Thursday, April 14, 2011

Thomas Paine, Arthur O'Conner and the Rebellion of 1798

While transported to prison for his part in the Rebellion of 1798, Arthur O'Conner of the United Irishmen penned the following lines. While an apparently loyal panegyric to crown and country, it was meant to be read in the order indicated in the lines below:

1 The pomp of courts and pride of kings,
3 I prize above all earthly things,
5 I love my country, but the king --
7 Above all men his praise I sing,
9 The royal banner are displayed,
11 And may success the standard aid

2 I fain would banish far from hence,
4 The rights of man and common sense
6 Confusion to his odious reign
8 That foe of princes Thomas Paine
10 Defeat and ruin seize the cause,
12 Of France, its liberties and laws

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