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very footmarks of the Roman soldier;" whilst one of our most thronged thoroughfares can be identified as a British trackway and Roman street. How often upon such sites are unearthed relics of the civilization and luxury of our conquerors and colonists.

The records of the Amusements of the People, and their Sights and Shows, in all ages, are richly stored with Curiosities : from the period when Smithfield was an Anglo-Norman race-course, to the waning of the last of the City pageants, Lord Mayor's Show. Old Poets and Dramatists, Travellers and Diarists, have left us pictures-in-little of the sports and pastimes, the follies and nine-day-wonders, of the “Londiners.” Fitzstephen and Hentzner, Stow and Strype, Howell and Aubrey, Evelyn and Pepys, Ned Ward and Tom Brown, Gay and Walpole, have bequeathed us many "trivial fond records” of this anecdotic class. Again, how many amusing eccentricities are recorded in the lives of the Alchemists, Astrologers, and Antiquaries of Old London!

Such are the leading Archäological features which, interwoven with the Modern History and Present Condition of the Metropolis, form the staple of the present volume. In the intermediate changes have disappeared many old London landmarks, which it has been my special object to describe :

“Praising what is lost, Makes the remembrance dear.”



Dec. 1867.




T ITTLE need be said to bespeak the interest of readers in the staple of U the present work—the Notable Things in the History of London through its Nineteen Centuries of accredited antiquity. Still, I am anxious to offer a few words upon the origin and growth of this volume; and the means by which I have striven to render it as complete as the extent and ever-varying nature of the subject will allow.

Twenty-seven years since in 1828), I wrote in the parlour of the house No. 3 Charing Cross (then a publisher's), the title and plan of a volume to be called “ CURIOSITIES of London;" and the work here submitted to the public is the realization of that design. I then proposed to note the most memorable points in the annals of the Metropolis, and to describe its most remarkable objects of interest, from the earliest period to my own time,-for the Present has its Curiosities as well as the Past. Since the commencement of this design in 1828,-precisely midway in my lifetime,—I have scarcely for a day or hour lost sight of the subject; but, through a long course of literary activity, have endeavoured to profit by every fair opportunity to increase my stock of materials; and by constant comparison, “not to take for granted, but to weigh and consider,” in turning such materials to account. In this labour I have been greatly aided by the communications of obliging friends, as well as by my own recollection of nearly Fifty Years' Changes in the aspects of “enlarged and still increasing London.”

“ Thinking how different a place London is to different people,” I have, in this volume, studied many tastes; but its leading characteristics will

be found to consist in what Addison's Freeholder calls “the Curiosities of this great Town.” Their bibliographical illustration, by quotations from Old Poets and Dramatists, Travellers and Diarists, presents a sort of literary chequer-work of an entertaining and anecdotic character; and these historic glimpses are brought into vivid contrast with the Social Statistics and other Great Facts of the London of to-day.

The plan of the book is in the main alphabetical. Districts and localities are, however, topographically described; the arrangement of streets being generally in a sub-alphabet. The Birth places, Abodes, and Burialplaces of Eminent Persons—so many sites of charmed ground—are specially noted, as are existing Antiquities, Collections of Rare Art and Virtu, Public Buildings, Royal and Noble Residences, Great Institutions, . Public Amusements and Exhibitions, and Industrial Establishments ; so to chronicle the renown of Modern as well as Ancient London. The articles describing the Churches, Exchanges, Halls, Libraries and Museums, Palaces and Parks, Parliament Houses, Roman Remains, and the Tower of London, are, from their importance, most copious in their details.

The utmost pains has been taken to verify dates, names, and circumstances; and it is trusted that no errors may be found in addition to those noted at the close of the volume, with the changes in the Metropolis during the progress of the printing of the work. The reader, it is hoped, will regard these inaccuracies with indulgence, when the immense number of facts sought to be recorded in this volume is considered. Lastly, it has been my aim to render the Curiosities useful as well as entertaining; and with that view are introduced several matters of practical information for Londoners as well as visitors.



Jun. 16, 1855.


During the printing of the present Work (nearly 900 pages), several changes bave been made in the Metropolis-its material aspect, as well as in circumstances affecting its government, &c.; among which are the following, entitled to special note :

Page 36.-BUNHILL-FIELDS BURIAL-GROUND. By Act of Parliament, the management of this property has been transferred by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners to the Corporation of London, who are to convert the ground into a public garden; • the Commissioners reserving the right to resume possession of the estate should their conditions be ineffectually performed.

Page 37.--Bartholomew's (S.) Hospital. The question as to the election of the Presidents of the four great City Hospitals, stated at p. 37 to be then sub judice, was, in November, 1866, decided by the Court of Queen's Bench in favour of the Hospitals, the Governors of which have free choice in the election of their Presidents (see p. 436). His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales has since been elected President of S. Bartholomew's.

Page 41.- Pantheon Bazaar was closed in 1867, and the building converted into a wine depôt. (See p. 640.)

Page 49.—Bermondsey Priory. See Annales Monastici, vol. iii., edited by H. R. Luard, 1866.

Page 74.—Top line, for Jolliffe Banks, read Jolliffe and Banks.

Pone 80.—The Speaker's State Coach is now kept at the Speaker's stables, Millbank.

Lage 85.- Charterhouse site and buildings are to be transferred to Merchant Taylors ; and Charterhouse to be removed into the country.

Page 92.- The old print of the “ Bunn House at Chelsey,” measures 52 by 21 inches.

Page 144.— Church of S. Alban the Martyr : the choir entirely for the parishioners.
Page 153.-S. Benet's Church, Gracechurch-street, has been taken down.
Page 238.–For Peckburn read Pickburn

Page 284.-NELSON COLUMN. The bronze lions, by Landseer, on the pedestal, are described at p. 759.

Page 287.- COMMON COUNCIL. For “ the Court held,” read the Court hold.
Page 302.—For “ Britton and Bailey," read Britton and Brayley.
Page 312.—DOCTORS' COMMONS. The buildings were taken down in 1867.

Page 350.-FLEET-STREET. No. 50, (not 13,) formerly the Amicable Life As. surance Office, is now the Office of the Norwich Union Society.

Page 430.- Middle Row has been taken down.
Page 469.-GRAY'S INN. For “Corner-court," read Coney-court.

Page 541.-MANSION HOUSE. At the close of the International Exhibition of 1851, the Corporation of London, with a view of encouraging the growth of Art in this country, voted the sum of 10,0001. to be expended in Statuary for the Egyptian Hall; and the Statues now in the Hall were ordered.

Page 608.-STRAND MUSIC HALL. For “Old,” read New Exeter 'Change.
Page 716.—Spitalfields. For “Lottesworth,” read Lolesworth.


ADELPHI, THE. SERIES of streets in the rear of the houses on the south side of the Strand, A reaching east and west from Adam-street to Buckingham-street, and facing the Thames on the south-a grand commencement of the architectural embankment of the river, in 1768. It is named Adelphi (adenoos, brother) from its architects, the four brotbers Adam, who built vast arches over the court-yard of old Durham House, and upon these erected, level with the Strand, Adam-street, leading to John, Robert, James, and William-streets; the noble line of houses fronting the Thames being the Adelphi-terrace. The view from this spot is almost unrivalled in the metropolis for variety and architectural beauty : from Waterloo Bridge on the east, with the majestic dome and picturesque campanili of St. Panl's, to Westminster Bridge on the west, above which rise the towers of Lambeth Palace and Westminster Abbey; the massive entrance and lofty clock-tower, and pinnacled and bristling roofs of the Houses of Paz. liament : beneath lies the river, spanned with manifold bridges. The prospect is, however, partially disfigured with huge and shapeless railway buildings.

In passing through Parliament the Bill for the Embankment of part of the Thames adjoining Durlam-yard, a violent contest arose between the City and the Court. The Lord Mayor, as Conservator of the river, considering the rights of the citizens exposed to encroachment, they were heard by counsel in Parliament. They produced a grant of Henry VII. of all the soil and bed of the river, from Staines Bridge to a place in Kent, near the Medway; and showed a lease granted by them, sixtysix years before this period, of a nook of the river at Vauxhall, under which they still continued to Terrire rent. On the other side a charter of Charles II. to the City was produced, in which he reserved the bed of the river; and it was contended that the City, by receiving the latter grant, abandoned the former; that the charter of Henry VII. extended only to the soil of the river within the City and cuborbs. The lease of Vauxhall was said to be a mere encroachment, and the right of the City was utterly denied. These arguments prevailed: the Bill passed both Houses: and the magnificent pile of ba ldings called the Adelphi was erected on the site. The brothers Adam were chosen the Court architeets, through the influence of the Earl of Bute, and did not escape the satire of the day :

“ Four Scotchmen, by the name of Adam,
Who keep their coaches and their madam,"
Quoth John, in sulky mood, to Thomas,
" Have stole the very river from us."

* Foundling Hospital for Wit, vol. iv. In the centre house of the Terrace, No. 4, David Garrick lived from 1772 till his death, Jan. 20, 1779 : the ceiling of the front drawing-room was painted by Antonio Zncchi, A.R.A.; the white marble chimney-piece cost 300l. Garrick died in the back drawing-room; and here his remains lay in state, previous to their interment in Westminster Abbey, Feb. 1. Johnson says: “His death eclipsed the gaiety of nations ;" but Walpole, “ Garrick is dead; not a public loss; for he had quitted the stage." There were not at Lord Chatham's funeral half the noble coaches that attended Garrick's; Burke was one of the mourners, and came expressly from Portsmouth to follow the great actor's remains; and Lord Ossory was one of the pall-bearers. Walpole writes to the Countess of Ossory :

“ Yes, madam, I do think the pomp of Garrick's funeral perfectly ridiculous. It is confounding the in nepre space between pleasing talents and national services. What distinctions remain for a patriot hero, when the most solcmn have been showered on a player ? . . . Shakspere, who torote when Burleigh counselled and Nottingham fought, was not rewarded and honoured like Garrick, who only acted," - Letter, Feb. 1, 1779.

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