Newcastle Courant

Abraham Woods Confession

Tuesday, 17th September 1737

The following is a copy of the paper left by Abraham Wood, a Gypsy, who was executed at Gloucester on Friday the 26th past, for robbing Henry Lovel (another Gypsy) on the highway.

The way of life those strollers, who call themselves Egyptians, lead.
In one gang belonging to the Lovells and Bozells there are thirty, and when they meet together, some strike out one way and some another, to espy out Gentlemens and Farmers flocks of sheep, and in the night-time meet together again, and steal the best they can find, and what quantity they please, by catching them with a dog; and when they come to a place convenient, they skin them and draw them, and bury the skins and guts, or throw them into a pool of water and sink them with stones. They carry the carcases six or seven miles in the night time from the place they steal them, then they get into some secret place and teat hedges, or get any thing they can first lay their hands on, and make a fire, and roast and boil till they have devour'd what they have. Often in the mean time some strike out and steal a horse or two, and some upon the highway.
About six years ago this Lovell and some of his gang stole three horses near Tamworth, one of them was a bright bay cropt gelding; and a Hue and Cry was out after them, and they escap'd by getting into a wood and going off by night. The mens names that stole the horses are Henry Lovell the younger, and Thomas Lovell his brother, and one Barnaby and Jeffery, confederates together with Lovell's gang. The names of the Bozells that belong to the same gang, are John Bozell the elder, and his four sons, viz. Peter, John, George and William. The said John Bozell's way of life is mostly in pretending to tell fortunes, and fraudulently getting peoples money by telling them, that by giving him such a sum of money, in such a place they shall find a great sum, and has brought a great many ignorant people to ruin.
There is one George Kemp, who very often robs on the highway; he is a tall well-looking man, and pretends to have a Licence, and sells flower'd waistcoats. Last Summer he broke open a house at Cely in Glamorganshire, and stole from thence six gold rings, and got off for Bristol. He most commonly has four women dress'd very well along with him.
Confess'd, August 21, 1737, by me
Abraham Wood.

With Thanks To:
The British Newspaper Archives

Original Article/Image Copyright:
Image © The British Library Board. All Rights Reserved.

Extracted From:
Newcastle Courant - Tuesday, 17th September 1737
Click here to view the original page @ The British Newspaper Archives.



  • Abraham Wood
  • George Bozell
  • Henry Lovell
  • Henry Lovell
  • John Bozell
  • John Bozell
  • Peter Bozell
  • Thomas Lovell
  • William Bozell