Barry, David Fitz-James de (1550–1617), 3rd Viscount Buttevant , was second son of James Fitz-Richard Barry Roe, lord of Ibawne, 2nd Viscount, and his wife Ellen (Eileen), daughter of Cormac MacCarthy Reagh. On the outbreak of the second Desmond rebellion (1579), he initially supported James fitz Maurice Fitzgerald (qv) but indicated his readiness to submit in April 1580. Acts of requital were required of him, which he was slow to perform, and in July his father was imprisoned for having encouraged him to rebel and having discouraged him from redeeming himself. On 26 August Lord Justice Pelham (qv) wrote to thank him for services recently rendered but ordered his arrest.
In February 1581 he went into rebellion, claiming that he was acting in self-defence against Sir Warham St Leger (qv) and Sir Walter Ralegh (qv), who were conspiring to take his life and lands. His father died in April and Barry succeeded to the title and the extensive family lands, which lay immediately north of Cork city, by virtue of the incapacity of his elder brother, who was deaf and dumb. He was proclaimed a traitor in May and remained actively in rebellion until a year later. On 2 May 1582 his forces were routed by Captain Zouche and he submitted on the following day. The forfeiture of his lands was eagerly sought, not least by Ralegh who had already petitioned for a grant of his principal residence at Barryscourt. In the event, the tactical value of conciliating a man of Barry’s standing and influence proved decisive and he was pardoned in August.
Thenceforward, he became a staunch supporter of the government: he was one of four men entrusted by Lord Deputy Perrot (qv) with the government of County Cork in 1584, took his seat in the house of lords in the parliament of 1585, and served as a JP and as a member of the provincial council under Sir John Norris (qv). In the 1590s he remained steadfast. He sought command of a company in May 1595, and in June brought a force to join Sir John Norris. In 1599 he assisted the earl of Essex (qv). Hugh O'Neill (qv) made strenuous efforts to persuade Barry to join him: in February 1600 he both ravaged Barry's lands and prevailed upon Bishop Dermot McGrath (qv) of Cork and the vicar apostolic of Ross, Owen Egan (qv), to threaten him with excommunication. Barry retorted that Queen Elizabeth was not concerned with religious matters.
He succeeded in extracting his brother John from the rebel ranks by offering him part of his inheritance, since ‘he made the want of such livelihood a pretence and colour of his revolt’ (CSPI, 1599-1600, 492). In the late summer of 1600 he was compensated for his losses at O'Neill's hands and rewarded for his services by being given the command of a company of foot. For the remainder of the war Barry was in continuous service: he was in command of an army of 1,300 foot and 120 horse in the summer of 1601, took control of the rising out of the county in the autumn, was present at the siege of Kinsale, and played an active part in the subsequent campaigns to expel the northern armies and reduce the province to submission.
James I rewarded his services with a grant of 31-year leases on substantial portions of MacCarthy land, a particularly satisfying form of recognition since he had been engaged in a protracted dispute with Florence MacCarthy (qv), who had challenged his right to succeed to his father's lands. He received royal favour once more in 1613, when James pre-empted the possibility of objections to his right to take his place in the lords by issuing a royal rescript requiring his attendance and forbidding any challenge to its propriety. He was appointed to the provincial council in Munster in 1615.
David Barry died at Barryscourt on 10 April 1617. He married, first, Ellen, younger daughter of David, Viscount Fermoy, with whom he had a son and five daughters; and, secondly, Sheelagh, daughter of Cormac MacCarthy (qv) of Muskerry, with whom he had three sons and four daughters. His eldest son, David, predeceased him, and his title and heavily mortgaged lands passed to his grandson, also David (qv), whose wardship was acquired by Sir Richard Boyle (qv) in exchange for the redemption of the mortgages. David married Boyle's eldest daughter, Alice, in July 1621.