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Russell, Patrick (1629-1692) (DNB00)


RUSSELL, PATRICK (1629–1692), archbishop of Dublin, son of James Russell of Rush, co. Dublin, was born in that parish in 1629. It is probable that he was educated for the priesthood and held preferment abroad prior to his election as archbishop of Dublin on 2 Aug. 1683. The first two years of his archiepiscopate were full of danger. He was frequently obliged to retire to Rush and seek concealment in the house of his kinsman, Geoffrey Russell. In 1685, however, the accession of James II was followed by a suspension of the penal laws. Russell seized the opportunity of restoring the discipline of the church. For this purpose he convened two provincial assemblies in 1685 and 1688, and three diocesan synods in 1686, 1688, and 1689. He signed the petition presented to James by the catholic bishops of Ireland on 21 July 1685, praying him to confer on Tyrconnel authority to protect them in the exercise of their ministry, and took an active part in appointing delegates to suggest to the king the best methods for securing religious liberty. James granted him a pension of 200l. a year.

During James's residence in Ireland Russell was in personal attendance on him, and performed the services of the church in the royal presence. On the flight of James he lay concealed for some time in the country, but was ultimately captured and imprisoned. He was temporarily released on bail, but again arrested, and, it is said, thrown into an underground cell. He succumbed to these hardships, and died in prison on 14 July 1692. He was buried in the churchyard at Lusk.

[Renehan's Collections on Irish Church Hist. i. 229; D'Alton's Archbishops of Dublin, p. 446; Moran's Spicilegium Ossoriense, ii. 271, 280, 295.]

E. I. C.