The Sun (1792–1806)

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The Sun was a British newspaper established by John Heriot in 1792 and was discontinued in 1806. The paper was funded by members of the Tory government led by William Pitt the Younger to counter the contemporary pro-revolutionary press.

John Heriot, a Scottish journalist and writer, had worked for the Oracle and the World newspapers in 1791, editing both, but did not remain in either post for long. In 1792, at the instigation of Edmund Burke, he was recruited by the British Treasury to establish a pro-government newspaper, the Sun. This was secretly funded by members of the Tory government, on a private basis.

Heriot launched the Sun on 1 October 1792,[1] and it quickly rose to become the second most popular newspaper in Britain, behind The Times.[2] The Sun survived until Heriot retired in 1806.[3]

Heriot also launched True Briton, a morning daily, on 1 January 1793;[4] It too was funded by the Treasury and maintained a strongly pro-government pro-Tory line.[5] The True Briton would continue for eleven years before collapsing in 1804.[6]


  1. ^ Annual biography and obituary, 1834, p. 49.
  2. ^ Davis, 2008.
  3. ^ Annual biography and obituary, 1834, p. 49.
  4. ^ Annual biography and obituary, 1834, p. 49.
  5. ^ Barrell, p. 138
  6. ^ Davis, 2008.


  • Davis, Caroline (January 2008). "Heriot, John (1760–1833)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/13079. Retrieved 16 August 2009.