Gerald Fitzpatrick

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Fitzpatrick (disambiguation) The surname Fitzpatrick is the translation of Mac Giolla Phádraig from the original Irish to English. It is the only surname with the Fitz prefix of native Gaelic-Irish origin. All others are of Hiberno-Norman descent. Giolla Phádraig (the devoted of St. Patrick) was King of Ossory, a kingdom in Leinster in Ireland. According to Carrigan, this kingdom was founded by Aengus Osrith who flourished some time about the latter half of the second century of the Christian era. Giolla Phádraig's reign commenced some eight centuries later in 976 AD and he reigned until he was slain in 996 AD. His sons were styled Mac Giolla Phádraig (son of Giolla Phádraig). As part of the colonisation of Ireland by England, natural Irish names had to be restyled in the English format. Mac Giolla Phádraig was anglicised as Fitzpatrick. By far the most important branch of the sept is the family whose Chief was known as Lord of Upper Ossory. At one time he was almost royal ruler over Laois and neighboring Kilkenny. Following the Norman invasion in the late 12th century, their power was vastly diminished by the ascendancy of the Ormond Butlers and other Hiberno-Norman magnates. Although their patrimony was restricted to Upper Ossory, the Fitzpatricks were by no means dispossessed of all their property. They were one of the original great Irish families to submit to Henry VIII, and as a result, in 1541, Brian, the first to assume the surname Fitzpatrick in place of Mac Gìolla Phádraig, was created Lord Baron of Upper Ossory. In the 17th century, the Fitzpatricks lost considerable territory through their staunch support of James II. Nevertheless, the head of the sept received a peerage in 1714. Records from 1878 show that no less than 22,000 acres (89 km²) of the finest land in Ossory was owned by the family. The clan name is found throughout the world and several individuals and families have been prominent. Apart from the Lords and Earls of Upper Ossory, also prominent was Brian Mac Giolla Phádraig (1585–1652), Vicar Apostolic of Ossory, who was murdered by Cromwellian soldiers. He was instrumental in saving the "Book of the O'Byrne", which he had transcribed, from destruction. The family of Sir Percy Fitzpatrick made a major contribution to the political formation of South Africa. Major Thomas (Broken-Hand) Fitzpatrick, from Cavan, Indian Agent to the Sioux, Cheyenne and Arapaho tribes brought peace to the Plains Indians of North America in 1851 at Fort Laramie. Patrick Fitzpatrick (1792–1865) was a trusted colleague of Daniel O'Connell. Fitzpatricks have also contributed, with significant influence and success, in high office in Ireland, England, Canada, India, Australia and the United States. There is a concentration of Fitzpatricks in County Laois, and the border counties of Ireland, such as Cavan, Fermanagh, Armagh, Meath and especially County Down. The Fitzpatrick motto - Fortis sub Forte Fatiscet - can be interpreted as "The strong will yield to the strong." A second motto, "Ceart ládir abú" translates to "Right and Mighty Forever".

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