A Short Biographical Dictionary of English Literature/Hone, William

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Hone, William (1780-1842). -- Miscellaneous writer, b. at Bath, in his youth became a convinced and active democrat. His zeal in the propagation of his views, political and philanthropic, was so absorbing as to lead to a uniform want of success in his business undertakings. He pub. many satirical writings, which had immense popularity, among which were The Political House that Jack Built (1819), The Man in the Moon (1820), The Political Showman (1821), and The Apocryphal New Testament. For one of his earliest satires, The Political Litany, pub. in 1817, he was prosecuted, but acquitted. Later he brought out Ancient Mysteries (1823), Every Day Book (1826-27), Table Book (1827-28), and Year Book (1828). These works, in which he had the assistance of other writers, are full of curious learning on miscellaneous subjects, such as ceremonies, dress, sports, customs, etc. His last literary enterprise was an ed. of Strutt's Sports and Pastimes (1830). Always a self-sacrificing and honest man, he was originally an unbeliever, but in his latter years he became a sincere Christian.