David Fairer Author & Literary Historian
David Fairer Author & Literary Historian
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Further Reading

For anyone interested in the social/political background to Chocolate House Treason, here is a selection of materials that have proved especially useful in writing the novel.


A few contemporary sources:


  • Addison, Joseph, The Campaign, a Poem, to His Grace the Duke of Marlborough(London, 1705)
  • Addison, Joseph, The Present State of the War, and the Necessity of an Augmentation, Consider’d(London: Printed and Sold by John Morphew near Stationers Hall, 1708)
  • [Anon.], The Character of a Coffee-House. Wherein Is contained a Description of the Persons usually frequenting it, with their Discourse and Humors(London, 1665)
  • [Anon.], The Character of a Coffee-House, with the Symptomes of a Town-Wit(London, 1673)
  • [Anon.], The Compleat Constable. Directing All Constables, Headboroughs, Tithing-Men, Church-Wardens, Overseers of the Poor, Surveyors of the Highways . . . in the Duty of their several Offices. Fourth Edition with Additions(London, 1710)
  • [Anon.], The Complete Art of Boxing, According to the Modern Method . . . To which is added The General History of Boxing(London, 1788)
  • [Anon.], The Female Wits: Or, The Triumvirate of Poets At Rehearsal. A Comedy . . . Written by Mr W.M.(London, 1704)
  • [Anon.], St. James’s Park: A Satyr(London, 1708) [? By Joseph Browne and William Oldisworth]
  • [Anon.], A Poem on the Queen’s Birthday(London: Printed and Sold by J. Morphew, near Stationers-Hall, 1707)
  • [Anon.], ‘The Weekly Comedy: Or, The Humours of a Coffee-House’, in The Weekly Comedy, 2 (20 Aug. 1707)
  • Boyer, Abel, The History of the Reign of Queen Anne, Digested into Annals. Year the Seventh(London, 1709)
  • Brookes, R., The Natural History of Chocolate, 2nd edn (London, 1725)
  • Brown, Thomas, Amusements Serious and Comical, Calculated for the Meridian of London2nd edn (London, 1702)
  • Browne, Joseph, The Circus: Or, British Olympicks. A Satyr on the Ring in Hide-Park(London, 1709)
  • Chamberlayne, Edward and John, Angliæ Notitia: Or, The Present State of England, 22nd edn (London, 1707)
  • [Defoe, Daniel], Defoe’s Review. Reproduced from the Original Editions, with an Introduction and Bibliographical Notes by Arthur Wellesley Secord, 22 vols (New York: Columbia University Press, 1938)
  • Dennis, John, An Essay upon Publick Spirit; Being a Satyr in Prose upon the Manners and Luxury of the Times, the Chief Sources of our present Parties and Divisions  (London, 1711)
  • Dunton, John, The Night-Walker: or, Evening Rambles in Search after Lewd Women(London, 1697-8). 8 monthly parts
  • [Farquhar, George],The Adventures of Covent-Garden, In Imitation of Scarron’s City Romance(London, 1699)
  • [Hatton, Edward], A New View of London: or, an Ample Account of that City, 2 vols (London, 1708)
  • Kettlewell, John, The Measures of Christian Obedience, 5th ed. (London, 1709)
  • [Langley, Batty], An Accurate Description of Newgate. With the Rights, Privileges, Allowances, Fees, Dues, and Customs thereof (London, 1724)
  • Lightbody, James, Every Man his own Gauger . . . Together with The Compleat Coffee-Man(London, 1698)
  • Macky, John, A Journey Through England. In Familiar Letters From a Gentleman Here, To His Friend Abroad(London, 1714)
  • Manley, Delariviere, Secret Memoirs and Manners of several Persons of Quality, of Both Sexes. From the New Atalantis, an Island in the Mediteranean(London: John Morphew and J. Woodward, 1709)
  • Marlborough, Sarah Churchill, Duchess of, Private Correspondence of Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough: Illustrative of the Court and Times of Queen Anne, 2 vols (London, 1838)
  • Miller, James, The Coffee-House: A Dramatick Piece, As it is Perform’d at the Theatre-Royal in Drury-Lane. By His Majesty’s Servants(London, 1737)
  • Misson, Henri, M. Misson’s Memoirs and Observations in his Travels over England(London, 1719)
  • [Tong, William], An Account of the Life and Death of Mr. Matthew Henry, Minister of the Gospel at Hackney(London, 1716)
  • [Ward, Edward], Adam and Eve Stript of their Furbelows: or, The Fashionable Virtues and Vices of Both Sexes expos’d to publick View(London, 1714)
  • [West, Richard], The True Character of a Church-Man, Shewing the False Pretences to that Name[London, 1702]


A selection of background sources:

  • Ashton, John, Social Life in the Reign of Queen Anne(London: Chatto & Windus, 1929)
  • Clery, E.J., ‘Women, Publicity and the Coffee-House Myth’, Women: A Cultural Review, 2:2 (1991), 168-77
  • Downie, J.A., Robert Harley and the Press: Propaganda and Public Opinion in the Age of Swift and Defoe(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1979)
  • Ellis, Aytoun, The Penny Universities: A History of the Coffee-Houses(London: Secker & Warburg, 1956)
  • Ellis, Markman, The Coffee House: A Cultural History(London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 2004)
  • Gregg, Edward, Queen Anne(London, Boston and Henley: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1980)
  • Hamilton, Elizabeth, The Backstairs Dragon: A Life of Robert Harley, Earl of Oxford(London: Hamilton, 1969)
  • Holmes, G.S., and W.A. Speck, ‘The Fall of Harley in 1708 Reconsidered’, English Historical Review, 80, No. 317 (Oct. 1965), 673-98
  • Holmes, Geoffrey, British Politics in the Age of Anne(London: Macmillan; New York: St Martin’s Press, 1967)
  • Horsley, L.S., ‘Rogues or Honest Gentlemen: The Public Characters of Queen Anne Journalists’, Texas Studies in Literature and Language, 18 (1976), 198-228
  • Klein, Laurence E., ‘Coffeehouse Civility, 1660-1714: An Aspect of Post-Courtly Culture in England’, Huntington Library Quarterly, 59:1 (1996), 30-51
  • Larwood, Jacob, The Story of the London Parks(London: Chatto & Windus, 1881)
  • Lemmings, David, Gentlemen and Barristers: The Inns of Court and the English Bar, 1680-1730(Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1990)
  • Lillywhite, Bryant,London Coffee Houses(London: George Allen and Unwin, 1963)
  • McLynn, Frank, Crime and Punishment in Eighteenth-Century England(Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991)
  • Malcolm, James Peller, Anecdotes of the Manners and Customs of London During the Eighteenth Century, 2 vols (London: Longman, 1810)
  • Matthews, William (ed.), The Diary of Dudley Ryder, 1715-1716(London: Methuen, 1939)
  • Quarrell, W.H., and Margaret Mare (transl. and eds.), London in 1710: From the Travels of Zacharias Conrad Von Uffenbach(London: Faber & Faber, 1934)
  • Sheppard, F.H.W., Survey of London: Volume XXXVI. The Parish of St Paul Covent Garden(London: The Athlone Press, 1970)
  • Snyder, Henry L., ‘The Reports of a Press Spy for Robert Harley: New Bibliographical Data for the Reign of Queen Anne’, The Library, Fifth Series, 23, no. 3 (Sept. 1968), 326-45
  • Snyder, Henry L., ‘The Circulation of Newspapers in the Reign of Queen Anne’, The Library, Fifth Series, 23, no. 3 (Sept. 1968), 206-35
  • Sommerville, C. John, The News Revolution in England: Cultural Dynamics of Daily Information(New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1996)
  • Speaight, George, The History of the English Puppet Theatre, 2nd edn (London: Robert Hale, 1990)
  • Thomson, Mark, The Secretaries of State, 1681-1782(Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1932)
  • Thornbury, Walter, Old and New London: A Narrative of its History, its People, and its Places. A New Edition, 6 vols (London, Paris & New York: Cassell, Petter, Galpin & Co, 1897)
  • Werrett, Simon, Fireworks: PyrotechnicArts & Sciences in European History(Chicago: Chicago University Press, 2010)

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