The 1st First English Newspaper In India | Bengal Gazette


The first English newspaper in India is the Hicky’s Bengal Gazette or the Calcutta general advertiser. It was not only the first English newspaper in India but it was the first English newspaper in the Asian continent.

The 1st First English Newspaper In India | Bengal Gazette
The 1st First English Newspaper In India | Bengal Gazette

The Bengal Gazette was an English newspaper that was published at the end of the eighteenth century. The author and founder of the oldest newspaper of India is James Augustus Hicky.

The idea of the newspaper in India was firstly bought by a Dutch adventurer named William Bolts, but Hicky is the first who did this.

The first copy of this newspaper was published on 29th January 1780 and named Hicky’s Bengal Gazette. The newspaper comes every Saturday. So that Hicky and his team has to prepare all the content of the newspaper for the printing from Monday.

They prepare almost 400 copies of the newspaper every week and all the copies were sold because of its popularity. Hicky decided to sell it in Rupee 1 at that time.

The Calcutta General Advertiser

As you know that the name of the newspaper is also the Calcutta General Advertiser, which is why this newspaper is sharing lots of advertisements and real facts and topics about the corruption in East India Company.

Because of these real topics and corruption news, this newspaper becomes very famous in all the Indian people and in many British soldiers who are posted in India.

But after some time this newspaper was banned by the East India Company because the writers are writing against the general named Waeran Husting.

This newspaper is running for 2 years and gained so much popularity among all the people but it was banned by the Britishers on 23rd March 1782.

James Augustus Hicky, The Father of the Indian Press

James Augustus Hicky is known as the father of Indian Journalism. He was an Irish man who was born in Ireland in 1740. He was the first person who launched the first English newspaper in India.

At his young age, he was a very hardworking and energetic guy. That is why at his young age he went to London with a Scottish painter to make his career in the painting field.

But he did not take painting as a job and tries his luck in Law. After some time he completed the clerkship under a lawyer. Now he started spending his time as a professional assistant under a lawyer in a court.

But after some time Hicky left Law and started investing his time in practicing to become surgent. After his regular practices and hard work, he was selected as a companion by a surgent.

The story of the writer of the First English Newspaper In India

In the year 1772, James firstly comes to India with a surgent as a companion. But he saw that in India the rule of East India Company was established and he observe a better scope in the shipping business in India.

So, he decided to start a shipping business as well as assurgent. In the starting, he receives a lot of profit. He shipping goods and material from India to other countries and some other products to all parts of India.

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But the year of 1776 takes many challenges for him. His shipping business was collapsed because his ship was damaged. That is why he will not be able to supply the goods and stuff at the time which resulted in a very big loss in his business.

He can not pay the loss amount to the dealers and that is why he was sent to the prison.

James Hicky Was Sent To The Jail

When James Augustus Hicky was sent to jail, he becomes very sadist and frustrated. Everyone knows the reason behind his sadness. He was spending his life very happily and suddenly an incident happened with him and he lost all the money.

Even he had not had any money to hire a lawyer to get rid of from prison. In the previous time, every person has to work in the jail, and Hicky was a well-educated person. That is why he acquired a printing press in jail and learn about printing and get Assignment help.

Now in 1777, he begins a printing company from the jail and started collecting money for his freedom.

As time passes through his printing business becomes successful and Hicky hired a lawyer from the jail named William Hicky. He was the person who helped James Hicky to get rid of from the jail.

The Idea Of Hicky’s Bengal Gazette comes in Hicky’s Mind

After taking a step in the printing business he knows all the things about printing culture and he observes that in India he can expand his printing business without any problem because he was the first one who decided to do this and he has no competition.

He launched his first newspaper named Hicky’s Bengal Gazette on 29th January 1780.

He was a brave man, he publishes advertisements and published articles on corruption in east India company openly.

Structure Of the First English Newspaper In India

The first English newspaper in India was the Hicky’s Bengal Gazette. It was a weekly newspaper which was published every Saturday. This newspaper was firstly published in Calcutta, the capital of British India. James Augustus Hicky was the author and founder of the oldest newspaper of India.

He was the first person who gives fire in the journalist profession. Because of his efforts, the journalist activities developed in India. He chooses Calcutta for the place where he wants to start the newspaper because it was the capital of British India and comes in the most popular city at that time. He thinks that his newspaper becomes viral in Calcutta1780.

Moto And Slogan Of The Bengal Gazette

James Augustus Hicky said that ” Bengal Gazette was a commercial paper open to all, but influenced by none”.

It means that this Bengal Gazette was a weakly commercial, political and advertising newspaper. which was open to all, means everyone can buy it and read the articles advertisements published on it. He also told that everyone can advertise on it and also suggest the topics, stories and local problems for the newspaper to be published.

Hicky’s Bengal Gazette

But influenced by none it means that, this newspaper is an independent one and it was free from all the higher authorities. The editor of the oldest newspaper of India writes in against any authorities like East India Company freely and without any fear.

Pattern And Size Of The Oldest Newspaper Of India

The Hicky’s Bengal Gazette, the first English newspaper in India was small in size as the newspapers of the current time. The length of the newspaper is approx 20 inches and the breadth is approx 7 inches. It was looking like a long notebook.

The newspaper contains only four pages printed on both sides. Every page is divided into three vertical rows in which the content is written. These rows contain images, advertisements, and news in such a format that is looking very amazing. The printing press creates 400 copies of the newspaper every week.

Problem Faced By Hicky And The Bengal Gazette

When James Augustus Hicky started his private printing press he decided to start an independent newspaper. He decided to publish genuine and original news without any favor to the higher authorities like East India Company.

“Bengal Gazette was a commercial paper open to all, but influenced by none.”

He wants to tell everyone that his newspaper was an independent one. Equal to all but it will not take the side of any authority. That’s why he decided on a slogan that expresses his feelings.

East India Company Introduced a Rival Newspaper

In the starting days, he publishes British advertisements like fashion, clothes and many others. This results in the interest of the Indian people in the newspaper.

Rival Newspaper Of The Bengal Gazette

We all know that British people are very clever. They come to India for only business purpose but when they observe that India is a goldmine the stablish their leadership in India by different schemes and laws.

He Observe that Hicky’s newspaper is becoming very popular in Indian peoples but also among all the British soldiers in India. So he think that the newspaper is a better and profitable way to connect with people so they decided to launch a rival newspaper in India named The India Gazette.

The India Gazette was a big problem for James Augustus Hickey because of East India Company. Britishers are very claver they copied James’s idea of the newspaper.

Now Hicky’s Bengal Gazette has to face competition with the India Gazette. So Hickey Changed his newspaper name from Hicky’s Bengal Gazette to Hicky’s Bengal Gazette or the Original Calcutta general advertiser. He adds Original words to show people that his newspaper is the first English newspaper in India.

East India Company Trying to Stop The Bengal Gazette

James was a very brave man. He did not support any wrong thing whether it was said by anyone. James writes openly without any fear and pressure in his article.

He writes in his newspaper on the topic of corruption, human writes violation and tyranny which was done by the employs of East India Company.

One day Hicky published a corruption report about an employee of East India Company named Simeon Droz and Warren Hustingswife. He told that both people are starting supporting the India Gazette which was Britisher’s newspaper. He also told that they support the India Gazette because he refused to pay a bribe to them.

In this article, he targeted Warren Hastings Indirectly. He targeted Marian Hastings, the wife of Warren Hastings.

But after some time he claimed Warren Hasting in his article over violating his right to free expansion and called Hasting a corrupt governor-general of British India.

After that, Warren Hasting got engaged and imprisoned him for one year and charged him 2000 rupees which were a big amount at that time. But because of his continuous efforts, his newspaper becomes more popular day by day.

The company is in power so they decided to stop the oldest newspaper of India, the Bengal Gazette. The newspaper runs for two years and on March 23, 1782, it was permanently banned by the East India Company.


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