Irish Orange Order political handbill poem, ostensibly by 'Robert Todd, Comber', ridiculing Liberal candidate in North Down John Shaw Brown on his defeat in the General Election of 1885, titled 'The Burial of the Radical Cause in the Glassmoss'.

'Robert Todd, Comber' and 'M'Cullough's Mule, Coroner, Glassmoss' [John Shaw Brown of Edenderry and Tordeevra, linen manufacturer; County Down, Northern Ireland]
Publication details: 
[Glassmoss, County Down, Ireland. 1885.]
SKU: 16070

1p., 12mo. Cheaply printed in small print. A frail survival: aged and worn. In the 1885 General Election Brown was soundly defeated in the North Down constituency by the Conservative candidate Thomas Waring. The present item is headed 'The Burial of the Radical Cause in the Glassmoss. (By Robert Todd, Comber.)' The poem is 32 lines long, divided into eight four-line stanzas. A clumsy parody of Charles Wolfe's 'The Burial of Sir John Moore after Corunna', it begins: 'Not a prayer was heard, nor a funeral note, | As his corse to the Glassmoss we hurried, | Not a Liberal discharged his farewell shot | Where the Radical done Brown lay buried. | We buried him hastily on Tuesday night; | The sods with our hackle-pins turning, | By the struggling Glassmoss cottage light; | And Conservatives [sic] bonfires burning. | No useless coffin enclosed his breast, | In a newspaper shroud we wound him, | On a Northern Whig [newspaper] we laid him to rest, | With United Ireland [another newspaper] wrapt round him.' The poem is followed by a six-line prose 'VERDICT' by 'M'Cullough's Mule, Coroner, Glassmoss.', beginning: 'Died, a natural death from speedy mortification, on Tuesday, 1st December, 1885, after a protracted struggle for a precarious existence in the unpropitious climate of North Down.' The deceased is said to be 'the victim of a policiy as vacillating and unstable as the Glassmoss sand to which he is consigned without hope of resurrection'. The final feature of the page is the following 'EPITAPH': ''Neath Glassmoss sand, | Not far from land, | In far famed County Down, | His body lies, | No more to rise, | Because it was done Brown.' Excessively scarce: no copies in the National LIbrary of Ireland, British Library, or on COPAC or OCLC WorldCat.