On November 2, 1822, The Mirror of Literature, Amusement and Instruction, began publication in London. This 16-page weekly magazine published by John Limbird sold for twopenny per copy, and became one of the first mass circulation magazines. With one woodcut per issue it was also one of the first illustrated magazines. It continued publication until 1850, and has been characterized as "the first long-lived cheap periodical" in England.
In his pamphlet entitled Practical Observations upon the Education of the People Addressed to the Working Classes and their Employers (1825) Henry Brougham commented upon The Mirror as follows:
"The Mirror, a weekly publication, containing much matter of harmless and even improving amusement, selected with very considerable taste, has besides, in almost every number, information of a most instructive kind. Its great circulation must prove highly beneficial to the bulk of the people. I understand, that of some parts upwards of 80,000 were printed, and there can be no doubt that the entertainment which is derived from reading the lighter essays, may be made the means of conveying knowledge of a more solid and useful description— a consideration which I trust the conductor will always bear in mind."