[Editor: This is the introductory section in the biography of Philip Durham Lorimer, written by Edward Augustus Petherick, which was published in Songs and Verses by Philip Durham Lorimer: An Australian Bush Poet, 1901. Following the introductory section were five parts to the biography: I. The wilderness, II. Vanity Fair, III. The Pilgrimage, IV. The Delectable Mountains, and V. Beulah.]
Philip Durham Lorimer whose verses and songs appeared in provincial newspapers of New South Wales during the ’eighties and ’nineties of the last century — gaining for him the cognomen of the “Bush Poet,” was the eldest son of Alexander Lorimer, M.D. of the East India Company’s service, and was born at Madras, 3rd June, 1843. He was educated at the Academy and University of Edinburgh. As a youth, he was a great favourite with all with whom he was associated, and regarded as a very good “story-teller.”
Intended by his father for the Army, Philip, however, showed no inclination in that direction and sailed for Australia in his eighteenth year, arriving in Sydney early in 1861.
A situation was soon found for him at a squatting station on the M‘Intyre River, in the New England district, near the borders of Queensland. His prospects were considered good and he was soon joined there by his brother Peter. A squatter’s or bushman’s life, as will be seen, is not ordinarily the most enjoyable, nor is there much of the ‘rollicking’ element in it which some would have us believe. The company on some stations is very much ‘mixed;’ sometimes it is composed of individuals of several nationalities. Gentlemen educated at Oxford or at Cambridge, the sons of officers in the Army, army-officers themselves, have been found in association with men whose chief accomplishments consist in the ability to “crack a stockwhip, to swear, and to ride anything!” Whether from strict upbringing, or from his own Sabbatarian views at that time, is not stated, — but Philip being asked on a certain occasion to kill a bullock on the Sunday, refused and resigned his situation.
E. A. Petherick (editor). Songs and Verses by Philip Durham Lorimer: An Australian Bush Poet, William Clowes and Sons, London, 1901, pages 11-12
Following are the several parts of the biography of Philip Durham Lorimer, written by Edward Augustus Petherick:
I. The wilderness
II. Vanity Fair
III. The Pilgrimage
IV. The Delectable Mountains