[from Manx Soc vol 16]


"ALL the babes unborn will rue the day
That the Isle of Man was sold away;
For there's ne'er an old wife that loves a dram,
But what will lament for the Isle of Man."

The negotiations for the sale of the Island in 1764 created great uneasiness amongst various classes, particularly that portion who had a dread that their favourite dram would come under the English excise-duties, and the trade, that is smuggling, would be ruined. This gave rise at the time to various political songs, of which the above is a fragment being the only portion I have been able to meet with. For the numerous publications connected with these transactions, see the Manx Society's eighth volume, Bibliotheca Monenensis, 1861.

The celebrated Yawkins, a Dutchman, commanding a smuggling lugger called the "Black Prince," the "Dirk Hatteraick " of Sir Walter Scott's " Guy Manering, was celebrated in this Manx trade, and is thus spoken of-

"Oft at the Ross with Yawkins and with Dowall,
And Manxmen gabbling from the manor-hole,
What noggins have I drunk of smuggled rum,
Just from the little 'Isle of Three Legs' come !
Such jough cheers me."


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Any comments, errors or omissions gratefully received The Editor
HTML Transcription © F.Coakley , 2001