Early Eighteenth-Century Newspaper Reports compiled by Rictor Norton

The Jacobites

16 June 1716   Sunday being the Pretender’s Birth-Day, several of his friends had prepar’d white roses to wear in favour of him; but by the good care of the Government this design was nipt in the bud. Some few however, and very few, made faint attempts to distinguish themselves, but met with many rebukes. One of these drest somewhat like a Gentleman, was challeng’d, by one of His Majesty’s Officers, near Grays-Inn-Lane, had his badge tore from him, and was wounded and disarm’d. [Weekly Journal, or The British Gazetteer]

18 May 1717   The intolerable insolence of the Jacobites is still so great, that they have now attempted to erect another non-juring meeting-place not far from White-Horse-Yard in Drury-Lane; which we do not doubt will meet with the same fate from the Whigs as those in the Savoy, Scroop’s-Court, and Aldersgate-Street.

Were they to seek all England round,
A place more fit, could not be found;
For, if the
Whigs, should them oppose,
The which, how soon, none of them knows:
The pocky bullies, and their whores
Would quickly join with them in scores:
In their Defence they’d lose their blood,
To do their Church and customer’s good.

But all to no purpose; for loyalty is always triumphant over rebellion. [Weekly Journal, or The British Gazetteer]

20 September 1718
Going this morning thro’ King Street in Westminster, to my great surprize seeing a great crowd of people about the middle, curiosity incited me to see the occasion of their flocking together, which was to gaze on the sign of a man doing (as children are wont to say, because they wou’d not speak par words) his needs on a dunghill, which unseemly sort of a posture making one more inquisitive than the rest ask what the figure was doing by the dunghill, an arch wag of a country-fellow said, Caunt you zee what he’s duing on! Why he’s shitting Jacobites, and wiping his Arse with Mist’s Saturday’s Posts, which witty answer
put all the spectators in a violent fit of laughter, excepting some few Jacks, who hang’d their ears as if they had been beset indeed, and sneakt off the ground as fast as they could, for fear their stinking in the nostrils of all loyal men, should bring ’em into a Premunire [a legal writ], for breaking the statute provided against all common nuisances.
   I am your humble servant.
   Rowland for Oliver.
      [Weekly Journal, or The British Gazetteer]


3 January 1719
St. James Market, December 30th. 1718.
Mr. Read,
In reading one of your journals wherein I read a letter sent to you from the abovesaid place, concerning several apprentices living there, and therebout, who were disaffected to the present Government, this is to acquaint you that, your printing the aforesaid had such a good influence on some of those treasonable sparks, that they do not practice those seditious doings as they did before. However some of them are still as wicked as ever, and going with them the Friday in Christmas Week to a certain tavern in Drury-Lane, they there had the impudence to drink the Pretender’s health, by the title of James the Third, and the healths of other traytors. On the Sunday following I went with ’em to a bawdy house in one of the courts going out of Drury-Lane into Wild-Street, where when they were in bed, I packt up all their cloaths, and sent them to their masters, in the pockets where they found several of their goods stoln, as pieces of lace, silk stockings, and other things, so coming all in a body to the bawdy house, with good oaken plants in their hands, they came and surprized their prentices in beds with their whores, whom they thrasht after a severe manner, some running one way naked, some another, and some up the chimnies, making them as black as so many Devils; so now ’tis that this discovery of these young fellows’ unlawful doings will bring them also to an early conversion, in the mean time.
   I rest Your humble servant unknown,
   [Weekly Journal, or The British Gazetteer]

(Texts have been modernized with regard to capitalization, italicization, and punctuation, but original spelling has been retained. This edition copyright Rictor Norton. All rights reserved. Reproduction for sale or profit prohibited. These extracts may not be archived, republished or redistributed without the permission of the compiler.)

CITATION: Rictor Norton, Early Eighteenth-Century Newspaper Reports: A Sourcebook, "The Jacobites", 17 April 2002 <http://grubstreet.rictornorton.co.uk/jacobite.htm>

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