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I. Newssheets et feuilles volantes : Influences et transferts culturels dans les presses ‎anglaise et française, 1600-1830

The Courier de l’Europe, The Gordon Riots and Trials, and the Changing Face of Anglo-French Relations

Howard Weinbrot

Résumés

Le Courier de l’Europe soutenait l’indépendance américaine, la liberté de la presse qui règnait en Grande Bretagne et le système parlementaire qui opposait l’opposition loyale au gouvernement. Pourtant, le Courier publia des commentaires très durs sur l’hostilité “protestante” à la loi d’émancipation des Catholiques de 1778, qui provoqua les sanglantes émeutes londoniennes, dites “émeutes Gordon”, de juin 1780. Entre 1780 et 1786, après les deux procès pour diffamation intentés contre Lord Gordon, le jugement que le journal porte sur ce dernier évolue, passant de la colère, qui diffère en violence seulement de la colère britannique, à la fureur, l’invective et les accusations de folie pure et simple. Cet article retrace une partie de cette évolution et suggère qu’elle est liée aux changements de rédacteurs du journal dont la direction passe de Serres de la Tour et Brissot à Warville puis Théneau de Morande. Cette étude jette aussi un aperçu sur la perception que les Français avaient de la Grande Bretagne dans la seconde moitié du XVIIIe siècle.

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  • 1 In many cases the Courier, often spelled Courrier, borrowed these paragraphs from Continental gazet (...)

1The Courier de l’Europe was conceived by the Scott Samuel Swinton in 1776. Though briefly interrupted, it stayed in print from 28 June 1776 to 28 December 1792. For much of its first thirteen years its variously dominant editors were Antoine Joseph de Serres de La Tour (1776-1783), Jacques-Pierre Brissot de Warville, and Charles Théveneau de Morande (1784-89). The format changed from folio to octavo in November of 1776, after which the sixteen column eight page French journal was published in London on Tuesday and Friday. It offered courtesy paragraphs to several countries, but gave the most space to Britain and secondarily to France.1 The Courier played an often important role in eighteenth-century Anglo-French relations. Specifically, in the matters concerning political unrest and Lord George Gordon, it both mirrored British and French responses to the decade long trauma regarding the 1778 Catholic Relief Act and by 1786 provided its own personal, malicious, response to it.

1. Subscriptions, Subjects, and Riots

  • 2 Courier de l’Europe, Gazette Anglo-Françoise. Continuée sur un Nouveau Plan. Le Premier Novembre M. (...)
  • 3 CE 1, 1776, p. iii.
  • 4 Ibid., p. iii- iv.

2The Courier’s front matter lists its London address and subscription rates as well as its main Paris venue at the Bureau-Général des Gazettes étrangères on the Rue de la Jussienne. Subscriptions also may be purchased at twenty other French cities, and ‘dans toutes les villes principalles de l’Europe.’ The Courier knew that though its language was French, its most compelling news was likely to be British. As ‘Avis du Rédacteur et des Propriétaires’ says, the Courier hopes to satisfy Europe’s ‘curiosité universelle’ regarding the Anglo-American war. Since readers must also be curious about Britain’s major parliamentary figure, ‘peut-être le célebre Burke ne sera pas fâché de voir sa véhémente eloquence travestie en François.’2 In the process of so writing, the ‘Avis’ continues, the Courier will glean vital information from thirty British gazettes, and also add foreign news about which British publications are largely ignorant or indifferent.3 At its inception, at least, the Courier thus claims to be impartial. Its motto is from Aeneid 1: 570: ‘Tros, Tyrius ve mihi nullo discrimine agetur.’ These are Dido’s words to Ilioneus, who seeks her help before he knows if his friend Aeneas has survived the violent storm that cast them on to her shores: the queen promises that Trojan or Tyrian shall be treated no differently by her. The Courier thus assumes a regal, welcoming, presumably even-handed journalistic posture, whose promise often will not be kept. However that may be, the Courier seeks to be timely with British and colonial news, and with ‘l’Histoire générale de l’Europe, traitée dans toutes ses branches’ and especially ‘tout ce qui a rapport aux affaires de l’Amérique,’ to whom the Courier often was partial.4

  • 5 For Beaumarchais, Vergennes, and the Courier, see Studies on Voltaire and the Eighteenth Century, v (...)

3Swinton and his editors needed official government permission to distribute the Courier in a nation suspicious of a free press. The French foreign Minister Charles Gravier, Comte de Vergennes, lifted his early ban (16 July-31 October 1776) of the Courier after Beaumarchais’s intervention and the Courier’s self-censorship regarding the French court, to which early numbers had seemed hostile. The journal then could be sold in France, its dominant market. It again was stopped after 17 March 1778, when Britain declared war and prohibited British goods from being shipped to French ports. English copies nevertheless were smuggled out and reprinted at Boulogne-sur-Mer, near Swinton’s French home. Even with a delay, Vergennes found the Courier instructive. It indeed regularly printed information regarding Parliament and America, who was siding with or opposing whom, how battles and strategy were proceeding in America, what ships were sailing when, to where, under whose command, and with how many canon. Vergennes did not read English, and surely used this information to supplement more clandestine sources.5

  • 6 CE. 1, 1776, p. 29.
  • 7 Ibid., p. 36.
  • 8 Ibid., p. 43.
  • 9 Mémoires et documents relatifs aux XVIIIe et XIXe Siècles. J.-P. Brissot Mémoires (1754-1793), Clau (...)

4For example, on 12 November 1776 the Courier reports that the honorable Temple Lutterel contradicted Lord Sandwich’s optimistic estimate of the Chanel fleet’s readiness: in fact, ‘les vaisseaux destinés à garder les côtes n’avoient pas […] la moieté de leur équipement’.6 On 15 November 1776 it extracts a letter from a British soldier that gives details of his and other regiments’ strength as they prepare to march on Montreal, together with ‘deux schooners chacun de 16 canons outre les pierriers’7 and so on through an ample paragraph. On 19 November it tells about the Lucy commanded by ‘le sieur Watson’ attacked by rebels but now sailing for New York. Readers like Vergennes learned of the respective strengths of General Washington’s American and General Howe’s British troops, and the tension between the American army and its Congress unable to give proper support.8 All this and much more troubled the British government, which nonetheless was bound by its own laws. The British ambassador David Murray, Viscount Stormont, as he then was, read the Courier in Paris. Upon returning to London in March of 1778 he consulted his uncle Lord Mansfield in hopes of shutting down the Courier, which he called ‘un espionnage public,’ and which Brissot later said was worth ‘cent espions’ to Vergennes. Mansfield had in fact already searched for ways to do that, but ‘la loi était muette, ou plutôt la loi permettait d’imprimer en français, en grec, en hébreu toutes les sottises que les folliculaires bretons imprimaient dans leur langue, et il fallait respecter la loi ou en faire une nouvelle.’9 Such British news was so valuable that from about 1776 to1783 the Courier enjoyed the large number of between 6,000 and 7,000 subscribers who, in the nature of things, regularly shared their copies.

  • 10 For example, Brissot reports that upon his first visit to England he saw ‘avec quelque plaisir’ the (...)

5French and francophone ancien regime readers needed instruction regarding that strange Protestant country and its succession of Dutch and German kings, banished English royals, almost perpetual wars with France, and bizarre willingness to supply it with so many able soldiers for her Irish brigades. The pedagogical process was helped when the national poet Shakespeare was translated and adapted by Pierre le Tourneur (1776-82) and ‘imitated’ by Jean-François Ducis (1770-1790). Each author had begun to counter Voltaire’s critical absurdities regarding Shakespeare as brilliant in certain scenes, but grotesquely ignorant of dramatic, that is French neo-classic, structure. Ducis no doubt caused Voltaire’s shade spectral apoplexy when in 1779 he replaced Voltaire in the Académie Française.10

  • 11 op.cit. Mémoires 1, p. 138.
  • 12 op.cit. Mémoires 1, p. 160.
  • 13 CE 7, 1780, p. 174 and 178.

6More importantly, Brissot makes plain that the Courier appeared when England and its political system ‘avait été veritablement une terre étrangère pour le reste de l’Europe’.11 The Courier’s readers were astounded by the eloquence of Fox, Burke, and North whose names and oratory they came to know, and ‘chacun s’étonnait que [King] Georges se laissât si tranquillement insulter par eux, et ne logeât pas à la Tour quelques-uns de ces beaux parleurs. Quoi! point de lettres de cachet, point de Bastille! C’est là que le peuple est roi, se disait-on’.12 Those readers thus confronted Britain’s relative freedom of the press, the nature of parliamentary debate and passage of bills, the concept of loyal opposition, and other terms to help naturalize the aliens. The Courier glosses a harsh reference to ‘la faction Oliverienne’ as ‘de Cromwell.’ It explains that in the House of Commons one refers to ‘l’honorable Membre’ because ‘il est de l’ordre de ne jamais nommer la personne qui a parlé, on peut seulement le désigner par l’ honorable member, ou lorsque c’est un Lord le très honorable personage.’ One learns that ‘Votre Seigneurie’ is ‘your Lordship.’ Clubs are ‘petites sociétés.’ There is comparable instruction in the modes of parliamentary exchange. Serres de La Tour rarely attended parliamentary debates, but he and presumably Brissot could glean information from British news papers. He thus could write that Burke may rise to speak with irony, severity, or something else, as ‘Le Sr. Burke parla avec son énergie ordinaire’.13 Other named peers or Members may merely rise to speak but fill one or more of the Courier’s long columns. The speeches often are eloquent, passionate, and sometimes appear to give both sides of an issue, as on 17 March 1780 above and an exchange between Burke and William Eden regarding the need for a third secretary of state.

  • 14 CE, 7, 1780, p. 369. Richmond urged repeal of the Quebec Act but toleration for Catholics within Br (...)

7Like any newspaper, the Courier was keen on reporting trouble, and certainly so with the American war and the terrible Gordon Riots in June of 1780, whose international implications still require discussion. Avidly Presbyterian Lord George Gordon was the third son of the powerful Scottish Duke of Gordon. Though he demanded deference to his rank, he also was adamantly liberal in ways and resigned from the British navy, which he thought anathema to American freedom. From 1774 he was a Member of Parliament for the purchased pocket-borough seat of Ludgershall in Wiltshire. He later would lead efforts to repeal Sir George Savile’s Catholic Relief Act of 1778 that freed Catholics openly to attend their churches, to educate their children as Catholics in Britain, and to own land. At least as important for the harried Crown at war in distant America, Catholics could join the British military without abjuring the Pope. Many Britons sympathetic to the Americans already were alarmed by the 1774 Quebec Act that ceded vast parts of upper mid-western North America to the religion, law, language, and culture of the defeated recently French subjects. The Act blocked American westward expansion as far as the Mississippi and stoked fears that George III was a Papist and at the least Beelzebub’s kissing-cousin. According to some of the even more troubled, the king would establish colonial Catholicism and despotism, extirpate Protestantism, impoverish the few survivors and surely force them to wear wooden shoes. The next step was to import that model to Britain and repeat the process. An out-of-touch government oblivious to its own peoples’ long-nurtured and approved passions, prejudices, and fears inadvertently set the stage for disaster. On 6 June 1780 the Courier quotes the Duke of Richmond reiterating his earlier remarks regarding the law of unintended consequences: ‘Sa grace répéta qu’elle regardoit le Bill passé en faveur des Catholiques de Quebec comme la cause premiere de tout le mal dont on se plaignoit, & que par conséquence le Gouvernement ‘seul’ en devoit être blâmé.’14

  • 15 For recent useful information regarding the Protestant Association, see John Seed, ‘The Fall of Rom (...)
  • 16 op.cit., 7, 1780, p. 368.
  • 17 James Boswell, Boswell’s Life of Johnson Together with Boswell’s Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides, (...)

8As President of Edinburgh’s Protestant Association Lord George led the often violent attacks upon the Catholic Relief Act, which the Kirk and the Scottish parliament rejected in 1778-79.15 He then assumed the same position in London and by June of 1780 was convinced that he could aggressively but legally force repeal of the controversial Act. He collected at least 40,000 blue-cockade wearing Protestants in St. George’s fields in Southwark and marched them and their massive roll of signed petitions to Parliament. Lord George soon found that it was easier to organize than to contain so large a group. It threatened and manhandled Members and Lords seeking to enter parliament and soon was captured by thugs largely interested in plunder, settling old scores, class retribution, eliminating Irish competition, and lots of whiskey. As the Courier reported on 6 June 1780, ‘lorsque les voitures des Membres commencerent à arriver, ces battallions de Supplicans devinrent insolents.’16 The crowds burned down or pulled down the homes of the Act’s Good and Great, destroyed foreign embassies in which mass had been held, rubbished prisons and freed prisoners. The mob had virtual carte blanche because the sympathetic and intimidated magistrates refused to order the few soldiers then present to fire upon the crowds. On 7 June George III declared martial law when it seemed that the next target was the Bank of England, Britain’s symbol and seat of commercial and imperial power. Twelve thousand troops soon were deployed in London under royal control. John Wilkes commanded 1,000 such Red Coats guarding the Bank and unhesitatingly ordered them to fire upon aggressors. By the time the riots were suppressed, perhaps 700 were dead from alcohol, bullets, bayonets, drowning, drunks falling into their own fires, horses, sabres, summary execution, and wagon wheels crushing the comatose drunk. Thereafter, twenty five nominal rioters were hanged, seventeen of whom were under the age of eighteen, including three yet younger children. By the end of the terrors, some twenty per cent of London and portions of smaller towns like Bath had been destroyed. James Boswell later said that the riots exemplified ‘the most horrid series of outrages that ever disgraced a civilized country.’17 Most fellow Britons agreed.

  • 18 James Boswell, Boswell’s Life of Johnson, 4, p. 87, in a conversation on Friday April 6, 1781. I as (...)
  • 19 op.cit., Mémoires 1, p. 309.

9Lord George was arrested on 9 June 1780 and sent to the Tower. His trial for constructive treason began on 9 a.m 5 February 1781 and ended at 5:15 a.m the next day. He was found Not Guilty, to the joy of a packed court room and indeed of more thoughtful British subjects. Samuel Johnson, for example, was pleased that Gordon was freed, ‘rather that a precedent should be established for hanging a man for constructive treason, which [Boswell reports] […] he considered would be a dangerous engine of arbitrary power.’18 There was a decorous but jolly celebration three weeks after the trial, in which the ducal Gordons entertained some 300 well-wishers, including numerous aristocrats – and the jurors. The Courier’s reporting of all this is the opening phase of its response to germane English conduct from 1778 to 1781. The Courier would become a cultural intermediary between Britain and France. In the process, it showed how reporting events became coloring of events, in which Britain could seem both a free and liberal nation, but also not fully in control of its people. As Brissot said of his senior colleague Serres de La Tour, his political principles varied, ‘mais généralement il était plus dévoué’ to royalist France than to England. He detested Fox’s republicanism because it was incompatible with subordination which was ‘l’âme des états.’19 These attitudes would emerge in what probably was his treatment of Gordon and the rioters.

2. The Courier and the Catholic Relief Act

  • 20 CE 3, 1778, p. 308.
  • 21 Ibid., p. 309.
  • 22 Ibid., p. 318.
  • 23 Such awareness certainly was part of Gordon’s and the Protestant Association’s hostility to the Cat (...)
  • 24 CE. 6, 1779, p. 69-70.
  • 25 Ibid., p. 364.
  • 26 CE. 7, 1780, p. 3.
  • 27 Ibid., p. 4 n.1.
  • 28 Ibid., p. 62.
  • 29 Ibid., 7, 1780, p. 177.
  • 30 Ibid., p. 370.
  • 31 Ibid., p. 369, 369 n.1.
  • 32 Ibid., p. 376.
  • 33 CE. 9, 1781, p. 51. I suspect that the Courier is referring to the volunteer units in the City of L (...)
  • 34 Op.cit., Mémoires 1, p. 309.
  • 35 CE. 7, 1780, p. 376.

10That response divides between tonally different sections before and during Lord George’s trial. The first section laments past British bigotry against Catholics. The largely ignored anti-Catholic laws remained in force and were inconsistent with the English constitution, which regards ‘la liberté & la tolérance comme inséparables.’ The Courier applauds what it thinks Sir George Savile’s ‘jour glorieux’ when he proposed the Catholic Relief Bill on 14 May 1778. This surely would eradicate ‘des vestiges de barbarie déshonnorante pour la nation.’20 The motion was seconded, praised, and unanimously passed,21 as it was on its next reading with ‘le même transport, la même unanimité.’22 The Courier is oddly silent, perhaps ignorant, regarding the Act’s clear intention of adding many Catholic soldiers to the British army fighting to suppress the American freedom that the Courier warmly supported.23 Within the year, however, Scottish storms darkened the putative glorious English day. Lord George becomes the Presbyterian spokesman, as many other Protestants join him in seeking to revoke an Act that for them was hardly glorious.24 The Courier now takes sides. Rather than merely supporting what it thinks a wise policy, it characterizes Lord George as someone who speaks ‘trahison’ regarding the Catholic Relief Act, and is walking into a labyrinth filled with traps.25 By January of 1780 it has drawn clear lines: Lord George, Scotland and ‘l’esprit impitoyable de l’intolerance religieuse’ contrasts with Savile, England, and a century celebrated ‘par l’adoption générale des principes contraires.’26 England could ‘donner un si bel exemple à d’ autres Nations.27 By 28 January 1780 the Courier relates a parliamentary debate that characterizes Lord George’s martial intention: in the House of Commons ‘se lever, revenir à la charge.’28 The Courier had hoped to encourage a world ‘consolant pour l’humanité’ and without ‘ces prejugés nationaux’.29 By June and the riots the Courier knows that is impossible. Lord George’s conduct is something ‘plus qu’extraordinaire’ in exciting the mob outside of the House of Commons.30 By June indeed the Courier even more than its British colleagues has stressed the riots’ international implications. It quotes Lord Bathurst asking what Europe and the world will say about ‘un Gouvernement trop foible’ to shelter the ambassadors of foreign princes from such insults? The Courier’s own voice adds that the Catholic ambassadors’ troubled dispatches to their respective courts scarcely honor the ‘Gouvernement civil de l’Angleterre.31 Bathurst reflects upon Lord North’s administration. The Courier reflects upon the English nation. That is true as well when it notes a group ‘distincte de la populace, sans prendre part à ses excès, en approuvoit secrétement le principe’;32 that group nonetheless arms itself against the mob and arrests some of its members. Here not only is broader acceptance for the Protestants than the Courier had hoped, but also the seeds of further discord within conflicts among co-religionists, what it called ‘cette petite guerre religieuse.’33 So dark a perception may be one reason that the Courier stresses its superiority to British reports, though it also misses the implications of its own discovery: ‘Nous avons rendu compte des horreurs de ces derniers jours avec beaucoup moins de circonspection, par consequent beaucoup plus de verité que l’ont fait les Editeurs des Papiers Anglois.’ I suspect that it does so because Serres was understandably horrified by the dangerous collapse of order that probably would have been treated more quickly and severely in France. Brissot said of Serres’ working method: as for news events ‘il les puisait dans les gazettes anglais; il faut donc souvent s’en défier’.34 Perhaps more sympathetically, he also wants to assure his foreign readers that the crimes were committed only by England’s ‘vile canaille’.35

  • 36 Ibid., p. 3.
  • 37 Ibid., p. 408, 410.
  • 38 The 1685 revoked Edit de Nantes, or Edit de Fontainebleau, itself included the term ‘la Religion Pr (...)
  • 39 CE. 7, 1780, p. 407, 410.
  • 40 CE. 5, 1779, p. 103.
  • 41 op.cit., 7, p. 407 twice.

11As these remarks imply, the Courier has viewed Britain from a French perspective and shared some of its host’s class-based prejudices. So far as I can tell all three primary editors were Catholic and probably were tutored in the presumed failings of Protestant Christianity. They regularly are incensed regarding Anglican England’s anti-Catholicism and the ‘domination Britannique’ that persecuted Catholics in Scotland.36 The editors also revealed their own religious biases. Henry VIII established ‘le culte religieux’ that is the Church of England (7 [1780]: 407). The Protestant Gordon rioters often emerge as ‘pretendus Protestantes’,37 words that evoke a familiar French term during the brutal era of the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes (1685) that targeted the ‘religion prétendue réformée’.38 Those Gordon Protestants were not from the established church, but ‘des Presbyteriens ou des Méthodistes, & il est à croire que les Protestants sont ceux qui ne savent pas ecrire’.39 Scottish Presbyterians embodied ‘l’esprit aveugle du fanatisme’ especially prominent in Scotland.40 Like the British elites, the Courier knows the petitioners only as ‘la canaille’.41 Like the non-elite, non-establishment, Protestants, the Courier had its own bigotry, which it either denied or defined as the glorious dawning of a philosophe new day.

  • 42 Scottish Commentator, ‘Appendix: Reasons against repealing the Statutes enacted to suppress the gro (...)

12The Courier thus fell into a trap that the uncomprehending British government set for itself: namely, neither group trusted or respected the vast majority of people being ruled. Parliament’s folly in1778 was to think that centuries of official anti-Catholicism could easily be changed by benevolent speeches. Anglican anti-Catholic national policy was promulgated by monarchs, preached from pulpits, printed in sermons, confirmed by bishops and archbishops, pronounced by politicians, and written about by men of letters since Henry VIII’s Act of Supremacy in 1534. Like Jonathan Swift in A Tale of a Tub (1704) many Anglican Britons also thought that Papists joined with Dissenters to subvert both the national church and the monarchy. A Scottish commentator in 1781 Edinburgh listed several eminences who insisted upon restraining Catholics. He soon added Addison to the list: ‘A Russell–A Sydney–a Newton–a Swift–a Bolingbroke–a Tillotson–a Locke–have, in ages as enlightened as the present, avowed and supported this doctrine.’ A contributor to the Protestant Magazine for June of 1782 insisted that preaching against Papists was Anglican orthodoxy, witness ‘Archbishop Tillotson, and every divine of the last and present age […] and he did not know a clergyman of the Church of England […] from whom he had not heard at some time or other, similar discourse’ that Popery was dangerous tyranny and must not be allowed to increase. The author of Strictures on a Pamphlet (1782) that favored English Catholics shared the assumption that English Catholics were as knavish now as ever. Bishop Sherlock had it right: Britain’s worst fear is ‘the prevailing power of Popery.’ It seeks to ruin the state and the Protestant religion. John Butler, Bishop of Oxford, confirmed that commonplace in his thirtieth of January sermon to the House of Lords in 1787. He so spoke because he rightly assumed that the, probably few, peers and other bishops in his small audience agreed. The regicide sent the rest of Charles I’s ‘family into exile, where they actually and largely imbibed the obnoxious principles of religion and government imputed to him, and became unfit to fill his throne.’42

13Three titles, with many siblings in many places in many years, reinforce the enduring breadth of such hostility. For the grand or the lowly, the Londoner or the villager, such articles of faith were especially urgent during times of stress: Thomas Bray, Papal Usurpation and Persecution, As it has been Exercised in Ancient and Modern Times, With Respect both to Princes & People; A Fair Warning to all Protestants To Guard Themselves with the utmost Caution against the Encroachments & Invasions of Popery (London, 1712); William Warburton, A Faithful Portrait of Popery: By which it is seen to be the Reverse of Christianity; As it is the Destruction of Morality, Piety, and Civil Liberty. A Sermon Preach’d at St. James’s Church, Westminster (London, 1745); John Baillie, The Nature and Fatal Influence of Popery on Civil Society. A Sermon (Newcastle, 1780).

  • 43 For the quotation regarding Irish peers and sons of peers in the House of Commons, see Sir Lewis Na (...)
  • 44 Edmund Burke, The Correspondence of Edmund Burke, Volume II. July 1768-June 1774, Lucy S. Sutherlan (...)

14The extensive fear and anger behind such concerns could not be reversed by a vote of 558 wealthy landed elites in the House of Commons, ‘about one-fifth of whom were sons of peers or were themselves Irish peers.’ Like Lord George, many of these Members had their own purchased seats, and in any case were elected by perhaps a maximum of ten percent of eligible Protestants the large majority of whom were Anglican and all of whom were male. The approximately 197 lords temporal and 26 lords spiritual in the House of Lords were even less likely to be sympathetic to the passions and fears of those they scarcely knew except as menials. Hostile assessors of the Savile Act insisted that both houses considered the bill with diminished numbers. It is reasonable to hypothesize that perhaps a combined 300 well-intentioned but self-deluded Members and Lords sought to change the religious culture of some nine million subjects by the presumably glorious proclamation.43 On 15 November 1772 Edmund Burke told the Duke of Richmond that aristocrats of his rank were the great oaks ‘that shade our country.’44 In 1780 the weeds sought to choke off the oaks, in which they included Burke himself. The Courier de l’Europe chronicled the series of events for its francophone readers, but from an English and French elite point of view. That point of view nonetheless was flexible enough to be admiring where admiration was due as, in 1781 at least, with that system in which a proper trial would replace a lettre de cachet.

  • 45 CE. 9, 1781, p. 61-62.

15The Courier thus is respectful when it discusses Lord George’s treason trial. It quietly admires the British legal system and Lord George himself; it recounts the habeas corpus that brings Gordon from the Tower to the King’s Bench court; it shows how a bailiff reads the indictment; how Lord George was allowed ‘un discours succint’ complaining about his followers’ exclusion from the court, his long detention in prison, the large jury pool, and the witnesses against him drawn from Scotland in which England lacked jurisdiction. Gordon wonders whether he can receive a fair trial, and is reassured by the chief justice Lord Mansfield.45

  • 46 Ibid., p. 62.

16The Courier now sees a man on trial for his life but speaking and behaving well in spite of a potential ghastly death sentence of hanging, drawing, and quartering. It sees him accompanied by his two brothers, the Duke of Gordon and Lord William, and several other ‘amis de distinction’ within the crowded King’s Bench court room: ‘mais tout se passa décement & avec beaucoup de tranquilité’.46 The trial enhances the Courier’s movement from Gordon as villain to Gordon as human being within an enveloping process that substitutes order for disorder.

  • 47 Ibid., p. 93.
  • 48 Ibid., p. 93.
  • 49 Ibid., p. 94.
  • 50 I quote the proceedings from ‘The Trial of George Gordon, Esq; […] on Monday, Feb. 5, 1781’ in The (...)
  • 51 CE. 9, 1781, p. 94.

17The trial begins with testimony damaging to Lord George and proceeds to his defense. The prisoner no longer is a dangerous fanatic rabble rouser; he is a defendant subject to judicial process, to ‘la substance des dépositions pour & contre’.47 The court room was packed almost wholly with Lord George’s supporters. Many shared his anti-Catholic bias; others were troubled by the Crown’s extension of the 1351 treason law, which stated that treason denoted intent to dethrone the monarch. The Crown insists that such indeed was Lord George’s intention as he led 500 armed persons who sought to raise a public war against George III. The defense rejects that charge, discredits the Crown’s witnesses, and includes a handsomely persuasive final argument. The Courier thus offers readers two columns of Thomas Erskine’s brilliant but, as it does not acknowledge, bigoted anti-Catholic defense of Gordon; it is ‘un chef-d’oeuvre de sensibilité & de vehemence’ by Gordon’s Scottish kinsman.48 After thirteen hours and Lord Mansfield’s prejudicial summing up of the evidence, the jury retires, returns in thirty minutes, and declares Lord George ‘NON COUPABLE’ to ‘des acclamations, des cris de joie qui s’elevent de toutes les parties de la salle.’49 Erskine and Gordon sank into one another’s arms with relief and perhaps surprise. The court room exploded with joy. Lord George thanked the jury and in a few weeks had a large celebration for them and for many of the other aristocrats in his family and on his side.50 The Courier’s change of attitude toward Lord George is stunning: ‘ce Seigneur s‘est fait admirer, non seulement à raison de la serénité & de la présence, mais même de l’enjouement de son esprit.’ Assuming that Serres de La Tour selected and shaped the relevant news, that former military man acknowledged and respected grace under fire at least as much as he disrespected insubordination. No wonder that at six in the morning the exhausted but joyous crowd ‘& tout le monde retire content.’51

  • 52 It is at the least plausible that the Court was not troubled by its defeat. It faced daunting publi (...)
  • 53 Lord Gordon, A Speech of Lord George Gordon containing a Spirited Defence of the Antient Constituti (...)
  • 54 CE. 9, 1781, p 8. Gordon invoked the Old Testament as early as this published 1782 text. If the pre (...)
  • 55 Felix McCarthy, A Serious Answer to Lord George Gordon’s Letters to the Earl of Shelburne, London, (...)
  • 56 Several of these are outlined in Robert Watson’s The Life of Lord George Gordon: With a Philosophic (...)

18This is hardly the full story. Lord George now apparently thought himself invulnerable, continued to side with the American rebels and to berate the government and its ministry still aware of June 1780 and its February 1781 failure at the King’s Bench.52 In 1782 Gordon issued in London A Speech of Lord George Gordon containing a Spirited Defence of the Antient Constitution of the Church and State of Scotland. He rejects royal authority’s right to create ‘any new and unknown species of army in Scotland’53 and regularly insists that the Marquis of Graham cannot be president of the assembled lords, for he has not properly declared himself a Presbyterian.54 In 1782 as well he wrote to the Earl of Shelburne again urging suppression of Popery. Felix McCarthy replied to what he called this dark and wicked letter with anger, irony, and threats that used Gordon’s own words: ‘I could not help thinking it high time that your Lordship should be dealt with roundly, freely, and concisely’ by his fellow Christians and subjects who abhor his ‘abominable trumpet of sedition’.55 In 1783 Gordon published Innocence Vindicated and the Intrigues of Popery Displayed, in which he suggested that George III was encouraging Popery and should remember the deposition of James II. In the same year Gordon wrote on behalf of European Jews in the Copy of a Letter from the Right Honourable Lord George Gordon to E. Lindo, Esq. And the Portuguese, and N. Salomon, Esq. (London, 1783). His Old Testament prophetic language characterizes an angry God overseeing all America and all Europe in confusion; the king’s servants are deceived and deceivers; the king’s cabinet is merely a Babel; Jews must join with Protestants to resist and fight Catholics. These and other challenges regularly reminded the ministry that Gordon could do again what he had done in 1780.56 It deemed him too dangerous to be free. Whatever the means, he had to be permanently incarcerated and, if possible, die by nominally legal means. Lady Justice carried a sword as well as a scale, and she was not always blindfolded. The story of the Gordon Riots was every where in the British press, in diaries, in letters, and in numerous pamphlets that memorialized the events and praised or blamed them as individual bias suggested. The Courier de l’Europe was among those news papers that covered the Gordon trauma and trials from 1780 to 1787, and it did so in radically different ways. We recall that it begins with deservedly stern reports of pending and actual destruction, moves to sympathy for the plucky prisoner on trial and, we shall see, concludes with almost homicidal verbal attacks upon Lord George for insignificant, if not invisible, offences that would end his life on the felon’s side of Newgate Prison. This change of attitude occurs with the Courier’s change of editors in 1784.

3. Peut être honni, villipendé, même battu

  • 57 Calvinus Minor, as a voice of the Protestant Association and perhaps by Archibald Bruce, An Appeal (...)

19Lord George’s heightened troubles began when the Church of England allied with the Crown to find an alternative to the failed treason trial. On 5 May 1786 the Church exercised its authority in Article 33 of the Thirty-Nine Articles: it excommunicated Lord George, probably for contumacy, when he refused to testify in an ecclesiastical trial regarding the estate of the dissenting clergyman Thomas Wilson. Excommunication could have meant incarceration without benefit of trial, defense, or jury until he recanted and cooperated with the Church, as he clearly would not do. Calvinus Minor in Edinburgh properly said that such legal action violated British subjects’ rights enumerated in Magna Carta and habeas corpus. Under Anglican arbitrary, illegal, and popish law, ‘deliverance [is] but by death or submission.’57 Thereafter, Gordon was charged with two offences in June of 1787 – a libel against Marie-Antoinette and a libel against British justice.

  • 58 The putative Comte Alessandro de Cagliostro was the Italian charlatan Giuseppe Balsamo (1743-1795) (...)
  • 59 […] Appendix to the Trials of Lord George Gordon, and Thomas Wilkins, For Libels, London, 1788, p. (...)

20The ostensible reason for the charge regarding Marie-Antoinette was that he had endangered the amity that the controversial Anglo-French commercial treaty of 1786-87 hoped to foster. As the Courier reported on 24 August 1786 Gordon’s unsigned notice in the Public Advertiser complained that ‘even in this free country,’ so unlike ‘an arbitrary kingdom,’ the French queen’s circle persecuted and defamed the Comte de Cagliostro.58 He had wisely counseled the queen’s enemy, the Cardinal de Rohan, regarding the affair of the diamond necklace ‘which has never been properly explained to the public in France.’ Gordon alludes to ‘the Queen’s faction’ but does not name Marie-Antoinette. Considering traditional cross-border insults, Gordon’s comments were mild regarding a major French embarrassment. The British Crown nonetheless mendaciously claimed that the ‘evil-minded’ mischievous Gordon threatened international harmony and required punishment. The Crown will ‘secure the peace of the Country by taking from you the power (at least for a time) of disturbing its tranquil life’.59

  • 60 Oliver Goldsmith, The Citizen of the World, in The Collected Works of Oliver Goldsmith, ed. Arthur (...)

21The charge of course was nonsense. Oliver Goldsmith recorded a commonplace when in1760 he wrote that the French and the English ‘place themselves foremost’ among European states perpetually fighting one another. Many Members of Parliament agreed. Pitt’s powerful urging produced a positive vote for the treaty that nonetheless included almost one-third negatives: 248 Ay’s against 118 No’s. Pitt himself acknowledged that the treaty designed to enhance trade and mutual wealth might only postpone war and temporarily improve relations between hostile powers. The treaty is not ‘a pledge of perpetual peace, but it tends to put off the season of hostility.’ We can have good commerce in good times ‘without destroying our power of going to war.’60 The Courier noted, and complained, about abundant and well-organized British abuse of the proposed treaty:

  • 61 CE. 20, 1786, p. 402.

Ce qu’il y a de remarquable dans cette opposition, c’est que les feuilles Angloises, sont, tout à la fois, remplies de commentaires par lesquelles on essaie de prouver le danger de ce Traité pour l’Angleterre, & inondées de prètendues lettres écrites de France, dans lesquelles on fait parler tous les manufacturiers François de la même maniere que parlent ceux de l’Angleterre qui sont opposans.61

  • 62 By 1787 the Botany Bay matter was known and proposed as a subject for a debating society in Hamburg (...)

22According to the charge as well, Gordon libeled British law when he published The Prisoners Petition to the Right Honourable Lord George Gordon, to Preserve Their Lives and Liberties, and Prevent Their Banishment to Botany Bay. The ferociously brilliant Petition could not be mistaken for the work of petty criminals guilty of conventional felonies. Gordon mentions Athelstan, Sir Henry Spellman, Sir Thomas More, Beccaria, Puffendorf, and Sir Matthew Hale (p. 11-13) all of whom, like the Old Testament God, know that only the taking of life requires the law to take life. Lesser and often inconsequential crimes deserve neither the pending banishment to distant and tyrannical Botany Bay, nor ‘the Hangman and the scaffolding […] already prepared for our execution.’62

  • 63 Lord Gordon, The Prisoners Petition to the Right Honourable Lord George Gordon, to Preserve Their L (...)
  • 64 CE. 21, 1787, p. 385.

23Each trial ended with an immediate Guilty verdict. When sentencing was postponed, however, Gordon absconded to Amsterdam, where he joined Dutch Jews to enhance his growing interest in Judaism. He was discovered, forced back to England, and again absconded, now to Birmingham’s Jewish community, where he formally converted, was circumcised, learned Hebrew and became Yisrael bar Avraham Gordon, before again being discovered and returned to the King’s Bench. He appeared there as an almost unrecognizable Polish Jewish congregant whose head covering the court ordered to be forcibly removed, and whose scraggly beard became an object of mingled puzzlement and derision. He was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment, a £500 fine, a massive £10, 000 as security for fourteen years of good behavior, and two further sureties of £2,500 for which others were to be bonds on his behalf.63 The Courier would have thought all this a splendid way to stop his ‘détestable penchant’ and ‘la punition qu’il mérite’–except that ‘C’est à Bedlam’ to which Lord George should be sent. The Courier agreed with its English hosts that Gordon was ‘un homme trop dangereux pour lui rendre sa liberté.’64 During the second trial year, then, the Courier drastically changed its attitude toward Gordon. In 1780-81 it was properly stern. Its anger was against the abuse of progress, British inability to sustain philosophe initiatives, and the return to religious war. The Courier laments serious failures in British culture and government. Discussion of the trial itself then moves us from the group to the elegant individual and joins with ‘tout le monde [qui] se retire content’ upon his acquittal.

24Now listen to a catalogue of terms the Courier uses to describe the now unlordly dressed Juif Lord George in 1786-87. Many of these are sadistic, ominous, cruel, and ignorant – as with the complex matter of the Church of England’s excommunication of a Scottish Presbyterian who converts to orthodox Polish Judaism: absurde, attrocité, Bedlam, dangereux, détestable, fanatique, folie, humiliation, indecente, maniaque (3 times) pauvre lord (4 times), pestiféré, proscrit, sedition, tremblante seigneurie, turbulent. The series of ethnic sneers include Lord Circumcis, Lord Israèlite and Moses ben Gordon. One paragraph captures the Courier’s now general tone regarding Lord George should he not appear for his sentencing before the court:

  • 65 Ibid., p. 408.

Il sera procédé contre lui par outlawry, & il sera déclaré exlex: la situation de S. S. sera vraiment digne de pitié; car comme ce lord a déja été excommunié, il sera non-seulement proscrit de l’église mais déchu de tous les privilèges de la loi civile. Un homme qui est exlex peut être honni, villipendé, même battu, sans avoir le droit de se faire rendre justice.65

25The Courier now implicitly likens Gordon to the cursed wandering Jew, whom not even other wandering Jews could accept:

  • 66 CE, 22, 1787, p. 62.

Si les États de Hollande vous ont chassé de leur territoire, c’est qu’un excommunié, un proscrit, un pestiféré ne peut trouver d’asyle nulle part. Les Juifs même, cette nation si long-tems proscrite, devenus délicats sur la choix de leurs membres; n’ont pas voulu vous circoncire.66

  • 67 Simon Burrows has challenged the view that numerous pre-1789 libels of Marie Antoinette circulated (...)
  • 68 For some of the energetic, if often fruitless, efforts to reform eighteenth-century prisons, see Jo (...)

26Gordon’s putative offences were government inventions to eliminate an apparent threat of popular uprisings in an increasingly turbulent decade. The Crown could neither control nor silence him, but it could put him away for ever. Though libels against Marie-Antoinette may not yet have been published, malicious gossip regarding her conduct and her roles in the affair of the necklace circulated on both sides of the Chanel.67 There long had been sanely wise criticism of the brutal British penal system and its bloody code that hanged children as willingly as it did adults for petty theft.68 Why, though, did the Courier turn from deservedly severe reporting of chaos to a near invitation to beat the prisoner and not be held accountable? The Courier, after all, was not threatened by British justice or by reading that the French Court’s scandal discredited all concerned in it.

  • 69 Simon Burrows, A King’s Ransom: The Life of Charles Théveneau de Morande, Blackmailer, Scandalmonge (...)
  • 70 For the popularity of Morande’s book, see Robert Darnton, ‘The High Enlightenment and the Low Life (...)

27Charles Thévenau de Morande is a probable if not certain answer to the question. Adulterer, blackmailer, bully, con-man, ingrate, libeller, pimp, poxed, wife-beater, rapist, sodomite, spy, and upstart are appropriate modifiers for a provincial bourgeois who in 1765 assumed the quasi-aristocratic title Chevalier de Morande. As Simon Burrows puts it, Morande assumed ‘a criminal alias and a means of rubbing shoulders with the nobility in search of a better class of dupe.’ His behavior in life and as perceived in fictional accounts justify Brissot’s description of him as ‘l’infame Morande’ and ‘ce serpent odieux.’69 Morande arrived in London in 1770 to avoid the consequences of a lettre de cachet. He there published his Gazetier cuirassé, ou anecdotes scandaleuses de la Cour de France (1771) as an often reprinted attack upon the French court and its ministers.70 Several more libellous publications followed this popular text that does scant credit to eighteenth-century French taste. From 1781 he received a thousand pounds annually as France’s naval spy in London; then in January of 1784 he became chief editor of the Courier and radically changed La Tour and Brissot’s balanced tones. Harsh attacks became staples, and perhaps none more so than its extended 1786-87 savaging of the Italian nominal Comte Alessandro de Cagliostro, the real Giuseppe Balsamo from Palermo.

  • 71 CE. 21, 1787, p. 385.

28Four overlapping hypotheses suggest themselves regarding Morande and the Courier’s at least thirty-one attacks upon Cagliostro. The first is psychological. Morande, the self-anointed Chevalier, needed to exorcise his own parvenu demon by demonizing Cagliostro. The second is that libel and calumny were Morande’s normal modes of proceeding; predation was as natural to him as breathing. The third is that, as Morande’s espionage suggests, he regarded London as an extended temporary meal ticket. He hoped sooner or later to return to France and needed at least to be tolerated by the powerful figures and groups he once had blackmailed or offended. This hypothesis blends with a fourth that expands upon these and on Morande’s nostalgie for France. Gordon protected Cagliostro from possible French persecution and became his public advocate. Gordon also apparently libeled Marie Antoinette and thus was a felon. Morande could appear to defend the French court he hitherto had defamed by in turn defaming the British aristocrat allied with the false Count who tarnished that court in the affair of the necklace. Morande’s brutality toward Gordon as libeler might compensate for his own libels. Morande’s Gordon inspires no ‘sentimens que le mépris.’71

  • 72 . See von Proschwitz, Beaumarchais et le Courier de l’Europe, 1, p. 183 (je n’ai qu’un mot), 1, p. (...)

29Morande’s letter of 18 June 1788 to the Comte de Montmorin supports the hypothesis that Morande adapted the Courier’s rhetoric for French interests, which in turn supported his own interests – to return to France with powerful protection. Morande tells the French ambassador in London that he indeed is an admirable spy, knows every important person in the navy, the press, the court, and parliament, and can find whatever is necessary to know. Thanks to this multiplicity of resources, he rarely makes a mistake: ‘Je n’ai qu’ un mot à ajouter, ma patrie m’est chère et je desire le prouver d’une maniére utile.’ He repeats that ‘j’ai saisi cette occasion de manifester mon zèle pour mon pays,’ and that he manipulates articles in favor of France and against England. He also purposely includes remarks that are not consistent with French ministerial views: ‘qui servent à prouver que ces observations ne m’ont pas été dictées.’ It seems reasonable again to suggest that one reason he so punishes Cagliostro, is to ingratiate himself yet more with authority and ‘prouver d’une maniére utile.’72

  • 73 CE. 21, 1786, p. 331.
  • 74 CE. 21, 1787, p. 62.
  • 75 Ibid.
  • 76 Ibid., p. 70.

30Morande’s Courier thus regularly couples its two presumed villains. Gordon lowers himself as the charlatan’s ‘secrétaire & son champion.’ The ‘pauvre lord’ has become ‘un champion si digne’ de Cagliostro and, implicitly like Cromwell, is ‘le lord protecteur’ (20 [1786]:125). After further insults to the ‘pretendu COMTE’ we get the sneering ‘Voilà l’ami du Lord G—e G----n.’73 The imposter Cagliostro should follow ‘le pauvre lord’ Gordon to Bedlam (ibid) and be with ‘son digne ami Cagliostro’ in exile from his and other countries.74 Morande seeks to drive Cagliostro out of England, and perhaps back to France and the Bastille. His Courier also sought to limit Gordon’s ability to find refuge in France or continental Europe.75 Hence Morande’s delight when Gordon is sentenced to Newgate where the warden Akerman will greet him: ‘sera sans doute très-touchante.’76

  • 77 For sensible conjectures regarding Burke’s recollection of the Gordon Riots as he contemplated the (...)

31There are several implications of this brief study. One is that the Anglo-French Courier de l’Europe had an ample share of scoundrels or, depending upon one’s perspective, patriots in foreign lands. Swinton in France spied for Britain; Morande in London spied for France. An international publication partially designed to illumine British politics as guides for French politics became an espionage tool and an instrument of personal ambition and destruction. Another implication is that the bad often drives out the good. The complexity of response to Gordon in La Tour and Brissot’s Courier disappears when ‘l’infame Morande’ becomes the chief editor. The Gordon Riots were destructive for London, Britain, Gordon himself, Anglo-French relations, and for many of those associated with him, like Cagliostro. Individuals matter. One sad paradox of these events is that aspects of the Gordon Riots anticipated some destructive events of the French Revolution.77 Whether Morande’s hostility was a function of his personality and private agenda, a sign of changing international journalistic Anglo-French relations, or yes and yes, in the Gordon matter the Courier de l’Europe had changed. It once had compiled news, especially British news, for francophone readers and reflected aspects of the free and argumentative British journalistic and political systems. It then became the instrument for Morande to prove himself useful to the France he had slandered and to which he hoped to return for profit and protection. He succeeded. He died quietly at home in 1805. Brissot also returned to France, but as a Girondist and was guillotined in 1793. L’époque des Lumières est aussi l’époque des ténèbres, et ce des deux côtés de la Manche.

Haut de page

Notes

1 In many cases the Courier, often spelled Courrier, borrowed these paragraphs from Continental gazettes. See Will Slauter, ‘The Paragraph as Information Technology: How News Traveled in the Eighteenth-Century Atlantic World,’ Annales H. S. S. (English Version) 67, 2012, p. 253-78.

2 Courier de l’Europe, Gazette Anglo-Françoise. Continuée sur un Nouveau Plan. Le Premier Novembre M. DCCLXXVI, 1, 1776, [ii] (subscriptions), [iii] (Avis and Burke). Subsequent citations to the Courier will be given as CE with appropriate volume year, and page. Burke would have been so pleased. His correspondence apparently does not comment on the Courier, but on 5 May1780 Jacques Necker wrote warmly to Burke that ‘Je scais que le Roy a dans Ses mains votre discours [presumably his speech of 11 February 1780 in which he praises Necker’s financial reforms] et qu’il vous avoit deja Suivi dans les papiers Anglois.’ Sir Gilbert Elliot, Bart., also wrote from France: ‘You have no idea of the avidity with which ils s’arrachent le ‘Courier de l’Europe’ and the admiration they have for le grand M. Bourique, and his systems of economy.’ See The Correspondence of Edmund Burke. Volume IV July 1778-June 1782, John A Woods (ed.), Cambridge and Chicago, Cambridge University Press and University of Chicago Press, 1963, 4, p. 233 and p. 233 n. 1. Other Members of Parliament, peers, and ministers, however, sometimes complained about misrepresentation or misunderstanding. See Will Slauter, ‘A Trojan Horse in Parliament: International Publicity in the Age of the American Revolution,’ in Charles Walton (ed.), Into Print: Limits and Legacies of Enlightenment: Essays in Honor of Robert Darnton, University Park, PA, The Pennsylvania State University Press, 2011, p. 15-31.

3 CE 1, 1776, p. iii.

4 Ibid., p. iii- iv.

5 For Beaumarchais, Vergennes, and the Courier, see Studies on Voltaire and the Eighteenth Century, vols 273, 274, Gunnar and Mavis von Proschwitz, Beaumarchais et le Courier de l’Europe. Documents inédit ou peu connus, Oxford, Voltaire Foundation at the Taylor Institution, 1990.

6 CE. 1, 1776, p. 29.

7 Ibid., p. 36.

8 Ibid., p. 43.

9 Mémoires et documents relatifs aux XVIIIe et XIXe Siècles. J.-P. Brissot Mémoires (1754-1793), Claude Perroud (ed.), Paris, 1912, 1, p. 161-62. Brissot claims that as for the Courier, ‘on se l’arrachait de Paris à Saint-Pétersbourg; elle compta bientôt des souscripteurs dans tous les coins de l’Europe’ (1, p. 160). See 1, p. 305 for ‘cent espions.’ Brissot also reports the ‘plus ou moins exact’ representation of parliamentary debates, largely if not wholly taken from English newspapers, 1, p. 161. Brissot’s reputation has evoked a small paper-skirmish regarding whether or not he spied for Paris police. Robert Darnton unwittingly began the squabble when he challenged the benign, liberal, image Brissot well-established in his Memoires: in order to keep body and soul together, Brissot was in fact a police spy for some years. Darnton so argued first in ‘The Grub Street Style of Revolution: J.-P. Brissot, Police Spy,’ Journal of Modern History 40, 1968, p. 301-27. He repeated it, with some modifications, in The Literary Underground of the Old Regime, Cambridge, MA, Harvard University Press, 1982, p. 41-70. This later was answered by Frederick A. de Luna, in ‘The Dean Street Style of Revolution: J.-P. Brissot, Jeune Philosophe,’ French Historical Studies 17, 1991, p. 200-18, to which Darnton in the same journal immediately replied, as ‘The Brissot Dossier,’ p. 191-205. He continued part of the argument in his helpful biography of Brissot, in ‘J.-P. Brissot and the Société Typographique de Neufchâtel (1779-1787),’ Studies on Voltaire and the Eighteenth Century, 10, 2001, p.7-47. Leonore Loft, among others, continued to take issue with Darnton, in her Passion, Politics, and Philosophie: Rediscovering J.-P. Brissot, Westport, CT. and London, Greenwood Press, 2002, and most recently and thoroughly by Simon Burrows ‘The Innocence of Jacques-Pierre Brissot,’ The Historical Journal, 46, 2003, p. 843-71. This essay includes several more references to others in the debate. By 2002 Darnton had slightly modified his position, for which see his ‘How Historians Play God,’ Raritan. A Quarterly Review, 22, 2002, p. 1-19, reprinted in George Washington’s False Teeth: An Unconventional Guide to the Eighteenth Century, New York, Norton, 2003. I am pleased to leave the resolution of this issue to my betters.

10 For example, Brissot reports that upon his first visit to England he saw ‘avec quelque plaisir’ the cliffs of Dover ‘et d’où l’on dit que l’intéressant roi Lear s’est précipité’ Mémoires, 1, p. 171. Voltaire’s Letters concerning the English Nation, London, 1734; French as Lettres philosophiques, 1734, reluctantly praised Shakespeare as natural and sublime, but he lacked even a spark of good taste. He did not know a single rule of the drama and was responsible for the ruin of the English stage, Letter XVIII, on Tragedy, p. 166-67. Voltaire is keen on English comedy. Johnson’s Preface to his edition of Shakespeare (1765) skewers Voltaire and the French concept of the three unities as unnatural, unnecessary, undramatic, and un-British.

11 op.cit. Mémoires 1, p. 138.

12 op.cit. Mémoires 1, p. 160.

13 CE 7, 1780, p. 174 and 178.

14 CE, 7, 1780, p. 369. Richmond urged repeal of the Quebec Act but toleration for Catholics within Britain (7, p. 370). The italicized footnote to this page stresses the riots’ further international implications: ‘C’est en conséquence de cette violence que les Ambassadeurs des Puissances Catholiques s’assemblerent Dimanche dernier, & expédierent des couriers pour leurs Cours respectives. On ajoute que leurs depéches contiennent des observations qui ne font guere honneur au Gouvernement civil d’Angleterre.’

15 For recent useful information regarding the Protestant Association, see John Seed, ‘The Fall of Romish Babylon anticipated’: plebeian Dissenters and anti-popery in the Gordon Riots,’ in Ian Haywood and John Seed (ed.), The Gordon Riots. Politics, Culture and Insurrection in Late Eighteenth-Century Britain, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2012, p. 69-92; Mark Knight’s essay in this volume on ‘The 1780 Protestant petition and the culture of petitioning,’ p. 46-68 also is germane, as are other essays in the collection.

16 op.cit., 7, 1780, p. 368.

17 James Boswell, Boswell’s Life of Johnson Together with Boswell’s Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides, George Birckbeck Hill and rev. L. F. Powell (ed.), Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1934-50, 3, p. 427. Two older but still valuable books on the Gordon Riots are J. Paul de Castro, The Gordon Riots, London, H. Milford and Oxford University Press, 1926, and Christopher Hibbert, King Mob. The Story of Lord George Gordon and the Riots of 1780 [1958], London, Sutton Publishing, 2004. George Rudé contributed several useful studies, some of whose conclusions have been challenged, but all of which set the riots in the context of crowds, mobs and group behavior: ‘The Gordon Riots: A Study of the Riots and their Victims,’ Transactions of the Royal Society 5th Series 6, 1956, p. 93-114; ‘The London ‘Mob’ of the Eighteenth Century,’ The Historical Journal 2, 1959, p. 1-18; The Crowd in History: A Study of Popular Disturbances in France and England 1730-1848, New York, Wiley, 1964; Paris and London in the Eighteenth Century, New York, Viking, 1971; Hanoverian London 1714-1808, Berkeley, University of California Press, 1971. More recent studies include those by the Tory politician and Member of Parliament Sir Ian Gilmour, Riot, Risings and Revolution: Governance and Violence in Eighteenth-Century England, London, Pimlico, 1993: see especially p. 342-70, p. 371-90; Nicholas Rogers, Crowds, Culture, and Politics in Georgian England, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1998, p. 152-75, and Rogers, ‘The Gordon riots and the politics of war,’ in Haywood and Seed (ed.), The Gordon Riots, p. 21-45. For illustrations of the riots, see Richard Wendorf, London, June 1780, Cambridge, MA, The Johnsonians, 2010, and Ronald Paulson The Art of Riot in England and America, Baltimore, MD, Owlworks, 2010. As these citations suggest, there has been a great deal of research regarding the crowd, its contents, and its motivation, and on various contextual matters, like empire, domestic politics, and the American war. There has been very little on the riots’ international repercussions, even less on the Church of England’s excommunication of Lord George, and less still on Lord George’s 1787 trials and the British justice system’s legal lynching of someone they could not control. The present essay hopes to suggest an international viewpoint. For the other two gaps, see chapters six and seven in Howard D. Weinbrot, Literature, Religion, and the Evolution of Culture 1660-1780, Baltimore, The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2013, from which portions of this essay are borrowed.

18 James Boswell, Boswell’s Life of Johnson, 4, p. 87, in a conversation on Friday April 6, 1781. I assume that Boswell’s italics for ‘constructive treason’ denote Johnson’s vocal contempt for the term. Boswell considers Johnson’s response typical of ‘his true, manly, constitutional Toryism.’

19 op.cit., Mémoires 1, p. 309.

20 CE 3, 1778, p. 308.

21 Ibid., p. 309.

22 Ibid., p. 318.

23 Such awareness certainly was part of Gordon’s and the Protestant Association’s hostility to the Catholic Relief Act, as noted in the Protestant Association’s Sketch of a Conference with the Earl of Shelburne, London, 1782?. Lord George interrogates Shelburne regarding the genesis of the Act in and for Scotland: it was ‘from a secret negotiation between one of his Majesty’s Judges and the head Bishop of the Roman Catholic clergy in Scotland, about taking the Papists into the new levies, for the American war, after General Burgoyne’s defeat at Saratoga: and not from any mild, enlightened, benevolent intentions of the Legislature’ (p. 15). Gordon probably had in mind the new Scottish levies of Catholic soldiers that the Catholic Relief Act allowed.

24 CE. 6, 1779, p. 69-70.

25 Ibid., p. 364.

26 CE. 7, 1780, p. 3.

27 Ibid., p. 4 n.1.

28 Ibid., p. 62.

29 Ibid., 7, 1780, p. 177.

30 Ibid., p. 370.

31 Ibid., p. 369, 369 n.1.

32 Ibid., p. 376.

33 CE. 9, 1781, p. 51. I suspect that the Courier is referring to the volunteer units in the City of London and Westminster, designed to protect local property. As ‘City’ units, they were likely to have been pro-American, Whiggish, anti-Catholic, and also hostile to the presence of the army and the militia. See Nicholas Rogers, ‘The Gordon Riots and the Politics of War,’ in The Gordon Riots, ed. Haywood and Seed, p. 36.

34 Op.cit., Mémoires 1, p. 309.

35 CE. 7, 1780, p. 376.

36 Ibid., p. 3.

37 Ibid., p. 408, 410.

38 The 1685 revoked Edit de Nantes, or Edit de Fontainebleau, itself included the term ‘la Religion Pretendue Réformée’ and the abbreviation ‘P. P. R.’ It promptly was translated into English as An Edict of the French King, Prohibiting all Publick Exercise of the Pretended Reformed Religion in his Kingdom. Wherein he Recalls, and totally Annuls the perpetual and irrevocable Edict of Nantes [1598]; full of most gracious Concessions to Protestants, London, 1686.

39 CE. 7, 1780, p. 407, 410.

40 CE. 5, 1779, p. 103.

41 op.cit., 7, p. 407 twice.

42 Scottish Commentator, ‘Appendix: Reasons against repealing the Statutes enacted to suppress the growth of Popery’ (in italics), in The Trial of Lord George Gordon, for High Treason, at the Bar of the Court of King’s Bench, On Monday, February 5th, 1781, Edinburgh; 1781, p. 187, 190 for Addison. All these men ‘have abhorred its [Catholicism]’s enslaving principles.’ Protestant Magazine, 2, 15 (Archbishop); […], Strictures on a Pamphlet, Entitled, ‘The State and Behaviour of England’s Catholics, From the Reformation to the Year 1780 , London, 1780, p. 11 (upon), 17n (prevailing); John Butler, A Sermon Preached Before the House of Lords at the Abby Church, Westminster, on Tuesday, January 30, 1787, London, 1787, p. 14 (family). The title page notes Charles I’s Martyrdom, but lacks a black mourning-border or the sermons’ frequent earlier terms holy and blessed. The text is the familiar Proverbs 17. 14, ‘The beginning of strife is as when one letteth out water.’ Butler is appalled by the regicide, but will not enter ‘into the allegations of either side’ (p. 11). Such a remark would have been nearly impossible in a 30th of January sermon a century earlier. For fuller discussion of this legally mandated sermon, see chapter 3 of Weinbrot, Literature, Religion, and the Evolution of Culture.

43 For the quotation regarding Irish peers and sons of peers in the House of Commons, see Sir Lewis Namier and John Brooke, The History of Parliament. The House of Commons 1754-1790, New York, Published for the History of Parliament Trust by Oxford University Press, 1964, p. 99. The entire ‘Introductory Survey’ is a valuable introduction to the complexities of parliamentary government in the period. Whether a presumed Whig or Tory, radical or conservative, being a Member of Parliament ‘was a privilege attendant upon property or social position’, p. 180. The property requirement was £600 yearly income from freehold land for a county seat, or £300 for a borough seat. In many cases a wealthy patron would ‘lease’ or temporarily give such an estate to a favored candidate. According to Namier and Brooke, by later in the century perhaps one third of the Members did not have such a qualification, p. 125. See p. 103-107 for a discussion of the Members’ wealth which, whether inherited or earned, entitled them to think of themselves as the ‘quality.’ For the House of Lords, see John Cannon, Aristocratic Century, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1984, p. 14-15. According to one of many Protestant commentators hostile to the Savile Act, it ‘was so suddenly introduced, and so hastily passed, before the sense of the nation at large could be obtained, or any opposition against it.’ See Strictures on a Pamphlet, p. 44.

44 Edmund Burke, The Correspondence of Edmund Burke, Volume II. July 1768-June 1774, Lucy S. Sutherland (ed.), 1960, p. 377. Burke’s remarkably mixed metaphor prognosticates his attitude toward those beneath him in 1780: he likens his social class to grovelers in the dirt who ‘while we creep upon the Ground we belly into melons that are exquisite for size and flavour, yet still we are but annual plants that perish with our Season and leave no sort of Traces behind us’ (ibid.). The Gordon rioters preferred whiskey to melons and left many a trace behind them. Burke’s house was saved only by a detachment of soldiers.

45 CE. 9, 1781, p. 61-62.

46 Ibid., p. 62.

47 Ibid., p. 93.

48 Ibid., p. 93.

49 Ibid., p. 94.

50 I quote the proceedings from ‘The Trial of George Gordon, Esq; […] on Monday, Feb. 5, 1781’ in The Annual Register […] For the Year 1781, London, 1782, here p. 217-218. For Thomas Erskine’s concluding speech, see Mr. Erskine’s Speech at the Trial of Lord George Gordon in the Court of King’s Bench On Monday, February 5, 1781, London, 1781. For the dinner with 300 at a London Tavern, see the London Courant and Westminster Chronicle, 16 March 1781 and a shorter form in the Whitehall Evening Post 15-17 March, and the Public Advertiser 16 March. The event clearly was well-known and apparently approved of by many. For Gordon to the jury, see the Gazetteer and New Daily Advertiser, 7 February 1781 for which a juror gently reprimanded him, and for which he apologized. This Gazetteer also includes a description from which the Courier could have borrowed, though other newspapers carried comparable enthusiasms: it was ‘impossible for any words language can afford, to convey an adequate idea of the extreme joy that seized every one upon hearing the verdict announced.’ There were ‘shouts of applause that shook the very place.’ There is no evidence that Serres attended the trial, and given the crush he might not have gained entrance even if he tried.

51 CE. 9, 1781, p. 94.

52 It is at the least plausible that the Court was not troubled by its defeat. It faced daunting public relations and tactical concerns: hanging, drawing, and quartering George II’s godson and the brother of the Scottish Duke of Gordon would have been politically ominous. Exiling him, presumably to France, still would leave a dangerous rabble rouser free to propagandize among perpetual enemies. Pardoning him would have been a sign of weakness and fear rather than generosity. The Court’s best hope was that Lord George would be a broken man who had learned his lesson and retreated into obscurity. That was a characteristic misconception.

53 Lord Gordon, A Speech of Lord George Gordon containing a Spirited Defence of the Antient Constitution of the Church and State of Scotland, London, p. 4.

54 CE. 9, 1781, p 8. Gordon invoked the Old Testament as early as this published 1782 text. If the presumably Catholic troops are rejected and ‘trusty, staunch Presbyterians’ are in charge of Scotland, ‘the countenance and blessings of the God of Israel may probably continue to rest upon the established government of Scotland, and on her nobles and lairds, and ministers and lieges, and their posterity to the end of the world; and the true church of Jehovah be guarded, in the right stile, against all idolatry and profanation, all human inventions, Popery, and Prelacy, and other foreign and domestic enemies’, p. 8. From this point of view, the Roman / Catholic and Anglican / Episcopal churches are human inventions alien to Scotland; the Presbyterian and Hebrew churches are indigenous and divinely ordained. Lord George was troubled by the secular consequences of excommunication by the Church of England; he could not have been troubled by its putative spiritual consequences.

55 Felix McCarthy, A Serious Answer to Lord George Gordon’s Letters to the Earl of Shelburne, London, 1782, p. 16. McCarthy is especially concerned with Gordon’s anger at Irish Catholics. I have not been able to locate Gordon’s own letter to Shelburne.

56 Several of these are outlined in Robert Watson’s The Life of Lord George Gordon: With a Philosophical Review of his Political Conduct, London, 1795.

57 Calvinus Minor, as a voice of the Protestant Association and perhaps by Archibald Bruce, An Appeal from Scotland in which the Spiritual Court of the Church of England, is Demonstrated to be Opposite to the British Constitution, and a Part and Pillar of Popery, London, 1786, p. 17-18. This information regarding excommunication comes from Giles Jacob and John Morgan A New Law=Dictionary: Containing the Interpretation and Definition of Words and Terms used in the Law, 10th ed., London, 1782, see ‘Excommunication.’ For Blackstone, see Commentaries on the Laws of England, 5th ed., Oxford, 1773, 3, p. 103 and especially 4, p.199: excommunication ‘by writ de excommunicato capiendo’ is among those crimes ‘clearly not admissible to bail by the justices.’ The excommunication documents remain undiscovered. I have not, yet, been able to find them either at the London Metropolitan Archives or the Lambeth Palace archives. Much of the non-written process is likely to have been done with episcopal and ministerial winks and nods. The germane royal Domestic Papers at Kew and, so far as I can tell, the scattered documents of Bishop Lowth of London and Archbishop Moore of Canterbury remain silent regarding this matter. The excommunication was anticipated and predicted in the Public Advertiser for 5 May 1786 in the case of Hendry vs. Kidd. Notice of Gordon’s excommunication appeared in The Yorkshire Magazine 1, 1786, p.157, the General Evening Post, the London Chronicle, for 6 May 1786, the Public Advertiser for 8 May, and the Gazette and New Daily Advertiser for 9 May, no doubt among other places. The notice is virtually identical in all places. No wonder that on 23 November the Public Advertiser reported that ‘we have from Authority, that the Archbishop of Canterbury is going to proceed to the confinement of Lord George Gordon.’ Article 33 of the Thirty-Nine Articles is ‘Of Excommunicate Persons, how they are to be avoided’as a ‘Heathen and Publican, until he be openly reconciled by Penance, and received into the Church by a Judge that hath Authority thereunto.’ Lord George of course hardly wished to be received into the Church of England. For the relevant ecclesiastical laws, see Edmund Gibson, Codex juris ecclesiastici anglicani: Or, the Statutes, Constitutions, Canons, Rubricks and Articles, of the Church of England, 2nd ed., London, 1761, 2, p. 1049-1064, 1049 quoted above. Contumacy was so familiar an offence, especially regarding civil matters, that from Queen Elizabeth’s reign forward the Church sought to establish a separate and less severe category, De Contumace Capiendo instead of De Excommunicato Capiendo. This required an act of parliament that apparently was not forthcoming. See Gibson, Codex juris ecclesiastici anglicani 2, p. 1049 n. d1 and p. 1059 n.

58 The putative Comte Alessandro de Cagliostro was the Italian charlatan Giuseppe Balsamo (1743-1795) whom Goethe discusses in Italienische Reise (Italian Journey) of 1786-87, published in 1816-17. Cagliostro outlines his case and Gordon’s English role in his Lettre du Comte de Cagliostro au Peuple Anglois, pour Servir de Suite à ses Mémoires, London?, 1786, p. 41-48. At least one person thought his meeting with Gordon detrimental to Cagliostro’s fortunes. See the pseudonymous Lucia, The Life of the Count Cagliostro […] Dedicated to Madame la Comtesse de Cagliostro, London, 1787, p. 97-101: ‘Every sincere well-wisher to the Count must lament his intimacy with a nobleman whose ill fated enthusiasm has justly rendered him an object of universal censure’ (p. 100). Throughout 1786, and occasionally beyond, the Courier de l’Europe waged a relentless war against Cagliostro as an Italian fraud, imposter, and imposer upon aristocracy.

59 […] Appendix to the Trials of Lord George Gordon, and Thomas Wilkins, For Libels, London, 1788, p. 6.

60 Oliver Goldsmith, The Citizen of the World, in The Collected Works of Oliver Goldsmith, ed. Arthur Friedman, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1966, 2, p. 72; The Speech of the Right Honourable William Pitt, in the House of Commons, February 12, 1787, London, 1787, p. 57. For discussion of the treaty, see W. O. Henderson, ‘The Anglo-French Commercial Treaty of 1786,’ Economic History Review, 10, 1975, p. 104-112, and Marie Donaghey, ‘The Best Laid Plans: French Execution of the Anglo-French Commercial Treaty of 1786,’ European History Quarterly 14, 1984, p. 401-422.

61 CE. 20, 1786, p. 402.

62 By 1787 the Botany Bay matter was known and proposed as a subject for a debating society in Hamburg: ‘Was Lord George Gordon justifiable in justifying his calm address to the new Colony of Botany Bay – and did he manifest his love of liberty in preferring a residence in Switzerland to St. George’s Fields?’ See J. W. V. Archenholtz (ed.), The English Lyceum, or, Choice of Pieces in Prose and in Verse Selected from the Best Periodical Papers, Magazins (sic), Pamphlets and other British Publications, Hamburg, 1787, 1, p. 364. For other ‘Gordoniana,’ see Sir John Hawkins, (ed.), Probationary Odes for the Laureateship, London, 1785, p. xxxv-xxxvi, p. 108, in parody. The same volume has a parodic poem putatively by Pepper Arden, Gordon’s chief prosecutor in 1787, p. 35-38.

63 Lord Gordon, The Prisoners Petition to the Right Honourable Lord George Gordon, to Preserve Their Lives and Liberties, and Prevent Their Banishment to Botany Bay, London, 1786, p. 10. For Gordon’s Jewish life, see Israel Solomons, ‘Lord George Gordon’s Conversion to Judaism,’ The Jewish Historical Society of England: Transactions Sessions 1911-1914, Edinburgh and London, Ballantyne, Hanson & Co., 1915; Papers Read before the Jewish Historical Society of England, June 2, 1913, 7, 1911-14. This article remains a valuable contribution to Gordon’s story. For one of the other several attacks on him as a Jew, see Felix Farley’s Bristol Journal, ‘Lord George Gordon turned Jew,European Magazine 13, 1788, p. 140. Gordon’s appearance when being sentenced in 1787 was radically different from that in 1780. There was little ‘enjouement’ during his second trial and sentencing.

64 CE. 21, 1787, p. 385.

65 Ibid., p. 408.

66 CE, 22, 1787, p. 62.

67 Simon Burrows has challenged the view that numerous pre-1789 libels of Marie Antoinette circulated in France: too few of these survive in any number in French libraries and even fewer in British libraries; some may have circulated in manuscript but were not published; the very few that did clandestinely circulate were indeed very few. See Burrows, Blackmail, Scandal, and Revolution. London’s French Libellistes, 1758-92, Manchester, Manchester University Press, 2006, p. 147-70. Robert Darnton points out that ‘Nasty rumors about the queen began to circulate in the mid-1770s’ in Darnton, The Devil in the Holy Water or the Art of Slander from Louis XIV to Napoleon, Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2010, p. 398, with fuller discussion of libels upon her, p. 398-411. The queen also was often discussed in the context of the seedy affair of the necklace involving Cagliostro and Madame de la Motte. For example, see the unsigned Memorial, or Brief, for the Comte de Cagliostro, Defendant: against the King's Attorney-General, Plaintiff: in the Cause of the Cardinal De Rohan, Comtesse De La Motte, and others. From the French Original, published in Paris in February last; with an introductory Preface. By Parkyns Macmahon, London, 1786, p. 62 and the pseudonymous Lucia, The Life of the Count Cagliostro, p. 86. As one would expect, Marie Antoinette was rudely treated as well in Jeanne de Saint-Rémy de Valois, comtesse de la Motte’s Memoires justificatifs de la Comtesse de Valois de la Motte, écrit par elle-même, London, 1788 [1789], p. 101-2, 122, 215. Much of the French, and in this case Valois, objection to Marie Antoinette was that an Austrian archduchess was not a proper Queen of France.

68 For some of the energetic, if often fruitless, efforts to reform eighteenth-century prisons, see John Howard’s epochal, The State of Prisons in England and Wales, With Preliminary Observations, and An Account of Some Foreign Prisons, Warrington, 1777, with a third edition in 1784. The Whig pro-American Manasseh Dawes’ omnibus title could also have included Samuel Johnson and Oliver Goldsmith, An Essay on Crimes and Punishments, With a View of and Commentary upon Beccaria, Rousseau, Voltaire, Montesquieu, Fielding, and Blackstone, 1782. Josiah Dornford, Nine Letters, to the Right Honourable the Lord Mayor and Aldermen of the City of London, on the State of the City Prisons; With Some Account of Eliz. Gurney, Thomas Trimer, and Robert May, Who ‘died for want of Care and the common Necessities of Life’, London, 1786, p. 131, 130. In the same year Dornford also published his comparably troubled and troubling Seven Letters to the Lords and Commons of Great Britain, upon the Impolicy, Inhumanity, and Injustice, of our Present Model of Arresting the Bodies of Debtors; Shewing the Inconsistency of it, with Magna Charta and a Free Constitution, London, 1786. John Bender has discussed prisons and prison reform in his Imagining the Penitentiary: Fiction and the Architecture of Mind in Eighteenth-Century England, Chicago, University of Chicago Press, 1987. For discussion immediately relevant to June of 1780, see Tim Hitchcock, ‘Renegotiating the bloody code: the Gordon riots and the transformation of popular attitudes to the criminal justice system,’ in Haywood and Seed (eds.), The Gordon Riots, p. 185-203, and Matthew White, ‘For the safety of the city: the geography and social politics of public execution after the Gordon riots,’ op. it. p. 204-225.

69 Simon Burrows, A King’s Ransom: The Life of Charles Théveneau de Morande, Blackmailer, Scandalmonger, & Master-Spy, London, Continuum, 2010, p. 27; Brissot, Memoires, 1, p. 313, 316. Burrows outlines Morande’s reputation as adulterous sexual libertine in fact, fiction, and reputation. The Chevalier D’Éon, for example, reported ‘that Morande had in a single month fathered children by his wife, his two domestic servants and several neighbours.’ One can, perhaps, equally admire his virility, the Chevalier’s veracity, and the women’s judgment. See Burrows, A King’s Ransom, p. 25, and p. 22-27 for comparable adult unsavories. His youthful escapades often were brutal as well. Burrows bravely attempts to cleanse some of Morande’s unlovely political traits, in ‘A Literary Low-Life Reassessed: Charles Théveneau de Morande in London, 1769-1791,’ Eighteenth-Century Life 22, 1998, p. 76-91, and in Chapter 8 of A King’s Ransom, ‘The First Revolutionary Journalist,’ p. 180-205.

70 For the popularity of Morande’s book, see Robert Darnton, ‘The High Enlightenment and the Low Life of Literature in Prerevolutionary France,’ Past and Present 51, 1971, p. 81-115, reprinted in Darnton, Literary Underground of the Old Regime, p. 1-40, and Darnton, The Devil in Holy Water, p. 24-38, with other scattered references.

71 CE. 21, 1787, p. 385.

72 . See von Proschwitz, Beaumarchais et le Courier de l’Europe, 1, p. 183 (je n’ai qu’un mot), 1, p. 186-87 (qui servent).

73 CE. 21, 1786, p. 331.

74 CE. 21, 1787, p. 62.

75 Ibid.

76 Ibid., p. 70.

77 For sensible conjectures regarding Burke’s recollection of the Gordon Riots as he contemplated the French Revolution, see Iain McCalman, ‘Mad Lord George and Madame La Motte: Riot and Sexuality in the Genesis of Burke’s Reflections on the Revolution in France,’ Journal of British Studies 35, 1996, p. 343-367.

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Howard Weinbrot, « The Courier de l’Europe, The Gordon Riots and Trials, and the Changing Face of Anglo-French Relations », Études Épistémè [En ligne], 26 | 2014, mis en ligne le 01 décembre 2014, consulté le 30 avril 2017. URL : http://episteme.revues.org/312 ; DOI : 10.4000/episteme.312

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Howard Weinbrot

Howard Weinbrot is Ricardo Quintana Professor of English, Emeritus, and William Freeman Vilas Research Professor in the College of Letters and Science, Emeritus, at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. He currently is a Reader at the Huntington Library, San Marino, California. He long has had and continues to pursue interest in eighteenth-century Anglo-French relations. His latest books are Menippean Satire Reconsidered: From Antiquity to the Eighteenth Century (2005), Aspects of Samuel Johnson:  Essays on His Arts, Mind, Afterlife and Politics (2005), Literature, Religion, and the Evolution of Culture, 1660-1780 (2013), and the edited collection Samuel Johnson: New Essays for a New Century (2014). He currently is engaged in a wide-ranging study of Samuel Johnson's sermons and their varied contexts.

Howard Weinbrot est Professeur émérite sur la chaire de littérature anglaise de Ricardo Quintana et a le titre de William Freeman Vilas Research Professor (émérite également) au Collège des Lettres et Sciences de l’université du Wisconsin, à Madison. Il est actuellement professeur associé à the Huntington Library de San Marino en Californie. Ces ouvrages les plus récents sont Menippean Satire Reconsidered: From Antiquity to the Eighteenth Century (2005), Aspects of Samuel Johnson:  Essays on His Arts, Mind, Afterlife and Politics (2005), Literature, Religion, and the Evolution of Culture, 1660-1780 (2013), et le volume d’articles Samuel Johnson: New Essays for a New Century (2014). Il travaille actuellement à une vaste étude des sermons de Samuel Johnson et à leurs contextes.

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