James Hardy Vaux (1782-1840) was a British convict and author. He attended a boarding school in Stockwell. In 1789 he volunteered in the Navy and served in the frigate Astraea in the North Sea. After sometime he abandoned it and returned back to London. After working for an attorney in Bury St. Edmunds and for a Covent Garden clothing firm he was arrested in 1800 for pilfering from the latter. He escaped from the sentence and in 1801 he reached Sydney and worked as a clerk at the Hawkesbury. In 1811 he was sentenced to twelve months hard labour for receiving property stolen from the judge-advocate Ellis Bent. During that period Vaux compiled his slang dictionary A New and Comprehensive Vocabulary of the Flash Language (1812), probably the first dictionary compiled in Australia, which gives a valuable glossary of London slang. He later wrote Memoirs of the First Thirty-Two Years of the Life of James Hardy Vaux, A Swindler and Pickpocket; Now Transported for the Second Time, and For Life to New South Wales (c1814).
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