Genealogical and Historical Research Service in Ireland



The following poem was included by Rev. EJ Quigley P.P., Newbliss, County Monaghan, in an article on Father James Coigley, the curate of Dundalk who was hanged in Maidstone, England, on 7 June 1798 for his involvement in the 1798 Rebellion. He had also been sympathetic to the Defenders.
The poem was written by Arthur Forrester of County Monaghan, date unknown.


Fill up once more, we'll drink a toast

To comrades far away

No nation upon earth can boast

Of braver hearts than they;

And though they sleep in dungeons deep

Or flee, outlawed and b[an]ned;

We love these yet, we can't forget

The felons of our land.


In boyhood's bloom and manhood's pride

Foredoomed by alien laws

Some on the scaffold proudly died

For holy Ireland's cause.

And brothers, say, shall we to-day

Unmoved, like cowards stand

Whilst traitors shame, and foes defame

The felons of our land?.


Some in the convict's dreary cell,

Have found a living tomb,

And some unseen, unfriended, fell

Within the dungeon's gloom.

Yet, what care we, although it be

Trod by a ruffian band --

God bless the clay where rest to-day

The felons of our land.


Let cowards sneer and tyrants frown

O! little do we care--

A felon's cap's the noblest crown

An Irish head can wear.

And every Gael in Innisfail

(Who scorne the serf's vile brand)

From Lee to Boyne would gladly join

The felons of our land.



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© MP McConnon, MC Research Service, Seabank, Castlebellingham, Dundalk, County Louth, Ireland
(Original uploaded 6 May 2008) Last update 29 May 2018.