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    An historic and unique silver Freedom Box given  to the High Sheriff of Dublin Frederick Darley (1764-1841) in 1799 the year after the 1798 Rebellion was defeated is to take pride of place next catalogue of London and Dublin based silver dealers L and W Duvallier.  A second box presented to Darley in October 1821, the year he gave the Williamite civic toast to King George IV during one of the King’s frequent visits to Ireland, is also included.  These two boxes have never been on the market before. They were acquired in London last week from a direct descendant of Frederick Darley.

    As High Sheriff Darley was one of the main men responsible for suppressing the rebellion in Dublin and the surrounding counties. Sir Jonah Barrington (1760-1834) relates how, on the occasion of an Anti-Union meeting in King’s County:  ” .. Darley the High Sheriff, and Major Rogers (acting of course under the instructions of Dublin Castle) placed two six pounders, charged with grape shot, opposite the Court house where the meeting was being held-bringing England’s logic to bear on the misguided ones who thought they could better know than England, what was for Ireland’s benefit.”

    Frederick Darley (1764-1841) architect, builder and stonecutter was joint Dublin city sheriff 1798-9. Elected an alderman in March 1800, he was Lord Mayor in 1808-09, and chief magistrate of the Dublin police from 1814. He was also a wide streets commissioner. Part of the ultra-conservative group that dominated the politics of Dublin Corporation at that time, he was a member of Dublin’s most fashionable Orange Lodge, L.O.L. No.176, founded in 1797. As an Orangeman he was opposed to the various attempts to put through catholic relief legislation during 1805-29.  Frederick Darley was married to Elizabeth Guinness, a sister of the brewery proprietor Arthur Guinness II.  The couple had 20 children.

    The 1799 freedom  box.

    The 1799 freedom box.

    The box presented in 1799.

    A detail of the box presented in 1799.

    The box presented in 1821.

    The box presented in 1821.

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