CORK, RICHARD BOYLE, IST EARL OF (I 566-1643 ), Irish statesman, was born at Canterbury on Oct. 3, 1566, and educated at King's school and Bennet (Corpus Christi) college, Cambridge. He afterwards studied law at the Middle Temple, and, settling in Dublin, became escheator to John Crofton, the escheator-general. On losing his rapidly acquired fortune during the rebellion in Munster, in Oct. 1598, Boyle returned to Eng land, was taken into the service of Essex, and after successfully repudiating before the Star Chamber various accusations, won the graces of Elizabeth, who made him clerk of the council of Munster.
In I6o2 Boyle bought for II,000 the whole of Sir Walter Raleigh's lands in Cork, Waterford and Tipperary. On these 12,000 acres he established manufactures and the mechanical arts, opened mines, built bridges and roads, settled towns, and generally resuscitated a war-devastated country. In 1603 he married his second wife, Catherine Fenton, daughter of the secre tary of State, and was knighted. In 1606 he became a privy councillor for Munster, and in 1613 for Ireland. Three years later he became Lord Boyle, baron of Youghal, and in 162o was created earl of Cork and Viscount Dungarvan. He was appointed a lord justice in 1629 and lord high treasurer in 1631. The ap pointment of Wentworth (Lord Strafford), however, as lord deputy in 1633 ended the power of Cork in Ireland. Wentworth f orced him to remove his wife's tomb from the choir in St. Patrick's, Dublin, and arbitrarily deprived him of much of the revenue from Youghal, a part of the Raleigh estates. In Went worth's fall, Cork played no retaliatory part. His last service to the State was his repression of the Munster rebellion. Cork died on Sept. 15, 1643.
Four of his seven sons received independent peerages—Richard (d. 1698) created Baron Clifford and earl of Burlington (he in herited his father's title and from 168o-95 was lord treasurer of Ireland) ; Lewis, Viscount Kinalmeaky, killed at the battle of Liscarrol (1642) ; Roger, baron of Broghill and earl of Orrery; and Francis, Viscount Shannon. Another son was Robert Boyle (q.v.), the famous natural philosopher and chemist.
In 1753 the earldom of Cork fell to the younger branch of the family, in the person of John, 5th earl of Orrery, he and later earls being "of Cork and Orrery." John, who was born on Jan. 2, 1707, and died on Nov. 16, 1762, translated the Letters of Pliny the Younger, and published Remarks on the Life and Writings of Jonathan Swift and Memoirs of Robt. Carey, earl of Monmouth. The earldom is now held by the loth earl (b. 1860. The wife of the 7th earl (see CORK AND ORRERY, MARY, COUNTESS OF) was famous in early i9th century society.