Teige Mac Murrough O'brien, first sheriff of Thomond

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Teige Mac Murrough O'brien, first sheriff of Thomond

Death: 1577
Inchiquin, County Clare, Ireland
Immediate Family:

Son of Eleanor fitz John
Husband of Honora O'brien, l
Father of Honora Bourke

Managed by: Stanley Welsh Duke, Jr.
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Teige Mac Murrough O'brien, first sheriff of Thomond

Teige or Tadhg Mac Murrough O’Brien died at Inchiquin, Ireland on 12 December 1577.

Parents: son of Murrough O'Brien, 1st Earl of Thomond (d. 1551) and Eleanor fitz John or Fitzgerald ( d. after 11 March 1549)


  1. Honora O'Brian (note: The History of the O'Briens says p 127 he married More. Elsewhere Honora is



  1. Turlough O'Brian, b. 1569 died at Ballingowe, 12th July, 1584
  2. Honora O'Brian b. 1570
  3. Slany O'Brien b. 1575
  4. Amy O'Brien b. 1578


He was politically and military active as an opponent of the Tudor reconquest of Ireland. Between 1570 and 1571 he was the first sheriff of Thomond.

Biographical Summary

Teige Mac Murrough O’Brien was “the first sheriff of Thomond”—say the Four Masters—in face of which fact, Lenihan’s “History of Limerick,” p. 99, makes Sir Donnell O’Brien sheriff the previous year, and the “Sheriffs’ Entries” in Dublin Castle give, under 1376, Clement Laragh, of Athenry—the latter, doubtless, a mere nominal honour, as the king’s writ did not run in Clare in the days of Brien “of the Battle of Enagh,” the burner of Limerick. Teige prepared provisions for the President of Connaught, who purposed holding a session in Ennis Abbey, and sent to Clare Castle for the Earl of Thomond; the latter, finding that his uncle Donnell was coming to the session, attempted to capture him; a riot ensued, and the President, escorted by the sheriff, fled to Gort. In 1573 the same Donnell urged Teige MacMurrough against the earl and his brother Turlough; the former was absent, but Teige McConor, aided by the Fitzgeralds and Butlers, marched against Teige MacMurrough and the northern tribes. They mustered near Clare Castle, and thence ravaged Kinel Fermaic, “along the stone road of Corofin and Boher-na-mic-righ, and some of the people carried the utensils and spoils out of the church of Kill Inghine Baoith (Kilnaboy), but this profanation of the saint (Inniwë) boded no good to the arms of the Dalgais;” they marched with standards flying past Teige MacMurrough’s Castle of Ballingown, and found the northern army on Balanchip Hill. The southerners toiled up its steep sides, getting into worse confusion every minute, seeing which the marshals lost their presence of mind, and all fled in disorder to Inagh. Turlough and twelve men barely escaped to Caherrush (whose foundations, almost washed by the sea, are visible south of Miltown Malbay); Teige McConor was captured with much arms, horses, and cattle, “and the wolves of the forest, the ravens and carrion crows, and ravenous birds were noisy over the bodies of the nobles slain in battle.”[2]

Teige MacMurrough seems to have spent the remaining four years of his life in peace. He died at Inchiquin, Dec. 12th, 1577;[3] his son, Turlough, being then aged seven. The latter died at Ballingowe, 12th July, 1584;[4] being in wardship of Elizabeth, he was succeeded by his three sisters, Honora,[5] Any,[6] and Slany ni Brien.



  1. [S37] Charles Mosley, editor, Burke's Peerage, Baronetage & Knightage, 107th edition, 3 volumes (Wilmington, Delaware, U.S.A.: Burke's Peerage (Genealogical Books) Ltd, 2003), volume 1, page 973. Hereinafter cited as Burke's Peerage and Baronetage, 107th edition.


  1. “Calendar of State Papers, Ireland,” pp. 449, 478.
  2. “Annals of the Four Masters.”
  3. Inquisitions at Ennis, 4th June, 22 Eliz.; 26th July, 1578. These Inquisitions are all from MSS. R.I.A., 14, c. 2, 3, 4.
  4. Inquisition, 16th Jan., 1584.
  5. Inquisition, 8th August, 1612, of Richard Wingfield and Honora, his wife, co-heir of Teige MacMurrough.
  6. Inquisition at Ennis, 2nd October, 1621.
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Teige Mac Murrough O'brien, first sheriff of Thomond's Timeline

County Galway, Connaught, Ireland
County Clare, Ireland