Among the authors, can be found politicians (William PITT, Edmund BURKE), satirists (Jonathan SWIFT), “political mathematicians” (William PETTY) and agronomists (Lord SHEFFIELD, Arthur YOUNG). Others are anonymous, with no named author or with coded pseudonyms: Hiberno Britannus – the British Irishman (Hibernia Lat. For Ireland), A Gentleman, Philopatriae – the patriot.
The subjects raised include: the main commercial and manufacturing occupations, the regulation of the Irish economy by statute, exports of wheat and wool, the production of flax, weavers –, Jonathan Swift adopted the pseudonym of The Draper for some political pamphlets – the national debt, the currency, taxes, land tenure, the improvement of agriculture, the iron industry, the condition of the working class, protectionism, customs’ tariffs and the regulation of Irish exports. But also, more political issues are evoked such as democracy, religion, the political exclusion of Catholics, English supremacy and the political union of 1801.
For over a century, since the annexation of the island by England and the settler plantations, economic and political issues are raised and debated in these pamphlets and works: – how to govern the island, how to encourage agriculture and industry in order that the island and its inhabitants should not constitute an financial abyss, how to grant a voice to the Irish people in the management of their affairs. The solution found in 1801, by the English, was the Union of both parliaments.
Consult The Catalogue Dubois Collection Ireland Scotland