Conference to explore Limerick sieges

King John's Castle which is due to be taken over by Limerick City and County Council
King John's Castle
King John’s Castle

THE Thomond Archaeological and Historical Society will host a three-day international conference on the 17th-century sieges of Limerick.

The four sieges to be discussed are the 1642 siege of King John’s Castle by the Catholic Irish Confederacy in 1642, the Cromwellian siege of the city by Henry Ireton in 1651, and the two Williamite sieges in 1690 and 1691.

The conference at the Absolute Hotel from October 3 to 6 is part of Limerick’s City of Culture year and will explore the transition from medieval to modern siege techniques and the international flavour of the armed forces involved.

It will also examine the logistics of seventeenth century campaigning and the effects of this half century of siege activity on Limerick’s citizens, as well as giving detailed accounts of the four sieges themselves.

The conference commences with an afternoon tour of King John’s Castle, followed by a conference launch, a keynote lecture by Kjeld Hald Galster (formerly of the Royal Danish Defence College) and a wine reception unveiling local artist Ester Barrett’s painting ‘The Siege of Limerick’.

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Saturday’s conference will see eight invited speakers explore the four sieges, a conference dinner will follow in the evening.

Sunday, October 5 will see an optional morning walking tour of the walls of seventeenth century Limerick.

For more information, go to or email [email protected]