Richard de Clare Pembroke, 2d earl of

Pembroke, Richard de Clare, 2d earl of, d. 1176, English nobleman, also known as Richard Strongbow. He went as an adventurer (1170) to Ireland at the request of the hard-pressed Dermot McMurrough, king of Leinster. Strongbow subdued much of E Ireland, including Dublin, in victories over Rory O'Connor, king of Connacht, and married Dermot's daughter. Henry II of England, although he had given permission for the earl's expedition, visited him in 1171 to claim the rich coastal cities and to receive Strongbow's homage for the fief of the interior of Leinster. Pembroke fought for Henry in Normandy and was rewarded by a grant of additional territory in Ireland. He then returned to Ireland as the king's governor. Badly defeated (1174) at Thurles, he was engaged in almost continuous fighting against the Irish until his death.

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