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

A Male Prostitute, 1757

On Wednesday last a Person, who, as it since appears, got his Livelihood by prostituting himself, sent a Letter of Assignation to the Right Hon. the Earl of Tankerville, appointing a Place where his Lordship should send his Answer; who ordered his Porter to go every Day to the said Place, with a Piece of Paper in the Form of a Letter, till he met with the Man; which he did last Monday Night, too him into Custody, adn carried him before Mr. Justice Fielding, who committed him to Prison, and the next Morning he was examined at that Magistrate's, in the Presence of his Lordship: And as this vilest of all Prostitutes had no other Excuse for writing this Letter but his Impudence, he was delivered over to the Commissioners for impressing Men, who sent him to the Savoy.

It appeared on his Examination, that Kensington Gardens, and some of the obscure Places in Hyde-Park, were the Places of Rendezvous for these Monsters in human Nature. He had in his Pocket-Book, Directions to Numbers of People of all Degrees, and some fair Copies of Letters of the same Stamp with that above mentioned, beginning with "My Lord," but without Directions.

On enquiring at the Place where he lodged, it appeared that he lay in Bed every Day till after Twelve; that he constantly breakfasted in Bed, wore a Bed Gown, and a Woman's Cap and Knot: His Paint and Patch-Boxes were found on his Toilet. In a Word, he is the completest Gomorrean that has been met with for some Time; tho', from some Papers found in his Pocket, it is no less certain than shocking, that there are many Clubs of these Animals now in Town, who, it is hoped, will soon be exposed to publick View. It is remarkable, that this Man was so great a Stranger to Lord Tankerville's Person, that he could not have told him from any other Man in the World; but his Letters are so contrived, that they may either pass for a begging Letter of a Man in Distress, or to offer his Person for the basest Purposes.

SOURCE: The London Chronicle: or, Universal Evening Post, Tuesday January 4 through Thursday January 6, 1757. The same report appeared in the Public Advertiser for 5 January, differing only in the last word being "uses" rather than "purposes".

CITATION: If you cite this Web page, please use the following citation:
Rictor Norton (Ed.), "A Male Prostitute, 1757", Homosexuality in Eighteenth-Century England: A Sourcebook, 2 November 2004, updated 16 June 2005 <>.

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