Device is incompatible to play the video
Monday, 11 March 2013, 1:00PM
Museum of London

The Gordon Riots of 1780: London in Flames, a Nation in Ruins

Professor Ian Haywood

In June 1780 the most destructive urban riots in English history erupted onto the streets of London. Sparked by resistance to the Catholic Relief Act of 1778, the riots soon escalated into a sustained assault on government properties and institutions. Fuelled by popular resentment against the war with America, the mob set fire to the private houses of members of parliament, central London prisons, and the toll-booths on bridges: at one stage even the Bank of England was attacked. For several nights it seemed as if the whole of London was ablaze and the country was on the verge of revolution: in the words of one newspaper, ‘every thing served to impress the mind with ideas of universal anarchy and approaching desolation’. In this talk, Professor Ian Haywood argues that it was this spectacle of apocalyptic destruction that gave the Gordon riots their cultural power and mystique, evoking memories of the Great Fire of 1666 and anticipating both the French Revolution and the Bristol Reform-Bill riots of 1831.

This is the second in a series of four 'Mondays at One' lectures, From Gin Lane to the Band of Hope.  Other lectures in the series are as follows:
    An Infernal Spark: Drink, Addiction and Disease
    Cannabis Britannica: The rise and demise of a Victorian wonder-drug
    "The fangs of the serpent are hid in the bowl": The Temperance Movement

professor-ian-haywood

Professor of English at Roehampton University. Recent publications include, The Gordon Riots: Politics, Culture and Insurrection in Late Eighteenth-Century Britain (Cambridge University Press, 2012) (co-edited with John Seed), Bloody Romanticism: Spectacular Violence and the Politics of Representation 1776-1832(Palgrave, 2006) and The Revolution in Popular Literature: Print, Politics and the People 1790-1860 (Cambridge University Press, 2004).

Read More
Read Less

Transcript

11 March 2013

The Gordon Riots of 1780: London in Flames, a Nation in Ruins
Professor Ian Haywood

View PDF
Print
Related Future Lectures
Related Past Lectures
WATCHED
Part of a series

England’s Tudor Reformation

Professor Alec Ryrie FBA
Wednesday, 3 February 2021 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

The Secrets of Darwin’s Greenhouse

Professor Jim Endersby
Monday, 8 February 2021 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Mata Hari: Femme Fatales

Professor Joanna Bourke FBA
Thursday, 11 February 2021 - 6:00PM
WATCHED

Giotto and the Early Italian Renaissance

Dr Valerie Shrimplin
Tuesday, 16 February 2021 - 1:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Should We Inherit?

Professor Martin Daunton FBA
Tuesday, 16 February 2021 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Crime in Fiction

Professor John Mullan
Wednesday, 24 February 2021 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Amelia Dyer: Baby Killers

Professor Joanna Bourke FBA
Thursday, 14 January 2021 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Christmas Lies and Legends

Judith Flanders
Wednesday, 9 December 2020 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

England’s Unwanted Reformation

Professor Alec Ryrie FBA
Wednesday, 2 December 2020 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Making a Monkey out of Darwin

Professor Jim Endersby
Monday, 30 November 2020 - 6:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Plato

Professor Edith Hall
Thursday, 26 November 2020 - 1:00PM
WATCHED
Part of a series

Snow White: Evil Witches

Professor Joanna Bourke FBA
Thursday, 19 November 2020 - 6:00PM
WATCHED

Free the Nipple!

Professor Joanna Bourke FBA
Thursday, 12 March 2020 - 10:00AM
WATCHED

The World's First Scientists

Professor Edith Hall
Thursday, 20 February 2020 - 4:00PM
WATCHED

The World's First University?

Professor Edith Hall
Thursday, 23 May 2019 - 10:00AM
WATCHED

Moral Figures: Jesus vs Hitler

Professor Alec Ryrie FBA
Wednesday, 1 May 2019 - 10:00AM
WATCHED

The Greatest Speech Of All Time?

Professor Edith Hall
Friday, 1 March 2019 - 10:00AM
WATCHED

What is Greek Theatre?

Professor Edith Hall
Wednesday, 28 November 2018 - 10:00AM