Open main menu


O'TOOLE, BRYAN (d. 1825), lieutenant-colonel, entered as cornet in a regiment of hussars raised by Frederick, baron Hompesch, in 1792, and served with it, under the Duke of Brunswick, in the first campaign of that year in Champagne, including the taking of Verdun and the attack on Thionville. Next he was present at the battle of Jemappes, and afterwards under the Prince of Condé at Neerwinden, at the blockades of Condé and Maubeuge, and battle of Charleroi. He then joined the army under the Duke of York, and commanded a squadron of Hompesch at Boxtel and Nimeguen, and in the winter retreat of 1794-5 from the Waal to Bremen. On arriving in England he was appointed captain-lieutenant in one of the regiments of the Irish brigade, then in British raj, and on 25 March 1796 was made captain in the Hompesch hussars, with which he went to the West Indies. Frederick, baron Hompesch, had then two corps in British pay — one hussars, the other rifles (see Parl. Ret. of Foreign Corps, 1796). O'Toole served with the Hompesch hussars in San Domingo, and returned home with the skeleton remains of the corps in 1797 (cf. G. R. Gleig, The Hussar of the authentic story of a soldier of the corps, afterwards an inmate of Chelsea). O'Toole was appointed to a troop in a new corps, Hompesch's mounted riflemen, with which he served in Ireland in 1798, and was ? resent at Vinegar Hill and Ballinahinch. [e was placed on half-pay when the corps was disbanded in 1802. He was brought in as captain in the 39th foot in 1803 ; was aide-de-camp to Major-general Broderick in the expedition to Naples in 1805, and to Sir Gralbraith Lowry Cole [q. v.] in the expedition to Calabria and battle of Maida in 1806 ; was made brevet major in 1808 ; was present as major of a light battalion at the capture of Ischia in 1809 ; and was major commanding the Calabrian free corps, in British pay, dur- ing Murat's threatened invasion of Sicily in 1810. He resigned his command to accompany the 39th to the Peninsula as captain, and was appointed major in the 2nd Portuguese cacadores, with which he was present at Ciudad Rodrigo, Badajos, Salamanca, capture of Madrid, and siege of Burgos and subsequent retreat. On 21 June 1813 he was appointed lieutenant-colonel, and received command of the 7th cacadores in Sir Lowry Cole's division, and was present with it at the battle of Vittoria, blockade of Pampeluna, and the battles in the Pyrenees. During his Peninsular service O'Toole lost the use of one arm. He was placed on half-pay of the Portuguese officers in 1816. He was made OB. on 4 June 1815, and had the gold cross for Ciudad Rodrigo, Salamanca, Vittoria, and the Pvrenees. He died at Fairford, co. Wexford, 27 Feb. 1825.

[Army Lists; Gent. Mag. 1825, i. 567-7. For particulars of the campaigns in Sicily and the Peninsula see Bunbury's Narrative of Passages in the late War, and Napier's Peninsular War, revised edit.]

H. M. C.