The O’Neill and O’Donnell as correspondents!

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A letter to a friend? Hugh O’Neill and Red Hugh O’Donnell were two of the last great Gaelic leaders, nobles, and generals, so a letter from them to Don Carlos must be a significant link with history. As this is Friday you now have an entire weekend to translate this, and I look forward to following your efforts. Marks will be awarded on Monday!

Collection: Mason Photographic Collection

Date: 1890-1910

NLI Ref: M46/5

You can also view this image, and many thousands of others, on the NLI’s catalogue at catalogue.nli.ie

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Owner: National Library of Ireland on The Commons
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 9280
thomasholmesmason thomasmayne thomashmasonsonslimited lanternslides nationallibraryofireland hughoneill redhughodonnell donegal tyrone letter latin doncarlos

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  • profile

    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 28/Aug/2020 08:57:08

    16 May, Anno 1596 was a Sunday !!

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    sharon.corbet

    • 28/Aug/2020 09:14:08

    This was an illustration in the 1895 edition of the Life of Hugh, Roe O'Donnell by Lughaigh O'Clery. The translation is given as: Most Serene Prince, We have written to your father, the mighty King, as well as haste would allow us, what we thought most necessary for us and our country. In this business we beseech your Highness to respond generously to the hopes which we entertain of his generous qualities, and set us down in the number of his clients, and help us mercifully, as is his wont in a cause so pious and just, namely the asserting of Catholic liberty and the delivering our country from the yoke of wicked tyrants ; and in this way obeying the majesty of God, he will save an infinite number of souls from the jaws of hell, gain them over to Christ, and either crush utterly the agents of Satan's wrath and the wicked disturbers of the Christian republic or compel them to return to wiser counsels. We beg God to grant your most serene Highness every blessing. From Lifford, May 16th, in the year 1596. [L.S.] Hugh O'Neill. [L.S.] Hugh O'Donnell.

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    sharon.corbet

    • 28/Aug/2020 09:44:10

    I'm a bit lost as to Don Carolo is, as I can't find a Spanish prince by that name, who was still alive in 1596. On the one hand, I may be just missing someone, but on the other hand, I did note that the prince is not actually named in the letter, and it's possible that someone mistakenly assumed that the letter was written to Don Carlos rather than Philip III.

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    Bernard Healy

    • 28/Aug/2020 09:54:51

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/scorbet Ah, now! You can't go cogging your Latin homework out of a history book! ;)

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    Bernard Healy

    • 28/Aug/2020 10:11:56

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/scorbet] I wonder if the answer is here: dib.cambridge.org/viewFullScreen.do?filename=a8702 Little is known of his immediate family other than that he was foster-brother to Cathal O'Connor, one of the O'Connors of Offaly, who fled to Spain and became known as Don Carolo. This O'Connor drowned trying to sail back to Ireland during the Nine Years' War. If it is intended for that Don Carolo, then the reference to the King being his father is more an honorific - suggesting a closeness to royalty and noble status - rather than saying that the King is literally his father. This is one era of Irish history that I wish I knew better.

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    sharon.corbet

    • 28/Aug/2020 10:41:50

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/bernardhealy I saw that, but I'm not entirely convinced - calling him "Most Serene Prince" seems a bit too much like lèse-majesté to me.

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    Bernard Healy

    • 28/Aug/2020 10:55:56

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/scorbet You're quite right. I should have looked at the text - it's clearly addressed at the bottom to "The Most Excellent and Supreme Prince, the Son of the King of Spain". I can't see how that could have been anyone other than the future Philip III, who, so far as I can tell, was never called 'Charles'. I suspect your theory of a mix-up is the case.

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    sharon.corbet

    • 28/Aug/2020 15:41:53

    For anyone less familiar with 16th Century Irish history, O'Neill and O'Donnell would be Hugh O'Neill, Earl of Tyrone and Hugh Roe O'Donnell, Lord of Tyrconnell and the letter would have been sent during the Nine Year's War. (I was not previously aware of the film, The Fighting Prince of Donegal. )

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    Seuss.

    • 28/Aug/2020 16:03:38

    European Royalty didn't start using "Serene Highness" until the mid 17th century. Before then it was used by the the leaders of leaders of the Republics of Genoa and Malta and the Order of Malta. Could this have been a letter to Martín Garzés, Grand Master of the Order of Malta (and a vassal of Philip II)?

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    sharon.corbet

    • 28/Aug/2020 16:32:08

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Here's a letter from Elizabeth I to Don Antonio de Crato, Pretender of Portugal which is addressed to "Serenissimo Prenicpe". I would also be inclined to think that Serene Prince isn't quite the same as "Serene Highness". And as https://www.flickr.com/photos/bernardhealy pointed out, this is clearly addressed to "The Most Excellent and Supreme Prince, the Son of the King of Spain".

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    Bernard Healy

    • 28/Aug/2020 19:31:29

    That’s a typo on my behalf. I meant to write SERENE for SUPREME. (I need to be more careful with MY homework!)

  • profile

    sharon.corbet

    • 28/Aug/2020 20:17:31

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/bernardhealy I admit I was wondering, but considering my ability to understand Latin normally involves trying to reverse-engineer French, I assumed you were correct!

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    John Spooner

    • 29/Aug/2020 12:34:39

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/ My education continues. I don't think I have ever come across the word 'cogging' before, and definitely not in the sense of copying, plagiarizing or (the word I might use in connection with Latin homework) cribbing. In the OED, the nearest definition is to cheat, originally at dice, which soon broadened to include cheating at cards, then to mean any sort of cheating or deceiving, including a citation from an 1873 slang dictionary 'to crib from another's book, as schoolboys often do. This is called "cogging over"'. But no citations after the late 19th century. So I looked to un the BNA to see if that gave any clues. Looking at the earliest examples in Irish newspapers (from the 18th century) it does indeed mean cheating at dice, then in the middle of the 19th there are 2 references to cogging in speeches as a "trick well known amongst school boys". Working backwards, all 17 instances of "cogging" in the 21st century meaning copying or plagiarizing are in Irish newspapers. I went back to 1950 in English newspapers and could find no instances (although I now also know all there is to know about cogging mills). Filed with naggin.

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    John Spooner

    • 29/Aug/2020 12:42:23

    And while we're at it - Irish 'cog' and Latin - Flann O'Brien (or probably more accurately Sergeant Pluck) in The Third Policeman uses 'cog' as an abbreviation of 'cognomen' (but I can't find the exact passage).

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    Bernard Healy

    • 29/Aug/2020 13:13:03

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/] Thank you! There’s a reference to it in this article. www.irishtimes.com/news/catching-the-blas-1.227460. I fear that my own copy of the Hiberno-English dictionary is probably in storage so I can’t check the word in detail, but I can say that when I was in school in the 80s & 90s, copying & cogging were the only words we used for that kind of cheating.

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    cargeofg

    • 29/Aug/2020 13:36:09

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/bernardhealy https://www.flickr.com/photos/johnspooner Like wise for me in the 70s when I was in secondary school. Can't remember having come across cogging it in Primary school. Now used here in Wales to describe wind turbines with a fault ie plenty of wind but blades only moving one blade width at a time. Similar to a incremental second hand on a watch.

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    Foxglove

    • 29/Aug/2020 14:31:05

    ego non video canum and I cogged this from the big book googlus

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    Bernard Healy

    • 30/Aug/2020 14:40:43

    I should mention that the O’Neill ended up in Rome & is buried in the Spanish church of San Pietro in Montorio. It’s a must-visit for any Irish history buffs in the Eternal City. I concelebrated Mass there in 2008 for the O’Neill’s 400th anniversary. www.historyireland.com/early-modern-history-1500-1700/san.... It’s worth noting that the tombstones of O’Neill & the other Irish chieftains are usually covered by a carpet.

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    eibhlin 1

    • 31/Aug/2020 22:34:59

    I did add a comment but its not where it should be, i.e. here.

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    eibhlin 1

    • 31/Aug/2020 22:45:47

    Having been to Simancas and I have a copy of the Catalogue, which includes a print of the above letter, the original being in the Archive at Simancas, I am curious about the discussion - who is Carlos apart from the suggestion that he is O'Connor Faily (I have been led to believe I too am one of those)? Can anyone provide some clarity????

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    Dr. Ilia

    • 03/Sep/2020 07:00:06

    Superb shot