Primary Source

Hicky's Bengal Gazette

Front page of Hicky's Bengal Gazette Newspaper


Hicky’s Bengal Gazette was the first printed newspaper to be published in India. While the cartoon of Henry Dundas alluded to governmental control over the flow of information between Britain and Bengal, newspapers such as Hicky’s Bengal Gazette served as an alternative and public venue for the circulation of information and even the expression of anti-government views. Regular contests over the contents of Hicky’s Bengal Gazette even gave rise to discussions of censorship and press freedom in the late eighteenth century. Like many other English language as well as multilingual newspapers published in British settlements in India during the late eighteenth century, Hicky’s Bengal Gazette reported on major military, political, and economic events within the Indian subcontinent as well as further afield. In fact, such newspapers played an important role in connecting the global British Empire and making its globalism a reality for readers across distinct geographies. This particular issue, printed in March 1781, not only presented reports on developments across the Indian Ocean world but also offered “hints and observations” for the government’s consideration as they dealt with the French. Equally, it reproduced reports first published in London newspapers, covered the state of affairs in other South Asian states such as Mysore, and provided room for locals to advertise their wares.  

This source is part of the Making Empire Global teaching module


Source: Universitatsbibliothek Heidelberg

How to Cite This Source

"Hicky's Bengal Gazette," in World History Commons, [accessed March 29, 2023]