Sir Thomas Prendergast, 1st Baronet

Sir Thomas Prendergast, 1st Baronet

Brigadier-General Sir Thomas Prendergast, 1st Baronet (c. 1660–1709) was the son of Thomas Prendergast (d. 1725) of Croane, County Limerick, and Eleanor Condor.

On 15 July 1699 he was created a baronet, of Gort, County Galway. On 10 August 1697 he married Penelope Cadogan (d. 1746), sister of William Cadogan, 1st Earl Cadogan, and daughter of Henry Cadogan. On his death at Battle of Malplaquet he was succeeded by his son Sir Thomas Prendergast, 2nd Bt.

He received his baronetage for informing King William III of a plot to ambush the King's coach at Turnham Green. The plot had been conceived by Sir George Barclay, was landed at Romney in January 1696 intent upon assassinating the King. Prendergast was called upon on Thursday 13 February 1696 by Captain George Porter, one of the forty-odd conspirators, to stop the coach on Saturday 15 February. However, on the Friday he went to Whitehall and informed the Earl of Portland on the conspiracy. A man named Fisher had already reported the planned assassination but the plot was taken seriously only after Prendergast's account. It was made known on the Saturday morning that King would not be driving to Richmond, and so the plotters postponed the assassination until the following Saturday 21 February. Another informer, De La Rue, revealed the plot but the King wanted confirmation from Prendergast, whom he felt he could trust and rely on. On the morning of the plot, the conspirators heard that guards had been dispatched but soon most of them had been rounded up and were eventually charged, thanks mainly to the testimonies of Prendergast.

He was rewarded with a grant from the Treasury and the Gort estate in County Galway, which was forfeited by the O'Shaughnessy family. This, and his marriage to Penelope Cadogan, enabled his family's fortunes to grow. He became MP for Monaghan in 1703 and rose to the rank of Brigadier-General, seeing action at the Battle of Oudenarde and finally being killed at the Battle of Malplaquet on 9 February or 11 February 1709 whilst leading his regiment against the French troops at Blaregnies.

He was succeeded to the baronetcy by his son, Sir Thomas Prendergast, 2nd Bt.

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