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and was intimately conversant with the character of the Irish peasantry. He always ridiculed the idea of any concession whatever; and used to say, that, if Ireland were resigned to the natives, they would insist upon the complete possession of England and the East-Indies. As an example in point, he mentioned, that, having abated one-third of the rent to an Irish tenant in consideration of some losses he had sustained, the tenant went home and told his relations- Arrah, our landlord is afraid of us: in future I shall only pay him one-quarter.'
This singularity of character equally surprised and disgusted the French invaders; and their officers loudly swore that they would never again visit such a country. As it seems to vanish when the Irish are transplanted to other regions, and become mingled with other nations, emigrations cannot be greatly regretted. But, as it possibly might be cured by education, particularly of the mathematical kind, it is most deeply to be lamented that the English, many centuries ago, did not introduce an universal system of education, by parochial and other schools, as was wisely ordered by the Scottish government with regard to the Highlanders, whose quiet and contented character forms a striking contrast. It may indeed be affirmed, without any degree of rashness or presumption, that the Irish commotions were as unavoidable a consequence of the want of attention to this grand and radical object, as the vices of an uneducated or neglected son are to an improvident parent.
Having premised these reflexions, arising from a warm and patriotic regard for the United Kingdoms, we return to Mr, Gordon's narrative; from which we shall be contented with offering a few extracts for the amusement of our readers, as the general series of facts is trivial and well known; and there is nothing in the arrangement or 'style to challenge particular observation. He informs us (p. 10) that a petition of the Irish catholics in 1792, fraught with gross misrepresentations, was presented to his majesty through the influence of Edmund Burke, a most determined champion of the Roman-catholic church, though a protestant in external profession.' In p 13, we are told that earl Fitzwilliam, a disciple of Burke, was a warm friend of the Romanists.
The view of the organisation of the United Irishmen is interesting,
• The association consisted of a multitude of societies, linked closely together, and ascending in gradation, like the component parts of a pyramid or cone, to a common apex or point of union. The lowest or simple societies consisted each originally of thirty-six, afterwards at most of only twelve men, as nearly as possible of the
same neighbourhood, that they might be mutually under the inspection one of another. An assembly of five secretaries, severally elected by five simple societies, formed a lower baronial committee, which had the immediate superintendence and management of these five societies. Ten delegates, elected one from each of ten lower baronial, composed an upper baronial committee, which in like manner directed the business of these ten lower committees. With the same superintendance over their constituent assemblies, delegates from the upper baronial, one deputed from each, formed in the counties, county committees, and in populous towns, district committees; and the provincial committees, one for each of the four provinces, were composed of delegates from the district and county committees, two from each, sometimes three, when the extent and population of the district seemed to require a more numerous representation. The supreme and uncontrouled command of the whole association was committed to a general executive directory, composed of five persons, unknown to all excepting the four secretaries of the provincial committees; for they were elected by ballot in these committees, the secretaries of which alone examined the bal. lots, and notified the election to none except the
themselves on whom it fell. The orders of this hidden directing power were conveyed through the whole organised body by not easily discoverable chains of communication. By one member only of the direc·tory were carried the mandates to one member of each provincial committee, by the latter severally to the secretaries of the district and county committees in the province, by these secretaries to those of the upper baronials, and thus downward through the lower baronial to the simple societies.
"The military organisation was grafted on the civil of this artfully framed union. The secretary of each of the simple societies was its non-commissioned officer, serjeant, or corporal; the delegate of five simple societies to a lower baronial committee was commonly captain over these five, that is, of a company of sixty men; and the delegate of ten lower baronial to an upper or district committee, was generally colonel, or commander of a battalion of six hundred men, composed of the fifty simple societies under the superintendence of this upper committee. Out of three persons, whose names were transmitted for that purpose from the colonels of each county to the directory, one was appointed by this executive body to act as adjutant-general of that county, to receive and communicate all military orders from the head of the union to the officers under his jurisdiction.—To complete the scheme of warlike preparation, a military committee, instituted in the beginning of the year 1798, and appointed by the directory, had its task assigned to contrive plans for the direction of the national force, either for the purposes of unaided rebellion, or co-operation with an invading French army, as occasion should require. Orders were issued thał the members of the union should furnish them elves, where their circumstances allowed it, with fire-arms, where not, with pikes.' To form a pecuniary. fund for the various expences of this great revolutionary machine, monthly subscriptions, acording to the zeal and ability of the sub
scribers, were collected in the several societies, and treasurers ap-. pointed by suffrage for their collection and disbursement.
• From this fund were supplied the demands of the emissaries commisioned to extend the union. Of these considerable numbers were dispatched into the southern and western counties, in the beginning and course of 1797, where, though many had been sworn into the union, little progress for the effectual promotion of the system had been made before the autumn of 1796 ; and so little was made for some time after, that in May, 1797, at the eve of an intended insurrection, the strength of the association lay, exclusively of Ulster,, chiefly in the metropolis and the neighbouring counties of Dublin, Kildare, Meath, Westmeath, and King's county. This body of political missioners received instructions to work on the passions, the prejudices, and feelings of those to whom they should address themselves.'
The Orangemen appear to have originated in Armagh, being protestants who united to defend their property against the Romanists. Our author (p. 56) justly blames the burning of houses by the British troops at the beginning of the commotions; because that severity spread desperation among many classes of men, who, having nothing to lose, became the most violent actors in the insurrection.
* The attack of Prosperous, a small town in the county of Kil. dare, intended for a seat of cotton manufactures, seventeen miles distant from Dublin, was made an hour after midnight, on the night of the 23d, or morning of the 24th, by a large body of men, supposed to be conducted by John Esmond, a Romish gentleman, first Lieutenant of a troop of yeoman cavalry. The small garrison was assailed by surprise. The barrack was fired, and twenty-eight of the city of Cork militia, with their commander, captain Swayne, perished in the flames, and by the pikes of the enemy. Nine men also of a Welch regiment of cavalry, styled Ancient Britons, were slaughtered in the houses where they had been billeted, and five were made prisoners. Many of the perpetrators of this atrocious butchery were, by the trembling loyalist inhabitants, recognised to be the same who on the preceding day had surrendered to captain Swayne, and, in the presence of a Romish priest, had expressed the deepest contrition for having engaged in the conspiracy of United Irish, and made most solemn promises of future loyalty—a melancholy instance of dissimulation, practised elsewhere in similar circumstances! Here, as in all other places where the insurgents had success, in the early part of the rebellion, while their hopes were high, a tumultuous and frantic exultation took place, with congratulations of Naas and Dublin being in the possession of their associates ; ance of such false intelligence, to inspirit their followers, being a part of the policy almost constantly practised by the leaders of the revolt. Loud shouts were heard, especially from a multitude of women, who always followed the men on such occasions, of down with the Orangemen! and, which marked the object of insurrection
at its very commencement in the minds of the common people, down with the heretics!. They accordingly murdered with deliberate ceremony, and mangled their bodies in a horrid manner, two gentlemen of the names of Stamer and Brewer, and an old man who had been serjeant in the king's army. That a slaughter of the remaining protestant inhabitants would have been perpetrated, is highly probable, if it had not been prevented by the approach of a body of troops, through fear of whom the rebels fled. Richard Grife fith, esq. with part of his troop of yeoman cavalry, and forty of the Armagh militia, who had repulsed the assailants at Claine, pursued them almost to Prosperous, three miles distant, which caused much terror to the rebels in possession of that town. P. 72.
Though Mr. Gordon may be reasonably supposed to be. biassed in favour of that church of which he is a member, yet, upon a careful perusal of his work, we find many unaffected proofs of impartiality. We are therefore inclined to credit this part of the narrative, and, in consequence, to infer that the catholics really intended to avail themselves of the pretence of general freedom to seize the supreme authorityand that their toleration would have been, at least, questionable.
• Discouraged by defeats, many of the rebels began to wish for leave to retire in safety to their homes, and resume their peaceful occupations. Of this a remarkable instance occurred on the 28th, and another on the 31st of May, Lieutenant-general Dundas, who had, in the afternoon of the 24th, defeated a rebel force near Kil. cullen, and relieved that little town, received on the 28th, at bis quarters at Naas, by Thomas Kelly,, esq. a magistrate, a message from a rebel chief named Perkins, who was then at the head of about two thousand men, posted on an eminence called Knockawlina hill, on the border of the Curragh of Kildare, a beautiful plain, used as a race-course, twenty-two miles south-westward of the me tropolis. The purport of this message was, that Perkins's men should surrender their arms, on condition of their being permitted to retire unmolested to their habitations, and of the liberation of Perkins's brother from the jail of Naas. The general, having sent a messenger for advice to Dublin castle, and received permission, assented to the terms, and, approaching the post of Knockawlin on the 31st, received the personal surrendry of Perkins and a few of his associates ; the rest dispersing homeward in all directions with shouts of joy, and leaving thirteen cart-loads of pikes behind.
* This disposition to surrender, which good policy would have encouraged among the insurgents, was blasted three days after by military ardour, which, when it eludes the salutary restraints of discipline, and is exerted against an unresisting object, ceases to be laudable. Major-general sir James Duff, who had made a rapid march from Limerick with six hundred men, to open the communication of the metropolis with that quarter, received intelligence of a
large body of men assembled at a place called Gibbit-rath, on the Curragh, for the purpose of surrendry, to which they had been ada mitted by general Dúndas. Unfortunately, as the troops advanced near the insurgents to receive their surrendered weapons, one of the latter, foolishly swearing that he would not deliver his gun others wise than empty, discharged it with the muzzle upwards. The soldiers instantly, pretending to consider this as an act of hostility, fired on the unresisting multitude, who fled with the utmost precipitation, and were pursued with slaughter by a company of fencible cavalry, denominated Lord Jocelyn's fox-hunters. Above two hundred of the insurgents fell upon this occasion, and a far greater number would have shared their fate, if a retreat had not been sounded with all possible dispatch, agreeably to the instructions of general Dundas, who had sent an express from his quarters at Kilcullen to prevent such an accident. In the public prints this body of insurgents is asserted to have assembled for the purpose of battle, and to have actually fired on the troops, but the truth ought to be related without respect of persons or party. The air is well known to have been otherwise ; and the rebels were crowded in a place neither fit for defence nor escapema wide plain without hedge, ditch, or bog, quite contrary to their constantly practised modes
• This eagerness of the soldiery for the slaughter of unresisting rebels, was often fatal to loyalists'; for frequently some of the latter were prisoners with the former, and being found among them by the troops, were not always distinguished from them. Å remarks able instance, in the march of this army, was on the point of having place in the melancholy catalogue which might be authentically formed. A protestant clergyman of an amiable character, Mr. Wil. liamson of Kildare, who had fallen into the hands of the insurgents, and been saved from slaughter by the humanity of a Roman-catholic priest, was, as having been spared by the rebels, deemed a rebel by the soldiery, who were proceeding instantly to hang him, when they were in a critical moment prevented by the interference of his brotherin-law, colonel Sankey.' P. 83.
« On the morning of the 23d of May, a labouring man, named Dennis M.Daniel, came to my house, with looks of the utmost consternation and dismay, and confessed to me that he had taken the United Irishman's oath, and had paid for a pike with which he had not yet been furnished, nineteen pence halfpenny, to one Kilty a smith, who had administered the oath to him and many others. While I sent my eldest son, who was a lieutenant of yeomanry, to arrest Kilty, I exhorted M.Daniel to surrender himself to a magistrate and make his confession ; but this he positively refused, saying that he should in that case be lashed' to make him produce a pike which he had not, and to confess what he knew not. I then ad vised him, as the only alternative, to remain quietly at home, promising, that, if he should be arrested on the information of others,