The Early Modern Commons

Search Results for "crime literature"

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Your search for posts with tags containing crime literature found 55 posts

A Brief History of Crime Literature | Stephen Basdeo

By Stephen Basdeo, a historian and writer based in Leeds, UK.[1] Unless otherwise stated, all images are from books in my private collection. There are few subjects that interest us more generally, than the adventures of robbers and banditti. In...

Luke Hutton’s “Black Dogge of Newgate” (1596) | Stephen Basdeo

Stephen Basdeo is a historian and writer based in Leeds, UK. Spanish Origins During the sixteenth century a new genre of popular literature arrived in England. Adapted from literature that was flourishing in Spain, a stream of printed books...

The Black Dog of Newgate (1596) | Luke Hutton

During the sixteenth century a new genre of popular literature arrived in England. Adapted from literature that was flourishing in Spain, a stream of cheaply printed books and pamphlets shined a light on the seedy underworld in England’s urban spaces....

George W.M. Reynolds’s Italian Chartist Republic

By Stephen Basdeo George William MacArthur Reynolds (1814–79) was one of, if not the, biggest-selling novelist of the Victorian era. Born in Kent, he was originally destined for a career in the navy, which was the path followed by his father. Upon...

“The Pixy; or the Unbaptised Child” by George W.M. Reynolds

Jessica Elizabeth Thomas George W. M. Reynolds wrote The Pixy, or the Unbaptised Child: A Story for Christmas, in 1848, and published it in his journal, Reynolds Miscellany, in 1850. It is one of Reynolds’s less well-known short stories, originally...

How the Albanian Mafia Infiltrated the Government

By Logan Lafferty Organized crime increasingly became a problem in Albania in the 1990s, after the fall of its communist government. Crimes like blackmailing, intimidation and racketeering were constantly increasing. The disintegration of the Eastern...

Hanging the Slave Traders

Books with the title of The Newgate Calendar were published as early as the mid-eighteenth century. Mostly they were collections of “Last Dying Speeches” of criminals and short biographies of felons such as Jack Sheppard, Dick Turpin, and...

A Murder-Suicide in Stephen Basdeo’s Victorian Ancestors: The Case of George Leedham (1871)

By Stephen Basdeo I have been doing a lot of work this past year tracing my ancestors and discovering their history. Imagine how delighted (wrong word, perhaps!) I was when I discovered that, on my mother’s side (my father is from Guyana, and it’s...

The Fine Art of Murder

Stephen Basdeo This website usually deals with the ‘fun’ side of crime history by discussing mobsters, outlaws, and highwaymen. Yet not all portrayals of crime and criminals were wild and brave characters as Walter Scott depicted them, and...

Lines Written by a New York Homeless Woman

By Stephen Basdeo I recently came across a fascinating book titled Darkness and Daylight; or, Lights and Shadows of New York Life (1891), which formed the basis of another post on this blog. Inspired by books such as Henry Mayhew’s London Labour...

Jack’s Story: The True Story of a Poor Boy in 19th-Century New York

By Stephen Basdeo I recently came across a fascinating book titled Darkness and Daylight; or, Lights and Shadows of New York Life (1891). Inspired by books such as Henry Mayhew’s London Labour and the London Poor (1851), Andrew Mearns The Bitter...

Stephen Carver’s “Author Who Outsold Dickens” (2020): Biography of a Crime Novelist

By Stephen Basdeo When I was doing my MA dissertation on the cultural history of crime, my supervisor, Dr Heather Shore, advised me to read two now largely forgotten novels: Rookwood (1834) and Jack Sheppard (1839). The heroes of these two novels, respectively,...

“The Truth and Nothing But the Truth”: Its first use in popular culture

By Stephen Basdeo ‘The truth and nothing but the truth’—it’s a well-known phrase used in courts of law and most of us have probably heard it in some police procedural drama. The principle that one should not lie in a court of law...

Gamaliel Ratsey (d.1605): The Man whose Life Kick-started the “True Crime” Genre

By Stephen Basdeo Gamaliel Ratsey was born in Market Deeping, Lincolnshire, during the late sixteenth century.[1] Little is known of Ratsey’s early life; his father, Richard, and his wife had several children and provided them all with a good education,...

Claude Du Vall: The Ladies’ Highwayman

By Stephen Basdeo In 1671 the poet and satirist wrote an ode ‘To the Memory of the Most Renowned Du-Vall’.[1] It celebrated the bravery and heroism of an English highwaymen named Claude Du Vall (1643–70): And yet the brave Du-Vall, vvhose...

Perverts in Rubber Suits

By Stephen Basdeo Such a man begins to commit actual murder from the first moment that he begins to indulge his sadistic day dreams, from the instant that he deviates from his normal routine, and begins to buy sadistic novelettes, or seek out a prostitute...

Red Katy and her Customers

By Stephen Basdeo Robert Fabian (1901–1978) began his career as a police constable in London. He rose through the ranks of the Metropolitan Police and was eventually appointed to the rank of detective superintendent. The sights he saw could have...

The Female Vagrant

By Stephen Basdeo English authorities always seems to have had a harsh attitude towards its destitute and homeless people, or vagrants. At the height of the Black Death in medieval England, when labour was becoming scarce and many people, understandably,...

Review: “The 19th-Century Underworld: Crime, Controversy & Corruption” by Stephen Carver

By Stephen Basdeo Everyone nowadays seems fascinated by the Victorian criminal underworld. From Ripper Street to Peaky Blinders, it seems people cannot get enough of murdered sex workers and brutal yet gentlemanly gangsters. We all now know the tropes:...

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Caveats and Work in Progress

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This will not be a 'real time' search, although EMC updates content every few hours so it's never very far behind events.

The search is at present quite basic and limited. I plan to add a number of more sophisticated features in the future including the ability to filter by blog tags and by dates. I may also introduce RSS feeds for search queries at some point.

Constructing Search Query URLs

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This is the basic structure:

http://emc.historycarnival.org/searchcat?s={search term or phrase}

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The URL for a search for the exact category Gunpowder Plot:

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I'll do my best to ensure that the basic URL construction (searchcat?s=...) is stable and persistent as long as the site is around.