Three Accounts of Peterloo

Three Accounts of Peterloo

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Excerpt: ...the words "Front!" and "Forward!" were given, and the trumpet sounded the charge at the very moment the threes wheeled up. When fronted, our line extended quite across the ground, which in all Pg 52 parts was so filled with people that their hats seemed to touch. It was then for the first time that I saw the Manchester troop of Yeomanry; they were scattered singly or in small groups over the greater part of the field, literally hemmed up and hedged into the mob so that they were powerless either to make an impression or to escape; in fact, they were in the power of those whom they were designed to overawe, and it required only a glance to discover their helpless position, and the necessity of our being brought to their rescue. As I was at the time informed, this hopeless state of things happened thus: A platform had been erected near the centre of the field, from which Mr. Hunt and others were to address the multitude, and the magistrates, having ordered a strong body of constables to arrest the speakers, unfortunately imagined that they should support the peace officers by bringing up the troop of Yeomanry at a walk. The result of this movement, instead of that which the magistrates desired, was unexpectedly to place this small body of horsemen (so introduced into a dense mob) entirely at the mercy of the people by whom they were, on all sides, pressed upon and surrounded. The charge of the Hussars, to which I have just alluded, swept this mingled mass of human Pg 53 beings before it; people, yeomen, and constables, in their confused attempts to escape, ran one over the other; so that by the time we had arrived at the end of the field the fugitives were literally piled up to a considerable elevation above the level of the ground. (I may here, by the way, state that this field, as it is called, was merely an open space of ground, surrounded by buildings, and itself, I rather think, in course of being built upon.). The...
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Product details

  • Paperback | 24 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 1mm | 64g
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236717775
  • 9781236717771