Friday, 7 December 2012

7th December 1812: 'The Wranglers; or Who Shall Be a Favourite'

The Wranglers;

(A Friend of O'Connor and Despard.)
I HAVE done more than ye for my King,
Stand-off with your vain foolish fancies,
For I made all the City to ring—
With “B—r—tt”and the valiant “Sir Francis.”

(Ned Lud)
Yet away with you, uncle Sir Francis,
Pray what has Jack sixteen-string* done?
To break lace-frames you ne’er made advances,
Nor to blow the man's brains out for fun.

Poh poh, ye’re insignificant sinners,
Compared with me—mighty great-man!
I am sure you will never be winners
Though I know that you will if you can.

For tho’, Frankly, my brother thou art,
And thou, Neddy, my darling, my child,
I declare you shall not have a part,
I'll not be of my honours beguil’d.

But here comes our King—hush and hear him,
Clear up the great point in dispute;
True worth he'll discern, I ne’er fear him,
He'll decide in my favour no doubt.

O yes—The great Naseby the mighty,
Shall be the head don in my court;
Bow down all ye “Broadbottomed”party,
And be present where’er he resort.

He has done the thing just as I'd have it,
He has formed right good subjects for me;
Infused discontentment, and hatred,
Made Jacobin slaves of the free.

His engine’s extensively useful
In promoting my cause upon earth,
I am sorry, True Blue† should afflict him,
With Toasts† to which virtue gave birth.

But the worst, I foresee, is not come yet,
True Blue will not let things rest so,
He will not only with—but effect it,
That out of the Country you go.

I dread most—Blue’s proposing the question,
(“Shall we turn baneful Hermes quite out,
Discontinue this vile publication,
This Pelt to the country about”?

Ah! poor fellow! I'll take pity on him,
He shall come with his “bairns” by his side;
He shall never want friends nor attendants,
Whilst a god o’er this world I preside.

*See Doublŭres of Characters, in the Anti-Jacobin Review; for October 1798.

††At these words poor Naseby fell into strong convulsion fits, and uttered, in a very incoherent manner, the following broken words, as near as could be collected —“Land”………..“the la…n..d”………“don't li… it” “we live… iu”……“le….lea….leave it.”—When the Paroxism was a little over, he began to speak more intelligibly and addressing himself to his son he said; “Oh Ned Lud. Ned Lud!—our cause! Oh ‘tis nearly, nearly over—Oh ‘tis over—you will receive little countenance or support from the next p—rl—m—t—no B—r—hm, no R—m—ly, no T—ny there!! And your uncle Frank vows he will not so again unless they mend their manners.”

When some particular friends had wiped the “blood and gore” from his mouth and body, they found them as if they had been “hacked with a hand-saw.”

This poem appeared in the Leeds Intelligencer of 7th December 1812.

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