The Queen Caroline Affair (2118 words)

Historical Context Essay

  • John Gardner (Anglia Ruskin University)

Context

Following the Peterloo massacre and the Cato Street conspiracy, the Queen Caroline Affair was the final great political and cultural event of the trilogy that spans the years 1819-1821. It was also the final banner under which both radicals and reformers could unite – until the Reform riots ten years later. The Queen Caroline Affair, as William Hazlitt would later note, became the concern of all sections of society:

It was the only question I ever knew that excited a thorough popular feeling. It struck its roots into the heart of the nation; it took possession of every house or cottage in the kingdom; man, woman, and child took part in it, as if it had been their own concern [...] it spread like wildfire …

Citation:
Gardner, John. "The Queen Caroline Affair". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 16 December 2004
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/stopics.php?rec=true&UID=1517, accessed 11 December 2016.]