The Street Robber and the Gentleman Highwayman: Changing Representations and Perceptions of Robbery in London, 1690–1800

Author: Shoemaker, Robert B.

Source: Cultural and Social History, 1 October 2006, vol. 3, no. 4, pp. 381-405(25)

Publisher:

Buy & download fulltext article:

The full text article is temporarily unavailable.

We apologise for the inconvenience. Please try again later.

Abstract:

Owing to the growth of urban crime, the expansion of print culture, and changing cultural attitudes, a remarkably diverse range of positive and negative images of robbery were disseminated in eighteenth-century London. Attitudes in the 1690s were already ambivalent, but repeated negative reports in newspapers and trial accounts contributed to the identification, in the 1720s during a perceived crime wave, of the 'street robber' as a particularly threatening criminal. In response, the concept of the polite gentleman highwayman emerged, epitomized in representations of James Maclaine at mid-century. From the 1770s, however, the appeal of the gentleman highwayman began to wane, and all forms of robbery came to be seen as equally undesirable.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1191/1478003806cs078oa

Affiliations: University of Sheffield

Publication date: October 1, 2006

Related content

Key

Free Content
Free content
New Content
New content
Open Access Content
Open access content
Subscribed Content
Subscribed content
Free Trial Content
Free trial content

Text size:

A | A | A | A
Share this item with others: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages. print icon Print this page