George Warter Story


?-1721 [George Story]; b. North of England; chaplain of Sir Thomas Gower’s regt., combined on the death of Gower with the Earl of Drogheda’s Regt. which saw action at the Boyne and Limerick in 1691; Story entered Ulster with the regiment; appt. Dean of Connor, 1694; Dean of Limerick, 1705; issued Impartial History of the Wars of Ireland (1691), afterwards bound with a continuation (1693) - i.e., 2 pts., from March 1689 to March 1692; contains plates of battle dispositions by Capt. Samuel Hobson et al.;
he preached an anniversary sermon on 23 Oct. 1714 at St. Dunstan’s in the West [Fleet St., London - the octagonal church where John Dunne preached], marking the day when ‘Irish Massacre’, on the feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola in 1642 when 40,000 Protestants were [purportedly] killed by the Catholics; the Impartial History is the subject of a section in Richard Murphy's poem “The Battle of Aughrim” [as infra].

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Impartial history
  • A True and Impartial History of the most material occurrences in the kingdom of Ireland during the two last years: with the present state of both armies: published to prevent mistakes, and to give the world a prospect of the future success of Their Majesties arms in that nation / written by an eye-witness to the most remarkable passages [1st Edn.] (London: Printed for Ric. Chiswell at the Rose and Crown in St. Paul’s Church-yard, MDCXCI [1691]), [12], 163, [1]pp. [ he first leaf bears half-title on recto and order to print on verso.]
  • A Continuation of the Impartial History of the Wars of Ireland: from the time that Duke Schonberg landed with an army in that Kingdom, to the 23d of March, 1691/2, when Their Majesties proclamation was published, declaring the war to be ended: illustrated with copper sculptures describing the most important places of action : together with some remarks upon the present state of that kingdom / by George Story ... [Impartial history of the affairs of Ireland during the last two years.] [ True and impartial history of the most material occurrences in the kingdom of Ireland during the two last years.] Series: (London: Printed for Ric. Chiswell ... MDCXCIII [1693]), [24], 328, [14]pp., ill. [folded pls., maps; 4° - half-title: An impartial history of the affairs of Ireland during the last two years]; contains num. errors in paging.
Note: The work of 1691 is listed as Wing STC S5750) and has been attributed to Story by Halkett & Laing.
  • A sermon preach'd before His Excellency the Lord Lieutenant, and a numerous assembly of the Protestant gentlemen of Ireland, at St. Dunstans in the West, October the 23[r]d. 1714: being the day appointed by Act of Parliament in Ireland for an Anniversary Thanksgiving for the deliverance of the Protestants of that Kingdom from the bloody massacre begun by the Irish papists on October 23, 1641 / by George Warter Story, D.D. Dean of Limerick / Publish'd at the Request of the Stewards, and several of the Gentlemen of Ireland (London: Printed by W. Wilkins for Ben. Cowse 1714), 30pp. [22cm.; 4°]. 

See also namesake - George Story, a Wesleyan minister and author of A Short Account of God's Dealings with Mr. John Haime [With “A Short Account of his Death”] (London: Printed by J. Paramore 1786), 46pp.. 12° [BL].

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Gearóid Denvir, ‘Decolonizing the Mind: Language and Literature in Ireland’, in New Hibernia Review, 1, 1 (Spring 1997), pp.44-68, quoting George Story: ‘[the mere Irish were ‘perfect barbarians … till at length they were partly civilised by the English conquest of that country’ [cited Joep Leerssen, Mere Irish and Fior Ghael, 1986, p.66.)

Richard Murphy, ‘The Reverend George Story Concludes / An Impartial History of the Wars in Ireland’ .

“I never could learn what became of St Ruth's core
Some say he was left strips amongst the dead,
When our men pursued beyond the hill;
And others that he was thrown into a Bog:
However, though the man had an ill character
As a great persecutor of Protestants in France,
Yet we must allow him to be very brave in his pen
And indeed considerable in his conduct,
Since he brought the Irish to fight a better battle
Than ever that people could boast of before:
They behaved themselves like men of another nation.

“But it was always the genius of this people
To rebel, and their vice was laziness.
Since first they began to play their mad pranks
There have died, I say, in this sad kingdom, [85]
By the sword, famine and disease,
At least one hundred thousand young and old.
Last July alone, more execution was done
At Augrim than in all Europe besides.
Seen from the top of the hill, the unburied dead
Covered four miles, like a great flock of sheep.

“What did the mere Irish ever gain
By following their lords into rebellion?
Or what might they have gotten by success
But absolute servitude under France?
They are naturally a lazy crew
And love nothing more than to be left at ease.
Give one a cow and a potato garden
He will aspire to no greater wealth
But loiter on the highway to hear news.
Lacking plain honesty, but most religious,
Not one in twenty works, the gaols are full
Of thieves, and beggars howl on every street.
This war has ended happily for us:
The people now must learn to be industrious.”  

—In “The Battle of Aughrim” - Collected Poems, Gallery Press 2000, pp.84-85.

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Muriel McCarthy & Caroline Sherwood-Smith, Hibernia Resurgens: Marsh’s Irish Books [Catalogue of 1994 Exhibition] (Dublin: Marsh’s Library 1994), noting that the last chapter of An impartial history attempts an analysis of the former and present circumstances of the country relying on Sir John Davies Discovery of the true causes why Ireland was never entirely subdued, and claiming that Ireland has many natural advantages including ‘the Bodies and Minds of the People Endowed with extraordinary Abilities of Nature’, with an editorial marginalia summarising, ‘The Irish no such Fools as the World Commonly makes them.’ (McCarthy, p.58; [item 57].) Note that ‘diagrams’ of Limerick and the Boyne from An impartial history illustrate the catalogue (p.57; p.61), the former showing ‘the Irish Town’ and ‘the English Town’ in horizontal relief above the plan of siege.

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Marsh’s Library, Dublin, holds An impartial history of the wars of Ireland. In Two Parts (London: for Ric. Chiswell 1693), 4o.

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Hurdles: Estyn Evans, Irish Folk Ways (London: Routledge 1957), cites Story’s account of the temporary huts built of turf and hurdles nr. Newry, so ‘that they [the cattle-minders] can remove them in summer towards the mountains, and bring them down to the valleys in winter.’ (Story, Impartial history, 1691; 2nd edn. 1693, p.16).

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