When you read in the history books or genealogy books about the Anglo-Irish, it’s helpful to have some background as to who they were and where they came from. The term itself is mainly from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The roots of these families can be found as early as the 1200s.
The Anglo-Irish were Protestants of the wealthy class, and most belonged to the Church of Ireland. They retained their English high society culture, and were prominent in the military, government, and as land owners. They were landlords to the majority of tenant farmer, both Catholic and Protestant.
One unique aspect of these landed families is they are both English and Irish in origins, as the incoming English families intermarried with the local Irish families. They maintained many aspects of their Irish heritage, while continuing in the English and Protestant tradition after the Reformation.
The Anglo-Irish as the professional class of citizens from the 1600s, commonly are documented in the history books and in published genealogies. Record of them may also be found in the manuscripts of the Genealogical Office in Dublin, sometimes back into antiquity.
When you visit Ireland or Northern Ireland today, you see the marble bust statues and tombs of the Anglo-Irish in the main Church of Ireland cathedrals. You also see paintings of them and more statues in government buildings and universities. For both good and ill, they were a part of the citizenry tapestry which built modern Ireland.