This satirical broadside begins: 'Let Banter cease, and Poetasters yield, / Since fam'd De Foe is Master of the Field. / What none can comprehend, he understands.'
The English-born novelist, secret servant and novelist Daniel Defoe (1660-1731) was highly vocal in his support for the Act of Union (1707) between the English and Scottish parliaments, and wrote many pamphlets on the subject. This piece, written in a sarcastic tone of mock admiration, has been attributed to Baron Belhaven, John Hamilton (1656-1708). It was probably written around 1706.
Broadsides are single sheets of paper, printed on one side, to be read unfolded. They carried public information such as proclamations as well as ballads and news of the day. Cheaply available, they were sold on the streets by pedlars and chapmen. Broadsides offer a valuable insight into many aspects of the society they were published in, and the National Library of Scotland holds over 250,000 of them.
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1706 shelfmark: S.302.b.2(045)
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