The Edinburgh Review

(3048 words)

Literary/ Cultural Context Essay

The Edinburgh Review; or, Critical Journal was launched in October 1802 by “a distinct and marked set” of energetic and talented but politically disfranchised young Scottish Whig lawyers — Francis Jeffrey (1773-1850), Francis Horner, John Archibald Murray, Henry Brougham (1778-1868) — at the instigation of one member of the group of friends who was neither a Scot, nor a lawyer: the Rev. Sydney Smith (1771-1845), visiting the Scottish capital at the time as a tutor. “It happened to be a tempestuous evening”, wrote Jeffrey’s friend and biographer, Henry Cockburn, in 1852, “and I have heard [Jeffrey] say that they had merriment at the greater storm they were about to raise”. Accounts d…

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Christie, William Henry. "The Edinburgh Review". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 12 May 2008
[, accessed 02 December 2015.]

Related Groups

  1. Periodicals