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June 2013 cover featuring a baby and a corgi
|Company||Condé Nast Publications|
Tatler is a British magazine, which is the successor of the original literary and society journal founded by Richard Steele in 1709. The current incarnation, founded in 1901, is a glossy magazine published by Condé Nast Publications focusing on society, fashion, politics and lifestyle. It describes itself as ‘The oldest and best magazine in the entire world. Ever. Funny, clever, beautiful, cool and prone to smugness: we’re your NBF’ . Being more than three centuries old, it is the oldest magazine in the world and its 300th anniversary was celebrated with a party at Lancaster House in October 2009.
The original Tatler was founded in 1709 by Richard Steele, who used the nom de plume "Isaac Bickerstaff, Esquire". This is the first known such consistently adopted journalistic persona, which adapted to the first person, as it were, the 17th-century genre of "characters", as first established in English by Sir Thomas Overbury and then expanded by Lord Shaftesbury's Characteristics (1711). Steele's idea was to publish the news and gossip heard in London coffeehouses, hence the title, and seemingly, from the opening paragraph, to leave the subject of politics to the newspapers, while presenting Whiggish views and correcting middle-class manners, while instructing "these Gentlemen, for the most part being Persons of strong Zeal, and weak Intellects...what to think." To assure complete coverage of local gossip, a reporter was placed in each of the city's popular coffeehouses, or at least such were the datelines: accounts of manners and mores were datelined from White's; literary notes from Will[disambiguation needed]'s; notes of antiquarian interest were dated from the Grecian Coffee House; and news items from St. James’s Coffee House.
In its first incarnation, it was published three times a week. The original Tatler was published for only two years, from 12 April 1709 to 2 January 1711. A collected edition was published in 1710–11, with the title The Lucubrations of Isaac Bickerstaff, Esq. Two months after the final edition, Steele and Joseph Addison, another major contributor to Tatler, co-founded The Spectator magazine.
Three months after the original Tatler was first published, an unknown woman writer using the pen name "Mrs. Crackenthorpe" published what was called the Female Tatler. Scholars from the 1960s to the 1990s thought the anonymous woman might have been Delarivier Manley, but she was subsequently ruled out as author and the woman remains unknown. However, its run was much shorter: the magazine ran for less than a year—from 8 July 1709 to 31 March 1710. The London Tatler and the Northern Tatler were later 18th-century imitations. The Tatler Reviv'd ran for 17 issues from October 1727 to January 1728; another publication of the same name had six issues in March 1750.
The current publication, named after Steele's periodical, was introduced on 3 July 1901 by Clement Shorter, publisher of The Sphere. For some time a weekly publication, it had a subtitle varying on "an illustrated journal of society and the drama" It contained news and pictures of high society balls, charity events, race meetings, shooting parties, fashion and gossip, with cartoons by "The Tout" and H. M. Bateman.
In 1940, it absorbed The Bystander, creating a publication called The Tatler and Bystander  . In 1961, Illustrated Newspapers, which published Tatler, The Sphere, and The Illustrated London News, was bought by Roy Thomson. In 1965, Tatler was rebranded London Life. In 1968, it was bought by Guy Wayte's Illustrated County Magazine group and the Tatler name restored. Wayte's group had a number of county magazines in the style of Tatler, each of which mixed the same syndicated content with county-specific local content. Wayte, "a moustachioed playboy of a conman" was convicted of fraud in 1980 for inflating the Tatler's circulation figures from 15,000 to 49,000.
The magazine was sold and relaunched as a monthly magazine in 1977, called Tatler & Bystander till 1982. Tina Brown, editor 1979–83, created a vibrant and youthful Tatler and is credited with putting the edge, the irony and the wit back into what was then an almost moribund social title. She referred to it as an upper class comic and by increasing its influence and circulation made it an interesting enough operation for the then owner, Gary Bogard, to sell to the Publishers Condé Nast. She was subsequently airlifted to New York to another Condé Nast title, Vanity Fair.
Several editors later and a looming recession and the magazine was once again ailing and Jane Procter was brought in to re-invent the title for the 1990s. With a sound appreciation of the times – the need for bite not bitch – plus intriguing, newsworthy and gently satirical content, she succeeded in making Tatler a glamorous must-read way beyond its previous social remit. The circulation tripled to over 90,000 – its highest ever figure, although this figure was exceeded five years later by Geordie Greig. The magazine created various supplements including The Travel and Restaurant Guides, the often referred to and closely watched Most Invited and The Little Black Book lists, and the hugely popular parties that accompanied them. Kate Reardon was made editor in 2011. She was previously a fashion assistant on American Vogue and then, aged 21, became the youngest ever fashion director of Tatler. "Everyone loves new Tatler editor Kate Reardon". 21 December 2010.
One of Tatler's most talked about annual features is The Little Black Book. A compilation of the 100 "most eligible" below-thirty-somethings in London.
|Edward Peter Huskinson||1908–40||Killed in 1941 by a train at Savernake[disambiguation needed] station.|
|Reginald Stewart Hooper||1940–45||Died in office. Previously editor of The Bystander from 1932.|
|Col. Sean Fielding||1946–54||later of the Daily Express|
|Lt-Col. Philip Youngman-Carter||1954–57||earlier worked for Fielding as editor of Soldier|
|Mark Boxer||1965||Officially "editorial director" of London Life. He was also the Times political cartoonist and creator of the Sunday Times magazine|
|Leslie Field||1978–||The first woman, and only American, editor.|
|Mark Boxer||1983–88||Second term; retired just before his death from brain cancer.|
|Geordie Greig||1999–2009||resigned to become editor of the Evening Standard|
|Catherine Ostler||2009–2011||Previously editor of the Evening Standard's ES magazine, resigned December 2010.|
|Kate Reardon||2011-||Previously contributing editor of Vanity Fair and fashion editor of Tatler before that. Also a columnist for the Daily Mail and The Times.|
There are also 14 Tatlers in Asia – Hong Kong Tatler (launched 1977), Singapore Tatler (1982), Malaysia Tatler (1989), Thailand Tatler (1991), Indonesia Tatler (2000), Philippine Tatler (2001), Beijing Tatler, Shanghai Tatler (both 2001), Macau Tatler, Taiwan Tatler (2008), Chongqing Tatler (2010), Jiangsu Tatler (2010), Sichuan Tatler (2010) and Zhejiang Tatler (2010). The Asian Tatlers are now owned by the Swiss-based Edipresse Group.
Other magazines named Tatler have no connection to the London magazine or Condé Nast, although their content is a similar mix of fashion and local high-society news.
The Irish Tatler was founded by H. Crawford Hartnell in 1890 as The Lady of the House, and later renamed Irish Sketch and Irish Tatler and Sketch. Noelle Campbell Sharp renamed it IT in 1979. She sold it to Robert Maxwell in 1989; Smurfit publications bought it after Maxwell's death. It is now Irish Tatler.
Ulster Tatler has been published in Belfast since 1966.
The New York Tatler Social Digest merged in 1929 with the American Sketch to give Tatler and American Sketch. John S. Schem closed the magazine in 1933 after legal trouble arising from its grading of New York débutantes, on a scale running "A", "B", "C", "D", and "E–Z".
The Tatler is the name of the print and online newspaper for Lloyd Memorial High School in Erlanger, Kentucky.
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