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forced them to its perusal. The barbarity of the penal laws and the despicable tyranny with which they were administered, were exposed in language calculated to produce emotion in the dullest minds, while their unphilosophical nature and futility were made apparent by a course of argument that defied the cavils of the critic, and remained indelibly fixed upon the memory. To the author of the work Ireland had long been indebted for the general participation of a new feeling of nationality: from the poetry of the “ Irish Melodies,” the people of Ireland caught a spirit unknown to their forefathers. Tenacious of the fame and honour of their individual septs, the ancient Irish were too much engaged in provincial contentions to entertain feelings of general patriotism, ana therefore their attachment to country was only of that qualified and contracted nature which the subdivisions of clanship afforded. The effect produced by the Irish Melodies is an additional proof of the influence which the ballads of a nation have upon the character of its inhabitants. A spirit, formerly unknown and unfelt, extended itself into every district where the beautiful poetry of the patriot Minstrel was heard. The political leaders of the Catholics enriched their harangues with quotations from the beautiful songs of their country, and Mr. O'Connell seldom addressed his countrymen upon the subject of their wrongs without selecting from Moore's inspired com positions some lofty sentiment, to serve as a leading motto for the struggle in which he was engaged.
Lord Byron did not live to read his friend Moore's “ Memoirs of Captain Rock." He died within a few days of its publication, in the month of April, 1824.
The year 1824 is remarkable for the publication of literary compositions of transcendent merit, bearing on the Catholic question, Doctor Doyle's letters under the signature of J K L created a general interest, by their argument and eloquence in the poetical department_Thomas Furlong. a young author, also at the same
e public mind to a keen and bril
rues of Ireland. Perhaps
et came forth ia
a form so humble and unpretending. It now lies before us, a thin dundecimo of forty pages, contained in a blue cover, which gives it more the appearance of a pass-book than a poem of superior rank. It was originally sold for a few pence, and extensively circulated in Ireland. The intention of the author was thus avowed :- 66 To those who
have heard of our wrongs—to those who know that we have been injured to those who are aware of our past sufferings, but who know not the nature or character of those under which we still labour—to such, in the absence of a more formal statement, I shall venture to offer the following little sketch. They may find in it many things that will lead them to think—they will behold in it at least a free and unflattering delineation of cnaracter-a hasty picturing of our more prominent evils- a rude but fearless grouping of some of those master-nuisances that must be remedied or removed, before the harassed land can calculate upon the enjoyment of tranquillity.”
The style of the satire somewhat resembles the celebrated epistles of Phelim O'Connor, in the Fudge Family, The same captious spirit of discontent runs through every line, but without incurring the charge of imitation.
The poem opens
“ Ask not for tidings ! can this blasted soil
The first character selected for portraiture was the Marquis Wellesley, then Lord Lieutenant of Ireland
“ Talk not of Wellesley ! though there was a time When that bigh name stood forth in prose aud rhyme ; 18.