[IRISH PARLIAMENT]. Anno Regni Caroli Regis…At the Parliament begun and holden at Dublin, …And there it continued until the 18. Day of April 1635.

Dublin, Society of Stationers, printers to the King, 1636


Folio. Ff. (vii) 101. Black letter, some Roman. Woodcut royal arms to verso of tp, tp within architectural border of putti, sphinxes, swags, and royal iconography, large armorial woodcut of Thomas Wentworth 1st Earl of Strafford (1593-1641), Lord Deputy of Ireland. Ornamental headpieces and initials. Bookplate of Sir Henry Mainwaring Bt. (1726-1797) on pastedown, bookplate of Wigan Free Public Library to fly, blind stamp to lower outer corner of next two leaves, ex dono to next leaf of ‘Ph: Mainwaring militis’ with price 6s above. Book label to rear pastedown recording Mr. Thomas Roberts of Springfield Street, Wigan presenting the book (1902). Fly and first leaf frayed at fore edge, slight age yellowing, marginal ink marks to ff. 70-78. A good clean copy with good margins in contemporary calf with gilt panel and border, rebacked, scratched.

First edition of this record of the Parliament held at Dublin from 14th July 1634 until 18th April 1635 demonstrating the impositions against and the demands of Irish peoples during a time where Catholics were being increasingly subjugated. By Charles I’s ascension to the throne, the Reformation in Ireland had diminished the voices of the Roman Catholics in favour of the English Protestants. Prominent Irish Catholics sought to re-establish authority by seeking a number of reforms which were named The Graces. From 1632-1640 the Irish Parliament came up against the strong anti-Catholic will of English politicians like Thomas Wentworth, eventually resulting in the bloody Irish Rebellion of 1641. This fed into the Wars of the Three Kingdoms, and culminated in the regicide of Charles I and the Interregnum.

The statutes listed matters of concern like the restoration of defective titles, the ownership of lands and tenements and subsidies and grants from the English government. The protection and preservation of Irish peoples against outside forces is a key concern: one act is “for the better preservation of fishing” in a number of Irish counties in order to protect the livelihoods of local fishermen as well as securing various estates bestowed by Elizabeth, James and Charles against seizure. Also included are punishments for crimes including buggery, an act for forbidding people from marriage until their former wives or husbands have died, and an act to “avoyde and present divers misdeameanors in idle and lewd persons in barking of Trees” which prevents people digging up and stealing trees from orchards. The act “to prevent and reforme prophane swearing and cursing” declares any form of blasphemy or profanity illegal henceforth, and punishable either by a fine of twelve pence or three hours in the stocks.  The statutes reflect a growing unease and tension surrounding the security of Ireland and its inhabitants as well as a more general anti-criminal policy.

Provenance includes Sir Henry Mainwaring (1726-1797), Baronet, and Philip Mainwaring (1589-1661) of the Mainwarings of Over Peover in Cheshire. The Baronetcy was first created in 1660 by Charles II for Sir Henry’s great grandfather Sir Thomas Mainwaring (1623-1689), who was a prominent antiquary and politician. Philip Mainwaring, agent for Thomas Howard, secretary to the Lord Deputy Thomas Wentworth, and supporter of King Charles during the Civil War, was great-uncle to Thomas Mainwaring. An ancestor, Sir Randolf Mainwaring, was royal archer to Richard II and went to Ireland on the kings service.

ESTC S112080; Sweeney 2517
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