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ment, in the following remarkable view of the subject :
If we should allow that the cruelties of the Irish, out of war, extended to these numbers, which, cONSIDERING THE NATURE OF SEVERAL OF THE DEPOSITIONS, I think in my conscience we cannot, yet, to be impartial, we must allow that there is no pretence for laying a greater number to their
Thus we close this subject with stating, that these hundreds of thousands are reduced by Carte to 20,000, less “ several thousands,” and 66,000 women and children,” and “others;" and by Warner to about 12,000, a large portion of which, “ in his conscience,” he cannot allow! Would it not be an insult to the reader, to offer another word, to prove the utter falsehood of all the terrific statements given of the subject, whereby the world has been so long and so grossly deceived ?
415 Warner, 296.
View of the spirit of the hostile parties in Ireland.
Murderous and never-enough-to-be-execrated orders of the lords justices, and of the Long Parliament. Illustrious contrast on the part of the Irish.
BEFORE we enter on the investigation of the horrible and unparalleled cruelties alleged to have been perpetrated by the Irish in this civil war, we regard it as a duty to present a view of the spirit manifested in the orders given to the commanding generals on both sides, which will shed important light on this interesting subject ; and add still further corroboration to the various proofs we have already adduced, of the unprecedented deceptions practised upon, and the erroneous impressions entertained by, the world at large, respecting Irish affairs.
He must be a mere sciolist in history, who requires to be informed, that the most rigorous military discipline has too frequently, in every age, been utterly inadequate fully to restrain the ferocious and sanguinary spirit of mercenary armies, which, accustomed to scenes of blood and desolation, are too prone to be steeled
against the calls of humanity. It is well known, moreover, that civil wars are almost always signalized by incomparably more ruthless barbarity than wars between hostile nations. But, if the wisest regulations, to restrain military violence, be always found difficult, and too often impossible, to be carried into effect, even in well-regulated armies, how frightful must be the result, when murder and desolation are not merely tolerated, but absolutely commanded; when the rulers
“ Cry havoc, and let slip the dogs of war;" when military outrage is excited, by orders to slaughter the unoffending; and when the incapacity to resist the violence of one party, is made a pretext for murder by the other !
It will astonish the reader to learn, that the tenants of the regions below do not differ more from the purest cherub or seraph that the mind of man can conceive, than the fiend-like spirit of the orders promulgated by the lords justices, from those issued by the leaders of the Irish. None of those destroyers of mankind, who
“ Wade thro' seas of blood,
And walk o'er mountains of slaughtered bodies ;'416 who riot in human misery; could exceed the lords justices, in the desolating inhumanity of their orders, which breathed nothing but an infuriate spirit of havoc and devastation.
Their commanders were directed to “ consume, destroy, and demolish all the places where the rebels were relieved or harboured;" to “kill, slay, and destroy all the rebels and their relievers.":417 But this was not all, nor half. How can we proceed to relate the execrable tale? It will hardly be believed. For the honour of human nature, it were to be wished that it could be utterly blotted from the records of history : but this is impossible. There it remains, and there it will eternally remain, to the never-dying infamy of those miscreant rulers. The orders close with a direction to kill and destroy all the men able to bear arms," in the places where the rebels were 66 relieved and harboured!!!!"*
*“ Order of the Lords Justices and Council to the earl of
Jo. BORLACE. “The rebels having assembled themselves in arms in hostile manner, with banners displayed, in several places about this city of Dublin, intending and openly professing to starve this city and this state, and his majesty's forces here, that so the rebels may the more easily possess themselves of the kingdom, deprive his majesty of his royal crown and sovereignty here, and root out, murder, and destroy, all the British and Protestants in the kingdom,
“ It is resolved, That it is fit that his lordship do endeavour with his majesty's forces to wound, kill, slay, and destroy, by all the ways and means he may, all the said rebels, and their adherents and relievers; and burn, spoil, waste, consume,
417 Carte, III. 61.
The murderous spirit of these orders for the destruction of the harbourers of the insurgents, must excite the most unqualified horror and indignation in every man not utterly destitute of the feelings of humanity. It may be readily conceived, that defenceless individuals, scattered over an extensive country, cannot possibly prohibit armed bodies of men from access to their houses or plantations ; nor can the inhabitants of cities, towns, or villages, destitute of fortifications or garrisons, prevent their entrance ; the attempt would ensure destruction, and could only be dictated by absolute insanity : and nothing but the most flagrant destitution of justice could ever induce commanders to punish the bare submission to overwhelming force and violence, with the rigour and severity due to the perpetration of the highest species of crimes.
Suppose, for a moment, that a civil war raged in this country, which God forbid : suppose, further, that an army of five thousand men were to
stroy, and demolish, all the places, towns, and houses, where the said rebels are, or have been, relieved and harboured, and all the corn and hay there; and kill and destroy all the men there inhabiting able to bear arms !!!!
“Given at his majestie's castle of Dublin, 23 February, 1641-2. R. DILLON,
418 Carte, III. 61.