Flight of the Wild Geese

Wed, 10/03/1691

The term 'Wild Geese' had been used to describe those Irish serving in European armies since the 16th century. The incident known as the 'Flight of the Wild Geese' refers to the 12,000 Irish Jacobite soldiers, commanded by General Lord Lucan, better known as Patrick Sarsfield, who left Ireland for France as agreed in the military articles of the Treaty of Limerick ending the Williamite War in Ireland. The Wild Geese formed King James’s army in exile. This force was in addition to the French Army’s Irish Brigade but by the end of the Nine Years War in 1697, the survivors of the Jacobite Irish Army were incorporated into the French Army’s Irish Brigade.