Thomas, 10th Earl of Ormond and Earl of Ossory
Piers grandson, Thomas (1531-1614), also inherited these titles. Thomas was the eldest of seven sons of James, the ninth earl, who had died prematurely just four
years after coming into his inheritance. Like his father, Thomas had spent much of his youth at court in England. He was to become one of the most powerful figures in Irish politics of the period, holding several high offices of State and continuing to serve the Queen. Thomas had been married, firstly to Elizabeth Berkley (d.1582), and secondly Elizabeth Sheffield (d. 1600), but was still without a legitimate male heir when, in 1601, he took a third wife, Helen Barry (d. 1640). Thomas’ only son-in-law, Theobald, Viscount Thurles, was designated as heir, but predeceased him in 1613. This was to lead to another round of serious complications in the Ormond inheritance.