Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

thinking that the whole of them together would ed emotion, more striking, perhaps, and more be as valuable as the worst of the mighty Athe effective, than the finest exhibition of feeling. nian's. Mr. Burke did wisely in printing what His orations, and the effect they produce, are a he chose to call speeches, that is, elaborate, splendid example of the superiority of thought and thoughtful and splendid essays. We can in a public assembly over every oiher quality. only say in praise of his oratory, that he was He is universally recognised as the ablest advo. the wisest man who ever mistook the nature of cate the Roman Catholics ever had in Parliaone of the great objects of his life. He was ment; and this, with no conspicuous accom. the only Englishman of his time in whose plishment, except that which supersedes the nemind politics approached to being a science. cessity of almost any other, knowledge, nameWhat business had he in the House of Com ly, and earnestness. He is the nearest approach mons ? Could he think that Adam Smith to a great political philosopher that is likely to would be the best champion of free trade at St. be effective in the House of Commons. Lord Stephen's? Or was he unaware that the man Grey is chiefly remarkable for dignity of manhas never lived who excelled, at the same time, ner, and for the even balance of a great numin working out general truths, and in applying ber of powers, none of them existing by them. them oratorically to particular cases? Burke, selves in the highest degree, but, when comof all men, perhaps, was the best fitted to have bined, of rare and extreme value. He has alwritten a general history of England; as it is, most uniformly fought on the losing side ; and he has earned for himself a brilliant place on a in oratory, as in every thing else, it is success particular page of it, to the miseries recorded which commonly decides the popular judgment. on which it may be feared that his authority in Mr. Brougham, take him all in all, is the most some degree added. To Burke's intellect, the celebrated among the living public men of matter in hand usually appeared of very little England. This is, in a great degree, owing to importance, compared with the principles which his having linked himself almost exclusively bore upon it. To his feelings, the thing in with great principles, or what have now the which he was engaged at the moment, present

force of such. But his speaking is in itself exed itself as above every thing important. His cellent, and still more peculiar ihan admirable. philosophical understanding thus taught him He deals not in sportive elegance, nor brilliant the laws which related to the French Revolu- description, nor lofty declamation. His brighttion; while his temper betrayed him into fal est waves are as bitter with sarcasm and invec. sifying the facts from which he professed to de. tive as the waters of Meribah. His fairest duce those general rules. With regard to In- images come forth hard and weighty, rough dia and America both, he knew more, and with the marks of the ponderous sledge he more wisely, than any other man in England; wields, and black with the smoke of the furnace but he did not know how to avail himself of his in which he forges them. He never tilts but means against predominating power; and the with the sharps. His fireworks are loaded consequence was a signal failure.

With re cartridges. And wherein he delights to dwell, gard to France, his statements are full of mis are fortresses of rock and iron. In his direct representation, and were, nevertheless, success invectives, a want is sometimes felt of that ful. How strange is the fate of a man of ge- straight-forward strength in which Lord Chat. nius, who lets himself be lured into an unsuila ham and Mr. Cobbett are first-rate masters. ble position !*

But his side blows are big with annibilation. The character of Sheridan as an orator is Place yourself full before him, and you may very ably, and, we believe, justly given by the chance to escape. But flatter yourself that writer of a late article in " Blackwood's Maga- you are safe in his rear; and, like the African xine,” (on Whately's Rhetoric), to which we serpent which can spring no way but backwards, have before alluded. There needs no stronger he will make you feel how deadly is that power proof how unfit a sphere is the House of Com which he who skujks from it never can avoid. mons for first-rate oratory, than the effect said His oratory is the true force for attack; and we to have been produced by the mountebank non should deeply lament, as mere lovers of elo. sense of that transcendant quack. Of later quence, to see him on the Treasury bench. speakers, Mr. Canning, Lord Grey, Lord Plunkert, and Mr. Brougham, are by far the most conspicuous. Of these, Ms. Canning was the most showy, and Lord Plunkett is undoubtedly

From the Monthly Magazine. the least so.

The former was early spoiled by admiration of Pitt, and only began in after | NARRATIVE OF SOME EVENTS IN life to work off the outward slough of worthless

THE IRISH REBELLION. glitter. He became quieter and more argu

BY AN EYE-WITNESS.* mentative, graceful and clear he always was; but he retained to the last the habit of labour.

Let not Ambition mock their useful toil." ing merely collateral points, and settling the My father's name was Samuel Barbour; he real question at issue by silence or a jest. Lord held a small farm within two miles of EnnisPlunkett is the fullest in matter, and most severe in style, of modern public speakers; and

* This narrative is taken, almost without the there is sometimes in the more important alteration of a word, from the lips of a plain reparts of his finer discourses, a tone of suppress spectable woman, the daughter of a County

Wexford farmer; and though unpretending in * Let it not be supposed that we differ from its style, it possesses the merit of strict fideliMr. Burke as to the principles by which he ty, and is so far curious, that few females in

corthy, called Clevass. It contained but twen-1 On Saturday, the 26th of May, Whitsun-ere, ty-two acres, but it was rich ground, and the Martin, our labourer, was shovelling oats, and rent was low; it had been in our family since my father went to the Seld to look at bin. the battle of the Boyne, for both my father's When he saw my father drawing near, he laid people and my mother's were Williamites.* It down his shovel, and, looking earnestly and lay in a pleasant valley between two hills, one sorrowfully at him, he said, "Master, if you called Coolnahorna, and the other the Mine. would promise me not to betray me, I wodd On the former, an old tradition said, that King tell you something that might serve you and James, when flying, stopped to take breath; yours. My father answered, “You ought to and an old prophecy said, that before an hun. know me well enough by this time, Martin, to dred years should have elapsed from that flight, be certain that I would not betray any one, the Irish should yet gather on that hill, strong, much less you."—"But, master," rejoined he, and victorious. The truth of this I myself saw " I'm sworn never to tell any one that won't but too clearly confirmed.

take the same oath that I did to be true to the Our farm, though very productive, would cause."--- You unfortunate man," said iny fanot have supported us in the comfort and re ther, “ I had rather see all belonging w me spectability we enjoyed, but that my father dead, and die myself with them, than prove was also a clothier; he bought the fleece from false to the government that has sheltered the sheep's back, and manufactured it into me.” On this, Martin, with a heavy sigb, remiddling tine cloths and friezes, which he sold sumed his shovel, and continued his work. My at the neighbouring fairs. He thus gave em. father had but little time to think on this, for ployment to eight men and six women, and no he was obliged to leave two cart-loads of cats one, rich or poor, had ever reason to complain at the mill of Moinart, to be ground into meal of Sam Barbour. Though all our neighbours for the use of the family. Moinart is about of the better class were Protestants (for we two miles from Clevass. and Mr. Grimes, the lived in the midst of twenty-two families of our miller, was a Protestant, and much respected own persuasion), yet all the people he employ in the county. As soon as my father cast his ed were Roman Catholics, and we met with as eyes on him, he saw that he too knew of somemuch honesty and gratitude from them as we thing bad going on; yet he hardly exchanged could have desired.

a word with him but on business, for his bearl, My father was advanced in life when he as he told us, was too foll; and, leaving the married, and I was his second child. He had oats to be ground, he turned back with the empfive more; the eldest, William, was at this ty cars, anxious to rejoin us as soon as possible time a fine well-grown boy, little more than When he had gone nearly half the road, he sixteen. I was not much above fifteen, but tall saw imperfectly (for it was now almost desk) and strong for my age. I had two sisters, of a great dust on the road before him, and heard eleven and six, a little brother of four years a confused murmur of voices-a moment after old, and my mother had an infant only six he thought a body of troops were advancing, weeks before the fearful times which I am en for he fancied he saw their bayonets; bat the deavouring to describe.

next instant he was surrounded by a party of During the entire winter of 1797, when more than two hundred rebels, armed with my father returned from Enniscorthy, he pikes, who stopped him, and dragged him off would mention the rumours he had heard of the car he was sitting on. My father was no the discontents of the Roman Catholics, and coward, as he fully showed two days afterthe hopes they entertained that the French wards; but he said, that, at tha: moment, the would assist them; but we never had time to thoughts of all he had left at home rushed into think of such things, much less to grieve about his mind, his knees failed him, and if he had them. We never imagined that any one on not clung to the head of his horse, he would earth would injure us, for we had never done have fallen to the earth. They asked all to the least hurt to any one, and we relied on the gether who he was, and where he came from, strength of the government, and, in particular, and he was unable to answer ; but one of them on the bravery of the Enniscorthy Yeomanry, happening to know him, cried out, “Oh, let for putting down any disturbances. My brohim go, that is Sam Barbour, of Clevass, he is ther William was one of these.

an honest man;" and tbey did set him at liber

ty. He came home, and, turning the horses could have been capable of collecting their over to Martin's care, he walked in amongst ideas into a continued narrative, and still fewer us, and his face told us the ruin that was comhave ever met one to record it for them. It ing upon us, before we learned it from his will, at all events, give to the tenderly-guard- words. ed of the ses who read it some knowledge of We cared little for eating the supper we had what was once suffered by hundreds, with as prepared for him and ourselves; and after kind hearts, and as soft feelings, as their own; hearing his story, we stepped to the door to and it will cause them to pray fervently against listen whether any of the armed ruffians were the miseries of civil war, which always fall | coming towards us; we heard nothing, but we heaviest on the most unoffending, on the wi saw in the distance eleven distinct blazes, dow and the orphan, the helpless woman, and every one from its situation marking out to us the unconscious babe.

where the house and the property of each * Williamites were the soldiers of William friend and neighbour were consuming. In imthe Third, who most of them, after the final mediate expectation of a similar fate, we inexpulsion of James the Second from Ireland, stantly began to load our cars with whatever Tot grants of land: Glove 10

boa

[ocr errors]

with them to Enniscorthy; what we could not with blood carried into the house, and were pack up we carried out to the fields, and con called to lay down our beds for them to lie on; cealed in the ridges of standing corn; and it these were yeomen, who had been skirmishing was but little of it we ever saw again.

in the neighbourhood, and who, full as the We passed the whole night thus; but the house was, were brought into it for present repoor children, hungry and sleepy, lay down in lief. I now began to see, for the first time, the nearest corner, for we had placed the beds some of the miseries that threatened us; and on the cars. On Whit-Sunday morning we thus passed a few anxious hours, when it sudset off for Enniscorthy, with beavy hearts, just denly struck me that our cows would be in. about the same hour we thought to have gone jạred if they were not milked again, and the to its church. My mother, yet weak, leaned servant girl and I set out about six in the evenon my father, I carried the infant, and the ing, and without meeting any thing to injure other children followed us, the little one cling us, we got safe to Clevass; we found all as we ing to my gown. My brother Williain had al had left it, with the poor cows standing lowready been in Enniscorthy for more than a ing to be milked; we brought home a large week with his corps ; the female servant went pitcher each, and, on our road home, met sewith os, but Martin, who, with his mother, veral Roman Catholic neighbours, with whom lived in a small cottage on our ground, staid we had lived on the most friendly terms; we behind us: and when we again saw him he was spoke to them as usual, but ihey looked in our an armed rebel. Yet, from his humanity to faces as if they had never seen us before, and us, I cannot think that he ever was guilty of passed on. I have since thought they either the same cruelties that were committed by his looked on us with abhorrence, as those devoted comrades.

to destruction in this world and in the next, When we entered the town, we went to the or, that knowing our doom, and pitying our house of a relation, whose name was Willis, fate, they were afraid to trust themselves to w bo instantly received us, but when we enter speak to us. We could not at least accuse ed, we had hardly room to sit down, it was so them of hypocrisy. full of the Protestant inhabitants of the neigh It was late when we returned to the town, bourhood, who had fled into the town for pro- and, even in the midst of his anxiety, I could tection. Few of these had had time to save see joy lighten in the looks of my father at our any thing, and those who, like us, had brought safety, for even during our short absence, the food, immediately gave it to be shared in com reports of the rapid advance of the rebels had mon. My father, on seeing us safe in the been so frequent, that he feared we might have house, immediately went and enrolled himself | been intercepted on our return. The milk was amongst the Supplementary Yeomanry, and gratefully received by our own children, as was provided with a musket and cross belts, to well as all the other poor little creatures shelwear over his coloured clothes. There were tered in that crowded house. We prayed, and more than two hundred of the neighbouring endeavoured to rest on the bare boards, though gentry and farmers armed hastily in the same worn out in mind and body ; but I slept but

Our regular yeomen, who were little that night, with the moans of a wounded clothed and disciplined, amounted to about as man in the very room with us, and the heat many more ; we had one company of the and closeness of the air, so different from our North Cork Militia, ninety-one in number; own pleasant airy little bed-rooms. and it was this handful of men, not much ex At the very dawn I arose, and my father ceeding five hundred in number, that, in our sceing me preparing to venture once more to simplicity, we had imagined could conquer all see our cows, and that I was seeking in vain the disaffected in the county. Excepting the for our servant (whom it was many weeks befew militia-men, all our little garrison were fore I saw again) said he would go with me, neighbours, or friends, or near relations, who for he hoped there would not be any immedia now knowing the immense force of the rebels, ate want of him in the town. We arrived at which was well known to exceed ten thousand, the little farm, and found, as yet, all was safe. and their barbarity, for they gave no quarter, The cows waiting for us, and the poor poultry knew they had no choice between dying like and pigs looking for food that we had not to men with their arms in their hands, or stand give them. After attending to the cows, I ing tamely like sheep to be butchered. Scarce thought of some brown griddle-cakes we had ly one of these men but had every one that was left behind us on a shelf, and went to break dearest to him sheltered in the town he was some to the fowls, when my father followed about defending; and yet it is this very cir. me into our desolate kitchen, and, taking a cumstance that was one of the causes of their piece of the bread, asked me for a mug of the losing possession of it, as I shall explain warm milk. I gave it to him, and turning to shortly.

the door, and casting my eyes up to CoolnaWhen my father left us, and we had un horna Hill, which was not a quarter of a mile packed our furniture, my sisters and I were at distant from us, I saw the top ridge of it filled first so unconscious of any immediate danger, with men, armed with pikes, the heads of them that we were rather gratified by the novelty of glistening brightly in the morning sun. Much our situation, and passed some time leaning troubled, I called to my father, and hardly out of a window, looking at the horse yeomen knowing what I did, I took up the large vessel passing hurriedly back and forwards, and dis of milk. I had intended to carry into the town puting between ourselves which man looked for the children ; but my father, looking at me best in his uniform, or sat best on his horse. as if he never thought to see me again, said A very short time, howeverchanged our feel. " Lay that down, Jane, it is most probable w

manner.

poon.

and we returned back to Enniscorthy, where unacquainted with the duties of a soldier, for, we arrived breathless about ten in the fore. until the preceding day, the greater part of the

As we advanced towards it, we heard Supplementary Yeomen had never before earthe drum beating to arms, and on entering, we

ried arms. heard that the enemy were closing in on all The fearful firing had now continued nearly sides of the town in vast force. We saw our three hours. Our men were forced to fall back friends hurrying through the streets to the into the town, for our little garrison was now different posts assigned to them ; the North reduced to less than two hundred, and though Cork were placed on the bridge over the Sla upwards of five hundred of the enemy were ney, which ran on the east side of the town; killed, they were so numerous that they never our own horse yeomanry filled the street lead felt the loss. The North Cork were now obing from that bridge ; our infantry, amongst liged to provide for their own safety; and I whom were the supplementaries, were placed have since heard it said, that they neglected at the Duffrey Gate Hill; at the opposite ex. to sound a retreat, which, if done, might have tremity of the town to the west, a guard of enabled many of the Enniscorthy nien to make yeomen was placed over the Market-house, a more regular one. As it was, some of them where there was a great store of arms and am dispersed through the fields, and gained Dunmunition, and where a few prisoners were con cannon Fort in safety, amongst whom was my fined; some more mounted guard over the brother, and the rest retreated fighting through castle, an ancient building, in which some of the burning streets, and more than once rethe most dangerous rebels were lodged; and pulsed the enemy; these would again return on my father, after leaving me with my mother, them in thousands, till at last, though they put on his belts, took up his musket, and joined disputed every inch of ground, they were forced my brother (whom we had never seen all this to retreat to the Market-house, and join their time though he was on duty in the town), at comrades who kept it. The house that shelthe Duffrey Gate, the post they were ordered tered us was directly opposite, and though to occupy. .

none within dared venture to the windows, yet In the course of this morning, Willis, whose we knew, froin the increased uproar, that dehouse we were sheltered in, put his wife and struction had come nearer to us. At last the his two infants on a horse, and mounting ano fire reached us, and we rushed from the flames ther, fled with them to Wexford; he never into the midst of the fight, leaving all we bad told any one he was leaving thein, nor could so anxiously saved the day before to be coo. we blame him, for such a calamity as we were sumed, without bestowing a thought upon it. all involved in would have made the most ge I know not what became of the wounded, but nerous man selfish. And he was a friendly if they even perished in the flames, it was a man, but he could not save us all, so, as was more merciful death than they would have but reasonable, he took with him those that met from the rebels. We fled across the were nearest to him.

square to the Market-house, and I, who bad At eleven in the forenoon, the videttes, never before seen a corpse, had now to step brought word from the Duffrey Gate, that the over, and even upon, the bodies of those rebels rebels were advancing towards the town from who had fallen by the fire of our men, whilst, the north-east, in a column that completely which ever way I turned my eyes, I saw dofilled the road, and was more than a mile in zens strewed around. I do not know by what length ; they were calculated, by some of our means we were admitted, but it was owing to garrison who had served abroad, to exceed six the courage and humanity of Mr. Grimes, the thousand men. They soon closed with our miller, and here we once more met my father; Enniscorthy Yeomen, and the shots, and the we now sank exhausted with terror amongst shouting, fell sharply on our ears. I was at barrels of gunpowder, arms, furniture, and first greatly frightened, and the children hid provisions confusedly heaped up together; bat their faces in my lap, but in a few minutes I in less than an hour (during wbich time our became used to the noise, and could speak to defenders fired often and effectually) the fire my mother, and try to give her some comfort, but reached the Markel-house also, and all within she seemed stupified, and could say nothing in it, women, children, and yeomen, were forced answer, but now and then to lament that her to leave it, and throw themselves into the fine boy was in the midst of the danger. She midst of the enemy, who now surrounded it in seemed not to comprehend that my father was thousands, or they would have been destroyed equally exposed, more especially as he (seeing by the explosion of the gunpowder, which that the disaffected inhabitants had now actu- shortly after took place. As we were going to ally begun to set their own houses on fire) had unbar the doors, Grimes determined on a des. twice or thrice quitted his post, on the enemy perate effort for our safety, he stretched oot being partially repulsed, and ran down to see his hand, and seized the pikes of two men who if we were yet safe, and to tell us that William lay dead across the door-way, he turned then was well, and behaving like a man and a sol to my father, and said, “ Throw aside that musdier; he then, on again hearing the advancing ket, Sain, take this pike, put a piece of the shouts of the rebels, would rush back to the child's green frock on it for a banner, and per. ‘ight. This imprudence, in which he did but haps you may save the lives of your family." nitate the rest of his comrades, gave dreadful But my father answered, “ Nover! I will never

vantage to the enemy, yet it was not cow quit the King's cause whilst I have life." ice that caused them to act thus, for they Grimes then raised a flitch of bacon on his vo proofs of even desperate courage, but pike, and bidding us follow, he rushed out of 1 their painful anxiety for all that was

The Market.house cheering and appearing a

[ocr errors]

curses.

provisions to them; my father, still holding brewery; a man, named Byrne, who had the ihe musket, followed. I snatched up the child care of it, saw him, through a crevice in the of four years old, my little sisters hung on my door, commit the act, and saw him, too, with skirts, and my mother, with the infant, came his leather-cutter's knife disfigure the face of after me. My father now turned to me, and the dead, after plundering him, and stripping said, “ Jane, my dear child, take care of your him of the new coat he wore. mother, and the children!” They were the In a few minutes my mother came to her. last words he ever spoke to me.

self; she arose, and we both, unconscious of Grimes stopped now to parley with the pike our loss, went with the children towards the men, who completely surrounded us, when a river, thinking that perhaps we might rejoin fine infant of five years of age, the son of Jo my father there.

My mother was now quite seph Fitzgerald, a near neighbour of ours, ran bewildered, and unable to speak to, much less out to join us; at this moment one of the re to advise me; and I, though born so near the bels, who had some particular hatred to his fa- | town, had never been in it, but to church or to ther, unfortunately knew the child, and ex market, and was totally ignorant whither to diclaiming, “ That's an Orange brat!” pushed rect my steps. We asked at many doors would him down with his pike (as I thought) on his they admit us, but were constantly driven back; the child gave a faint cry, and I was away, and, for the most part, with threats and stooping to raise him, when I saw the pike

At last we came by chance to the drawn back covered with its blood! It shiver house of one Walsh, a baker, who knew my ed in every limb, and then lay perfectly still mother, and spoke compassionately to her, but it was dead. I had strength given me to sup. we had hardly entered, when five or six pikepress a shriek, and I hid my face in my little men followed, and ordered him to turn us out, brother's bosom, whilst my sisters never utter or they would burn the house over our heads. ed a cry, but pressed still closer to me; and Ile dismissed us unwillingly; and we then folmy mother, who never took her eyes off my lowed some other desolate beings like ourfather, did not see it.

selves, who led us into the garden of one BarWe were allowed to pass over the square ker, that held a high command among the rewithout any injury, and were following Grimes bels. His family seemed not to notice us, and towards the river, when I noticed a pikeman we here sat down, with many more, on the bare following us closely, and at last pushing be- | ground under the bushes. All were women tween my father and me. In my fear and con and children, some, from their appearance, fusion I did not know the man; but I was told seemed to be of a rank far superior to us; and afterwards it was a man named Malone, whom I have since heard that forty-two widows passI had many times seen, and who of all othered the night in that garden. Many of these men we should have thought we had least rea knew their loss, yet fear had overpowered grief son to fear. His mother had been of a decent so completely, that not one dared to weep aloud. Protestant family, but had married a profligate The children were as silent as their mothers, of the Roman Catholic persuasion, he deserted and whenever a footstep going to or from the her and one infant, when she was with child of house, was heard to pass along, we dared not another, and my father's mother took her even look towards it, but hid our face against home, and on her dying in childbirth of this the earth. The moon shone brightly, and I at man, my kind grandmother then nursing her one time saw a man led along, pinioned, but own child, put the deserted infant to her breast, Barker, who was then in the house, was so'huand prolonged his life for some days till a nurse mane as not to put him to death amongst us, was provided for him, whom she paid; he was but ordered him off for execution to Vinegar reared by our family, and was at this time a Hill. leather-cutter. I could not then recollect him, As the night advanced, a rebel, named Lacy, however, for his face was covered with dust observing my mother to shiver violently, went and blood, a terrific looking figure, and his ac out, and, soon returning, threw over her shoultion was suspicious; so, as if I could protect ders about three or four yards of coarse blue my father, I determined not to lose sight of cloth, speaking at the same time some words him, and, with his three young children, kept of pity to her. She, in her frantic terror, en. close to them. Concealed in a chimney, at deavoured to cast it away, lest, as she said, she the corner of the lane, we were now about to should be killed for having what was not her enter, there was a yeoman, who, it was said, own, but I, with some difficulty, made her fired away more than an hundred ball cartridges keep it, and, except the clothes we wore, it at the rebels in the square below, and made was the only covering by night or day we had every shot take effect. He at this moment for ten weeks. took aim at a pikeman within a few paces of In the dead of the night I began to take us, who staggered some steps, and fell dead somewhat more courage, and hearing a strange across my mother's feet; she dropped in a dead noise in a lane, which was divided from the swoon beside the corpse. I turned to raise her, garden only by a low wall, I crept to it, and and to lift the infant from the ground it had saw a sight that soon drove me back to my mo. fallen on, and I thus lost sight of my father, ther's side. Some wounded men had been and the fearful pikeman who followed him: 1 dragged to die in that lane, and some boys of never more saw him alive. But Providence the rebel's side, were mounted on horses, and thus kindly spared me the sight of his murder gallopping up and down many times across by the very man that drew his first' nourish- their bodies, whilst the only signs of life they ment from the same breast with himself. He showed were deep groans. But Barker, when followed him, as I afterwards heard, into Bar. he heard of this cruelty, put a stop to it, and

« AnteriorContinuar »