present, London, 30 July 1642; A True Relation of the taking of Mountjoy … by Col. Clotworthy, London Aug. 4, 1642; Hugh Reilly's Ireland's Case briefly stated, 1695; Benn's Hist. of Belfast; Ulster Journal of Archæology, vol. i.; Journals House of Commons, Irel.; Rinuccini's Embassy, transl. Hutton; Prendergast's Cromwellian Settlement; State Papers, Irel. Commonwealth, P. R. O., Dublin; Ludlow's Memoirs, ed. Firth; Hill's MacDonnells of Antrim, and Montgomery MSS.; Lowry's Hamilton MSS.; O'Callaghan's Hist. of the Irish Brigades; O'Kelly's Macariæ Excidium, ed. O'Callaghan; Hart's Index Expurgatorius Anglicanus; Notes and Queries, 1st ser. ii. 457, 4th ser. xii. 189, 237; Hist. MSS. Comm. 5th Rep. p. 413, 8th Rep. p. 497, 10th Rep. pt. i. p. 49, pt. v. pp. 140, 149, 154, 179, 180.]
O'NEILL, SHANE, surnamed an-diomais, or ‘the proud,’ lord of Tyrone (1530?–1567), was the eldest legitimate son of Con O'Neill, first earl of Tyrone [q. v.], by his wife Mary, daughter of Hugh Boy O'Neill, lord of Clandeboye. He was born apparently about 1530. He was fostered among the O'Donnellys, whence his title of ‘the Donnellyan,’ and in 1531, when a mere infant, was carried off by force from Baile-Ui-Dhonnghaile, now Castle Caulfeild, by Niall Og O'Neill. In the settlement of 1542, when his father was created Earl of Tyrone, he was probably, on account of his youth, passed over in favour of his supposed elder brother, Mathew, or Ferdorach O'Neill, or Kelly, created Baron of Dungannon. But being a man of overweening ambition, he refused to submit to his exclusion, and, on reaching manhood, he raised, with his father's connivance, a faction against the Baron of Dungannon. In 1551 government interfered, but Shane nevertheless succeeded in holding his own, though in one of the frequent skirmishes that took place, he narrowly escaped capture by the Baron of Dungannon. Government would have been glad to get hold of him ‘anywise,’ but Shane was too wary to allow himself to be entrapped as his father had been, and an attempt on the part of Sir Thomas Cusack in the spring of 1552 to reduce him by force proved equally unsuccessful. In December the Earl of Tyrone was restored, and things reverted to their old position.
One of the principal motives with the government in consenting to Tyrone's restoration was the expectation of obtaining the assistance of the O'Neills in expelling the Hebridean Scots from their settlements along the Antrim coast. But Shane, whose policy at this time tended to an alliance with the MacDonnells, not only refused when called upon by Sussex in 1556 to assist him, but actually joined his forces with those of James MacDonnell. The allies were defeated, and Shane sued for and obtained pardon. But he continued to intrigue with the Scots, and in the following year he lent underhand assistance to the MacDonnells against Sussex. The same year he expelled his father and the Baron of Dungannon who sought shelter in the English Pale, and at the instigation of Hugh O'Donnell he assembled a large army on the borders of Tyrconnel against Calvagh O'Donnell [q. v.] But he was utterly defeated by O'Donnell in the neighbourhood of Strabane, and Sussex, taking advantage of the opportunity, invaded Tyrone, and restored the earl and the Baron of Dungannon. He was again pardoned, but again in 1558 refused to assist Sussex against the Scots, and ‘dyd cruelly, wylfully, and trayterously murther his brother, the Baron of Dungannon, seke to repossesse himselfe of his father's and brother's estates, and … cause his men to pray and borne dyvers of the possessions of her Majesties true and good subjects in the Englysh pale.’
Notwithstanding his misdeeds, Elizabeth shortly after her accession authorised Sussex to recognise him as his father's legitimate successor. In taking this step she cannot have been unconscious of acting unjustly to the Baron of Dungannon; but her anxiety for peace, and the fact that Shane possessed the suffrages of his clan, and was already in quiet possession, led her to acquiesce in an arrangement which from the standpoint of government was repugnant to decency and honour. At the same time she insisted that Shane should acknowledge her authority, and submit his cause to her deputy, the Earl of Sussex. But Shane flatly refused even to meet Sussex until hostages had been given for his safety, though eventually he repaired to Dundalk, and, ‘after some proud and arrogant wordes spoken,’ consented to refer himself and his cause to her majesty's commissioners. He insisted, however, on the recognition of his claim to dispose of his urraghs or vassal chiefs as he pleased, which was the main point in contention, and Elizabeth, finding after a little time that he was likely to prove unmanageable, in August 1560 revoked her former decision, and authorised Shane's subjugation and the restitution of rights to Mathew's son Brian, the young baron of Dungannon, ‘being ye heyre in right.’ Preparations were accordingly made to invade his country. But he offered to submit, whereupon ‘therle of Kyldare was with others sent to parle with him, who concluded with hym upon artycles, whereunto he subscrybed, and was sworne to observe them, and to repaire with all spede