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Chartism Test Questions: 6

It is of no use to refuse to look our difficulties in the face. The fact is, that, be it from listlessness, ignorance, want of thought, incapacity to reason as to political causes and effects, or satisfaction with things as they are, the great majority of the working men of the metropolis are altogether indifferent as to representation. They feel certain evils, and they complain of them, but they do not apply themselves to consider whence they proceed.

In the country, we believe, it is far otherwise. . . . We are sorry to have to report that in the metropolis, where the lead should have been taken, there is nothing doing; and unless the metropolis be set working, all agitation elsewhere is useless. It is here that the seat of Government is. A demonstration in the streets of London comes before the very eyes of those who make the laws. An atmosphere of agitation here does not dissipate without first involving the two Houses of Legislation in its influence. A hundred demonstrations in the country are only heard of through the newspapers of the factions, which invariably describe them as contemptible, diminish the numbers, and caricature the speeches.

FROM 'Prospects of our cause', The Chartist, 30 June, 1839.


  1. What reasons does the source suggest for the indifference of London's working men towards Chartism? 
  2. Why was London so important to the Chartists, according to the source? 
  3. Why did the writer think that provincial agitation was ineffective?
  4. What was the aim of the article 'Prospects of our Cause'?
  5. What provincial agitation occurred in July 1839 and with what results?
  6. How did Feargus O'Connor attempt to increase the importance of the provinces?
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