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The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21).
Volume IX. From Steele and Addison to Pope and Swift.

I. Defoe—The Newspaper and the Novel

§ 9. The Flying Post and The Post Boy

From Dunton, Defoe borrowed some of the topics discussed in the miscellaneous portion of his paper. In 1695, the Licensing Act, which had for some years been administered with moderation, was allowed to lapse, and several new journals were at once begun, some of which were destined to have important careers. Chief among these were The Flying Post, a triweekly whig organ, edited by the Scot George Ridpath, for many years a bitter opponent of Defoe, and the tory Post Boy, which was published by Abel Roper, a special object of whig detestation, and, for some time, edited by Abel Boyer, who, later, changed his politics. These and The Post Man, as well as the printed newsletter of Ichabod Dawks and the written newsletter of John Dyer, notorious for his partisan mendacity, were primarily disseminators of news. They were supplemented, in March, 1702, by the first of the dailies, The Daily Courant, which, like the weekly Corantos of eighty years before, consisted of translations from foreign papers. It soon fell into the hands of Samuel Buckley, a versatile man with whom Defoe was often at odds.