When Maurice FitzGerald decided to assist the deposed King of Leinster in his invasion of Ireland, he cannot have possibly imagined how potent a force his descendants would become over the next seven hundred years. From the Machiavellian pragmatism of Garret Mor to the doomed rebellion of Silken Thomas and the flight of the Wizard Earl, the Kildare FitzGeralds have always been a dynasty of consequence. In the 18th century, a new age of respectability saw the family head elevated in the Peerage as Duke of Leinster. But even in those times, scandal was not far away as the Duke’s son Lord Edward Fitzgerald became embroiled in the Rebellion of the United Irishmen. The outbreak of the Great War in 1914 was ultimately followed by tragedy and ruin, fostered by a compulsive heir whose passion for fast living almost wiped out the Fitzgerald fortunes forever.

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