Cover image for Fenian fire : the British Government plot to assassinate Queen Victoria
Fenian fire : the British Government plot to assassinate Queen Victoria
Campbell, Christopher, 1951-
Paperback edition.
Publication Information:
London : HarperCollins, 2003.

Physical Description:
xxiv, 422 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, portraits ; 20 cm
General Note:
Originally published: 2002.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
DA560 .C35 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



A historical investigation into one of the most serpentine attempts on Queen Victoria's life that reveals for the first time the true instigator at the heart of government.

* There were eight attempts to assassinate Queen Victoria during her long reign; four of them were of Irish origin. The most serious of all was the 'Jubilee Plot', a conspiracy apparently hatched in New York by the Fenian Brotherhood to blow up the Queen, her family and most of the British Cabinet with dynamite at the great service of thanksgiving to commemorate the 50th anniversary of her accession, held at Westminster Abbey in June 1887.

* The plot was 'uncovered' by Scotland Yard with just a few days to go. Several of the bombers were caught, tried and sentenced to penal servitude for life. But - warned off in time - the master bomber escaped to America...

* Now, using recently declassified Foreign Office Secret files (marked 'Fenian Brotherhood'), the author discloses for the first time the huge secret at the heart of the British counter-intelligence operation against militant Irish nationalists: the entire conspiracy was masterminded for its own reasons by a clandestine British agency reporting directly to the Prime Minister, Lord Salisbury.

Author Notes

Christy Campbell was a publisher's editor before turning freelance writer. He has written for the Sunday Telegraph since 1990 when he joined as Defence Correspondent covering the Gulf War. He has made a speciality of 'forensic historical investigations' and produced a series of special supplements for the Sunday Telegraph on 20th-century history. He has written a number of non-fiction books on World War II and broadcast on radio and television, and is the author of The Maharajah's Box published HarperCollins.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrationsp. xi
Chronologyp. xiii
A Note on Sourcesp. xxi
Part 1 The Missionaryp. 1
Part 2 The Generalp. 51
Part 3 The Clanp. 83
Part 4 Dynamitep. 107
Part 5 Spymaster-Generalp. 149
Part 6 The Fallp. 181
Part 7 In the Year of the Jubileep. 221
Part 8 Delusionp. 243
Part 9 The Commissionp. 297
Epiloguep. 365
Dramatis Personaep. 371
Acknowledgementsp. 381
Published Sourcesp. 383
Notesp. 387
Indexp. 407