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Battle of Clontarf

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Date: 1014 to 1014
Location: Irelandmap
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The Battle of Clontarf in 1014

The Battle of Clontarf (Cath Chluain Tarbh) was fought on 23 April 1014 near Dublin between Brian Boru, High King of Ireland, and the allied forces of Sigtrygg Silkbeard, King of Dublin and Máel Sechnaill mac Domnall supported by Máel Mórda mac Murchada, King of Leinster Following the marriages of Dúnflaith and Gormflaith will help to understand the highly complex political network that influenced the careers of their spouses and sons. [1]

Amlaíb Cuarán (Olaf I Sitricsson) was married to Gormflaith the daughter of Murchad mac Macfinn king of Leinster

Brian Boru of the Dál Cais in County Clare (Munster) was expanding his territory and influence

He clashed with the high king of Ireland, Máel Sechnaill of the Uí Néill; King of Mide & High King of Tara

980 - Máel Sechnaill defeated Amlaíb Cuarán in the Battle of Tara

c. 981 Amlaíb Cuarán died - Máel Sechnaill married his widow, Gormflaith.

997 - Brian Boru made a treaty with Máel Sechnaill. They divided Ireland between them.

998 - Brian Boru took on Sigtrygg Silkbeard, King of Dublin & defeated him and forced Sigtrygg Silkbeard to recognise their over-lordship by giving hostages (Sigtrygg Silkbeard was the son of Amlaíb Cuarán & Gormflaith - (Sigtrygg Silkbeard was married to Sláine, daughter of Brian Boru)

999 - Sigtrygg Silkbeard allied with his uncle, Máel Mórda mac Murchada

999 - Máel Mórda and Brian Boru fight in the Battle of Glenmama

1002 - Máel Sechnaill submited to Brian Boru

Gormflaith, the mother of Sigtrygg Silkbeard then married Brian Boru (their son Donnchad later becomes King of Munster & claims High Kingship of Ireland)

c. 1010 - Brian Boru divorced Gormflaith, the mother of Sigtrygg Silkbeard

Gormflaith is said to have incited her brother Máel Mórda mac Murchada to rebel against Brian Boru (Cogadh Gáedhel re Gallaibh - The War of the Irish (Gaedhil) with the Foreigners (Gaill) ie Vikings- twelfth-century propaganda, glorifying Brian Boru)

1013 - Sigtrygg Silkbeard, rebelled against Brian Boru, supported by Máel Mórda mac Murchada, King of Leinster and forces from Scandinavia, the Orkneys & Hebrides campaigned against Brian Boru - (Máel Mórda mac Murchada was the brother of Sigtrygg Silkbeard’s mother, Gormflaith)

Culmnating in the Battle of Clontarf, April 23rd, 1014

The army of Brian Boru won the battle - Brian Boru &Máel Mórda were killed.

Sigtrygg Silkbeard survived to rule Dublin (following the Norman invasion, he died in exile in 1042)

Máel Sechnaill was once again High King of Tara, he died in 1022.

Sources

  1. The Socio - Political Networks of Sitric Silkenbeard - The Foreign Kings of Dublin 980 to 1054 pdf by Kristen Mercier




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