[1817] - Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine founded

Originally named the Edinburgh Monthly Magazine, the first issue was printed in April 1817 under the editorship of Thomas Pringle and James Cleghorn. Initially the journal was not a success, and its owner, William Blackwood the publisher, fired the editors and relaunched it as Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine (often referred to as the Maga). Conceived in opposition to the Whiggish Edinburgh Review, Blackwood’s Magazine was a combative, controversial and highly popular Tory periodical that rose to prominence in the early nineteenth century through the work of leading contributors such as John Wilson, John Gibson Lockhart and William Maginn. From 1817 to 1824 it became notorious for a series of articles attacking the work of ‘Cockney School’ writers including John Keats, Leigh Hunt and William Hazlitt. Consequently, the magazine became embroiled in a controversy with John Scott, the editor of the London Magazine, which resulted in a duel between Scott and Jonathan Christie, Blackwood’s representative, on 16 February 1821. Scott subsequently died from the injuries he sustained that night. The magazine ran from 1817 to 1980: among its contributors were Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Thomas de Quincey, George Eliot, Anthony Trollope, Joseph Conrad, Dorothy Sayers and Hugh MacDiarmid.

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