The Word on the Street
home | background | illustrations | distribution | highlights | search & browse | resources | contact us

Broadside entitled 'Life in Edinburgh!'


This boxing match report begins: 'Milling Extraordinary! / Betwixt G___E W___R, the Aberdeen Champion. And M'D__D, the Royal Exchange, Edinburgh, Hero, on Friday 11th Nov. 1825, at Night!' The sheet was published by James McLean of Edinburgh, and cost a penny. A previous owner of the broadside has attempted to fill in the text which has been left blank (presumably to protect the people's identity).

All three rounds of this boxing match are described in detail although it appears as though there was no clear winner! At this time the boxers, or 'pugilists', would probably have played by Jack Broughton's rules, devised in 1743. Those rules, with only minor changes, governed boxing until they were replaced by the more detailed London Prize Ring rules in 1838.

Broadsides are single sheets of paper, printed on one side, to be read unfolded. They carried public information such as proclamations as well as ballads and news of the day. Cheaply available, they were sold on the streets by pedlars and chapmen. Broadsides offer a valuable insight into many aspects of the society they were published in, and the National Library of Scotland holds over 250,000 of them.

previous pageprevious          
Date of publication: 1825   shelfmark: L.C.Fol.74(077)
Broadside entitled 'Life in Edinburgh!'
View larger image

NLS home page   |   Digital gallery   |   Credits

National Library of Scotland © 2004

National Library of Scotland