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Personal.” His windows commanded a charming nesday a pig will be turned loose, and he that and extensive view. He writes picturesquely :- takes it up by the tail and throws it over his head “Before me palatial Windsor is seen rising proudly shall have it. To pay twopence entrance, and no in the distance. The spire of Harrow, like a burial less than twelve to enter. On Thursday, a match obelisk, ascending in another direction, brings will be run by two men, a hundred yards, in two before the glass of memory eminent names with sacks, for a large sum. And to encourage the which it is associated— Parr, Byron, Peel, and sport, the landlord of the inn will give a pair of others, no longer of the quick, but the dead. The gloves, to be run for by six men, the winner to hills of Surrey southward blend their faint grey have them. And on Friday, a hat, value ten outline with the remoter heaven. The middle shillings, will be run for by men twelve times landscape slumbers in beauty ; clouds roll heavily round the green; to pay one shilling entrance; no and sluggishly along, with here and there a break less than four to start. As many as will may enter, permitting the glory of the superior region to shine and the second man to have all the money above obliquely through, in strong contrast to the shadowy | four.” face of things beneath.”
This, doubtless, was the locale of the scenes To the west of Frognal there is some rising mentioned in the public prints of June, 1786:ground, which the late Mr. Sheffield Neave laid “On Whit Tuesday was celebrated, near Hendon, out for the erection of about twelve handsome in Middlesex, a burlesque imitation of the Olympic houses, called Oak Hill Park. One of these has Games. One prize was a gold-laced hat, to be been frequently occupied during the summer grinned for by six candidates, who were placed on months by Miss Florence Nightingale. Near the a platform with horses' collars to grin through. entrance of this park is a house which was occu- Over their heads was written 'detur tetriori'—' The pied for many years as the Sailors' Orphan Girls' ugliest grinner shall be the winner.' Each party Home, before the transfer of that institution to its had to grin for five minutes by himself, and then new buildings between Church Row and Greenhill, all the other candidates joined in a grand chorus and Prince Arthur's Road. To the north of of distortion. The prize was carried by a porter Frognal is the Upper Terrace, which screens this to a vinegar-merchant, though he was accused by portion of Hampstead from the bleak winds that his competitors of foul play, for rinsing his mouth blow across the Heath. In this terrace a house with verjuice. The sports were concluded by a known as the “Priory" was the residence of the hog with his tail shaved and soaped being let loose eminent sculptor and Royal Academician, Mr. J. among some ten or twelve peasants, any one of H. Foley. In another house in this terrace lived whom that could seize him by the queue and throw Mr. Magrath, one of the founders, and during its him across his own shoulders was to keep him as a earlier years the secretary, of the Athenæum prize. The animal, after running for some miles Club.
about the neighbourhood of the Heath, so tired his Half a mile westward, beyond Frognal, lies West pursuers, that they at last gave up the chase in End, a group of houses surrounding an open despair. We are told that on this occasion a space which is still a village green. This used prodigious concourse of people attended, among to be the scene of a fair held annually in July ; whom were the Tripoline Ambassador, and several but the fair was suppressed about the year 1820 other persons of distinction and quality.” on account of the disorderly conduct of its fre- The Rev. Mr. Richardson, in his amusing quenters. There is extant in the British Museum “ Recollections," states that as lately as 1819 the a curious handbill, dated 1708, and entitled “The fair was attended by about two hundred “roughs” Hampstead Fair Rambler; or, The World's Going from London, who assaulted the men and the quite Mad. To the tune of ‘Brother Soldier, dost women with brutal violence, cutting their clothes hear of the News ?' London, printed for J. Bland, from their backs. The Hampstead magistrates near Holborn, 1708.” From this it is clear that, were obliged to call the aid of special constables in like most rural and suburban fairs, it was remark order to suppress the riot. This riot, however, able chiefly for its swings, roundabouts, penny had one good effect, as it helped to pave the way trumpets, spiced gingerbread, and halfpenny rattles. for the introduction of the new police by Sir Occasionally, however, its proceedings were varied; Robert Peel. There is a tradition that the last under date July 2, 1744, we read : “This is to Maypole in the neighbourhood stood on this green. give notice that the Fair will be kept on Wednes- A good sketch of a dance round a country Mayday, Thursday, and Friday next, in a pleasant, pole will be found in Hone's “Every-Day Book," shady walk, in the middle of the town. On Wed under “May-day.”
eens thief of dise other of five
est End, for the moscecond and third-rate 22.000; and at
West End, for the most part, lies low, and population had grown to 12,000. Ten years later the houses are but poor second and third-rate it had increased to 19,000; in 1865 it had reached cottages; and there is a public-house bearing the 22,000; and at the present time (1877) its numbers sign of the “Cock and Hoop.” Here is a small | may be estimated at about 40,000. Gothic structure, forming at once a village school On more than one occasion, when silly prophets and a chapel of ease for the parish.
and astrologers have alarmed the inhabitants of A new cemetery for the parish of Hampstead London by rumours of approaching earthquakes, was formed on the north of West End in 1876; it and tides that should swallow up its citizens, the covers twenty acres of ground, and is picturesquely high ground of Hampstead and Highgate has laid out; and close by is a reservoir belonging to afforded to the crowds in their alarm a place of the Grand Junction Waterworks Company. refuge and safety. An amusing description of, at
A little further on the road to Hendon is an all events, two such instances will be found in outlying district of Hampstead parish, known as Dr. Mackay's “Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Child's Hill, consisting almost wholly of cottages, Delusions,” in the chapter devoted to the subject dotted irregularly around two or three cross-roads. of “Modern Prophecies.” It may sound not a Here a small district church was erected about the little strange when we tell our readers that one of year 1850; it is a Gothic edifice, consisting of a these unreasoning panics occurred so lately as the nave and chancel, with a small bell-turret. The first year of the reign of George III. It is only road, here branching off to the right, will take the fair to add that a slight shock of an earthquake tourist through a pleasant lane to the north-west had been felt in London a month before, but so corner of the Heath, where the gorse and furze slight, that it did no harm, beyond throwing down bloom in all their native beauty. Following this one or two tottering stacks of chimneys. road, and leaving on his right Telegraph Hill—the Apropos of the gradual extension of the limits of site of a semaphore half a century ago–he will the metropolis, of which we have already more find himself once more at the back of “ Jack than once had occasion to speak, we cannot do Straw's Castle,” whence a short walk will take him better, in concluding this part of our perambulaback into the centre of Hampstead.
tions, than to quote the following lines of Mr. Having thus far made our survey of the parish | Thomas Miller, in his “Picturesque Sketches of of Hampstead, little remains to be said. The London.” “Twelve miles,” he writes, “would place, as we have endeavoured to show, has long scarcely exceed the almost unbroken line of buildbeen considered healthy and salubrious, and, there- | ings which extends from Blackwall to far beyond fore, has been the frequent resort of invalids for Chelsea, where street still joins to street in appathe benefit of the air. From the annual report rently endless succession. And yet all around of the medical officer of health for Hampstead, this vast city lie miles of the most beautiful rural issued in 1876, we learn that the death-rate for the scenery. Highgate, Hornsey, and Hampstead, on previous twelve months had been only 151 in a the Middlesex side, hilly, wooded, and watered; thousand-a very low rate of mortality, it must be and facing these, the vast range called the Hog's owned, though not quite so low as it stood in the Back, which hems in the far-distant Surrey side preceding year, when Dr. Lord gave to the parish, from beyond Norwood ; . . . . whilst the valleys on in allusion to its lofty and salubrious situation, the both sides of the river are filled with pleasant fields, name of Mons Salutis.
parks, and green, winding lanes. Were London to The parish extends over upwards of 2,000 acres extend five miles further every way, it would still of land, of which, as we have stated, between 200 be hemmed in with some of the most beautiful and 300 are waste. In 1801 there were 691 in country scenery in England; and the lowness of habited houses in the parish, and the number of the fares, together with the rapidity of railway families occupying them was 953 ; and the total travelling, would render as nothing this extent of number of the inhabitants was 4,343. In 1851 the streets.”
"Oppidum rure commistum.”—Tacitus. Appearance of Haggerston in the Last Century-Cambridge Heath-Nova Scotia Gardens-Columbia Buildings-Columbia Market-The "New"
Burial-ground of St. Leonard's, Shoreditch-Halley, the Astronomer-Nichols Square--St. Chad's Church-St. Mary's Church-Brunswick Square Almshouses-Mutton Lane–The "Cat and Mutton " Tavern-London Fields—The Hackney Bun-house-Goldsm ths' Row-The Goldsmiths' Almshouses—The North-Eastern Hospital for Sick Children-The Orphan Asylum, Bonner's Road-City of London Hospital for Diseases of the Chest-Bonner's Hall-Bishop Bonner's Fields-Botany Bay_Victoria Park - The East-enders' Fondness for FlowersAmateur Yachting—The Jews' Burial-ground— The French Hospital—The Church of St. John of Jerusalem-The Etymology of “Hackney."
HAVING in the preceding chapters devoted our Hackney Road, which divides these last-named attention to the north-western part of London, we districts from that of Haggerston. now take up fresh ground, and begin anew with In Rocque's map of Hackney, published in the north-eastern districts, which, although not so 1745, the Hackney Road appears entirely unbuilt extensive as the ground over which we have tra- upon, with the exception of a couple of houses at velled since starting from Belgravia and Pimlico, the corner of the roadway leading to the hamlet will doubtless be found to contain much that may of Agostone (now Haggerston), and a small cluster prove interesting to the general reader.
of dwellings and a roadside public-house called the Taking our stand close by the north-easternmost “Nag's Head," at the bottom of a narrow thoroughpoint described in the previous parts of this work fare called Mutton Lane, which passes through the
-namely, by St. Leonard's Church, Shoreditch* - | fields in the north, by the front of the Goldsmiths' we have on our left the districts of Hoxton and Almshouses, of which we shall have more to say Islington, and on our right that of Bethnal Green. presently. The greater part of the lane itself is Stretching away in an easterly direction is the now called Goldsmiths' Row. At the eastern
end of the Hackney Road, Cambridge Heath is • See Vol. II., p. 195.
marked as a large triangular space, the apex of
of the parish o b
and Market, the tall roots or
cows terminate in elab
and a few of the now occupied / withic of the roof, and the fing the louvre
which terminates close by Coats's Lane, Bethnal The chief feature of the building, which occupies Green. From Cambridge Heath the roadway the whole of the eastern side of the quadrangle, trends to the north by Mare (or Meare) Street, is a large and lofty Gothic hall. The exterior on the east side of London Fields, forming the of this edifice is particularly rich in ornamentation. principal roadway through the town of Hackney. The basement is lighted by a range of small
At a short distance eastward of Shoreditch pointed windows, above which is an ornamental Church, on our right hand as we pass along the string-course. The hall itself, which is reached Hackney Road, and therefore within the limits by a short flight of steps, is lighted by seven large of the parish of Bethnal Green, the eye is struck pointed windows on each side, with others still by Columbia Square and Market, the tall roofs of larger at either end; the buttresses between the which rise against the sky, reminding us of the windows terminate in elaborate pinnacles; in fact, Houses of Parliament, though on a smaller scale. the whole building, including the louvre in the They were erected in 1869, from the designs of centre of the roof, and the tall clock-tower, bristles Mr. H. A. Darbishire. On the site now occupied with crocketed pinnacles and foliated finials. by the market and a few of the surrounding Whether the building is too ornate, or whatever buildings existed till very recently a foul colony may be the cause, it is not for us to say; but, at of squalor and misery, consisting of wretched low all events, as a place of business in the way detenements-or, more correctly speaking, hovels signed by its noble founder, Columbia Market from and still more wretched inhabitants; the locality the very first has proved a comparative failure. bore the name of Nova Scotia Gardens, and it Scarcely any of the shops which open upon the abounded in pestilential drains and dust heaps. arcades are occupied ; indeed, very little in the Nova Scotia Gardens and its surroundings, in fact, way of business is ever carried on there. An were formerly one of the most poverty-stricken attempt was at one time made to convert it into a quarters of the whole East-end, and, doubtless, fish-market, in order to relieve the run upon Bilone of those spots to which Charles Dickens refers lingsgate; but even this, too, proved ineffectual; in his “Uncommercial Traveller," when he draws and in April, 1877, it was re-opened as a market attention to the fact that while the poor rate in for American meat. St. George's, Hanover Square, stands at seven- On the opposite side of the Hackney Road, pence in the pound, there are districts in these facing the entrance to Columbia Square, is the eastern slums where it stands at five shillings and “new” burial-ground belonging to St. Leonard's, sixpence. By the benevolence of Lady Burdett- Shoreditch. This has been long disused, and Coutts, whose charity and will to benefit the poor within the last few years the grave-mounds have of London we have already had occasion to remark been levelled, the place being made to serve as a upon in our account of Highgate,* the whole of recreation-ground for the children in the neighthis seat of foulness and disease was cleared away, bourhood. and in its place four large blocks of model lodging Haggerston, on our left, at one time an outlying houses, forming a square called Columbia Buildings, hamlet in the parish of St. Leonard's, Shoreditch, have been erected, and are occupied by an orderly is mentioned in “Domesday Book" under the name and well-behaved section of the working-class popu- of Hergotestane. It is now an extensive district, lation of the district. Contiguous to the square stretching away from the north side of the Hackney stands the Market, which was also established by Road to Dalston, and from the Kingsland Road the same benevolent lady for the convenience of on the west to London Fields, and is crowded the neighbourhood. The market covers about two with factories and with the residences of the acres of ground, and the buildings, which are prin- artisan class. In the seventeenth century the cipally constructed of brick, with stone dressings, hanılet contained only a few houses, designed for are very elaborately ornamented with carved work, country retirement. The celebrated astronomer, in the shape of medallions and armorial bearings. Halley, was born and resided here, though the The market-place forms three sides of a square, house which he occupied is not known. He died having an arcade opening on the central area in 1741, and lies buried in the churchyard of Lee, through Gothic arches. Tables for the various Kent. commodities which may be brought to the market | Nichols Square, which we pass on our left, keeps for sale, occupy the centre of the quadrangular in remembrance the name of Mr. John Nichols, space, and are partly covered in by a light roof. F.S.A., the well-known antiquary, and “the Dug
dale of the present age.” Mr. Nichols was the * See ante, p. 416.
author of “ Literary Anecdotes of the Eighteenth
Hackney Road. )
Century," the “History of the County of Leicester," The open space in front, known as London " Progresses and Processions of Queen Elizabeth," Fields, and extending over several acres, has within &c., and was many years editor of the Gentleman's the last few years been taken in hand by the Magazine in its palmy days. He was a native of Board of Works, and has had its surface levelled, the adjoining parish of Islington, where he chiefly and, where necessary, sown with fresh grass; it is resided. He died in 1826, and was succeeded crossed by numerous paths, and in part planted in his property in this neighbourhood by his son, with trees. The spot has been for ages the resort Mr. John Bowyer Nichols, who shortly afterwards of the dwellers in the neighbourhood for the purbecame proprietor of the Gentleman's Magazine. ! poses of recreation, and from the neighbouring This gentleman died at Ealing in 1863. The tavern and its associations had in process of time Messrs. Nichols have been for many years printers become better known as the “Cat and Mutton" to the two Houses of Parliament.
fields. In the north-east corner of Nichols Square Strype tells us that the Bishop of London held stands St. Chad's Church. It is a large red-brick demesnes in Hackney as far back as the time of edifice, with an apsidal eastern end, and comprises Edward I., in the nineteenth year of whose reign nave and aisles, transepts, and chancel, with a (A.D. 1290) the right of free warren in this parish dwarf spire at the intersection. The transepts are was granted to Richard de Gravesend, who then lighted by large wheel windows, and the body of held the see ; and from an “inquisition” in the . the fabric by narrow Gothic pointed windows. same reign, it is clear that a yeoman named The church was built about 1865. It is noted for Duckett held lands here under the bishop, who in its “High Church” or ritualistic services. his turn held them from the king as his superior.
St. Mary's Church, in Brunswick Square, close There are, or were, several manors within the by, was built in 1830, but considerably altered in parish of Hackney; the principal of these is 1862. It is of Gothic architecture, and, externally, termed the “ Lord's-hold," and was attached to the is chiefly remarkable for the lofty tower at the bishopric of London until the year 1550, when it western end. The organ, which was originally in was surrendered to the Crown by Bishop Ridley, St. George's Chapel, Windsor, was built by Father whose memory is kept up in connection with this Smith. It has been within the last few years locality by the name of Ridley, given to a roadway much enlarged by Willis.
on the north side of Dalston Lane. The parish of Haggerston contains a Church in the short thoroughfare connecting the London Association, of which all the communicants are Fields with Goldsmiths' Row there is a shop which members, and each member is required to do some in bygone times was almost as much noted for its work for the cause of the Established Church. “Hackney Buns” as the well-known Bun-house at
On the west side of Brunswick Square is a row Chelsea was for that particular kind of pastry about of almshouses, of neat and picturesque appear which we have already spoken.* ance. These almshouses, belonging to the parish Goldsmiths' Row extends from the canal bridge, of Shoreditch, were founded in 1836, and stood near the south-west corner of London Fields, to the originally on the south side of the Hackney Road, Hackney Road. The thoroughfare is very narrow, but were rebuilt on this site on the demolition of and in parts consists of very inferior shops and the houses, in order to make room for the ap- tenements. On the west side, about half way down, proaches to Columbia Square, &c.
stand a row of almshouses belonging to the GoldPassing eastward, by the Imperial Gas-works, smiths' Company. They were founded in 1703, we arrive at Goldsmiths' Row, which, as stated by a Mr. Morrell, for six poor almsmen belonging above, was formerly known as Mutton Lane, a to the above-mentioned company, each of whom name still given to that part of the thoroughfare has a pension of £21 per annum. On the oppobordering upon the southern extremity of London site side, near the corner of the Hackney Road, Fields, where stands a noted public-house, rejoicing are some new buildings in connection with the in the sign of the “ Cat and Mutton.” Affixed to North-Eastern Hospital for Sick Children, which the house are two sign-boards, which are rather was founded in 1867, in the lackney Road. The curious ; they have upon them the following new buildings were inaugurated a few years ago by doggrel lines :
the Princess Louise. The institution was estab“ Pray, Puss, do not tare,
lished, as its name implies, for the purpose of affordBecause the mutton is so rare."
ing medical relief to sick children ; and about “ Pray, Puss, do not claw, Because the Mutton is so raw."
. * See ante, p. 69.