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La Pie Voleuse [The Maid and the Magpie] (1815)
Buonaparte-phobia (1815, 1820)
Regent's Bomb (1816)
Yacht for the R——t's B—m— (1816)
Interesting History of Memorable Blood Conspiracy (1816)
Bullet te Deum / Canticle of the Stone (1817)
Sinecurist's Creed (1817)

The Sinecurist's Creed, or Belief


The Sinecurist's Creed, or Belief was one of four liturgical parodies Hone composed and published in very early 1817. Together with The Late John Wilkes's Catechism and The Political Litany, The Sinecurist's Creed was one of the works singled out by the Attorney General for prosecution in December of that year. (The fourth parody, The Bullet Te Deum, was ignored by the authorities, perhaps because a well-publicized prosecution would likely have served only to increase the pamphlet's public visibility.) Borrowing its form from the Book of Common Prayer's Athanasian Creed, The Sinecurist's Creed is clearly a political attack on three prominent figures in the Tory government: Eldon ("Old Bags"), Castlereagh ("Derry Down Triangle"), and Sidmouth ("the Doctor").

The original pamplet was brief, 8-page, small format publication that Hone sold for eight pence for four copies or a shilling for eight. Such a pricing scheme, incidentally, suggests that Hone was marketing specifically to the "carriage trade"; he was selling to persons who would resell the pamphlets at a profit. In addition, these brief (and profitable) texts were quickly pirated by provincial printers further increasing their circulation among the English readership. The present electronic edition offers a facsimile of the title page followed by a reading text of the parody and of the end-paper advertisements.

Title Page Transcription:

THE | SINECURIST'S | CREED | or | BELIEF; | as the same can or may be Sung or Said | THROUGHOUT THE KINGDOM. | Quicinque vult. | By Authority. | FROM HONE'S WEEKLY COMMENTARY, NO. 2. | LONDON: | Printed for one of the Candidates for the Office of Printer to the KING'S MOST EXCELLENT MAJESTY, and sold by WILLIAM HONE, 55, Fleet Street, and 67, Old Bailey, three Doors from Ludgate Hill. 1817. Price Two-pence.


The Sinecurist's Creed:





Upon all suitable occasions may be sung or said the following CONFESSION--upstanding and uncovered.

Quicunque vult.

WHOSOEVER will be a Sinecurist: before all things it is necessary that he hold a place of profit.
Which place except every Sinecurist do receive the salary for, and do no service: without doubt it is no Sinecure.
And a Sinecurist's duty is this: that he divide with the Ministry, and be with the Ministry in a Majority.
Neither confounding the Persons: nor dividing with the opposition.
For there is one Ministry of Old Bags, another of Derry Down TRIANGLE:* and another of the Doctor.

--- [page 4] ---

But the Ministry of Old Bags, of Derry Down Triangle, and of the Doctor, is all one: the folly equal, the profusion coeternal.
Such as Old Bags is, such is Derry Down Triangle: and such is the Doctor.
Old Bags a Mountebank, Derry Down Triangle a Mountebank: the Doctor a Mountebank.
Old Bags incomprehensible, Derry Down Triangle incomprehensible: the Doctor incomprehensible.
Old Bags a Humbug, Derry Down Triangle a Humbug: and the Doctor a Humbug.
Any yet they are not three Humbugs: but one Humbug.
As also they are not three incomprehensibles, nor three Mountebanks: but one Mountebank, and one incomprehensible.
So likewise Old Bags is All-twattle,* Derry Down Triangle All-twattle: and the Doctor All-twattle.
And yet they are not three All-twattles: but one All-twattle.
So Old Bags is a Quack, Derry Down Triangle is a Quack: and the Doctor is a Quack.
And yet they are not three Quacks: but one Quack.
So likewise Old Bags is a Fool, Derry Down Triangle is a Fool: and the Doctor is a Fool.
And yet not three Fools: but one Fool.

--- [page 5] ---

For like as we are compelled by real verity: to acknowledge every Minister by himself to be Quack and Fool:
So are we forbidden by State etiquette: to say there be three Quacks, or three Fools.
Derry Down Triangle is made of none: neither born nor begotten.*
Old Bags is of himself alone: a Lawyer bred, a Lord created, by his Father begotten.
The Doctor is of Old Bags, and of Derry Down Triangle: neither made, nor created, nor begotten, but proceeding.
So there is one Old Bags, not three Old Bags: one Derry Down Triangle, not three Triangles: one Doctor, not three Doctors.
And in this Ministry none is afore or after the other: none is greater or less than another.
But the whole three Ministers are co-Charlatans together, and co-Tricksters.
So that, in all things, as is aforesaid: the Majority with the Ministry, and the Ministry in the Majority, is to be worshipped.
He therefore that will be a Sinecurist, must thus think of the Ministry.
Furthermore it is necessary to his Sinecure's preservation: that he also believe rightly the mystification of Derry Down Triangle.
For the Sinecurist's right faith is, that he believe and confess: that Derry Down Triangle, the queue of the

--- [page 6] ---

Ministry of the great man now no more, is now both Minister and Manager.
Minister, first selling the substance of his own country to this: Manager, scattering the substance of this, over all the world;
Perfect Knave and perfect Fool: of unsparing despotic views--on overstrained taxation subsisting;
Equal to Old Bags as touching grave Trickery: and inferior to the Doctor as touching his Mummery.
Who although he be Knave and Fool, yet he is not two, but one Minister;
One; not by a conversion of the Charlatan into the Minister; but by shooting a more showy juggler, who wanted, and still wants, to be a Minister.
One altogether; squandering in profusion our substance: by votes of corrupt Majorities.
For as by power of Dupery, and our Money, he makes whom he will his own: so by Intrigue and Cajolery, he is Minister:--
Who to talk for our Salvation, descended to kiss the Nethermost End of Tally-high-ho; and rose again as a giant refreshed;
He ascended into a higher place, he sitteth at the right hand of the Chair, from whence he shall hear how those who being starved,--'by the Visitation of God,'--became Dead.
At whose nodding all Sinecurists shall rise again, and again; and with their voices cry Aye! Aye! and the

--- [page 7] ---

Laureate in token of joy, shall mournfully chaunt the most doleful Lay in his Works.
And they that have said Aye! Aye! shall go into Place everlasting; and they that have said No! shall go into everlasting Minorities.
And COLERIDGE shall have a Jew's Harp, and a Rabbinical Talmud, and a Roman Missal: and WORDSWORTH shall have a Psalter, and a Primer, and a Reading Easy: and unto SOUTHEY's Sack-but shall be duly added: and with Harp, Sack-but, and Psaltery, they shall make merry, and discover themselves before Derry Down Triangle, and HUM his most gracious master, whose Kingdom shall have no end.
This is the Sinecurist's duty, from doing more than which except he abstain faithfully, he cannot be a Sinecurist.
Glory be to Old Bags, and to Derry Down Triangle, and to the Doctor.
As it was in the Beginning, is now, and ever shall be, if such things be, without end. Amen.

[Here endeth the Creed or Belief.]

Printed by J. D. Dewick.

[end page 7]



[Hone's notes--in the original, the notes appear at the foot of the appropriate page.]

* Triangle, s. a thing having three sides; the meanest and most tinkling of all musical instruments; machinery used in military torture. -- DICTIONARY [return]

* All-twattle:--Twattle, v. n. to prate, gabble, chatter, talk idly. -- ENTICK'S DICT. [return]

* Neither born nor begotten, but the D____l _______. -- SCHOOLBOY'S SAYING. [return]


[End-Paper Advertisements:]


Uniform with this CREED, forming a Companion to it;

Price Two-Pence,




to be


until the


Throughout the Dominion of ENGLAND and WALES, and

By Special Command.



Price Two-Pence;



Price Two-Pence.