Presentation on theme: "Ireland in Schools study unit Should we call Grace O’Malley a pirate? Story for Lesson 2 Activity 1 The story of Grace O’Malley."— Presentation transcript:
Ireland in Schools study unit Should we call Grace O’Malley a pirate? Story for Lesson 2 Activity 1 The story of Grace O’Malley
Grace O’Malley was one of the most successful pirates ever to sail the seas off the west coast of Ireland. She had lots of ships and over 200 men. She robbed any ship that dared to sail through waters she ruled.
According to the English, Grace 'has not acted like a woman and has caused a lot of problems as chief commander and director of thieves and murderers at sea. She has thieved from this part of Ireland'.
Grace also traded as far away as Spain where she sold fish and cows’ hides [skins]for wine, salt and iron. She was at sea so much that her youngest son was born aboard ship in 1567. Grace had a very exciting life. Many stories are told about the adventures she had. Here are four of them.
Grace had a very exciting life. Many stories are told about the adventures she had. Here are four of them.
Why she was called Grace the Bald Even though she had long, dark hair, Grace is often called Grace the Bald. It is said that when Grace was a young girl, she asked her father could she sail with him. He refused to take her, because she was a girl.
However, Grace was determined to go with him, so she cut off all her hair and dressed in boys’ clothes. She went back to her father and said, ‘Now will you take me?’ We don’t know what her father answered. What do you think he said?
How Grace showed that she was strong When Grace was sixteen years old, she married her first husband, a chieftain called Donal O’Flaherty. He was always fighting. Donal captured a small castle from his neighbours, the Joyces. Donal fought so fiercely that he was given a new nickname Donal the Cock. The castle was renamed Cock’s Castle.
Shortly afterwards, in 1565, Donal was killed by the Joyces when he was out in the mountains. Luckily, some of his men managed to return to the castle to warn Grace. The Joyces thought that it would be easy to get their castle back.
They were wrong. Grace and her men fiercely defended the castle and won. The Joyce’s ran away liked scared rabbits. The castle’s name was changed to Hen’s Castle to show how brave Grace was. What does this story tell us about Grace?
How she taught Lord Howth lesson Many years later, in 1576, Grace's galleys landed at Howth near Dublin. At that time, Irish chieftains offered food and shelter to other chieftains who were travelling through their lands.
When Grace went to Howth Castle to be welcomed as a guest. Imagine her surprise and anger when they would not even let her in. She was furious.
On her way back, Grace came upon the son of the lord playing with his friends. She kidnapped the boy and sailed off with him. Lord Howth was very upset when he found out what had happened.
He went to see Grace and offered a lot of money to get his son back. Grace did want not money. What she wanted was to teach Lord Howth a lesson he would never forget.
She made him promise that the gates of Howth Castle would never again be closed to anyone looking for food and shelter and that promised an extra place would always be laid at the dinner table in Howth Castle to remind the people of the castle of how badly they had treated Grace. Only then did Grace give the lord back his son.
To this day, there is always an extra place at the dinner table in Howth Castle. Do you think Grace behaved properly?
How did Grace try to deal with her biggest enemy? Sir Richard Bingham was a very important man in Ireland. He had been sent to the west of Ireland by the Queen of England to control the Irish. Grace and Bingham were deadly enemies. He made life very difficult for Grace, taking her lands and cattle.
Once, locked her away in jail. Grace became so angry that, in 1593, she wrote to Queen Elizabeth I to complain about Bingham and his nasty ways. What do you think Grace wrote?
Elizabeth agreed to see Grace. She was probably curious to meet this Irish woman who had caused the English in Ireland so much trouble. Queen Elizabeth must have liked Grace because she ordered Bingham to return the lands and cattle which he had taken from her.
Grace returned to home only to find Bingham had not changed his ways. She died about ten years later.