I recently came into possession of a book written by Thomas Cooper (1805-92), a famous Chartist activist, which he gave to his friend, the newspaper proprietor and fellow Chartist, John Cleave (1790-1847).
Chartists writers loved drawing inspiration from England’s medieval past; in their campaign for political reform, which better figure could they choose than England’s famous outlaw from the Middle Ages?
“I only strive to arouse the grovelling spirit of the industrious millions to a sense of the wrongs under which they labour.”
“A plebeian fighting for the poor and rewarded with poverty.”
My book on Wat Tyler in medieval and post-medieval literature is now available for preorder on Amazon!
In Thomas Miller’s novel ‘Royston Gower’ (1838), Robin Hood is portrayed as a medieval Chartist activist.