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Nine Famous Irishmen
In the young Irish disorders, in Ireland in 1848, the following nine men were captured. Tried and convicted of treason against Her Majesty, the Queen, and were sentenced to death: John Mitchell, Morris Leyne, Pat Donahue, Thomas McGee, Charles Duffy, Thomas Meagher, Richard O’Gorman, Terrance McManus, and Michael Ireland.
Before passing sentence, the judge asked if there was anything that anyone wished to say. Meagher, speaking for all, said: “My Lord, this is our first offense, but not our last. If you wish to be easy with us, this once we promise, on our word as gentlemen to try to do better next time. And next time – sure we won’t be fools to get caught.”
Thereupon, the indignant judge sentenced them all to be hanged by the neck until dead, and drawn and quartered.
Passionate protest from the entire world forced Queen Victoria to commute the sentence to transportation and exile for life to the remote, barren wilds of Australia.
In 1874, word reached an astounded Queen Victoria that the Sir Charles Duffy who had been elected Prime Minister of Australia, was the same Charles Duffy who had been transported into exile there 25 years before.
You cannot keep a good Irish man down!