This account begins: 'The HISTORY and Comical LIFE of Jean Murphy. Shewing the enterprising scenes she came through when commanding a party of Rebels in Ireland : how she travelled Scotland in man's apparel'.
After some time travelling in Scotland, Jean Murphy, also known as Patrick Murphy, is said to have settled in Glasgow and found work as a lamp-lighter. Still disguised as a man Murphy then proposed marriage to her landlady, Water Jenny, in order to procure her savings. Whether true or not, such stories proved extremely popular amongst the broadside-reading public. The National Library of Scotland's broadside collection includes many other examples of stories featuring 'warrior women' and the escapades of women disguised as men.
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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Probable date published:
1830- shelfmark: L.C.1268
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