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William Hone (1780-1842), Bookseller, pamphleteer and writer

Sitter in 3 portraits
Hone is remembered for his struggle for press freedom. He produced two weekly newspapers, the Traveller (1814-15) and the Reformist's Register (1816-17), in which he exposed injustice and supported reform. In 1817, he published several political satires on the Tories in the form of parodies of the Anglican Church's prayer book. These pamphlets, including the Political Litany and the Sinecurist's Creed, led to his prosecution on charges of blasphemy and sedition. In prison while awaiting trial, Hone continued publishing articles from his cell. He won his acquittal, which is regarded as a landmark in the history of the press, by his defence of journalists' right to free expression.

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1183

William Hone

by William Patten
oil on canvas, engraved 1818
NPG 1183

D19944

William Hone

by Henry Richard Cook, published by Effingham Wilson, after William Patten
stipple engraving, 1818
NPG D19944