Peterloo Riots, white metal medal, circa 1819, the cavalry cut down men, women and children in the street, MANCHESTER/ AUGUST 16/ 1819, rev. MANCHESTER/ AUGUST 16/ 1819, REV. THE WICKED HAVE DRAWN OUT THE SWORD/ THEY HAVE CUT DOWN/ THE POOR AND NEEDY/ AND SUCH AS BE OF/ UPRIGHT CONVERSATION/ PSALM XXX VII/ XIV, £Sold
On 16th August, approximately 50,000 people gathered at St. Peter's Fields, Manchester, to listen to speeches protesting against the working conditions in England. Amongst those present was Henry 'Orator' Hunt. As the mood grew angrier the local magistrates lost their heads and ordered the reading of the Riot Act. When this failed to calm things down, the Yeomanry were ordered to charge, killing eleven people and injuring 400. The term 'Massacre of Peterloo' was an ironic reference to Waterloo and was a crucial event in English social history.
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