Derricke's Image of Ireland (1570s)

John Derricke, The Image of Irelande. London : By [J. Kingston for] Jhon Daie, 1581.
Only one complete copy survives of this controversial work, which defends England's subjugation of Ireland in verse. In the 1570s English troops under Lord Deputy Sir Henry Sidney, father of the poet Philip Sidney, were engaged in a brutal struggle against native Irish forces. John Derricke was a Protestant English engraver who accompanied Sidney and produced this illustrated account to justify and glorify the English actions. The twelve remarkable woodcuts are intended to depict the native Irish as savages and the English forces as heroic conquerors. Ironically, the images give us a powerful insight into life in Ireland, as Derricke was despite his prejudices an eye-witness and a skilled observer.
Derricke, John
plate 3

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