Ireland in the aftermath of Cromwell and Catholicism and Irish nationalism became inexorably linked as Ireland’s dominant religion is banned and its priests outlawed. The Priest Hunters provides a fascinating investigation into the Penal Era, one of the darkest in Irish history, when a breed of brutal, greed-driven men emerged to hunt down those Catholic clergy for bounty. Blending tales of heroism, fear, hatred, bigotry, violence, and ultimately, redemption, the book explores many of the most sinister episodes of that time and also delves deeper into the lives of four of the most infamous priest hunters – Sean na Sagart, Edward Tyrrell, Barry Lowe and John Garzia. Sean naSagart was an Irishman who was been condemned to death for horse stealing but was reprieved on condition he become a priest hunter. Edward Tyrrell was an English mercenary driven solely by greed and lust. Barry Lowe indulged in such acts as tying a priest behind his horse and dragging him through the brush. John Garzia, who had fled the Spanish Inquisition, arrived in Ireland and evidently sought revenge hunting down priests.
An incredible account of some of the most hated men in Ireland.