1. Themes
  2. A to Z
  • Click to view this Transcript


Tranquility once more prevails at Ballarat

After days of violence and unrest during which the Eureka Hotel was burned and diggers clashed with government forces, it was publicly believed that peace had at last returned to Ballarat.

1 December 1854
Published Source
Australian National Dictionary Centre, The Gold Rushes and Australian English: a resource for researchers, teachers and students, Australian National University, 2005, http://www.anu.edu.au/andc/res/aus_words/gold/index.php. Details
This material is provided by the Australian National Dictionary Centre, a joint project of the Australian National University and Oxford University Press Australia.


  1. Click to view this transcript



The latest intelligence from Ballarat, as detailed in our correspondent’s letter, is of a pacific nature. Great excitement had prevailed, and preparations were made by the diggers to meet any turn of affairs that might present itself, but fortunately the result shows that peace and quietness reigned paramount, showing that although for a moment they had adopted a line of conduct which no true lover of his country could approve of, cool reflection has led to wiser modes of seeking the redress of grievances. Tranquility once more prevails at Ballarat, and now is the time for the Executive to do what they could not consistently think of doing while active rebellion existed,—suspend at once from office all officials at Ballarat, against whom charges have been made. Those who have been proved to be untrustworthy, such as the coadjutors of Mr Dawes at Scobie’s inquest, should be at once dismissed, and requested not to remain at Ballarat. It is the opinion of many that no concession whatever shall be made to the diggers while they commit acts and assume a position at variance with the true interests of society; it is urged that, yielding to their demands now would only tempt them on to further extravagancies (sic), that, having once taken power, they would not stop short at the mere redress of their present wrongs, but would straightway urge unreasonable demands. But those who argue thus do not know the Ballarat diggers. They are, as a body, hardworking, well-disposed characters—they are gentle-men in the original and true signification of the word. It is true that they were roused to indignation as any other community of gentle-men would be by the murder of one of their fraternity, and the suspicion (since proved to be well founded) that the slayers of their fellow-digger were protected by those whom they paid to preserve law, order, and justice intact in their community. It may be truly said, with regard to the burning of Bentley’s Hotel, that they rioted to preserve order; they grievously outraged the law, in order that the law might be administered with purity. Once more Ballarat is quiet, long may it remain so; and may the government speedily take advantage of this state of things to rectify all proved abuses, such as a corrupt magistracy, under which the Ballarat diggers have hitherto groaned. Geelong Advertiser, 1 December 1854