an anti-English uprising in Munster (southwestern Ireland) between 1579 and 1583. It was provoked by the attempts of the English government of Elizabeth I to subdue Munster completely.
The revolt is named after one of its main leaders, Gerald Desmond, a representative of the powerful Anglo-Irish FitzGerald clan. In their struggle against the English colonizers, the leaders of the revolt intended to rely on aid from the Catholic powers, particularly Spain. In 1580, however, the Spanish landing party was crushed by the English. The social heterogeneity of the participants in the revolt and the prevalence of clan interests among its leaders narrowed its base and facilitated its suppression.