The Editors of the Irish Tribune - The Last Conquest of Ireland (Perhaps)

John Mitchel
Author’s Edition (undated)

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waging in this island against foreign tyranny. In conducting it, my weapons shall be—the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help me God! 'JOHN MARTIN."

Reilly was an ardent fellow-labourer with Martin; and James Finton Lalor, of Kildare county, came up to Dublin and threw himself into the work. Lalor was the most powerful political writer that our cause had yet called forth, if I except Davis only. These two journals established themselves in Trinity Street; one in my office, and the other next door to it: so that instead of one regular avowed organ of insurrection, the enemy had to deal with two. Mr Duffy, also, in the Nation, became now as urgent and vehement in exciting the people to resistance as I had been, or as the Tribune or Felon themselves. For five weeks thereafter truth and manhood, that is, "treason-felony," were openly taught and enforced; but six weeks would have been too much. The police were ordered to forcibly stop the sale of papers by vendors in the streets; and warrants were issued for the arrest of all the Editors,—Martin, Duffy, O'Doherty, and Williams. The country was beginning to bristle with pikes; men were praying for the whitening of the harvest; and it was plain that, before the reign of "Law and Order" should begin, other terrible examples must be made; other juries must be packed; then, after that, a Whig "government" would surely begin to deal with Ireland in a conciliatory spirit!

Throughout all these scenes, the horrible famine was raging as it had never raged before;—and the police and military, both in towns and the country, were busily employed in the service of ejecting tenants,—pulling down their houses,—searching out and seizing hidden weapons,—and escorting convoys of grain and provisions to the seaside, as through an enemy's country. Yet rumours began to grow and spread (much exaggerated rumours, as I fear), of a very general arming amongst the peasantry and the Club-men of the towns; and the police had but small success in their searches for arms; for, in fact, these were carefully built into stone walls, or carried to the graveyards, with a mourning funeral escort, and buried in coffins, shrouded in well-oiled flannel, "in hope of a happy resurrection."

The enemy thought it wisest not to wait for the harvest; and resolved to bring matters to a head at once. Accordingly, they asked Parliament to suspend the Habeas Corpus Act in Ireland, so as to enable them to seize upon any person or number of persons whom they might think dangerous, and throw them into prison without any charge against them. Parliament passed the Bill at once; and in truth it is an ordinary procedure for Ireland. It ...continue reading »

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