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FENIAN LITERATURE.

ment suddenly collapsed in the disgust of the

would-be leaders and the laughter of officials Street Ballads, Popular Poetry, and House- and friends of the Government who for hold Songs of Ireland. Collected and ar- months previously had been in a state of ranged by Duncathail (Dublin, M'Gla- ignorant terror. shan & Gill.)

The mistake that the British public made FENIAN literature has not attracted its literature of the Young Ireland party, and

in giving undue importance to the rebellious fair share of attention. Whilst the prisoners thus overrating the strength of the agitation, who profess to despise and

defy British law was not, however, greater than the mistake are occupying the Four Courts on all the now universally made in the opposite directechnicalities of certiorari, mandamus, and tion. The vast mass of our readers will criminal information, it would be a mistake learn with surprise that not only is there in to imagine that the copious legal arguments Ireland'a collection of Fenian writings pubwith which the Irish journals abound are the lished in 1865 quite equal in point of literaonly contributions for which the reading pub- fry ability to anything in the same strain lic are indebted to the Fenians. The abor- published from 1843 to 1848, but (which is tive rebellion of '48 was more of a literary far more important than any question of imposture than any thing else. The Young literary merit) a collection of writings which Ireland party wrote so well that they man- has found its way into the cabins and whisaged to excite the interest of all classes ex- ky-shops of the lower classes. cept the people of Ireland. In this country

In '48 a good many editors of newspapers we became familiar with the anti-English were arrested, but not one ballad-singer. ballads of Davis and Duffy. The song In '65 only one disloyal editor, Mr. Clark beginning

Luby, has been arrested; but the arrests of

ballad-singers in Cork, Dublin, Tralee, LimWho fears to speak of Ninety-eight? erick, and the country towns of the south

have given constant employment to the poand the stirring verses of Ferguson, M'Car- lice. Not a fair is held in Ireland now at thy, and Barry were very generally read which the authorities do not take precauhere, and they were criticized as literary ef- tions for seizing upon the ballad-singers and forts, in no unfriendly spirit, by English confiscating their seditious wares. Amongst writers. But we all fell into the delusion, the most peremptory orders sent from the as the authors themselves are now ready to Castle to the stipendiary magistrates are acknowledge, that these political poems were those touching the suppression of popular known to the masses in Ireland. The peo- ballads. This gives to the Fenian conspiraple knew very little about the authors, and cy a character far graver than the affair of less about their works. They had heard of 48, and recalls some of the features of the Gavan Duffy as an opponent of O'Connell, times of Wolfe Tone. The Wexford insurbut they never heard of The Muster of gents of 1798 never saw a treasonable news the North,' or • The Voice of Labour.' It paper; but they were familiar with the rewas only when some of these gentlemen got bellion-teaching verses of M.Birney, and down to Ballingarry that their eyes were such ballads as The Wearing of the Green.' opened to the political blindness of the Indeed the latter may be found even now peasantry. The people looked with aston- amongst the street literature reprinted ishment and doubt upon such totally ún- by the Fenians and purchased extensively known leaders as O'Gorman, O'Brien, and by the people. The Young Irelanders ner. Dillon. It is said that some grey-haired er would have re-published such lines as farmers, when the rumour spread that fight- these, ing was intended, asked if Boney was come across ?” and others inquired' “if Lord Then forward stepped young Boney, Edward was really come back ?" or "if the And took me by the hand, Counsellor (meaning O'Connell) was Saying, "How is old Ireland, friend of theirs ? ” Then the briefless bar- And how does she stand?risters and clever young gentlemen who had

“ It's as poor, distressed a nation

As ever you have seen, never grown tired of repeating, with a little verbal alteration, the dictum of Fletcher of

They are hanging men and women

For the wearing of the Green! Saltoun, " Let me make the ballads and I

For the wearing the Green! care not who make the laws,” began to dis

For the wearing the Green! cover the difference between making bal- They are hanging men, and women too, lads and securing readers. The move- For wearing of the Green!”

a

PATRICK SHEEHAN.

But that the Fenians should have circula- It was the broad daylight! ted these verses with their own halfpenny

And when I found that I was blind, productions, shows that they have had a My tears began to flow;

I longed for even a pauper's grave more correct appreciation of the popular

In the Glen of Aherlow. taste. Of their own street ballads, the following is one which has attained extensive

O blessed Virgin Mary, popularity. As a ballad slip, it appears Mine is a mournful tale ; anonymously; but Mr. M'Glashan's publi

A poor blind prisoner here I am, cation gives its authorship to a Fenian with În Dublin's dreary gaol; an extraordinary name, Mr. Charles J. Struck blind within the trenches, Kickham, of Mullinahone, — the same Mr. Where I never feared the foe; Charles J. Kickham, we presume, who was

And now I'll never see again arrested with the famous Head Centre and My own sweet Aherlow! prison-breaker, Stephens :

- There is a touch of genius in the shadowy way in which the author announ

ces the death of the three sisters in the lines My name is Patrick Sheehan,

beginning, My years are thirty-four ; Tipperary is my native place,

The news I heard nigh broke my heart. Not far from Galtymore ; I came of honest parents,

As to the political effect of such a balBut now they're lying low;

lad, we have no hesitation in declaring our And many a pleasant day I spent conviction that there is more danger in the In the Glen of Aherlow.

disaffection that this artfully-told story of

Patrick Sheehan may produce, than in all My father died; I closed his eyes

the writings of the Young Ireland party, Outside our cabin door ;

and all the contemptible blusterings of the The landlord and the sheriff too Were there the day before !

now so-called national

the Nation

organs And then my loving mother,

and the Irishman. In this ballad Mr. KickAnd sisters three also,

ham undoubtedly constructs his verses so as Were forced to go with broken hearts

to touch the heart of the class to which, we From the Glen of Aherlow.

believe, he himself belongs.

Of an apparently ruder stamp, but comFor three long months, in search of work, posed with equal cunning, is a street ballad I wandered far and near;

called • By Memory Inspired.' It is copied I went then to the poor-house,

from a broad-sheet which was found hawkFor to see my mother dear;

ing about the country, headed with a rude The news I heard nigh broke my heart;,

woodcut of two men leaning pensively on a But still, in all my woe, I blessed the friends who made their graves in one hand and bottle in the other, suppos

table, and a standing cavalier, with a glass In the Glen of Aherlow.

ed to be engaged singing to them. Its anonyBereft of home and kith and kin,

mous author has boldly mixed up the With plenty all around,

moral-force tribune with Mitchell and the I starved within my cabin,

men of '98:
And slept upon the ground;
But cruel as my lot was,

By Memory inspired,
I ne'er did hardship know

And love of country fired, 'Till I joined the English army,

The deeds of Men I love to dwell upon;
Far away from Aherlow.

And the patriotic glow

Of my spirit must bestow “Rouse up there,” says the Corporal, A tribute to O'Connell that is gone, boys, gone! “ You lazy Hirish hound;

Here's a memory to the friends that are gone. Why don't you hear, you sleepy dog, The call to arms.sound ?

In October, 'Ninety-seven
Alas, I had been dreaming

May his soul find rest in Heaven -
Of days long, long ago;

William Orr to execution was led on :
I woke before Sebastopol,

The jury, drunk, agreed
And not in Aherlow.

That Irish was his creed ;

For perjury and threats drove them on, boys, I groped to find my musket

on : How dark I thought the night! Here's the memory of John Mitchell that is O blessed God, it was not dark,

gone!

In ’Ninety-eight — the month July – Their paltry successors in the combinéd line
The informers pay was high;

of business are to be found brawling and When Reynolds gave the gallows brave Mac- boasting at national associations and town Cann;

councils. But not so the Fenian contriBut MacCann was Reynolds' first

butors to this little volume or to the colOne could not allay his thirst; So he brought up Bond and Byrne that are

umns of the suppressed journal, the Irish gone, boys, gone :

People. Luby, O'Leary, Stephens, and their Here's the memory of the friends that are gone! associates, never condescended to attend

public meetings or take any part in the We saw a nation's tears

clap-trap of the ordinary Irish agitations. Shed for John and Henry Shears; They confined their publicaction to the Betrayed by Judas, Captain Armstrong; pages of their weekly organ, and we must not We may forgive, but yet

shut our eyes to the fact that that organ, We never can forget

the Irish People, presented a contrast to The poisoning of Maguire that is gone, boys, other anti-Saxon newspapers. As a literary gone

production, the Fenian paper was well Our high Star and true Apostle that is gone!

written. Its principles of rebellion were de

cided and clear; but its style, though earHow did Lord Edward die? Like a man, without a sigh;

nest, was apparently moderate and calm.

When Dr. Cullen wrote an inflammatory But he left his handiwork on Major Swan ! But Sirr, with steel-clad breast,

pastoral, denouncing England and the And coward heart at best,

English, and telling the people that they Left us cause to mourn Lord Edward that is were grossly misgoverned, but winding up gone, boys, gone :

by only asking for a collection towards the Here's the memory of our friends that are gone! Catholic Bishop's pet university, the Irish

People coldly dissected the Archbishop's September, Eighteen-three,

pastoral, and, in much better English, drew Closed this cruel history,

the logical conclusion from his Grace's vioWhen Emmett's blood the scaffold flowed upon : lent premises. Hence the sweeping charge Oh, had their spirits been wise,

which a certain section of the Roman CathThey might then realize

olic party in Ireland have been making Their freedom — but we drink to Mitchell that against the rebels

. As far as this volume, editis gone, boys, gone :

ed by “ Duncathail," and the numbers of the Here's the memory of the friends that are gone!

Irish People are concerned, we have failed

to discover those incitements to assassinatThis ballad is a key to the historical ing priests and landlords of which so much knowledge or historical ignorance of the has been said; and indeed it seems that the multitude by whom it is eagerly read. The only evidence produced goes the other way, leaders of the Young Ireland party - Smith for it turns out to be merely a private letO'Brien, Meagher, Gavan Duffy - are all ter written to Luby, expostulating with him (with the suggestive exception of Mitchell) for not hinting at the advantage of thus totally ignored. No reference is made to disposing of the clergy and proprietors. Grattan, Charlemont, or Flood. The only The most vigorous onslaught on the landreal popular heroes appear to be O'Connell lords which this Fenian volume contains is and a set of uncompromising rebels. There the following :are some lines in it which show that the author has thoroughly grasped the genius of his countrymen: for example, that episode in the death of Lord Edward

Oye who have vanquished the land, and retain “But he left his handiwork on Major Swan!" it,

How little ye know what ye miss of delight! That line conveys no small amount of There are worlds in her heart - could ye seek consolation to the Irish mind.

it or gain itBetween these Fenian writrs and the That would clothe a true noble with glory and other Irish Nationalists there is another point What is she, this isle which ye trample and ravof difference. The writers of the old Nation

age, newspaper aspired to be orators as well as Which ye plough with oppression, and reap authors. They were constantly leaving the with the sword, editor's desk to move resolutions and deliv- But a harp never strung in the hall of a savage, er fervid addresses at public meetings. Or a fair wife embraced by a husband abhorred?

THE NEW RACE.

The chiefs of the Gael were the people embod- | The wounded wood-dove lies dead at last ! ied !

The pine long-bleeding, it shall not die! The chiefs were the blossoms, the people the This song is secret. Mine ear it passed root;

In a wind o'er the plains at Athenry. Their conquerors, the Normans, high-souled and high-blooded,

These lines, so unintelligible, no doubt, Grew Irish at last from the scalp to the foot.

to most of our readers, indicate Mr. De And ye ! - ye are hirelings and satraps, not no-Vere's thorough appreciation of the Celtic bles !

mind; but the following passage in a more Your slaves, they detest you; your masters, ambitious poem, “The Bard Ethell,' is, if

they scorni The river lives on - but the sun-painted bub- possible, still more characteristic :

bles Pass quick, to the rapids incessantly borne.

I forgive old Cathbar, who sank my boat ;

Must I pardon Feargal, who slew my son — And who is the author of this fiery admo- Or the pirate, Strongbow, who burned Granote, nition to the Irish landlords ? No one can

They tell me, and in it nine priests, a nun, suspect him of being a Head Centre. He And (worst) St. Finian's old crosier staff?

At forgiveness like that I spit and laugh! is a professor in the Catholic University; he is even one of the territorial class; be is - it is only fair to add – a highly-cultivated Justice Keogh, in charging the jury at the

One of the ablest of the Irish Judges, Mr. gentleman, Mr. Aubrey De Vere. Duncathail, the Fenian editor, avows in his Pre- that, though rebellious ideas may exist in

Special Commission in Dublin, remarked face, that he publishes the compilation to the mass of the people, such ideas have re“ cheer the reposing soldier amid the camp- ceived no encouragement whatever from fires of the bivouac; to sing to the listening any intelligent or educated quarter. We ears of Age the songs of memory and of hope, to Youth the song of love, to Manhood authority — for reasons now given.

are compelled to differ from this eminent and Womanhood that of patriotism and duty, to the Child the strain which he may not forget, and which may win him to his bome, should he ray, and bind him to Ireland in weal or woe;" to pour the precious balm of love upon the weary feet of Ire

From the Victoria Magazine. land; and to “cheer the hearts of those who

A STORM. may be capable of serving her with more than words or songs.In doing this he has

“Oh, I have suffered acted judiciously in mingling with such With those that I saw suffer ! A brave vessel, popular strains as · Mackenna's Dream, who had no doubt some noble creatures in her, The Green Little Shamrock,'' The Boys of Dash'd all to pieces. Oh! the cry did knock Wexford,'' The Galloping O’Hogan,' "The Against my heart. Poor souls, they perished.” Western Winds, and Arthur M.Coy,' some of the less directly rebe Mious poems of

OFTEN during the summer months just writers like Mr. De Vere. Very few, how- past, and while looking at the gentle ripever, of his verses have penetrated the ears pling surface of Carmarthen Bay, I have of the peasantry. The only one, indeed, heard the exclamation, “ How I should like that seems to have caught the fancy of the to see a storm!”. The summer visitors common people is a mysterious little effu- went their way, however, without being șion, in which he speaks of Ireland under gratified by. witnessing that grandest of her mystical names.

all nature's sights, a storm at sea; but winter has come in with a noisy herald, and the trumpet voice of the blast that proclaimed the last month of 1865 will long be

remembered. The Little Black Rose shall be red at last;

For nearly a fortnight there had been What made it black but the March wind dry,

warning voices in the air, “the sea and the And the tear of the widow that feM on it fast? It shall redden the hills when June is nigh!

waves roaring,” hungry for human prey.

The heavens one hour hung with heavy The Silk of the Kine shall rest at last;

black clouds; another, great white pillowy What drove her forth but the dragon-fly?

masses, between which drifted a fleecy veil. In the golden vale she shall feed full fast, Then again an even grey pall would be With her mild gold horn and her slow, dark drawn across the ethereal blue; earth and eye.

THE LITTLE BLACK ROSE.

heaven would seem to unite; and the vaVOL. XXXII. 1481.

THIRD SERIES.

LIVING AGE.

poury screen press almost palpably upon old Welch superstition of the goblin hounds, you; hiding away the fierce blast

, you knew, who are said to sweep through the air, by the action and tremble in the thick hot chilling the listener's blood by their yells air, must be blowing somewhere.

and shouts. How the sea muttered and thundered The wind did not treat us long to this upon the sands at low water; and then as gentle music; Old Boreas was only striking the tide rose again, what a sheet of angry the key-note, presently he began sounding foam there came up, as if the depths had the chords, gently at first, taking breath, as been at war; foam which, caught by the it might be, between each effort, and listensudden gusts of wind, was whirled high up ing for the effect. the cliffs and hung upon the many-hued Until just as the waves touched the cliffs, rocks and yellow furze.

and the harsher roar told me they were There is not usually much sea-rack here, breaking against Selwyne, a fierce gust of but we have bad plenty of it these three wind swept over the hill, striking the house weeks past; and there it now lies, “ rugged like a hammer, and causing the roof to ratand brown,” dire witness of storms out in tle again. There was a crash, a shiver, and the heart of the Atlantic; lies, grim enough all was over for the present, although you by day, but by night gleaming with phos- could still hear the mighty rush of the blast phorescent light.

as it careered along on its course, and by Day after day the warning grew plainer; the time it had sighed itself out, the waves until at last the storm king himself was were rushing into the caves, and the vaulted close upon us.

roofs resounded again with hollow mockery. Upon Monday the symptoms grew more Some minutes passed, the distant moandemonstrative; the rose red and ing of the tide and soughing of the wind angry, and sank in a perfect glory of only heard, and then the very hill seemed rainbow hues, drawing down upon his de- to bend, while over it came a mighty rushparting footsteps a dark curtain, as if to ing wind. shut out the havoc and distress that he left Shorter and shorter grew the pauses in to revel during the long wild night. the storm, nearer and louder the distress of

It was low water just after sundown, and the sea, until the hurricane was upon us. for awhile all was tolerably calm. Then a What a scene it was then; how the distant throbbing went vibrating along the waves and winds seemed to outvie each crests of the hills, most resembling the echo other in wild defiance, drowning any poor that lingers in the vaulted roof of a cathe- weak human voices, appalling the senses, dral after a mighty burst from the organ. and forcing upon the mind that verily God's Far away upon the low level beach the sea voice is in the tempest ! song was murmuring, exquisitely sweet and But is there no other voice ? solemn, but in it weird voices seemed What is it that wakes the dull sinking mingling in eerie song, voices broken by sickening, pain at the listener's heart, as shrill cries and shrieks, which it was almost there wells up the involuntary prayer impossible to believe the piping of wild “ God help those at sea.” birds, and which amply accounted for the

sun

1

SCRIPTURE ENIGMAS.

Who suffered deeds of which he was afraid ?

What youth, the sage's counsel disobeyed ? Who left St. Paul for worthless mammon's Who would not leave king David in his woe? sake?

Whose kindly works did grieving widows What sleeping prophet did an angel wake?

show? Whose offering of faith did God accept? Who boldly slew the oppressor of his land, What gentlewoman's death the widows wept? And then led on a valiant patriot band ? What Jewish maiden, from a lowly place,

In the initals of these names, A mighty monarch's throne was called to grace ?

A world-wide fault we find, By the initials find the doom

Which sows the seeds of hate and fear To which the path of sinners tend;

And misery 'mid mankind. Which casts o’er life its awful gloom,

And deeply darkens to the end.

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