Category Archives: 18th Century

Hellgate, Newgate, Cripplegate and Billingsgate

Snippets 146. In the late 18th Century a familiar family nicknamed “Newgate, Cripplegate, Billingsgate and Hellgate” were notorious among the aristrocracy. Richard Barry, 7th Earl of Barrymore, was known as Hellgate, and lived a short and wild life, dying at the … Continue reading

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Drunken Actors

Snippets 145.  In almost every generation there has been an actor who is known for turning up drunk to work.  They often became famous for it, and all the more popular.  In Thomas Munden’s biography of his father, well-known actor … Continue reading

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The Struggling Actor

Snippets 144.  Joseph Shepherd Munden was a well-known actor during the late 18th and early 19th Centuries, known principally for his comedy performances.  His son Thomas wrote his very entertaining biography, Memoirs of Joseph Shepherd Munden.  The following anecdotes concern … Continue reading

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Premonition of Murder

Creepy History 43.  It’s October, and that means Creepy History month on Windows into History again! The following quote is taken from News from the Invisible World, a collection of anecdotes published in 1840. Monday, April 2, 1781, I was … Continue reading

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Tip us your Daddle

Snippets 130. Francis Grose (1731-1791) was a noted antiquarian who wrote a series of books about medieval antiquities. Financial difficulties inspired him to branch out into other areas of writing, and in 1785 his A Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar … Continue reading

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Breaking Wind

Snippets 127.  Today’s quote is taken from Voyages to the East Indies, by Dutch explorer John Splinter Stavorinus (1798): The king, who was addressed by the title of Touang Sultan, or My Lord the King, appeared to me to be … Continue reading

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A Lesson in Life

Snippets 109.  Colley Cibber (1671-1757) is a name that will be unfamiliar to many today, but in his day he was very well known as a playwright. Unfortunately, despite being Poet Laureate, his reputation was for being a particularly bad … Continue reading

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