It’s the birthday of one of the most controversial figures in Manx history – William Christian, AKA Illiam Dhone.
To mark the occasion Culture Vannin have shared this YouTube video from Jack Rackam. The title Patriot or Traitor? pretty much sums up the whole debate that’s rumbled on about Dhone since he was executed by being hanged on Shotto Hill. Sorry, I mean shot on Hango Hill.
If you want to know how the civil war in England affected life in the Isle of Man but only have four minutes and 52 seconds to spare, then this video covers most of the main points. Although I’m still not quite sure why absolutely everybody seemed to have it in for the Quakers. I would have thought that fairly non-judgemental people with a ready supply of porridge and big hats would have been pretty popular in the 17th century.
These days, of course, the idea of other people being hassled and inconvenienced because of an internal tiff among the English is a difficult concept to imagine. But give the old noggin a stretch.
This fun little film is also a reminder that a sizeable chunk of Manx history can be summed up by the expression ‘Oh my god, I forgot we had that‘.