How was the Monmouth Rebellion reported in the News?
The London Gazette
In 1685 the official news was published in the London Gazette. This was printed as a board sheet twice a week, and contained a round up of all the political, domestic and foreign news. With reports from Scotland taking 5 to 7 days to reach the publisher, 2 days from the West of England and from 3 to 20 days from Holland. As a result, reports of the different events that happened on the same day, sometimes got merged by the editor in ‘one’ event, or printed after an earlier account, getting published in a later edition! Each London Gazette is numbered and give a date range.
The following extracts are taken from the London Gazettes that were published during the Monmouth Rebellion and give a perspective on the ‘official’ news, as read in the London Coffee shops, and of course agreed by King James II.