Sympathy With Lancashire.
Title:Sympathy with Lancashire
Publication:The Bradford Observer
Date:Thursday, October 23, 1862
Discounting the extra syllable upbeats and downbeats (anacrusis and hypercatalexis) this poem is written in alternating trimeter and dimeter dactyls – in short, this is like a broken waltz. There are twelve quatrains and the language used is quite formal and archaic, in keeping with its moralistic tone.
The Old and New Testaments are brought to bear on the morality of this poem, but there is also a strong contrast described between the former relative wealth of the mill workers and their present impoverished state. These kinds of statements were necessary in order to assure potential charitable donors that they were working to correct an unnatural social state, and that this really was the deserving poor. Although published in a Bradford newspaper, it is stated that this was composed in Hampden, so can be counted as part of the great metropolitan drive to provide aid for the Cotton Famine, contributed to by the magazine Punch and the Victoria Press.