« 이전계속 »
enjoy. They, therefore, wished the Gulls to gain the same degree of rational liberty, which they themselves possessed.
The Freelanders were, however, not very united among themselves in their opinion of this revolution. They were divided into three parties, the high, the middle, and the low: the first comprised the steward, the lord's household and dependents; the second included the constitutionalists, or assertors of the rights of the tenants; and the third consisted of the rabble, wbo wished to level all distinction of rank. The high party decried the revolution from its dawn; but they did not show any animosity towards it, as they considered Farmer Lewis as the author of the revolt of the Thir: teen Acres, and rejoiced at its being retaliated upon him. The middle party hoped to witness the emancipation of the Gulls from their seryitude, and their enjoyment of rational liber, ty. . The low party rejoiced to see the destruction of rank which they held to be inconsistent, with freedom, in any shape. They
hoped, that the same visionary plan of reform. ... yould be introduced among themselves,..
This lecelling system had been engendered by some writings of an idle, sottish vagabond, one Tommy Thorn, who was, however, unfortunately possessed of more than common abilities. He had first shown himself an incendiary, by dispersing some hand-bills among the occupiers of the Thirteen Acres, to which might be at. tributed, in a great measure, their throwing off their dependence on Freeland. He conveyed his doctrines, which were of the levelling kind, in that plain, forcible style, which is exactly suited to the understandings and taste of those whom he intended to lead astray. He represented lords as a set of sturdy beggars, who indolently fattened on the sweat of the industrious tenants' brow, and you may be sure that he treated the inferior ranks with much less civility, But his contempt of lords, and other great men will no longer astonish the Readler, when he shall be told, that this wretch made a diversion of packing up the prophets, and knocking them down with the Bible, like so many Dutch pins with a bowl; he served the same sauce to the A postles with the New Testament. Indeed, we dare not say to what lengths he carried his
blasphemous impiety. It is certain that he must have studied his ABC out of a very bad HONN: „BOOK, and that his master could only be fit to keep company with Jerry Abershaw, on W1M. Bledon COMMON. His chief doctrine, which was that every legal or moral restraint was an infringement of natural liberty, was so palate. able to the disorderly part of every community, that those of the manor of Freeland began to entertain ideas of throwing of all those restraints, and all subjection to the established laws. · FRANCIS, who had succeeded Joseph, his fa- ther, the late Lord of the Gormands, was a relative of Lady Lewis, and he had entered into a compact with Eagle Frederic, which was supposed to be for the support of Lord and Lady Lewis, and consequently deemed inimical by the Gulls. They, by some means, got an intimation of it, and resolved to be the first to strike a blow. As they knew that they should have little to apprehend from the tenants of Bighose, and the Lowlands, who, by their own revolts, had shewn that they entertained similar Principles, they determined to make their
estates the scene of warfare, and they accordingly ordered a body of armed men to march against them. The Gormands and Eagles marched to oppose them, and, at the onset, repulsed the Gulls. The latter, however, sent such strong reinforcements to their combatants, that, at the end of the campaign, they were greatly successful.
The Gulls then began to crow, and, almost frantic with their temporary success, they stormed their Lord's mansion-house, carried himself and his family away prisoners, and deereed the eternal abolition of the seignory and the equality of all mankind. They, moreover, declared, that they would grant fraternity and assistance to all those tenants of other manors who wished to procure their liberty. This des claration was construed into an attack against all lords whatever, and consequently made them their enemies. Their savage excesses and brutal treatment of the Lord and his family also alienated the minds of all sober disposed persons from them, and rendered their once popular cause odious.
As it was foreseen that this insurrection in the manor of the Gulls, would inevitably involve all the neighbouring estates, particularly Frceland, Quirke thought the present a time, when his assistance would be wanted by the Steward, and he might have a good price for it, and he, accordingly, in the Common Hall, seceded from Brush and his party, who openly rejoiced in the emancipation of a great people, as they termed the Gulls, against whom Quirke let loose all the powers of invective. Vortex and his adherents were, at first, very cautious of trusting to this apparent overture of so slippery a chap, and, to do away all their suspicions, Quirke wrote a book against the revolutionary Gulls. He knew they must be aware that he could not recede from black and white, however they inight have dis. trusted him of swallowing, or explaining away his own words—a practice at which all orators are very expert. The most direct assertion made at one time, will, at another, be ex. plained in a diametrically opposite sense. --Tommy Thorn answered Quirke by another