Database of Poems

Back to results

Lord John and the Pedlar

1832: Representation of the People Acts

Author: Anon

Publication: Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine

Publisher: William Blackwood

Published: October 1832

Place of publication: Edinburgh, Scotland

Publication type: Newspaper/Periodical

Featured individuals:
Henry Brougham (1778-1868)
Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey (1764-1845)
John Russell, 1st Earl Russell (1792-1878)

A full copy of this poem is available.

Further information:

Archive/Library: National Library of Scotland
Classmark(s): The Blackwood's Magazine: reel no. 30
Pages(s): 640-641

This poem concerns a pedlar, Tom Potts, who visits Bridgewater Town.  There, he finds a town turned 'upside down' by Reform.  The public houses have all changed their names: The Saracen's Head, is now called Lord Grey, and The Lord Harry has replaced The Mitre.  Tom is entertained by 'John Boniface', a fervent supporter of reform, who provides him with a Reform Dinner.  Boniface believes that the Bill will both 'brew and bake' for all.  However, this idea is satirised at the end when Tom Potts goes to leave and is told that he will have to pay for his bill - indicating that the bill will not be as 'glorious' as some hope, and it will not meet the rhetoric of the reformers.