Taking a Walk on the Wild Side: Henry Goodcole’s
Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry Sent After Lust and Murther (1635)
and London Criminal Chorography

Randall Martin

Randall Martin. "Taking a Walk on the Wild Side: Henry Goodcole’s Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry Sent After Lust and Murther (1635) and London Criminal Chorography". Early Modern Literary Studies 14.3 (January, 2009) 6.1-34 <URL: http://purl.oclc.org/emls/14-3/Martgood.html>.

  1. Before the appearance of serialized printed news in the 1660s, crime stories tended to reduce explanations for real-life homicides to a single cause: sinful human nature. This approach came naturally to writers of early modern murder pamphlets, since many were Calvinist-trained clergy who ministered to convicted prisoners in county jails. The influential Puritan divine William Perkins had theorized that original sin created an inherent disposition towards spiritual and literal murder. Ontologically, therefore, law-abiding citizens were potentially no different from criminals; only self- or externally imposed discipline prevented their fallen human nature from manifesting itself as illegal behaviour.1 When discussing an accused person’s motives, clerical crime-writers accordingly focused on internal moral lapses and public transgressions, biographically narrativized as chains of sin culminating in homicide. Contingent circumstances such as poverty, unemployment, gender, class, and the physical environment of crimes, while sometimes mentioned, were rarely taken seriously as contributing factors. This kind of evidence became increasingly visible and debated in popular news after the Restoration, however, owing to nascent formats of commercial journalism such as assize-trial reports and newspapers. These publications expanded the conceptual origins of homicide by recognizing its social and material causes, while retaining traditional – and profitable – perspectives of moral judgement and divine retribution.

  2. The arc of this received narrative of early modern murder news has been shaped partly by J.A. Sharpe’s and Peter Lake’s studies of the puritan ideology of confession and conversion pamphlets, partly by Jürgen Habermas’s arguments about the emergence of a secularizing culture of rational debate, which he calls the public sphere, based on the growth of late-seventeenth-century printed news, and partly by studies of post-Restoration competition among crime-news publishers, as well as the enabling impact of judicial licensing on assize-trial reporting.2 Collectively these developments opened the criminal law and individual cases to unprecedented public scrutiny. However, this account tends to neglects pre-Restoration writers who experimented with what we would now call more material and sociological modes of criminal analysis, and who transformed the earlier moralizing genre of criminal biography into more forensically oriented reports of urban homicide.

  3. The most influential of these writers was Henry Goodcole, author of an unprecedented half-dozen news-pamphlets between 1618-37. Goodcole’s writings were at the forefront of a growing early modern market for crime news, establishing him as England’s first professional real-crime writer. As printed reports reached increasing numbers of readers and listeners around the country, they overwrote romanticized memories of notorious murders in older formats such as ballads (oral and printed) and prose fiction. In both narrative and visual terms, Goodcole’s Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry Sent After Lust and Murther (1635) was notably ground-breaking. Unusually for an early modern murder pamphlet, it went through several editions, the second of which Goodcole revised substantially; and it is in the differences between the original and later editions that his innovative interpretations of metropolitan homicide become especially visible. The brisk sales of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry not only reflected the topical notoriety of its criminal subjects and their three socially prominent victims, but also changing public attitudes towards female criminality in the 1630s. By documenting subversive public reactions in an added report about a post-execution protest by members of London’s criminal community, Goodcole’s second edition also revealed weaknesses in the theory of defensive surveillance which underpinned London policing practices.3 His insights drew on two areas of knowledge new to the genre of printed crime news: empirical evaluation of economic circumstances and gender differences; and the mapping of city and suburban spaces according to his and readers’ subjective perceptions of their reputation for life-threatening dangers.

  4. In this paper I’d like to show how changes between the original and later versions of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry opened new paths for criminal analysis by expanding moral and theological explanations of homicide to embrace social and spatial relationships. The older religious outlook dominates the first edition, which looks back to Arthur Golding, author of the first English murder pamphlet in 1573, and William Perkins for its ideological framework. Goodcole’s second edition added detailed descriptions of London danger zones, thereby re-situating the murder stories within Londoners’ wider functional and imagined associations of illicit activities with local zones and sites.

  5. At this point it will be useful to summarize briefly the differences between the first (STC 12010) and second (STC 12010.5) editions. Distinctions between them have been obscured by the fact that the original UMI microfilm of the first edition mistakenly reproduced the BL copy (C.27.c.17), which is the second edition. This error has recently been corrected by UMI microfilm reel 2184:08, which reproduces the Huntington Library copy of the first edition (as does EEBO). The second edition is highly unusual in having an altered original woodcut on the recto of the first leaf (A1) that relates to its revised contents (Figure 1). Its titlepage includes a subsection (“Also some new Additions ... death”) referring to the additional material on C1v-C2r (“A briefe observation ... the Kings Royall perogative”) and the last two pages of the final leaf (C4), “The Habeas corpus” (Figure 2). The second edition omits a depiction of the murder-weapon (B4r) which appears vertically down the right margin of C2r in the first edition (and which appears horizontally in both editions across the bottom of the opening image on A1r, and down the left margin of first edition B4v, and second edition B2v). The second edition also omits Goodcole’s closing affirmation immediately before “FINIS” on the last page (C4v) 4

    Figure 1. Woodcut from second edition of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry.

    Figure 2. Title-page of second edition of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry.

  6. There is an equally important transitional edition (STC 12010.3), represented by the Bodleian (Ashmole 739 [1]) and other copies. It lacks the frontispiece woodcut (B1) and “The Habeas corpus.” It is paginated like the first edition, whereas the second is not. But like the second edition, STC 12010.3 omits the second illustrated club in the right-hand margin of C2r of the first edition. More significantly, when this intermediate edition was issued the attack described in “The Habeas corpus” had not yet taken place, since the titlepage omits references to it and to Shearwood’s removal to “Ring-Crosse,” Islington, which were added to the titlepage of the later second edition, STC 12010.5. Instead, it describes Shearwood hanging at Battlebridge, near St Pancras, before being taken to Islington (see 12010.5, C1v, C4v).5 Unfortunately there is no microfilm reel or EEBO image of this transitional edition.

  7. Goodcole’s successive additions served several purposes: distinguishing between city and suburban areas of risk and safety; implicitly advocating heightened surveillance of parishes and precincts by constables, beadles, and nightwatchmen; and attempting to educate citizens to recognize signs of predatory behaviour, especially in women. Overall, the second edition of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry began to re-vision London as an chorographic narrative defined by a new epistemology of criminalized space, thereby aligning it with early modern chorographies such as William Camden’s Britannia (1586/1610), John Stow’s Survey of London (1598/1603), and William Gray’s Chorographia, or a Survey of Newcastle-upon-Tyne (1649). Andrew Gordon and Bernhard Klein characterize early modern chorography’s non-visual mapping of towns and cities thus:
    ‘Mapping’, the inscriptive practice of the cartographer, has become a key theoretical term in current critical discourse, describing a particular cognitive mode of gaining control over the world, of synthesising cultural and geographic information, and of successfully navigating both physical and mental space. 6
  8. Gordon and Klein’s idea of a metaphorical refiguring, or poetics, of social relations embedded in an imaginative experience of urban topography helps illuminate Goodcole’s rhetorical production of spatialized metropolitan homicide. Lucia Nuti’s discussion of early modern chorographic writing also clarifies the more intensely totalized perspective that differentiates the second edition of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry from the first, and from older confession-and-conversion murder news.7 Goodcole’s new orientation moves early modern conceptions of homicide away from an exclusive focus on human sin, partly by granting London’s physical environments a degree of causal agency. It also invites readers to criminalize city spaces through their personal valorization of site-specific behaviours.8

    The uses of Newgate: towards a new iconography

  9. After serving as Visitor (i.e. prison chaplain) of Ludgate prison from 1613, Henry Goodcole was appointed the first full-time Visitor of Newgate by the Court of Aldermen of the City of London in July 1620.9 Less than a year after his appointment, the trial of Elizabeth Sawyer for witchcraft and murder erupted to threaten his professional reputation and test his handling of a highly visible case. Sawyer’s story is best known from the later dramatization by Thomas Dekker, John Ford, and William Rowley, The Witch of Edmonton (1621/1658). Goodcole’s control over Sawyer and his personal conduct with her in Newgate had been publicly called into question by rumours that she had communed with the devil while in his charge. From his viewpoint as a newly appointed Visitor, The wonderfull discouerie of Elizabeth Sawyer a Witch, late of Edmonton, her conuiction and condemnation and Death. Together with the relation of the Divels accesse to her, and their conference together (1621) represented Goodcole’s attempt to dispel public doubts about his conduct and restore his professional credit. His efforts were evidently successful, since his employers granted his petition for providing Newgate with a new chapel later in 1621. Two years after they awarded him a £10 rise in his annual salary for his “better encouragement.”10

  10. Now apparently secure in his job, Goodcole was not moved to publish crime news for another fourteen years. He drew attention to his absence at the beginning of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry, speaking as an insider of the criminal justice system: “I Have resumed my Pen which I resolved in this Nature for ever to be silent: But the Common good, preservation of my Countries welfare, incites me unto this officious service” (A2v). In terms of his career ambitions, this and his second publication of 1635, The Adultresses Funerall Day, renewed bids for his first church preferment, which came a year later when Goodcole was appointed vicar of St James Clerkenwell. It was also an opportune moment for writing about London homicide, since indictments and convictions for all manner of felonies reached a peak in the 1630s for the century, leading to heightened fears of personal violence and social disorder.11 In 1631 the whole country had been transfixed by the scandalous news of Mervin Touchet, Earl of Castlehaven, who was tried by his peers in Westminister for rape and sodomy. The case generated a torrent of commentary about a perceived breakdown in paternal responsibility by the governing classes.12 It also rekindled memories of another sensational murder-conspiracy sixteen years earlier, the poisoning of Sir Thomas Overbury in the Tower.

  11. In this climate of aggravated anxiety, Goodcole’s two crime reports of 1635 did more than simply inform readers of events. The Adultresses Funerall Day (C4v-B1r) had explicitly linked its double account of husband-murder with memories of the Overbury and Castlehaven trials as well as other recent crimes. It confirmed fears that disorders among the elite were spreading downwards to local domestic relationships. But whereas The Adultresses Funeral Day and later Natures Cruell Step-Dames (1637) concerned household violence, Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry recounted tantalizing details of the London underworld through the lives of its two subjects, Thomas Shearwood and Elizabeth Evans, and their methods of entrapment, robbery, and murder. It also drew on knowledge Goodcole had accumulated first-hand from examinations and confessions during his years in Newgate (2nd edn, C1v). The resulting impression of comprehensive expertise and city-wide vision sought to link the business of metropolitan sex and deadly violence on a new scale. While Shearwood and Evans’s methods of deception were hardly novel (e.g. their “seduction” of victims recalled brothel robberies featured in earlier coney-catching literature), the outcomes in brutal murder prompted Goodcole to represent London not just as temporarily afflicted by some particularly nasty killings, but as a city being re-defined by an increase in life-threatening risks across urban and suburban boundaries.

  12. Structural features mark the first edition of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry as a typical early modern murder pamphlet; e.g. the frontispiece image of felons hanging from gibbets (Figure 3), the predominance of moral didacticism (from the title onward), the confession-and-conversion closure of the criminal biographies, and the final gallows speeches. Original rather than generic illustrations, on the other hand, suggested urgent threats to public order. Goodcole’s printers Nicholas and John Okes served him well in these respects well by commissioning relatively sophisticated woodcuts to seize the attention of potential buyers. The first was a composite illustration of the hanged murderers and two of their victims, headed by a biblical text about talionic revenge. The image appears not in the usual place on the title-page but is given its own framed space opposite (the first leaf recto is blank, so the image surprises the prospective buyer on opening). On the left hangs a man in chains, the sign of public degradation for notorious criminals. On the right hangs a woman in petticoats, her head skewed by the noose. A ladder leans against her gibbet, perhaps suggesting she was executed after the man.

    Image 3. Title-page of first edition of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry.

  13. The second edition of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry added aliases to each figure: “Country Tom” and “Canberry [i.e. Canterbury] Bess” (Figure 1). Symmetrically paired gibbets turned inward at either side, denoting the curvature of a proscenium arch, created a theatricalizing effect. This configuration mobilized readers’ associations of public executions with staged shows and conventionalized repertoires of roles and gestures from officials, the condemned, and spectators (performative expectations that prison and gallows reports such as Goodcole’s helped to produce). The second edition also added the figure representing a spectator who appears at the left margin looking towards the reader. He stands outside the inner frame of Tom’s gibbet and is now only half visible because the left margin has been cropped, though presumably he was once fully visible. This man may represent Goodcole, mediating between readers and the criminals, and thus signifying his leading themes of neighbourhood surveillance and citizen vigilance (discussed below). His apparel also ambiguously relates him to the two men in the centre-distance walking over a knoll, with small animals before them. The right-hand man is dressed as a gentleman. He may be reaching for his sword, stepping towards the scene. The left-hand man is walking in the opposite direction, holding out a rod as if to attack the well-dressed on-comer. These offensive and guarding gestures aimed in both directions create a Janus-like marker. Since the men’s apparel resembles the figure at the left of the frame, they too may represent aspects of Goodcole’s appropriation of, or relation to, the crimes, though their meaning remains uncertain. Could they represent the endangered “Passengers” or “Travellers” described in his Preface (A3v-A4r)? Their dress and accoutrements connect them to the class of Tom and Bess’s three victims, but more ambiguously to Tom’s later masquerade, since he wore his victims’ clothes after attacking them, thus appropriating their social identities. The rod held by the outbound man faintly resembles the murder-weapon depicted beneath the main image, and his apparel resembles Tom’s (as well as that of the left-hand figure). In which case perhaps these figures also suggested Tom coming and going from his attacks. Two victims, later identified as Masters Claxton (left) and Holt (right), lie prostrate beneath each gallows at side length. Holt’s visible boots and spurs indicate some rank. Claxton has been stripped naked and his genital area is being covered with a sheet by a grim-faced milkmaid. Below these figures appears the second image, a massive club, fearsomely spiked, accompanied by the proto-tabloid caption, “The forme of the instrument of wood and iron that he used to hurt with” (A1v).

  14. While the conventional titlepage that follows in both editions identifies Tom’s and Bess’s real names, their execution dates (14 and 17 April 1635), and the author (“H.G. their daily Uisiter, at the time of their Imprisonment, and severall dayes of Execution”), the frontispiece image emphasized displaying and labelling the dangers of criminal violence, extending the pamphlet’s verbal text to semi-literate buyers and readers. Visibility and naming, textual counterparts to local policing duties of reporting and regulating suspicious behaviour, are developed as the pamphlet continues. The frontispiece murder-weapon appears again, lengthwise, in the expanded margins of pages eight and eleven (1st edition, B4v, C2v), the first time with the note, “The form of his [Shearwood’s] weapon, which lay secretly in his breeches.” The weapon accompanies Goodcole’s narration of two of the three murders committed by Shearwood and Evans: against Thomas Claxton in April 1635, and Michael Lowe in autumn 1634. Like the third victim, Rowland Holt, killed in January 1635, they were all “Gentlemen of great Note, and good quality, Eminent in place and substance” (B3v). Lowe, we learn later, was the son of a Lord Mayor and served the Corporation of London in his capacity as Secondary, or sub-warden, of the Counter prison (C1v). The victims, in other words, were all propertied men with the greatest social obligation for, and material interest in, preventing crime and prostitution. Yet their apparent willingness to become Evans’s clients compromised their positions as city governors and householders. The murder-weapon, graphically reproduced in the text, replaces the typical (and often improbable) appearances of the devil in earlier murder pamphlets with a new icon of forensic evidence and human agency.13 As a synedoche for the violence described in the text, Tom’s club objectifies and universalizes the human pain experienced by the two victims, enabling readers to connect imaginatively with their suffering through the recurring emblem.14


  15. The descriptions of local spaces and illicit activities added to the second edition shifted its narrative focus away from the personal histories of Tom and Bess to the present condition of London and its inhabitants. Goodcole’s revisions likewise strengthened his bird’s-eye point of view mimicking the omniscient gaze of divine judgement referenced by the pamphlet’s scriptural quotations (A4v, 1st edn; A3r 2nd edn). In both respects the city’s temporal identity became progressive, since Goodcole aimed to predict the future habits of criminal classes in dystopic spaces so as permanently to unsettle and mobilize residents. To appreciate the originality of his revisions, it’s worth briefly comparing earlier London crime stories.

  16. Social-spatial mappings of the London underworld had appeared in the coney-catching pamphlets of Robert Greene, Thomas Nashe, and Thomas Dekker, and subsequently in citizen comedies by Thomas Middleton, Dekker, and others. In these texts, vagabond, rogue, and gypsy taxonomies are highly theatricalized and almost entirely invented (though their discursive energies were capable of generating real social effects; as Dekker put it, the coney-catching underworld was “drawne to the life, of purpose that life might be drawne from it”15). Unlike news about real crime, in which closure was provided by assize trials and gallows confessions, coney-catching pamphlets typically ended divertingly with a jest.16 Their cultural legacy is The Beggars’ Opera rather than The Newgate Calendar.17 From a legal perspective, Elizabethan coney-catching and rogue literature focused almost exclusively on the urban risks – and pleasures -- of petty crimes such as theft and prostitution rather than violent felony, in part because the public reporting of assize sessions remained tightly regulated or banned by judicial and local authorities until the 1670s. Greene’s Notable Discovery of Coosnage (1592) is typical in painting a vivid picture of highly organized petty criminals preying on London crowds and country visitors, whom Greene ostensibly seeks to forearm. Goodcole recycles this justification in his Preface to Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry:
    I presume not to instruct the prudent and wise, that were absurde and ridiculous. But the Levell of my intention is to make the vulgar Ignorants so wise, as to walke warily and circumspectly ... and discerne by this frequent discovery of such notorious offenders, that live upon the spoyles of such [city] Passengers, and Travellers resorting up unto London upon their necessary affaires. (1st edn, A3v-A4r; identical in 2nd)
    But whereas Greene assured readers that his criminal subjects almost always spared the lives of their victims, Goodcole’s new message was that cosenage and clandestine sex now lead inevitably to murder.

  17. The topsy-turvy ethic of coney-catchers and prodigal adventurers likewise characterized early modern ballads about notorious highwaymen and women. These tales suggested that victims were not usually killed or wounded if they delivered over their money or goods.18 In his study of early modern criminal literature, Bryan Reynolds further observes that the rarity of Elizabethan and Jacobean stories of mugging-murders indicate that the London underworld and its literary collaborators were more intent on profiting from the exploitation of opportune or risky spaces than by destroying their lucrative potential -- material and discursive -- with associations of violent death.19 Thus, while Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry recalls certain fanciful features of earlier crime discourses (e.g. the killers’ aliases), it also constructs a materially different world, not only in being non-festive, graphically realistic, and free of “secret” cant, but also by inter-relating specific London sites with prostitution, robbery, and murder, and explaining Shearwood and Evan’s motives in terms of real contemporary conditions of domestic migration and (un)employment.

  18. The murder-narrative in both editions of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry gained mimetic authenticity by supplying unusually precise information about actual locations and place-names, many of which concern London suburbs or extramural wards of the City. Shearwood and Evans first met Claxton, for instance, near “the Kings gate which is by Blomesbury” to drink with him. Evans then accompanied him alone “into Grayes-Inne fields, a stones cast wide from the High-way” (B4v) where Shearwood suddenly re-appeared to attack him. Both Bloomsbury and Gray’s Inn Fields had notorious reputations for thieves and illicit sex owing to their proximity to roads and their hidden depths, which permitted quick escape and urban anonymity.20 Shearwood and Evans murdered Lowe “at the pitch of the Hill going downe to Hockley Hole in Clerkenwell Parish” (i.e. Goodcole’s own neighbourhood), the location possibly illustrated by the knoll in the frontispiece image. Hockley-in-the-Hole was a village northwest of Clerkenwell Green, which itself lay directly north of the city walls. Both places shared with Turnbull Street “a particularly bad reputation as a haunt of thieves and loose women.”21 Shearwood and Evans had previously assaulted and robbed Lowe “by the Lady Hattons wall about Michaelmas terme last” (C2r).22 The personally identified location indicated that Shearwood and Evans’s daring violence operated closely in the shadows of the city’s elite. Holt was killed in “Clerkenwell field,” or as Goodcole puts it more suggestively at the beginning of his examination section, “on the back-side of Clarken-well neare London” (B1r). Thomas Dekker, among others, described Clerkenwell as a notorious suburban locale for “whores and thieves” in News from Hell. Bridewell prosecution records have subsequently confirmed this area’s reputation for organized prostitution.23 These topographic signposts connected the reported murders with Londoners’ lived or imagined fears of criminal activity in the same vicinities, attempting to transform greater London’s identity as a set of shared values on the basis of increasing threats to personal safety.

    Strangers in the city

  19. Goodcole’s biographies of Shearwood and Evans also drew attention to purported differences between settled metropolitan residents and a new economic underclass from the provinces.24 To contemporary readers, the monikers “Country” and “Canberry” would have immediately associated Tom and Bess with the huge number of migrants who poured into London during the seventeenth century. These newcomers consisted largely of displaced or impoverished persons, particularly from the north, who were looking for employment but sometimes forced, when work became unavailable or intermittent, to shift to illegal means for survival.25 Tom fit this profile exactly by coming from Staffordshire of “labourous” parents. Migration from the countryside swelled London’s population during the century despite falling numbers amongst native citizens owing to high mortality rates. Between 1520 and 1625 London had a net inflow of about 6000 people a year to reach a mid-century population of about 450,000.26 Rapid growth put considerable strains on employment and housing and led inevitably to the scapegoating of provincial strangers in the same ways that religious refugees from the Netherlands and France had been targeted in the previous century.27

  20. Goodcole’s much longer report about “Canberry Bess” suggests that her story engaged him in more imaginatively productive ways than Shearwood’s. She was born in Shropshire “of a very good parentage descended, who carefully for her good education, and future preferment, sent her up unto London, to some friends, who setled her in a good service” (B2v). Evans was a typical provincial woman of her class, sent to serve in a London household in the hope marrying into the circles of her master’s better-connected friends. Unfortunately she experienced a common metropolitan disaster, growing “acquainted with a young man . . . who tempted her unto folly, and by that ungodly act her suddain ruine insued” (B2v). Among early modern clerical news-writers, this story would normally have continued with a moralizing tale of the woman’s descent into greater sins and capital crimes. But unexpectedly, Goodcole offered an empathetic perspective on Evans’s drift into four years of alleged prostitution before she hooked up with Shearwood:

    By reason of such her folly, her Friends failed, and frowned on her: Oh unnaturall blemish! thus to forsake, cast off, and forget their owne deare flesh, all meanes of livelyhood failing, her left thus destitute, and out of all credit, friends, money, apparrell and service (B2v)
    Evan’s behaviour was thus a remediable social problem, the direct result of poverty, a loss of kinship support, and social abandonment. While categorizing her initial misfortune as a moral fault, Goodcole recognized that it was not the sole motive for her conduct, and that her subsequent actions were in some sense the outcome of rational self-preservation. The same was true, by implication, for the scores of early modern women who, on coming up to London, found themselves in similar distress. As he would do again in both The Adultresses Funeral Day and Natures Cruell Step-Dames, Goodcole enlarges the terms of criminal analysis from personal reprobation and/or demonic inspiration to individual responses to shifting circumstances of economic power and social hierarchies. And while he offers no extended scrutiny of the cultural attitudes and double standards propelling Evans’s downward spiral, he nonetheless opens a new horizon for future discussions of criminal behaviour, with dilemmas similar to Evans’s becoming more visible in news-reports about seduced and abandoned women from mid-century onwards.28

    Neighbourhood Watch

  21. As an early form of mass-media, the production and reception of popular printed news developed the functional capability of generating crime panics. These are associated with the blurring of urban neighbourhood boundaries by perceived incursions from alien or hostile persons. Authorities and citizens attempt to contain these threats by policing local danger zones and safe havens.29 During periods of heightened anxiety about serious crime in early modern London, as J.M. Beattie has shown, “more highly organized systems of surveillance” were imagined and proposed, and Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry represents an early instance of this tendency. Yet prior to the Restoration the effectiveness of London policing was undermined by systemic weaknesses. Of the three categories of local officer charged with upholding moral and social order – constables, beadles, and nightwatchmen – only beadles held a salaried and uniformed position, with the officer responsible for daytime patrols of London wards and precincts. He assisted constables and supervised nightwatchmen, both of whom were unpaid, amateur, and part-time officers elected annually from among socially prominent citizens by the wardmote, or annal meeting of London ward householders, and the Court of Common Council. Owing to the intense growth of both London’s city and suburban populations and its night-time activities – lawful and illicit – male householders were increasingly unwilling to undertake these volunteer duties, however. From the late sixteenth-century onwards they regularly hired deputies for the watch, whose dedication and competence varied, leading to regular complaints about the growing dangers of night-time streets and calls for a paid full-time watch.30 Constables also faced growing pressures to maintain order in fast-growing wards, especially in terms of controlling “vagrants,” an elastic category which included new immigrants and migrants. And again the practice of appointing deputies created both lapses and continuities in experience and service. Notwithstanding these problems, official surveillance and peace-keeping was more effective in the City than outside its jurisdictions, where the number of suburban constables and county magistrates was far smaller than in inner or extramural wards.31 Addressing these problems of traditional citizen-organized policing, Goodcole, a Clerkenwell householder as well as City of London employee, presents himself as an exemplary community leader stepping forward to fulfil his obligations of “officious service:”

    Even so am I ... Like a Watch-man to observe all commers in and out, into the Gates of the Citty, to unvaile pernitious passengers, which dayes and nights uncessantly passe through the Streets, and in the secret corners of the same prvilily lurke, and watch an opportunity to cozen, rob, and murther (A3r-v, 1st edition; A2v 2nd edition).
  22. Drawing on his years of experience working with serious criminals, Goodcole authoritatively “unvails” Shearwood and Evans’s modus operandi, whereby Evans, like “a decoy Ducke,” lured men into rural-suburban or concealed city spaces for illicit sex, at which point Shearwood would bludgeon them with his “short Trunchin, or Bastinado” (A3v, 1st edn; B4r, 2nd edn). The term “short” indicates the publishers have exaggerated the weapon’s relative size in their images, while their marginal note about its hiding place in Shearwood’s breeches -- a detail contradicted by Goodcole’s description that he carried it “under his cloake by his Bloody polluted hands” (B4v) -- hints darkly at a transgressive sexual motive to his violence that complements Evans’s entrapments. Goodcole claims that their activities constituted a “A new kind of invented wickednesse, and fearefull mischiefe” and a “new invented mysterie of Iniquity” (1st edn, A3v-4r). Recent research indicates that this claim was true in terms of contemporary perceptions, and that Goodcole’s publication may in fact have contributed to shaping them. From 1637 onwards records of the Court of Aldermen and the Journals of the Common Council – the executive and legislative governing bodies of the city – begin to include complaints of “lewd and idle women being comon nightwalkers wandring the streets of this city to attempt and entice youth and other people to lewdnes in the evenings.” Prompted by recommendations by the governors of Bridewell, in 1638 the Common Council also urged officers to arrest “lewd and loose women wondring in the streetes,” and thereafter urban “nightwalkers” were consistently identified as female “enticers” of men in the records of proceedings by London magistrates.32 Although her activities with Shearwood were not exclusively nocturnal, Evans’s criminal profile constitutes evidence of this intensified trend towards associating unregulated women travelling through the city with illicit sexuality and feminized dangers.

  23. In order to transform first- and second-hand reports of the murders into a city-wide vision of imminent personal risk, Goodcole universalizes the signifying function of Shearwood’s bastinado. He extends the weapon’s violence imaginatively through his references to actual or potential assaults and murders in various London spaces. These are embedded in the main narrative, as we have seen, and also classified separately. The first edition of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry presents just one such grouping. It lists the alleged zones and places where Shearwood and Evans (and by implication the criminal class they represent) preyed on their victims:
    1 To Play-houses
    2 To Tavernes.
    The places they resorted unto, 3 To Innes.
    4 To Ale-houses.
    5 To the open Streetes.
    6 To the Fields. (B3r)
    There’s not much left after this. Presumably the ubiquity of this list was meant to suggest that, in terms of absolute safety, virtually no place in London was free from burgeoning dangers. Yet these spaces are the usual suspects cited by clamorous moralists such as John Northbrooke in his Treatise against dicing, dancing, plays, and interludes (1577), Philip Stubbes’s Anatomy of Abuses (1583), and William Prynne’s Histriomastix (1632). Here the over-extension of supposedly risky areas, which included ale-houses and playhouses stigmatized by godly but not most working Londoners, would simply have failed to connect with many readers’ memories of real dangers or criminal contact.

  24. As with several other Perkins-inspired non-space lists in the first edition of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry, this one functions as another conventional sign of an allegorizing murder pamphlet. And like earlier instances of this genre, including Goodcole’s, the implied disorder of these sites is symbolically corrected by the accounts of Shearwood’s and Evans’s gallows repentance, which becomes the first edition’s culminating focus (C2v-C4r). Its final page concludes briefly with “A general Admonition” (C4v) linking Shearwood’s and Evans’s lives to virtually all readers by way of Calvinist ideas of human reprobation, and thereby prompting Goodcole to reaffirm domestic obedience and state vigilance as imperative. His equally conventional attestation follows: “There is nothing contayned in the Booke ... but that I know to bee truth.” Goodcole dates this claim 23 April, St George’s day, linking his narrative authority with the national scope of the criminal law.

  25. The second edition of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry presented readers with many smaller changes of wording and layout, some of which are attributable to the Okes’ efforts to condense the original in order to make room for new material.33 The major additions consisted of three sections: two descriptive catalogues of London sites and criminal habits, and a concluding report, ‘The Habeas corpus, or Remove of Countrey Tom into the Countrey’ (C4r-v).

  26. The first two sections subjectify London spaces by attributing to them offender-prone and defensible qualities. Offender-prone areas occur where features of natural topography, the built environment, and accessibility induce opportunities for criminal activity. In theory defensible areas are sites rendered potentially safer by virtue of their open visibility and non-isolation, by casual surveillance from community passers-by, and by the likelihood of intervention from local witnesses.34 The first catalogue names opportune and suspicious “tokens” by “lewd tempting persons lurking in the Streets and High-wayes;” e.g.:

    First, if they be Cheaters, looke if they bee not Gentile-like cloathed: then if they intice you to play at Cards or Dice for a Pot of Beere, or Pint of Wine, beware of such; and if by such tricks you chance to be deluded, take notice of that house ....

    Thirdly, take heed of such as boldly stand at their doores to intice you, or say, some Friend is on their houses that would speak with you ....

    Fiftly, if a Woman come unto you alone, with inticing faire promises of Curtezan courtesies, to meete you in the Feilds, or some other private remote places, remember the case of Mr. Claxton, and Mr. Holt.

    Sixtly, remember the suburban places, there abhominable Creatures attend their prey, by day and night. (2nd edn C1v)
  27. In the same way that early modern chorographies gathered quantitative spatial and cultural information into patterned resemblances, these items classify London topography according to environmental and situational effects of risk.35 Besides revising the first edition’s hyperextended list of allegedly immoral spaces (playhouses, etc.), the accumulated references to predatory anonymous women mark a shift of emphasis from relatively ungendered to dominantly feminized criminal space, with Canberry Bess becoming its textual icon (superseding the visual emblem of Tom’s spiked club). As Paul Griffiths’s study of the language of City records and the emergence of negatively gendered labels such as “nightwalker” demonstrates, a key term used to define this class’s activities was “entice,” which figures prominently in the first catalogue. Anonymous women arriving from the provinces or suburbs, or undomesticated female “passengers” through the City, were increasingly assumed to have subversive motives: titillating and seducing men, and destabilizing the city’s paternal authority.

  28. The second catalogue continues to use the mobile urban woman as a master-sign of London criminality. It chorographs violent spaces on a city-wide scale (2nd edn C1v-C2r) while at the same time fortifying Goodcole’s call for active citizen participation in systems of city-wide surveillance and regulation:
    An intimation of such places, in, and about the City of London, that Harlots watch their opportunities to surprise men, confessed by this Malefactor.

    First, at West Smithfield within the Railes, and Duck-lane end.

    Second, and thirdly, by the Tavernes in Smithfield, and Cookes shops in Pye-Corner, and Cloath-faire, a great harbor for such.

    Fourthly, by Smithfield Pond, and sheepe-pens.

    Fiftly, by the little conduit in Cheapside in the evening

    Sixtly, St. Antholins Church when the shops are shut up.

    Seventh, and lastly, remember London-bridge, over which you must necessarily travell into the Southerne parts: Beware you goe not by Night with a cloak-bag, but in your hand, nor behind you on horsbacke, lest you be bustled against the wall by a cutpurse in the habite of a Gentleman and so lose it . . . In Middl. towards Pancras Church, in the fields: At Cow-crosse towards the Butchers, at Bloomesberry in St. Giles in the fields, beware of such like offenders . . . (C2r)

  29. Opportune topographic and built features seem to destine these sites to enact endless scenes of entrapment and murder. Maintaining an omniscient perspective, Goodcole accumulates place and times of greatest danger to crystallize imaginative patterns of recognition for readers, including memories of their own fearful encounters. To give credence to their recognition, Goodcole resists overdrawing contrasts between city and suburban spaces. While the majority of his sites are in the socially marginal suburbs (e.g. West Smithfield, Duck Lane, St Pancras), a substantial minority are markets and religious places in the city (e.g. Pie Corner, Cloth-Fair, St Antholins). Both areas, moreover, have gendered associations. Pleasure-seeking activities in the suburbs operated beyond the jurisdiction of the wardmote inquest, consisting of male householders charged with reporting suspicious behaviour and infringements of City laws, or Aldermen’s deputies, who gradually assumed many of these duties as the enthusiasm of inquestmen declined in this period.36 Commercial areas were associated with women who went there to trade and shop; their presence and mobility appeared greater because the men’s public activities tended to be focused on parish vestries and local gathering places such as ale- and coffeehouses.37 Collectively the two catalogues of Goodcole’s second edition overcode greater London’s spatial identity as an agglomeration of feminized criminal locales.38

  30. Yet Goodcole’s “unvailing” of London hot spots was also highly ambiguous, teasing readers with hints of erotically thrilling as well as dangerous escapades, and possibly encouraging their exploration by local punters. Goodcole seems almost to prompt such responses when he asks readers to visualize the upshot of Bess’s fatal attractions on Claxton, Holt, and perhaps Lowe. What were they doing with her in Gray’s Inn Fields at night, or on the “backside” of Clerkenwell? The unspoken answers are unmistakably salacious, if only because Goodcole betrays his own embarrassment at having to acknowledge the moral complications of the victims’ actions. He attempts to defend their pursuit of illicit sex with avowals of masculine class solidarity: “what they [Claxton and Evans] did, I am so charitably opinionated of the deceased Gentleman, that to their slanderous calumniations, and traducings concerning him, I give not the least credence.”

  31. Nonetheless, the walk-about itinerary of these sections ostensibly advances several positive propositions. First, that public visibility will deter crime because it will allow Londoners to recognize and avoid suspect sites and behaviour. Second, that spatial openness will motivate passers-by to intervene as witnesses to violence, since their interests as propertied citizens will encourage them to uphold order, possibly identify with a victim, and come to his aid. But “The Habeas corpus” unexpectedly problematized these assumptions about defensible spaces and confirmed the reality of unintended responses. It also suggested that the policing perspectives of over-sight and rational control introduced by the second edition’s chorographic presentations of criminal space were fragile constructs.

  32. Following the “generall Admonition’ mentioned above (and with Goodcole’s attestation cut), “The Habeas corpus” continued the narrative of Shearwood’s execution (C4r-v). Whereas Evans’s body was taken to Barber Surgeons’ Hall to be anatomized, Tom’s was removed to a gibbet in the suburbs of St Pancras, symbolically marking the City’s expulsion of provincial contagion.39 Coming that way at night, a butcher allegedly remarked on seeing Tom, “it was no matter if all such rogues were serv’d so” (C4r). At that moment two gentlemen witnessed the butcher being ambushed by “lurking villaines,” who “presently seized on him, and tooke his cloathes, and bound him naked to the Gibbet with a gagge in his mouth, bidding him watch the Coar[p]se.” In what looks like a calculated replay of Shearwood and Evans’s assault on Claxton (B3r), the party of rogues revenged the honour of their mate, turning the intended display of state punishment into a defiant counter-spectacle by the London criminal community. Meanwhile the two gentlemen retreated into urban anonymity, failing to aid the butcher until the coast was clear. Their apparent reluctance to get involved wryly undercut assumptions that neighbourhood surveillance, solidarity, and the presence of casual passers-by would promote urban safety. The entire event also suggested that relying on physical boundaries or distance between the City and suburbs, as well as on reverse “migration,” to solve challenges of governance in either area was misleading. Moreover, early modern penal violence, when it was not being treated casually as a backdrop to local festivity, was always being judged by onlookers for its legitimate relationship to the character of the criminal and the contextual circumstances of the crime.40 If one assumes some of these rogues either witnessed Shearwood’s execution and/or were directed to St Pancras by the advertisement in Goodcole’s first edition (“Here endeth the Narration of Thomas Shearwood, who now hangeth in chaines near Pancras Church” [C3v]), “The Habeas corpus” leads one to suspect they “read” Tom hanging in chains not as a terrifying deterrent but as a provocative outrage. The body of the man portrayed lying at the foot of the Bess’s gibbet in the pamphlet’s frontispiece may in fact have suggested the manner and symbolism of their attack on the butcher.

  33. This was not the end of Shearwood’s story. Now veering towards parody, “The Habeas corpus” continued with a Not-In-My-Backyard sequel which revealed how the execution and possibly its appropriation by Goodcole generated further protests and complicated subjective distinctions between criminal and non-criminal spaces. True suburbanites, the St Pancras residents were “much damnified and annoyed” to learn of Tom’s officially sponsored intrusion into their neighbourhood. They complained of the “spoile and depopulating the growing fields there abouts, stript of all fences, and the grasse trodden downe, and made levell, by the infinite confluence of all sexes from all parts” who had heard or read about the murders and came to gape at Tom’s body. They also deplored the sight’s “confusion” of spectators’ reactions (C4v, alluding to the butcher’s attackers). The disgruntled citizens petitioned the king and council to have the “hated spectacle” taken away at night to “the Ring-crosse beyond Islington,” where “those that are not yet satisfied, may see Country Tom got farther into the Countrey.”41 Goodcole’s complacent pursuit of Tom’s post-execution peregrinations in the intermediate and second editions of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry kept his memory alive with his confrères and contributed to an after-life celebrity that divided public reactions to the state-sponsored project of evangelical conversion which dominated his original edition (C3r).

  34. Like the descriptions of criminal hot spots, presumably the inclusion of this revenge-protest and its aftermath in Goodcole’s later versions of Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry was meant to reinforce the message of a London crime epidemic. But to sceptical or critical readers it could have suggested a territorial backlash towards the moralizing triumphalism of the first edition. The second edition’s ambiguities also exposed Goodcole’s rhetorically heightened connection between new levels of violent felony and the need to strengthen official surveillance as tendentious. Nonetheless, despite the instabilities of its chorographic re-visioning, Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry confirmed the discursive power and commercial profitability of this dialectic between anxiety and discipline, since site- and class-specific constructions of criminal identity became prominent features of popular journalism and crime fiction, and remain so in today’s media. Goodcole’s shift away from moralizing biography towards patterned information about the criminal effects of localized spaces and the environmental causes of deviance unsettled traditional conceptions of homicide and anticipated new measures of surveillance and policing later in the century and beyond.42


    I’d like to thank Paul Stevens and Madeline Bassnett for reading earlier drafts of this essay and making valuable suggestions. I’m also grateful to EMLS’s two anonymous readers for their excellent recommendations.

    1.William Perkins, A Golden Chaine, or the Description of Theology (London, 1592), F5v-6v.

    2. J.A. Sharpe, “‘Last Dying Speeches’: Religion, Ideology and Public Execution in Seventeenth-Century England,” Past & Present 107 (May 1985), 144-67; Peter Lake, “Deeds Against Nature: Cheap Print, Protestantism and Murder in Early Seventeenth-Century England,” in Culture and Politics in Early Stuart England, ed. Kevin Sharpe and Peter Lake (London, 1994), 257-67; “Popular Form, Puritan Content? Two Puritan appropriations of the murder pamphlet from mid-seventeenth-century London,” Religion, culture and society in early modern Britain, ed. Anthony Fletcher and Peter Roberts (Cambridge, 1994), both reprinted in The Antichrist’s Lewd Hat: Protestants, Papists and Players in Post-Reformation England (New Haven, CT, 2002); Jürgen Habermas, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere, ed. Thomas Berger, intro. Thomas McCarthy (Cambridge, MA, 1989); Sandra Clark, Women and Crime in the Street Literature of Early Modern England (Basingstoke, 2003); Richard Cust, “News and Politics in Early Seventeenth-Century England,” Past & Present 112 (1986), 60-90; Michael Harris, “Trials and Criminal Biographies: a Case Study in Distribution,” Sale and Distribution of Books from 1700, ed. Robin Myers and Michael Harris (Oxford, 1982),1-36, 267-72; John H. Langbein, “The Criminal Trial Before the Lawyers,” University of Chicago Law Review 45 (1978), 263-316; Fritz Levy, “The Decorum of News,” in News, Newspapers, and Society in Early Modern England, ed. Joad Raymond (London, 1999), 12-38; Lois G. Schwoerer, “Liberty of the Press and Public Opinion: 1660-1695,” in Liberty Secured? Britain Before and After 1688, ed. J.R. Jones (Stanford, CA, 1992), 199-230; James Sutherland, The Restoration Newspaper and its Development (Cambridge, 1986).

    3. J.M. Beattie, Policing and Punishment in London 1660-1750: Urban Crime and the Limits of Terror (Oxford, 2000), 82.

    4. See below p. 22.

    5. “Also some new Additions, with a discovery of those places where such kind of lude people haunt and resort unto, and by what signes and tokens you may discover them: disclosed by this Sherwood a little before his death. ... and now he hangeth in chaines by Battle-bridge.” (titlepage, 12010.3).

    6. Andrew Gordon and Bernard Klein, Literature, Mapping, and the Politics of Space in Early Modern Britain (Cambridge, 2001), 3.

    7. Nuti, Lucia, “Mapping Places: Chorography and Vision in the Renaissance,” Mappings, ed. Denis Cosgrove (London, 1999), 90-108.

    8. Compare Mary Bly’s analysis of literary constructions of the Blackfriars and Whitefriars liberties in “Playing the Tourist in Early Modern London: Selling the Liberties Onstage,” PMLA 122.1 (January 2007), 61-71. Like the present essay Bly draws on Henri Lefebvre’s and Michel de Certeau’s ideas of spatial values being produced by the physical circulation and interactions of local inhabitants and readers (respectively, The Production of Space, trans. Donald Nicholson-Smith (Oxford, 1991), 38-42; “Walking in the City,” The Practice of Everyday Life, trans. Steven Rendell (Berkeley: 1984), 91-110.

    9. C. Dobb, “Henry Goodcole, Visitor of Newgate,” The Guildhall Miscellany 4 (1955), 15-21.

    10. Dobb, “Henry Goodcole,” 18.

    11. J.A. Sharpe, Crime in Early Modern England 1550-1750, 2nd edn (London, 1999), 71, 82-6.

    12. Cynthia B. Herrup, A House in Gross Disorder: Sex, Law, and the 2nd Earl of Castlehaven. (New York, 1999). Goodcole interviewed Castlehaven’s implicated servants Florence (or Lawrence) Fitzpatrick and Giles Broadway in Newgate, and he accompanied them to the scaffold on 6 July 1631, writing an eyewitness manuscript account of the event (with distinct Foxeian overtones in the case of Broadway) that possibly circulated publicly before reaching print much later as The Case of Sodomy (1708).

    13. The devil’s presence, meanwhile, shrinks to an ontological abstraction of human sinfulness [B1v], rather than being an active external force shaping everyday human subjectivity.

    14. Elaine Scarry relates an illuminating modern analogy to Heavens Speedie Hue and Cry’s novel display of the murder weapon. In 1963 an Amnesty International newspaper article sought to enlist readers’ support in opposing torture. Amnesty discovered that by accompanying the text with an image of the torture weapon, it “elicited from the public an immediate outcry against the human hurt visibly suggested by the object.” For the same reasons, trial prosecutors will display any weapon involved in an alleged crime during the course of their arguments, and newspapers whip up public fear (and sales) with photographs of murder- weapons or related harmful objects (The Body in Pain: the Making and Unmaking of the World [New York, 1985], 15-17).

    15. The Belman of London (1609), cited by Lawrence Manley, Literature and Culture in Early Modern London (Cambridge, 1995), 342. See also Clark, The Elizabethan Pamphleteers (Rutherford, NJ, 1983).

    16. Manley, Literature and Culture in Early Modern London, 346.

    17. Peter Linebaugh, “The Ordinary of Newgate and His Account,” in Crime in England, 1550-1800, ed. J.S. Cockburn (London, 1977), 246-69.

    18. G~mini Salg~do, The Elizabethan Underworld (New York, 1992), 114-15.

    19. Becoming Criminal: Transversal Performance and Cultural Dissidence in Early Modern England (Baltimore and London, 2002), 108-9.

    20. Edward H. Sugden, A Topographical Dictionary to the Works of Shakespeare and his Fellow Dramatists (Manchester, 1925), 232. In Middleton’s The Roaring Girl, for example, Moll arranges an assignation with Laxton at the second location.

    21. Sugden, A Topographical Dictionary, 121.

    22. This lady was probably the widow of Sir William Hatton, nephew and heir of Sir Christopher Hatton, famed Elizabethan courtier and lord chancellor buried in St Paul’s (“Sir William Hatton,” Oxford Dictionary of National Biography).

    23. Ian W. Archer, The Pursuit of Stability: Social Relations in Elizabethan London (Cambridge, 1991), 210-11. Bawdy houses were also clustered in St John’s Lane, Shoreditch, and Whitechapel. As Archer’s research into the Bridewell records also shows, however, “many establishments operated within the supposedly much better governed areas under the City’s jurisdiction,” thus blurring commonplace distinctions between its wards and the under-regulated and the weakly patrolled suburbs, distinctions partly produced by printed literary discourses. One factor contributing to the presence of brothels within City wards was the active complicity of their male householders – the class represented by Shearwood and Evans’s victims (211). Ironically, this was also the class that “stood in the front line in the maintenance of order” (214) until after the Restoration, when better organized and publicly funded systems of policing were introduced.

    24. Deborah Lupton, Risk (London, 1999), 25, 46, 143-4; Peter Stallybrass and Allon White, The Politics and Poetics of Transgression (Ithaca, NY, 1986).

    25. Robert Tittler, Townspeople and Nation: English Urban Experience 1540-1640 (Stanford, 2001), 175.

    26. Stephen Inwood, A History of London (London, 1998), 159-60; Tittler, Townspeople and Nation, 164.

    27. They would be targeted again in 1685 after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes renewed Huguenot immigration to England (c.f. the publicly contested murders by Mary Hobry [or Aubrey, 1688] and Margaret Martel [1697]). See Roger L’Estrange, A Hellish Murder Committed by a French Midwife, On the Body of her Husband, Jan. 27 1687/8 (1688), A Full Relation Of The Birth, Parentage, Education, Life and Conversation of Mrs. Margaret Martel, The Barbarous French-Woman (1697), both reproduced in Martin, ed., Women and Murder in Early Modern News Pamphlets and Broadside Ballads, 1573-1697 (Aldershot and Burlington, VT, 2005).

    28. For example alleged infanticide Anne Greene, 1651, and, in later criminal fiction, Defoe’s Roxana and Moll Flanders; see Hal Gladfelder, Criminality and Narrative in Eighteenth-Century England: Beyond the Law (Baltimore and London, 2001).

    29. Stanley Cohen, Folk Devils and Moral Panics: The Creation of the Mods and Rockers (London, 1972).

    30. Beattie, Policing and Punishment, “Constables and Other Officers,” 114-68, “The Problem of the Night,” 169-73; Archer, The Pursuit of Stability, 14-17, 63-74, 218-23.

    31. Archer, The Pursuit of Stability, 221-29.

    32. Paul Griffiths,”The Meanings of Nightwalking in Early Modern England,” The Seventeenth Century 13 (1998), 218-20. In the context of increasing fears about street crime and prostitution, Griffiths’s essay demonstrates how the meaning of the term “nightwalker” changed to become associated with unaccompanied London women and illicit sexuality in the 1630s. See also below p. X. For moralizing verse vignettes about London prostitutes and their clients, see Humphrey Mill, A Nights Search: Discovering the Nature, and condition of Night-Walkers with theire associats (London, 1640).

    33. Advertised on the titlepage. The pamphlet remained twelve leaves, or twenty-four pages, signed A-C.

    34. David T. Herbert, “Urban Crime: A Geographical Perspective,” Social Problems and the City: Geographical Perspectives, ed. David T. Herbert and David M. Smith (Oxford, 1979), 119-26; Oscar Newman, Defensible Space (New York, 1992), 18-27.

    35. Ulrich Beck, Risk Society, trans. Mark Ritter (London, 1992), 22-23; Lupton, Risk, 5-23, 45-6; Nuti, “Mapping Places,” 98.

    . Archer, The Pursuit of Stability, 218-20.

    37. Robert B. Shoemaker, “Gendered spaces: patterns of mobility and perceptions of London’s geography, 1660-1750,” Imagining Early Modern London: Perceptions & Portrayals of the City from Stow to Strype 1598-1720, ed. J.F. Merrit (Cambridge, 2001), 144-65.

    38. Manley, Literature and Culture in Early Modern London, 346.

    39. Tom’s skeleton was also eventually taken to Barber Surgeons’ Hall in Monkwell Street. Both his and Bess’s skeletons were displayed there in 1638 in the new anatomy theatre designed two years earlier by Inigo Jones. They remained on view until 1784 when the theatre was demolished (Jonathan Sawday, The Body Emblazoned: Dissection and the Human Body in Renaissance Culture [London, 1996], 60-71, citing Edward Hatton, A New View of London, 2 vols. [1708], 2:597, itemizing the theatre’s human furnishings: “The skeletons of Canberry Bess and Country Tom (as they there call them,) 1638”). Unfortunately Bess’s and Tom’s skeletons no longer survive; they seem to have been lost when the later Surgeons’ Hall was destroyed by bombing during the Second World War.

    40. Susan Dwyer Amussen and Thomas Laqueur have shown in different ways that the emotional and semantic effects of public executions were neither certain nor stable. “Punishment, Discipline, and Power: The Social Meanings of Violence in Early Modern England,” Journal of British Studies 34 (January 1995), 1-34; “Crowds, carnival and the state in English executions, 1604-1868,” The First Modern Society: Essays in English History in Honour of Lawrence Stone, ed. A.L. Beier, David Cannadine, and James M. Rosenheim (Cambridge, 1989), 305-55.

    41. The titlepage claims its added “discovery of those places where such kind of lude people haunt and resort unto” was “disclosed by this Sherwood a little before his death” (A2r). While this information was inserted into the original text and therefore came before “The Habeas corpus,” it was evidently written by Goodcole after Shearwood’s execution in response to the extraordinary honour-attack reported in the latter (see p. 5 above). A further irony is that in the first version of the frontispiece illustration, there was no outward-looking figure in the wings keeping watch or standing guard.

    42. Beattie, Policing and Punishment, 3-4, and “The Making of a Paid Night Watch,” 173-97.

Responses to this piece intended for the Readers' Forum may be sent to the Editor at M.Steggle@shu.ac.uk.

© 2009-, Matthew Steggle (Editor, EMLS).