The introduction sketches the ways that war, print and sentiment were entwined in the nineteenth century. At moments of imperial crisis, the press circulated the hopes and anxieties of the empire and its settlement colonies. It argues that the nineteenth-century media was a means by which the colonial and British public imagined their place in the empire. It takes seriously the idea that media coverage of war reveals a language of sentiment at least as important as the coverage of the material aspects of each conflict. It introduces the theoretical basis for the chapters that follow, grounded in studies of print culture, ideology and settler colonialism.