This is a land worth fighting for”
William of Orange – attrib.
“I fought to liberate the Protestants,
not oppress the Catholics”
William of Orange
King William, though made a champion of the Orange Order, was a fair general, making good Treatys with the surrendering cities. He and his Williamite party were condemned in the Irish parliment for these “generous” terms by the Ultras such as Bishop Anthony Dopping of Clonmacnois and Trinity College. These later held sway with Queen Anne leading to a breaking of most of the Treaty of Limerick and the Treaty of Galway…
A land worth fighting for, plains of Royal Meath
A kingdom, no, three, on his white steed
With Dutch Dane and German as he did need
He crossed Boyne’s narrow water
And faced James with French and Irish who with brave deed
Raced headlong both sides to slaughter.
The battled ebbed, the battle flowed
The battle sped up, and then it slowed
And in time, the field it showed
William won the day
And the Irish troops, they soon it knowed
Their King was away.
The king to his servant said
The Irish being cowardly had the battle fled
Not fighting as they should have, instead
Of standing their ground another bit
The servant stated that in the race ahead
From the battle, the king beat the soldiers to it.
And by Treaty inside Limericks wall
Which is why the city by that name people still call
The victor, and those who fall
Made solemn guarantee
That those of faiths not of state, lands great and small
Shall keep, and to worship be free.
However those who succeeded the throne
His traits of fairness had not shown
And freedom for Catholic was unknown
And to our shame
We listened and spread the story that has grown
That for bigotry William was to blame.
The Boyne was a battle of Kings
Not for faith, but for other things
For power, and all that brings
To he who wins
And fools, beats drums and songs sings
And in time will suffer for his sins.
Sure he wanted freedom from Rome’s diktat
As do us all, though Catholic for that
And that was all that he was at,
Though others round him at his prime
Waited their moment and at their places sat
And struck after his time.
What thinks he when he sees made
In his honour the Orange parade
Bigot tunes by his subjects played
By those he fought to free
How they from his vision have strayed
By opposing for all faiths liberty!
He stated loud, he stated well
The history books to us they tell
That cavalry charge he ordered, and with the shell
He fought to liberate Protestants, as they did call
Him to do so, and for it his troops fell
Not to oppress Catholics at all.
And the men of 98
Who wished for freedom for their faith
This they often did state
They united to make a nation as a Republic great
With their fellow Irishman, the Jacobite.