Dictionary of Sydney: Flash men, coves and rascals

The 1840s was a really interesting time for sydney’s criminal history, the time between getting rid of the shackles and evolving into the sydney we know today. Dr Lisa Murray told Nic about a dossier compiled at the time by police superintendent William August Miles called “The Registry of Flash Men”. Miles found it very important to keep tabs on the working of sydney’s criminal underworld, observing behaviour and connections.

In fact, the Flash Men of the time even had their own underworld cant that was the subject of what may have been the first dictionary ever compiled in Australia.

The Dictionary of Sydney has of course delved more into the breadth of law and order (and criminality) in Sydney.

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