The Butler Lordship in the 15th Century
James (1390-1452), 4th Earl of Ormond, also a magnate and administrator, was a major figure in Ireland where he served as chief governor for long periods. The fourth earl’s three sons by his first marriage succeeded him as earls of Ormond, although their interests were engaged mainly in England where a bitter civil war (the Wars of the Roses) was in progress.
James (1420-61), 5th Earl of Ormond, succeeded his father and lived out his life in England where he was also created earl of Wiltshire. The fifth earl was executed in 1461 for his part in the civil war there. His two brothers – John (d.1478), who also died in England and Thomas (d.1515), who was reputed to be ‘one of the richest subjects in the Kingdom’ – succeeded him.