Few details are known about who created these imitation banknotes – or why – except that they were produced between 1818-19. They all satirise political themes and subjects, taking aim high food prices, the law, and political corruption. Their humour is often lewd, such as the note that promises to pay the bearer,
TWO PENCE, when Coughing, Sneezing or the Bowel-easing Flatus, shall, By a Westminster Jury, be deemd a flagrant breach of The King’s Peace, or, constitute the fundamentals of a wicked conspiracy.
It is possible that they may have been bought and exchanged as jokes.
- Article by:
- Ruth Mather
- Power and politics
The start of the 19th century was a time of hostility between France and England, marked by a series of wars. Throughout this period, England feared a French invasion led by Napoleon. Ruth Mather explores the impact of this fear on literature and on everyday life.