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Gerald FitzGerald, 5th Earl of Kildare

Gerald FitzGerald, 5th Earl of Kildare

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Gerald FitzMaurice FitzGerald, 5th Earl of Kildare (died 16 October 1432) was an Irish peer. Kildare was the son of Maurice FitzGerald, 4th Earl of Kildare and Elizabeth Burghersh.


Kildare served as Justiciar of Ireland in 1405. In 1407 he defeated the O'Carrol clan at Kilkenny. About 1418 he emerged as a leading opponent of the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, John Talbot, 1st Earl of Shrewsbury. Together with Christopher Preston, 2nd Baron Gormanston, he was accused of treasonable correspondence with Thomas Le Boteller, the Prior of the Order of Hospitallers at Kilmainham, imprisoned and threatened with forfeiture of his titles and estates. No plausible evidence of treason was produced against either Kildare or Gormanston, and they were released and restored to their estates. It is unlikely that either of these elderly pillars of the Anglo-Irish establishment were guilty of anything more serious than opposition to Shrewsbury's policies.

He died in 1410 and was buried at the Grey Abbey at Kildare.


Kildare married, firstly, Margaret Rocheford, daughter of Sir John Rocheford. Their children included:

  • Thomas FitzGerald, died before his father without issue.
  • Lady Joan FitzGerald d. Jul 1452, married James Butler, 4th Earl of Ormonde

He married secondly, Agnes Darcy, daughter of Philip Darcy, 4th Baron Darcy de Knayth and Elizabeth Gray. Their children included:

  • Elizabeth FitzGerald, who married John Grey, 2nd Baron Grey of Codnor.

Since his son predeceased him the title should have passed to his brother John, de jure 6th Earl, although his son-in-law, the Earl of Ormonde, also claimed the title in right of his wife, Elizabeth. The dispute was finlly resolved in favour of John's son Thomas FitzGerald, 7th Earl of Kildare.

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