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British War Poetry in the Age of Romanticism 1793-1815, by Betty T. Bennet, Edited by Orianne Smith

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1798.2
The Runaway Fox
Anon
The London Chronicle (March 1798), p. 251

Shewing how Mr. FOX came to run away from
    the Parliament House: being quite a
    new Song, in praise of those Persons
    who resolve to keep the Ship, and ride
    it through the Storm.

There was one noted Fox, Sir,
    A man of sense and wit,
And well he dealt his knocks, Sir,
    Against good Mr. PITT!

But PITT he was a fellow,
    Who trimm'd him in his turn;
O! then how Fox did bellow,
    And all his wrath did burn.

Says Fox, this plaguy war, Sir,
    Doth prove you fool and mad;
Says PITT, pray hold your tongue, Sir,
    For Peace it can't be had.

Said Fox, when bread was dear, Sir,
    The War was all the reason;
But PITT he made it clear, Sir,
    It was a scanty season.

Says Fox, you've broke the Bank, Sir:
    O! now we're all undone!
For this, says PITT, pray thank, Sir,
    The fools who made the run.

Says Fox, what fright and fear, Sir,
    In Ireland have you spread.
Why there, says PITT, 'tis clear, Sir,
    Rebellion's rais'd her head.

Says Fox, I love those fellows,
    Those persons whom you blame.
Says PITT, why you're the bellows
    That's blowing up the flame.

Says Fox, in England too, Sir,
    You've broke the Constitution.
No, no, says PITT, 'tis you, Sir,
    That want a Revolution.

Then Fox, he storm'd and bounc'd, Sir,
    At what young PITT did say:
And felt he was so trounc'd, Sir,
    At last he ran away.[1]

St. Stephen's House he quitted,
    As all the world doth know;
Nor dar'd, he was so twitted,
    To stand another blow.

So now let every lip, Sir,
    Come sing, with praises warm,
"The men who keep the Ship, Sir,
    "And ride it thro' the storm."


Notes

1. Charles James Fox (1749-1806) was the leader of the opposition in the Whig party. He had welcomed the French Revolution, but by 1797 he was so disappointed in the prospects for peace, he resigned from Parliament.

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Published @ RC

September 2004