Verse 1 begins: 'The Russians are coming to Scotland they say, / Get ready old women, they're now on their way ; / Be true to your colours and laugh at the joke'.
This broadside focuses on Britain's foreign policy during the 1850s. The Austrians and Russians, under Tsar Nicolas I, were forming an alliance, mainly to gain supremacy over the Turks in the Balkan States and the Crimean Coast. Britain's government at the time, a Liberal-Conservative coalition led by George Hamilton Gordon, Lord Aberdeen, refused to acknowledge the new Russian threat, however. This broadside's prediction of Russian aggression would prove to be true as Britain entered into the Crimean War in 1854.
This style of text, with its implicit political propaganda, would not only have made for compelling entertainment, but would also perhaps have stimulated political thought, reasoning and debate.
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Probable date published:
1854 shelfmark: L.C.Fol.178.A.2(113)
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