Acts affecting property in Ireland: the Acts of Settlement and Explanation

These lists are not intended to be comprehensive, but to give an outline of the mid-1600s laws which transferred much land-ownership in Ireland from (mainly Roman Catholic) inhabitants to (mainly Protestant) settlers.

Acts of the Parliament of Ireland in the time of Charles the Second

These Acts are referenced by the year in which they received Royal Assent:

  Act of Settlement 1662 (Parliament of Ireland: 14-15 Charles II c 2)
  "An Act for the better execution of his Majesties gracious declaration for the settlement of his kingdom of Ireland, and satisfaction of the several interests of adventurers, souldiers and other his subjects."
  This Act incorporates the King's Declaration dated 30 Nov 1660 and its attached Instructions (226 of them), setting up and instructing a Commission to deal with matters of land ownership. Clause VI of the Declaration deals with illegality of the "pretended" Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum by explicitly overruling "strict letter of the law", and by granting all land already in the possession of adventurers. The Doubling Ordinances are only supported to the extent that monies have already been paid.


  Act of Explanation 1665 (Parliament of Ireland: 17-18 Charles II c 2)
  "An Act for the explaining of some Doubts arising upon an Act intituled An Act for the better execution of his Majesties gracious declaration for the settlement of his kingdom of Ireland, and satisfaction of the several interests of adventurers, souldiers and other his subjects, and for making some Alterations of and Additions unto the said Act, for the most speedy and effectual Settlement of the said Kingdom."
  The Act has 234 Sections.

  Also relevant is a set of Rules issued on 9 April 1666 by the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland and his Council, to resolve some doubts of the Commission.

The full text of the above Acts, and of the Rules, can be found in:
  The Statutes at Large, passed in the Parliaments held in Ireland
   Vol II  1634-1662 (incl Act of Settlement 1662, pp 239-348), Dublin 1786
   Vol III 1665-1698 (incl Act of Explanation 1665, pp 2-137; Rules 1666, pp 197-204), Dublin 1786.

This page was last updated 5 Sep 2016