A part from the surviving state papers (notably those of Lord Lieutenant Clarendon) one of the most important sources for the history of Ireland in the reign of James II is the ‘Narrative’ written in 1702 by Thomas Sheridan. Sheridan was appointed secretary to Lord Deputy Tyrconnell and first commissioner of the revenue at the end of 1686 and was dismissed, following allegations of corruption, early in 1688. Sheridan claimed that James had made him secretary against Tyrconnell’s wishes so that he could watch Tyrconnell’s behaviour on his behalf, and that Tyrconnell fabricated the charges of corruption in order to be rid of him. Most historians, especially those hostile to Tyrconnell, have accepted Sheridan’s account as accurate. Sir James Mackintosh, for example, wrote : ‘Clarendon and Sheridan’s MSS agree so exactly in their picture of Tyrconnell, have such an air of truth in their accounts of him that it is not easy to refuse them credit, though they were both his enemies’.