Chapter 53 [The Eureka Stockade, by Raffaello Carboni, 1855]

[Editor: This is a chapter from The Eureka Stockade by Raffaello Carboni. A glossary has been provided to explain various words and phrases that may be unfamiliar to modern readers.]


Turbatus est a furore oculus meus.

The following is the scene, so characteristic of the times, as it was going on at the Prince Albert:—

“Who’s the landlord here?” was the growl from a sulky ruffian, some five feet high, with the head of a bull-dog, the eyes of a vulture, sunken in a mass of bones, neglected beard, sun-burnt, grog-worn, as dirty as a brute, — the known cast, as called here in this colony, of a “Vandemonian,” made up of low, vulgar manners and hard talk, spiked at each word, with their characteristic B, and infamous B again; whilst a vile oath begins and ends any of their foul conceits. Their glory to stand oceans of grog, joined to their benevolence of “shouting,” for all hands, and their boast of black-eye giving, nose-smashing, knocking in of teeth, are the three marks of their aristocracy. Naturally cowards, they have learned the secret that “pluck,” does just as well for their foul jobs. Grog is pluck, and the more grog they swallow, the more they count on success. Hence their frame, however robust by nature, wears out through hard drink, and goes the way of all flesh, rarely with grey hairs. It is dangerous to approach them; they know the dodge how to pick up a quarrel for the sake of gratifying their appetite for fighting. You cannot avoid them in this colony; they are too numerous. I saw hundreds of these Vandemonians, during my four months in gaol. Their heart must be of the same stuff as that of vultures, because they are of the same trade. In a word, they are the living witnesses among us, of the terrible saying of Isaiah, “The heart of man is desperately wicked.”

Through such did Satan plant his standard to rule this southern land, before Christ could show his Cross; hence, before famous Ballaarat could point at a barn, and call it a church, on the township, old Satan had three palaces to boast of, the first of which — a match for any in the world — has made the landlord as wealthy and proud as a merchant-prince of the City of London. “Non ex illis Mecoenates,” — that’s the secret how this land has produced so many first-rate bullock-drivers.

The scene at the Prince Albert is now more interesting.

Raffaello Carboni. The Eureka Stockade: The Consequence of Some Pirates Wanting on Quarter-Deck a Rebellion, Public Library of South Australia, Adelaide, 1962 [facsimile of the 1855 edition], page 67

Editor’s notes:
B = (“with their characteristic B, and infamous B again”) a reference to swearing, presumably referring to the word “bloody”

**non ex illis Mecoenates = (Latin) “not one of them a Mecoenates”; a reference to Gaius Cilnius Maecenas (70 BC–8 BC; different spellings of his name have been used: Maecenas, Mecaenas), who was a patron of the arts in ancient Rome, as a consequence of which patrons of the arts came to be called “Maecenates”

Prince Albert = the Prince Albert Hotel (in Ballarat, Victoria)

*turbatus est a furore oculus meus = (Latin) “my eye is troubled”; from Psalm 6:8 in the Latin Vulgate Bible, “Turbatus est a furore oculus meus; inveteravi inter omnes inimicos meos” (“My eye is troubled through indignation; I have grown old amongst all my enemies”, or “My eyes are filled with grief; I have grown feeble in the midst of my enemies”) [unlike most of the chapter in the Book of Psalms, Psalm 6 is not numbered differently in other versions of the Bible]

Gaius Maecenas”, Encyclopædia Britannica (accessed 9 January 2013)
Gaius Maecenas”, Wikipedia (accessed 9 January 2013)
Sir Richard Colt Hoare. A Classical Tour Through Italy and SicilyBiblia Sacra Vulgatae Editionis, Nicolaum Pezzana [Nicolas Pezzana], Venetiis [Venice, Italy], 1669, page 393 (accessed 20 January 2013)
Psalms 6”, New Advent (accessed 9 January 2013)
Psalms 6:8 : Douay-Rheims Bible parallel: Christian Community, New Jerusalem, Clementine Latin Vulgate, Biblia Sacra Vulgatam ”, Veritas Bible (accessed 9 January 2013)
Psalmus VI (Nova Vulgata): Psalm 6 (6)”, Thesaurus Precum Latinarum: Treasury of Latin Prayers (accessed 9 January 2013)

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