When William Hawke moved to London in the 18th century, little did he know that he would fall in with the criminal world, be transported to America, return to London and be hanged.
This is the text of a public talk given at Abbey House Museum, Kirkstall, Leeds on 1 March 2015 to complement their Crime and Punishment Exhibition.
Johnson’s Lives of the Highwaymen was part of one of the most popular genres of early eighteenth-century literature: the criminal biography.
or, The Life and Death of the Notorious High-Way-Man, Now Hanging in Chains at Hampstead, Delivered to a Friend a Little before Execution: Wherein is Truly Discovered the Whole Mystery of that Wicked and Fatal Profession of Padding on the Road (1674)
The Man who served the Booby but loved the Fanny.
In Henry Fielding’s novel, there was no difference between the great men in high life and those in low life.