Advertisements, Agents and Exchange

  • Victoria E. M. Gardner
Part of the Palgrave Studies in the History of the Media book series (PSHM)


In 1797 the provincial press was in high foment. As the French Revolutionary wars continued, greater taxation was required to support the war effort. Along with a raft of other taxes newspaper stamp and advertisement duties were set to rise. Yet as the provincial press saw it, raising advertising duty would destroy businesses and families. As the Reading Mercury cried: ‘The Profits of a Newspaper arise only from Advertisements’.1 The Newcastle proprietors wrote a memorial recording their objections. According to them, only the London proprietors really benefited from suggested concessions on the bulk purchase of stamps while changes to advertising duty could ruin them: ‘It is Mr Pitt’s Plan to take away this only Advantage, by making Advertisers pay according to the Number of Lines and Hereby put it totally out of the Power of the Country Printers to carry on their Business’. If the planned change was effected ‘We and our Families would be irreparably injured’.2


Eighteenth Century Book Trade Advertising Agency Newspaper Business State Lottery 
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© Victoria E. M. Gardner 2016

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