Image of two men kissingHomosexuality in Eighteenth-Century England: A Sourcebook compiled by Rictor Norton

Newspaper Reports, 1737

NOTE: See also numerous reports from Bristol

Monday 17 January 1737

A house in Black-Friars much suspected of being frequented by an infamous Gang of Sodomites, Mr. Jones City Marshal has often of late visited the home, particularly last Night; but before he came out, that execrable Crew found means to escape but narrowly. (Caledonian Mercury)

Saturday 22 January 1737

On Thursday Night last, Mr. Jones, the City-Marshal, was call’d upon to suppress a House in Black-Fryars, who harbour’d those abominable Wretches called Sodomites. He accordingly went thither with an Assistant; but, tho’ the utmost Caution was taken of its coming to the Knowledge of the People of the House, their guests found Means of making their Escapes, some with Handkerchiefs about their Shoulders like Night-Rails, before Mr. Jones’s Arrival: However, his going there, will, it is hoped, prevent their meeting there more, to the great Joy of the Neighbours. (Newcastle Courant)

Saturday 5 February 1737

Bristol, Jan. 22. . . . We have been a pretty while quiet from hearing of the detestable Actions of those Black Gang of Vermin the Sodomites, till last Week an Instance happened in this City, at an Inn in Thomas-street, where one of Lucifer’s Tribe was discovered in a Diabolical Attempt with a Soldier: It seems he deceived the honest Soldier with specious Pretences, and treating him pretty freely with Liquor, had Leave to a Part of his Bed, which he was no sooner in, but he began his brutish Attempts, and being overheard by the Chamber-maid, she immediately inform’d some Gentlemen in the House of the Affair, who presently turn’d the He-Lady out of the Inn, and being well mobb’d, was severely pelted thro’ the Streets: The Butchers too got him into their common Beast-Penn, and dragg’d him thro’ the Filth till the Wretch was almost suffocated. (Newcastle Courant)

Wednesday 2 March 1737

Friday the said Sessions [of the Old Bailey] 25 Prisoners were try’d three of whom were capitally convicted, viz. Nathaniel Hillyard for murdering Mr. Minegan, a Marshall’s Court Officer in the Haymarket in the Year 1733.
          Samuel Taylor and John Barry for committing the detestale Sin of Sodomy. (Derby Mercury)

Thursday 22 September 1737

They write from Bristol, that Thomas Hull the Sodomite was so severely pelted in the Pillory, that he died upon the Spot. (Stamford Mercury)

CITATION: If you cite this Web page, please use the following citation:
Rictor Norton (Ed.), "Newspaper Reports, 1737", Homosexuality in Eighteenth-Century England: A Sourcebook, 17 Feb. 2015 <>.

Return to Homosexuality in Eighteenth-Century England