What if Heat magazine had been around in Georgian England? Many of us think of the ill-behaved celebrity and the tabloid splash as inventions of the modern world, but the antics of Premiership footballers and C-list soap stars are as nothing when set alongside the peccadilloes and hell-raising of 18th-century celebs. The first flowering of the great age of newspapers and caricature gave us boozy Prime Ministers and party leaders who settled their political differences with duels in Hyde Park (when they weren't gambling, or writing essays about farting); peers of the realm who sat the unburied corpses of their cherished mistresses at their dinner tables; entertainers who rode horses standing upright in the saddle, while wearing a mask of bees; and celebrity courtesans who ate 1,000-guinea banknotes stuffed into sandwiches, simply to make a point. Before it was dashed from their lips by the Victorian party-poopers, our Georgian forebears drank deep from the cup of life. The Gin Lane Gazette is a compendium of illustrated 'best bits' from a fictional newspaper of the latter 1700s. It contains some of the most sensational headlines and true stories of the period. Presided over by inky-fingered hack Mr. Nathaniel Crowquill, the editor and proprietor, its premises are located in Hogarth's chaotic Gin Lane. Mr Crowquill has devoted fifty years to sniffing out scandal and intrigue. His drunken acolyte, Mr. Jakes, supplies merciless caricatures and engravings for every page. Sports reports, obituaries, fashion news, courtesans of the month, book reviews, and advertisements for bizarre - and often alarming - goods, services and entertainments also feature in a riotous melange of metropolitan mayhem.
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A full-time cartoonist since 1996, Adrian cut his teeth on Spitting Image. In 2001, he began to focus on political caricature, and cartooned for publications such as the Sunday Telegraph, the Scotsman, The Times Educational Supplement, Time Out, the Sun, and the Daily Mail and wrote/illustrated historical spreads for various QI Annuals. This, coupled with a regular cartoon slot for History Today, set him thinking about the possibilities of crossing popular history with caricature, and the The Gin Lane Gazette was born.Review:
"Beautifully produced...a pleasure indeed" History Today "Consistently hilarious...beautifully authentic...an absolute pleasure" British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies "Fast-paced and funny...every page is beautifully decorated... If I were Michael Gove (which thank God I am not), I would insist that this book be fixed into the A Level curriculum" -- Rebecca Rideal The History Vault
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