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Teribus BS: What defines the English (98* d) RE: BS: What defines the English 20 Sep 17

Glad you brought up Tolpuddle:

The Tolpuddle Martyrs were transported to Australia in 1834, for taking an oath that they would work to support each other and their families. The landowners were forcing them to work longer hours, reduced their wages, meaning starvation and deprivation for all. The oath was to hold back a portion of their produce, to enable them to feed their families, whilst reserving seed stock to grow their own food. Six men took this oath under a Yew tree in the village of Tolpuddle, Dorset. When the landlords learnt of this, they tried to charge the men with theft. The courts decided that as the men were starving, the landlords were the guilty ones, for not ensuring their wellbeing.

Just for David Carter (UK)'s edification, please note:

1: Hold back a portion of THEIR produce
2: Grow THEIR OWN food
3: Landlords responsible for the wellbeing of their tenants.

The charge was changed to a rigged one of blasphemy and treason that was quickly overturned but not before the men had been transported to Australia for a term of seven years. The men were pardoned in 1836, the pardon was granted on the grounds that the King, when Prince of Wales, became a Freemason, whose oaths did not include loyalty to the reigning monarch. As the King could not be transported, or seen to be guilty of treason against himself, the 'martyrs' had to be pardoned.

All but one returned to England, not that they stayed for very long all five crossed the Atlantic to eventually settle in Ontario in Canada.

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