Henry Mayhew

(2530 words)
  • Anne Humpherys (York College, CUNY )

Henry Mayhew (1812 - 1887), the son of a London solicitor, was a journalist, an incipient social scientist and economist, a writer of farces and comic novels, children’s books, and travel books about Germany. In other words, he was a man making a living by writing whatever came up in his frequently disorganized life. He is best known today for his four-volume survey of mid-century London street life, London Labour and the London Poor (1851 - 1852; 1861 - 1862), the best and perhaps the only extensive glimpse available of the underside of Victorian life in London. In his own day, however, his reputation rested primarily on his investigation as the Metropolitan Correspondent for the Morning Chronicle of the exploited pieceworkers in L…

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Humpherys, Anne. "Henry Mayhew". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 07 October 2004
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=3013, accessed 05 July 2015.]