Thirty-fourth Hugh M Fitzpatrick Lecture in Legal Bibliography

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Dr Hiram Morgan, School of History, University College Cork
‘Certain Considerations’: Sir Francis Bacon and policy-making in Ireland under Elizabeth and James

Hiram Morgan is Senior Lecturer at the School of History, University College Cork, and is currently head of CELT, the world’s largest website for Irish Studies which is hosted there. He obtained his BA and PhD at Cambridge. He has authored Tyrone’s Rebellion (1993) and edited Political Ideology in Ireland, 1541-1641 (1999), Information, Media and Power through the Ages (2001) and The Battle of Kinsale (2004). He co-authored with John Barry Great Deeds in Ireland (2013) and worked with Dorothy Convery on Ireland 1518 (2015). He has held various research fellowships and has been a principal investigator on several local, national and international projects. He has contributed many peer-reviewed articles and was co-founder of History Ireland, Ireland’s popular history magazine.

Chairman: Senator Michael McDowell, Senior Counsel
Welcome: Professor Anne Fuchs, FBA, MRIA, Director, Humanities Institute
Respondent: Dr Eamon O’ Flaherty, Associate Professor, UCD School of History
De Búrca Rare Books
Dr Mona B McGarry


Hiram Morgan's paper examines the impact that Sir Francis Bacon (1561–1626), the English scientist, jurist and politician, had on Irish policy during the Elizabethan and Jacobean periods. Bacon, who eventually became Lord Chancellor of England before retiring to write his scientific works, never came to Ireland but his interventions here are of some importance. Morgan’s contribution to the Hugh M Fitzpatrick Lectures in Legal Bibliography series takes its rise from a range of documents in manuscript and in Bacon's collected works, beginning with his famous 'Certain considerations touching the Plantation in Ireland' written to advise King James in 1609 about colonizing Ulster. It seeks to show how Bacon sought to influence key ministers such as Essex, Cecil and Buckingham and how in turn from his position in the English legal establishment he sought to influence laws and judicial appointments in Ireland.