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The history of newspapers is traditionally written from a national perspective. Paradoxically, however, the gathering and distribution of news undertaken by seventeenth century newspapers was transnational. This article shows some of the methodological problems this paradox raises. Through a case study of the weekly London newsbook Mercurius Politicus, it demonstrates the nature and significance of international news in seventeenth century Britain. The history of the early newspaper needs to be rewritten from the perspective of pan-European communication networks.
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Keywords: European news; Mercurius Politicus; community; historiography; international news networks; seventeenth century Britain

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 August 2012

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