The Proliferation of Newspapers in Regency England
By Cheryl Bolen
Despite heavy taxation, high cost, and government censorship that included prosecution for libel, newspapers proliferated during the Regency.
In 1816, there were 31 national newspapers, including 14 in London. Daily papers included The Times, The Morning Chronicle, Morning Post, and The Morning Herald.
The leading newspapers of those were John Walters’ Times, which catered to the Tories; James Perry’s Morning Chronicle, a vehicle for the Whigs; and The Morning Post, which was heavily supported by the Prince Regent. Each of these was a morning newspaper.
Evening newspapers included The Sun, The Courier, The Globe, The Star, The Traveller, and The Statesman. Other daily papers were The British Press, The Public Ledger, and The Morning Advertiser.
Newspapers published Monday-Wednesday-Friday included The London Chronicle, The London Packet, and The Evening Mail.
On Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday, the Commercial Journal, the St. James Chronicle, General Evening Post, and The English Chronicle appeared.
Those periodicals published only on Mondays included the Farmers Journal, Country Chronicle The News, the Hunt Brothers’ infamous Examiner, the National Register, and Bell’s Messenger.
Saturday-only publications included Cobbett’s influential Political Register and Mirror of the Times while Baldwin’s Journal appeared only on Friday, as did the Country Herald.
Cost of newspapers was a hefty 7 pence. It was estimated that because of the high cost, each newspaper passed through twenty pair of hands. They were also available at coffee houses and circulating libraries.