Áed Ordnidhe mac Néill, Ard-rí na h'Éireann

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Áed Ordnidhe mac Néill, Ard-rí na h'Éireann

Also Known As: "High King of /Ireland/", "9444"
Birthdate: (69)
Birthplace: Ireland
Death: 819 (69)
Immediate Family:

Son of Niall Frossach mac Fergail, Ard-rí na h'Éireann and Dunlaith ingen Flaithbertaich, of the Cenél Conaill
Husband of Maedhb Ingen Indrechtach
Father of Máel Dúin mac Áeda Ó Néill, King Of Ailech; Niall Caille; Ordnide O'Niel; Land Ingen Aed; Fogartach and 2 others
Half brother of Colman mac Niall and Muirchertach mac Niall

Occupation: aka Aedh V `the Dignified'; 164th MONARCH of IRELAND; aka Aodh Oirdnide
Managed by: James Fred Patin, Jr.
Last Updated:

About Áed Ordnidhe mac Néill, Ard-rí na h'Éireann

Aed Oirdnide 795-817

Aed Oirdnide The Ordained 797-817 AD

by Judy Donnaly

Aed Oirdnide the Ordained m Niall Frossach m Fergal m Mael Duin of Cenel Eogain became hi king in 797. He was known as Aed O Neill.

He first devistated Meath at Druim Righ and it submitted to him.

Donall Midi's 2 sons where killed there Finsneacta m Follomain and Diarmaid Oder.

This was done only becauce they remained in contestation for the kingship.

In 793 this same year Inis Patrick near Dublin was burned by the gallaib [the Danes] who stole the shrines of St Doconna.

In 794 Clonard monastery was again burned.

A battle occured in Connact between themselves at Dun Ginbe.

Finnalibar of West Meath held a battle at Teathba where many chiefs of both sides were killed.

There was terrifing lighting ,whirlwind and thunder this year in both Ireland and England.

In 797 Aed went into Meath and divided it between the sons of Donnchad Mide, Concobar and Ailill.

This did not work as Concabar the following year killed his brother in battle and reunited the territory under himself.

This killing was at the battle of Ruba Conail in 798 at West Meath.

Hi [Iona} was burned by the Norse.

In 799 Aed took a great army into Leinster both laymen adn Clergy as a full muster which included all the soldiers of Ireland except Leinster.

This indicates the nature of his power as hi king with command of all the client tuaths and princes under him by agreements.

He had the power under the law of Patrick to command the monasterys to provide troops.

The Clergy however compained of this demand citing the ruling of Fotad of Canoine which had exempted the clergy of Ireland from expeditions and hostings. And complained to the king that they were free of being called to the 'rising out' on the basis of this award of Canoine.

This Proclaimation was one of the earliest statements of 'separation of church and state' which began:

'The church of the Living God let her alone, waste her not,

Let her right be apart, as best as ever was'

The entire poem and desire of the Proclaimation and award of Fotad is preserved in Trinity College Library ,Dublin.

Aed upheld the seaparation and accepted it and obsolved and released the clergy from there military obligations to provide troops to him .

And than went on to obtain his deamand from the Laigen in full which was the payment of the Boruma to the ONeill kings.

Finsneacta gave him hostages as well.

In March of that year just before the Feis of St Patrick there was in 799 a great wind, thunder and lightning.

Many were killed in this huricaine and the islands of the Atlantic off the coast of Clare were covered in sand and water.

In 800 Finsneachta m Ceallach King of Leinster entered religion and Aed went to Dun Cuan and divided his kingdom between Finsneactas two sons the two Muiedachs as he had unwisely and unsucessfully previously divided Meath between the sons of Donchad Midi.

The consept of an over king interfering in the affairs of a sub kingdom and its sucession was unheard of in Ireland and was not popular.

In 801 Hi [Iona] was again plundered by the Norse gallaib some 68 persons were killed of laity and clergy by them.

Finnachta m Ceallan took back th Leinster government from the 2 Muiredachs.

In Aeds 10th year 802 Sligo was attacked by the foreigners who burned Inis Muireadaigh Church and than sailed into Ros Comain.

in 803 Finsneacta who had been King of the Laigen and than entered religion when he was deposed by Aed died at Cill Dara.

A hosting came to Meath from Connact to aid Concobar m Donchad Midi m Domnall Midi at Tailten near the Sele [Blackwater] river.Aed came to protect the Meathmen and drove these invaders out of Meath as if they 'were goats and sheep' and burned Donchads holding in Meath.

In 804 Ulaid ws plundered by Aed O Neill after the profination of Patricks shrine by Duncha.

The Luigne in 805 killed 2 sons of Muirgeas m Tomaltach and Muirgeas laid waste of Leyne in vengance.

The Luigne had killed these two Tadg and Flaithnia because Muigeas has killed a son of theirs.

'It was I that struck the sword into the throat of Tadg afterward',

said one of Luignes heros whose son had been slain.

aed pg 2

A great deal of the internicine warfare rampant throughtout Christian Ireland rested just on these incursions of appling death as a remedy for all disruptions and desires from power to private quarrels rather than the pre christain solutions of eric and geis where a labor or fine was placed upon the perpetrator of a violation resulting in debt owed not only to the victim but his entire family and a geis prohibition of certain areas of funtion obeyed by the perpetrator.

In the Christian era the clann, family or kin ,when a member was killed or violated, returned in kind and above the same devistation on the party commiting the crime.

His entire country clann and tuath being punished.

Thus continued a complete divistation of the lands of those responsible as well as the innocent in a never ending cycle of violence.

The same pattern was repeated in the north of Ireland recently with 'the troubles'

The consept of retribution still glazing the restive peace.

In 706 the Fair of Tailtin was prevented by the monks of Tamlach because of the violation of termon lands at Tallaght Dublin by the O Neills.

This was accomplished when the monks of Tallagh seized the horses and chariots of the king.

The Church boycotted the Fair.

No one came.

Aed gave the clerics and their familys on the termon lands their full demand along with added gifts.

The termon lands which were occupied by tenants and family were grants to the monastaries and the occupying muinter were considered to be monks of the Church as well as laity.

The Cile-de {Cullde} came over the sea to Ireland without a vessel or boat to which this man preached to the Irish from a scroll given him from heaven.

After preaching in the day the Ceile De went southward across the sea.

A vision or apparation was the Culdee.

It was thought the Culdee an order forming around the preaching were druidic and retained some of these ancient conspets in the christain sect.

Other anomalies were recorded this year in that cake - probably meaning the communion wafer- flowed in blood when it was cut and that birds could speak with a human voice.

These were later regarded as warnings of the calamitous invasion of the Vikings in future.

In 812 the foreigners were coming regularly to Ireland and a slaughter was made of them by the Umhall Conmaicne [Conamara] in Galway.

An attach was made by the foreingners and many native people were killed .

At Rosscommon the Calraighe Luirg were slaughtered by the UI Briuin {connors}.

In West Meath the Cora Raode slaughtered the Ui Mic Uais decendants of Colla Uais.

The gallaib were killed by Cohtach m Mail Duin Lord of Loch Lein of Eoganact at Kerry Lakes of Kllrney.

There were paulpers in Ireland now numerous enought to be supported by the benificant Church of Christ.

In 808 In Mayo the foreigners came again.

The battle of Umhall was fought by the inhabitants and they were killed by the gallaib invaders along with their prince Flannbrat m Donadach.

In this year Aed conducted another invasion of Leinster but lost on the Liffe plain.

In 810 the 18th year of Aed Oirdnide a battle was fought beteen the Cenel Eogain his clann and the Cenel Conail.

In 811 Clonmacnoise was burned again as Fobren in the west was burned and plundered by the waring Irish or foriegners.

It is not known which.

In 812 Brega again fought with the Cianacta.

In 815 Aed went with his army to Dun Cuair in Meath to divide Leinster between the grandsons of Bran the Byrnes.

In this year Aeds brother Colmain was killed by Clan Conail.

It is said that Aed was ordained here in 804 at Dun Cuair Enfield by Condmail the Abott of Armagh and hence the upholder of Patrick law or Cain.

The ollams of Ireland and the bishops were considered equals by that time and upheld the ordination of ligitimate children to be kings and to be chosen by priests and elders of the Church.

It is noted that this approval in public of his right to be hi king and to be a ligitimate ruler gave the church additional temporal power.

During his 804 invasion of Leinster this church aknowlegement gave him leave to comply with the clerical wish to be free of military service to the king, and he freed the monastersy of their duty to provide troops.

Colum Cilles chief group went to Tara and cursed Aed o Neill but Aed had pursued these Church disidents causing them to flee from Louth to Munster.

He was an effective dynastic ruler.

From Christmas to Easter that year of 815 great snow and ice prevailed in Ireland freezing the rivers and putting horse drawn chariots on Loch Eagh.

Timber was being shipped from Connact to The east thrugh Lock Erne on ice.

There was much hail as well.

In 816 the battle of Rath Fearad Fort with the Ui Briuin vs the Ui Maine in Delbna Nuadat between the Suca[Such] and the Shannon at Athlone Rosscommain was held

.Cathal of ui Maine was killed .

The Ulidians fought amonghst themselves.

In 817 Aed devistated Cualainn and Leinster to Glen da Loch wasting the entire countryside.

Cenel Conail and Cenel Eogan again fought.

After 25 years as king Aed Oirdnide m Niall Frossach died at Ath da Fearta at Mag Conaille in penance.

He had been a champion of the Church and a good military leader of his client states.

He left the country generally outside of Leinster in good order under a form of law and respect and followed the precepts of his predicessors in creating stable rule.

Aed left a son Neall Caille as king of Ailech in the north.

This became the 34th hi king of Ireland.

Aed was the last king of the 8th Century covering the 700's.

tThis century produced 9 kings as compared to the previous 600's which had 10 of them.

Aed was succeeded in orderly sucession by Cobcobar m Donnchada Mide of the Clann Colmain Mar.


Early Irish Kings and Sucession, Bart Jaski, 2000, Four Courts Press, Portland Oregon

Irish Kings and High Kings, F J Byrne, 1973, Batsford Ltd, London

The Annals of Clonmacnoise, 1896, translated by Conell Mageoghagan

The Annals of Ireland J O Donnovan 1856, Hodges Smith and Co, Dublin

The High Kings of Ireland

Ireland was never conquered by the Romans. Instead the Irish helped hasten the end of Roman control over Britain by constantly raiding the British coastline, capturing slaves and booty. They were converted to Christianity by the Romano-British Saint Patrick in the mid-fifth century. Isolated from the chaos that swept Britain during the Anglo-Saxon invasion, Ireland was able to develop its own rich and prominent Christian culture. During the sixth century, Saint Columba followed in the footsteps of the Irish Scotti to spread the Celtic Church into Dal Riada (now Western Scotland).

Ireland was never politically unified enough to translate its religious and cultural influence into political power. There were some signs that unity would have eventually come, however. At various points in its later history, Ireland was united under the High Kings (Ard Ri), and, but for many incursions by Danes, Normans and the English, Ireland might have developed into a fully unified single kingdom in the same way as England had in the tenth century. The High Kings were nominally in charge, but in practice, descended as they were from the prominent Ulster Ui Neill / O'Neill Clan, the only territory under their command without dissent was Ulster.

The earliest rulers are often legendary, with little or no proof of their actual existence bar oral history. As such, where necessary, they are shown over a lilac-tinted background.



According to Ammianus Marcellinus, the Picts, Scotti, Saxons, and Attacotti attack Roman Britain in what seems to be a serious incursion.


The Barbarian Conspiracy sees attacks falling on Roman Britain from all sides, including from the Scotti.


379 - 405

Niall Noígillach of the Nine Hostages
Ruled from Tara. First non-legendary High King?


Attacks on the south coast of Britain by Niall are best associated with this year.

405 - 428

Dathi / Nath I

429 - 463

Lóeguire macNéill

463 - 483

Ailill Motl mac Nath I

483 - 507

Lugaid macLóeguiri O'Néill

c.480 - 550

During this period, the domination of the High Kings pressurised the Scoti, in the north and east of Ulster, into migrating to western Pictland. Once there, they founded the Dal Riada.

507 - 534

Muirchertach macErcae O'Néill/Muiredach
Dau. m Sawyl Penuchel, King of Dunoting. 

534 - 544

Tuathal Máelgarb macCorpri Cáech O'Néill

544 - 565

Diarmait macCerbaill O'Néill

565 - 566

Domnall macMuirchertaig O'Néill

565 - 566

Forggus macMuirchertaig O'Néill

566 - 569

Ainmere macSátnai O'Néill

569 - 572

Báetán macMuirchertaig O'Néill

569 - 572

Eochaid macDomnaill O'Néill

572 - 581

Báetán macNinnedo O'Néill

581 - 598

Aed macAinmerech O'Néill

598 - 604

Aed Sláine macDiarmato O'Néill

598 - 604

Colmán Rímid macBáetáin O'Néill
Rival claimant.

604 - 612

Aed Uaridnach macDomnaill O'Néill

612 - 615

Máel Cobo macAedo O'Néill

615 - 628

Suibne Menn macFiachnai O'Néill

628 - 642

Domnall macAedo O'Néill

642 - 654

Conall Cóel macMáele Cobo O'Néill

642 - 658

Cellach macMáele Cobo O'Néill

656 - 665

 Diarmait macAedo Sláine O'Néill
Joint ruler.

656 - 665

 Blathmac macAedo Sláine O'Néill
Joint ruler.

665 - 671

Sechnussach macBlathmaic O'Néill

671 - 675

Cenn Fáelad macBlathmaic O'Néill

675 - 695

Finsnechtae Fledach macDúnchada O'Néill

695 - 704

Loingsech macOengus O'Néill

704 - 710

Congal Cinn Magir macFergus Fánat O'Néill

710 - 722

Fergal macMáele Dúin O'Néill
And Cenél Ailech.

722 - 724

Fogartach macNéill O'Néill

724 - 728

Cináed mac Irgalaig

724 - 734

Flaithbbertach macLoingsig O'Néill
Died in 765.

734 - 743

Aed Allán macFergal O'Néill

743 - 763

Domnall Midi O'Néill

763 - 770

Niall Frossach macFergal O'Néill
Died in 778.

770 - 797

Donnchad Midi macDomnaill Midi O'Néill

797 - 819

Aed Oirdnide macNéill Frossach O'Néill

819 - 833

Conchobar macDonnchado Midi O'Néill

833 - 846

Niall Caille macAedo Oirdnide O'Néill

846 - 862

Máel Sechnaill macMáele Ruanaid O'Néill
King of Mide.

879 - 916

Flann Sionna macMáele Sechnaill O'Néill
King of Mide.

862 - 879

Aed Findliath macNéill Caille O'Néill
Cenél Ailech.

916 - 919

Niall Glúndubh macAedo Findliath O'Néill
Cenél Ailech.

919 - 944

Donnchad Donn macFlann O'Néill

944 - 950

Ruaidrí ua Canannáin
Rival claimant.

944 - 956

Congalach Cnogba macMáel Mithig O'Néill

956 - 980

Domnall macMuirchertaig O'Néill

980 - 1002

Máel Sechnaill macDomnaill O'Néill

1002 - 1014

Brian Bóruma macCennétig / Brian Boru
King of Munster (976-1014).


Brian Boru defeats the Dublin Norse at the Battle of Clontarf, but dies in the process, destroying Irish unity.

1014 - 1022

Máel Sechnaill macDomnaill O'Néill

1022 - 1064

Donnchad MacBrian
King of Munster (1022?-1064).

1064 - 1072

Diarmait MacMáil na mBó
King of Leinster.

1072 - 1086

Toirdelbach O'Brien
King of Munster.

1090 - 1121

Domnall macArdgar O'Lochlainn O'Néill
Cenél Ailech.

1121 - 1135

Toirrdelbach macRuaidrí na Saide Buide ua Conchobair / Turlogh
King of Connacht (1106-1156).


1141 - 1150

Toirrdelbach macRuaidrí na Saide Buide ua Conchobair / Turlogh
King of Connacht (1106-1156).

1150 - 1166

Muirchertach macNéill macLochlainn / Murtagh
Cenél Ailech (1136-1166).

1166 - 1175

Ruaidrí macToirrdelbaig
King of Connacht (1156-1183).

1175 - 1258

Ruidri is the last of the High Kings. Henry II of England now styles himself 'Lord of Ireland'.

1258 - 1260

Brian Catha an Duin

1260 - 1316

English rule is restored.

1316 - 1318

Edward de Bruce


English rule is restored.



Henry VIII of England raised Ireland from a lordship to a kingdom and assumes the title King of Ireland.

1579 - 1583

The Second Desmond Rebellion against England is put down.

1594 - 1603

The Nine Years' War between England and Irish rebel Hugh O'Neill ends with the surrender of the Irish.



The United Irishmen rebel against British rule in Ireland, but despite French help they are defeated.


The Act of Union joins Ireland with Britain.



A Home Rule for Ireland Bill is passed, but immediately suspended upon the outbreak of World War I.

1916 - 1918

The Easter Rising in Dublin and a declaration of an Irish Republic in 1916 leads to the proclamation being ratified by the Irish parliament in 1918.

1921 - 1922

The British government legislates to establish Ireland as an autonomous region of the United Kingdom, terming the twenty-six counties of the south as, appropriately, Southern Ireland.


Following the Anglo-Irish Agreement, the Irish Free State is a dominion in the British Commonwealth. Irish nationalist leader Michael Collins, head of the Irish Free State, is killed by militant Republicans.


The Irish Free State is abolished as a state which is called simply Ireland comes into being with a new constitution on 29 December, although it is still represented internationally by the British monarchy as an instrument of Irish policy.


The Republic of Ireland is declared with a president at its head, but the six protestant counties of Northern Ireland remain part of Britain.



Áed mac Néill (died 819) commonly called Áed Oirdnide, was King of Ailech. A member of the Cenél nEógain dynasty of the northern Uí Néill, he was the son of Niall Frossach. Like his father, Áed was reckoned High King of Ireland.[1] He was King of Ailech from 788 onwards and High King of Ireland from 797.

In 819 Áed died near Áth dá Ferta in the territory of Conaille Muirtheimne in modern County Louth.[27]

Family Áed had married Euginis ingen Donnchada (died 802), daughter of Donnchad Midi.[35] His son Niall Caille (died 846) was later king of Ailech and High king of Ireland. Another son Máel Dúin mac Áeda was also a King of Ailech.[36]

Called Hugh the Dignified; he died in battle.


Aodh Ordnigh

King of Aileach and Prince of Ulster, Ireland.

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