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Six Acts

Following the Peterloo massacre of August 16, 1819, the UK government acted to prevent any future disturbances by the introduction of new legislation, the so-called Six Acts which labelled any meeting for radical reform as "an overt act of treasonable conspiracy".

Parliament had reconvened on November 23 and the new acts were intorduced by the Home Secretary Lord Sidmouth. By December 30 the legislation was passed, despite the opposition of the Whigs. The acts were aimed at gagging radical newspapers, preventing large meetings, and reducing what the government saw as the possibility of armed insurrection.

The acts were: