^viD

L^-.

.

nJeuiiL

MEDIEVAL LONDON
By

WILLIAM BENHAM,
Rector of St. Ed}nund the King,

D.D., F.S.A.

Lombard Street, and Honorary Canon of Canterbury,

AND

CHARLES WELCH,
Librarian
to the

F.S.A.

Corporation of London.

LONDON
SEELEY AND CO. LIMITED, GREAT RUSSELL STREET NEW YORK THE MACMILLAN COMPANY
:

1901

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
London Bridge and the Tower.
Charles, duke of Orleans.
British

From a Manuscript of Museum, i6 F.
ii.

the

Poems of
Frontispiece

A Tournament.
Saintre.

From a Manuscript British Museum, Nero D.

of the
ix.

Romance of

the Sire Jehan de

P. lo

Richard

II.

riding out of London to the

War

in Ireland.
Harl, 4380.

From
P.

a

Manuscript of Froissart's Chronicles.

British

Museum,

18

Richard II. delivered by Bolingbroke to the Citizens of London. British From a Manuscript of the Metrical History of Richard II. P. 34 Museum, Harl. 1319.

The Funeral
British

Richard II, From Museum, Harl. 4380.
of

a Manuscript of Froissart's Chronicles.

P. 74

The

London from Westminster TO Greenwich, by Antonie van den Wyngaerde. Bodleian Library,
Principal Parts of a Pen

Drawing

of

Oxford.

Of this Flemish artist very little is known. There exists a rescript of Philip II. addressed to Margaret of Parma, regent of the Low Countries, giving him permission to remove with his goods and to settle in Spain, from which it is supposed that he was in the King's service. The drawing was made, probably for Philip, before the
It is unfinished, blank spaces being left for of the spire of St. Paul's in 1561. There are also memoranda on the Whitehall, Bridewell, and some other buildings. drawing which show that the artist intended to colour it, leaden roofs, for instance, The Bodleian Library possesses forty-seven other drawings of being marked " blau." one of Whitehall, intended no doubt to fill his, two of which are here reproduced space in the large view, and one of Greenwich Palace from the Observatory the blank
fall
:

which is coloured in a simple manner. It is not improbable that Wyngaerde A copy of the drawing of London, much left England on the death of Queen Mary. altered and embellished, was made and engraved by N. Whittock in 1849.
Hill,

WESTMINSTER TO CHARING CROSS.

THE STRAND.
ST.

PAUL'S cathedral.

LONDON BRIDGE. billingsgate and ST. MARY SPITAL. the tower. greenwich palace, from the thames. greenwich palace, from the observatory the PALACE OF WHITEHALL.

hill.

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
Drawings by John Wykeham Archer.
John
British

Museum.

1808, d. 1864), a water-colour painter, engraver, and antiquary, was employed by another antiquary, Mr. W. Twopeny, more than half a century ago, to make twenty drawings yearly of London antiquities, a work which he Many of the buildings which he drew have since been carried on until his death. The whole collection was acquired for the have undergone restoration. destroyed, or portfolios. A very few of the drawings were British Museum, and fills seventeen etched by Archer for his book entitled Festiges of Old London.
(/a

Wykeham Archer

ROMAN BATH
BASTION

IN

OF

THE STRAND. THE CITY WALL
184I.

1

84 1. IN

THE

CHURCHYARD

OF

ST.

GILES'S,

CRIPPI.EGATE.

THE CRYPT OF GUILDHALL. 1842. THE CRYPT OF ST. MICHAEL'S, ALDGATE. 1841. THE CRYPT OF MERCHANT TAYLORS' HALL. GARDEN HOUSE, CANONBURY, BUILT BY THE LAST PRIOR OF
MEW'S, SMITHFIELD.
1841.

ST.

BARTHOLO-

AUSTIN FRIARS. 1842. A CELL IN THE LOLLARDS' TOWER, LAMBETH. ENTRANCE TO THE LOLLARDS' TOWER. 184I.
1

1841.

THE GUARD ROOM, LAMBETH. 84 1. THE CRYPT OF ST. STEPHEN'S, WESTMINSTER. 1 842. GATEWAY OF THE BLOODY TOWER. 847. FOR RAISING THE PORTCULLIS, TOWER OF LONDON. MACHINERY WARDERS' LODGINGS, TOWER OF LONDON. 1847.
1

1850.

The coloured

Illustrations are printed by

Mr. Edmund Evans

at the

Racquet Court Press.

MEDIEVAL LONDON
CHAPTER
I.

A COMPREHENSIVE SURVEY.

What

" Derivation are the Historical Limits of '^ Medieval London F of "London^' Decay of Ancient London Renewal The Roman City Outlying Districts London Christianised King Alfred's after the English Conquest was Complete

— — Paul's Cathedral— William Supremacy — Gradual Rise London — Plantagenets. — Foundation of days Conqueror's London — London — Rebuilt Henry of — Clement Danes — Watling lU. Westminster Abbey — The Folkmote Ground— Cheapside and Surroundings — The Pageants — The Arches Court — London Wall, Gates and Towers— City Trees— The — Hospitals — Episcopal Religious Houses — Monasteries — Priories —

— —

Its

to

St.

the

in the

the

by

St.

Street

its

the

— Notes of Remarkable Events under — London ^een Elizabeth. Dynasties — Aggas's Map of
Residences
Outskirts
London.^ temp,

Colleges

the Successive

Medieval London
though
it

it

is

a

perfectly distinct and real

subject,

might be

difficult to

give exact dates of beginning and end.

Historical periods glide in, and run their course, and fade
fresh shape.

away or take
some
the days of
the Stuarts.
itself,

Yet we may venture

to approximate, and to say with

confidence that Ancient

King Alfred, and passed

London changed into Mediaeval in into Modern with the accession of

The

Great Fire of 1666 made vast changes not only in the city

but in the surroundings thereof, but modern
a century before that.

London had begun

nearly

London is not mentioned in Caesar's account of Britain, but we know from Tacitus that it existed and was a place of importance. In a lecture of Dean Stanley delivered in Exeter Hall, entitled "The Study of Modern History in London," he follows the etymology accepted in That time, and interprets the name " The City of Ships." his
derivation was disproved
as I

by Dr. Guest, and the meaning now, so far know, universally held by scholars is " The Fortress by the Lake."

2

MEDIEVAL LONDON
" lake," so called, was the river spread out in a wide marsh on
side,
the.

The

Surrey

and the
the

" fortress "

was

a

palisaded
Street

ground round the

neighbourhood of

present
in

Cannon
first

Station.
first

When
wall are

the

Romans took
fortified it

possession

the

half of the

century, they
still

with a tower and a wall.

Parts of the

Roman

standing
stantial

;

most of

it

remained in the days of Mediasval London.

Sub-

fragments of the later wall taken from around Bishopsgate are

preserved in the Guildhall

Museum.

They

include portions of

handsome

Roman

buildings and sculptured ornaments. Evidently some, having fallen

into decay, were in the course of ages used

by mediasval Londoners

for

the repairs of their walls.
furniture,

And

there are further remains of elaborate
civilised life in

and other proofs of high
city

London.
is

But the
a blank.

written
It

history of the

during the

Roman
visits

occupation

was

certainly the largest port in the country, but of written records

there are none.

Traditions there are of

of Apostles and other
city

Christian missionaries,
stating that
it

and one church
site

in

the

has a brass plate

stands on the

of the mother church of London, the
this is a sheer

foundation of King Lucius.
all.

But

myth, King Lucius and
there were Christian

That during those

years of

Roman dominion
all sides.

congregations we
the city were

may

feel

confident, but there are

no proofs.

Beyond

swamps and marshes on

A

dreary tract covered

with reeds and thorns, and formed into an island by a river which came

down from the hills and enclosed it by forking off into the Thames, I myself can occupied by the fair City of Westminster. is now remember when a large part of Belgravia still consisted of fields. A somewhat eccentric Hertfordshire baronet, who seconded the Reform
Bill

of 1832, once brought up a bag fox and a pack of hounds, and
fields.

hunted him through those
to

The swamp

continued

all

the

way

Fulham on
all

the west, and over Finsbury on the north.

Beyond the
forest.

marshes

round rose a region of thick, well-nigh impenetrable

The
the

Romans was followed after a brief interval by English Conquest, and London decayed we may even say fell into
departure of the

utter desolation.

For her greatness had been

entirely

commercial

;

she

had had large trade with the Continent, which was now broken to
She had received her food from ships which came both up and

pieces.

down

the

Thames, but the poor Britons who were fighting

for existence

had no

A COMPREHENSIVE SURVEY
more
to send her.
left

3

The

rich traders

and merchants had no longer any
it

occupation, and

their

luxurious homes to find
deserted.

elsewhere.

And
for

so the once flourishing

London became
a

But when the English Conquest was accomplished, and peace
a

while followed

warfare,

population
the

also

reappeared

in
its

London,
situation.

consisting

of traders
to

who saw
return.

great advantages

of

Prosperity began

merchants.

converted to
his
Sir

London became once more a city ot It was again flourishing when the heathen English were Christianity by Augustine, so much so that in 604 one of
its first

companions, Mellitus, became

bishop, Sebert being then king.

Walter Besant

sees in the identity of the

Cockney

dialect (" lydy " for

lady,
chieflv

&c.) with that of Essex, a proof that the new population were

from the East Saxons.
first

At
which

the

Christianising

of London
flee

seemed to be

a

failure.

Mellitus built a cathedral, but had to
the
king's

before the heathenism into
failure,

sons

relapsed.

The

however,

was

but

temporary, and the Church became altogether triumphant.

The
The

intense

sense of nationality, which has always characterised the English people,

comes out

in

the names given to the
dedicated
to

London
English

churches.
saints,

greater

number of them were
continue to this day.

and the names
endeared

One of
to

these saints

—Botolph—who had
forth
to

himself immensely

the

Londoners, went

N.E. England

and established a great mission there, and there he died.
tower of Boston
shire.

The
in

noble

(=

Botolph's town) preserves his
in love

memory
his

Lincolnbuilt
his

But the Londoners,

and veneration to

memory,

churches bearing his
burial-place
;

name

at all the four gates
still

which led towards

three of

them

remain, and the

name of

the fourth

survives in Botolph's Lane, by Billingsgate.

When

King Alfred had delivered the country from
put forth
It

the

Danish

invaders and restored peace, he

his

energies

to

strengthen

London and

enlarge

its
it

prosperity.

had been

growing almost

uninterruptedly, while

had been subject, now to one of the kingdoms
to

of the Heptarchy,
city of his

now

another.
in

Alfred made

it

really

the chief

dominion.

Winchester

some

respects was held to be the

royal city, but

London became

in fact the capital
city.

of England.

It

was

the richest and the most influential

Under

the Danes, on their


4
second invasion,
it

MEDIAEVAL LONDON
retained
its

influence,

and added

at least

two churches

with Danish names, Olaf and Magnus.
Mediasval London had thus begun, but
its
still

the recorded details of

history for a while are scanty
either.

;

and there are few remains of Saxon

London
burned

The
;

first

cathedral of Mellitus, probably of wood, was

in

961

so

was

its

successor in a great

fire

of 1084.

There

are here and there a few

Saxon churches remaining
and Corhampton
in

in

England, such as
It is

Bradford-on-Avon

in Wilts,

Hants.

not to be

wondered many.

at that there is not

one in London, though there were then

Maurice,

whom

William the Conqueror made Bishop of London,
in

began a new cathedral

1086, of course in the usual
pillars,

Norman

style,

with round arches and heavy
transepts of Winchester.

such as

may

still

be seen in the
it

But two hundred years passed before
in the

was

completed, and as

it

was always the custom

Middle Ages to

carry on building, or to
architecture in

make
a

repairs

and
St.

restorations, in the style of
all

vogue

at the

moment,
composite

Paul's became, like nearly

our English

cathedrals,

building,

exhibiting

not

only

Norman, but Early English and Early Decorated.
enclosed by a wall in which were six gates.
these are preserved in the

This cathedral was
of two of

The names

names of "Paul's Chain" and "St. Paul's Alley."
fully established.

London's importance became more and more

She

had struggled successfully

for her rights against the

Danish King, Cnut.
It

London from
showing
his

the

first

stood high in favour with the Conqueror.

had

not resisted him, and he remembered that, and lost no opportunity of
gratitude.

The

city

had hitherto struggled between adher halcyon days, and

versity and prosperity, but the

Norman brought

from
is

his

time her greatness was assured.

In the Guildhall Charter-room
is

a manuscript beautifully written, six inches by one inch, and this
it

what

contains

:

Charter
" Will'm
ealle
[--a

of

William

I.

to the City of London.
Gosfreg^
portirefan,

kyng

gret Will'm

bisceop and

and

burhwaru binnan Londone, Frencisce and Englisce
kyde eow
J>at

freondlice.
}>e

and

ic

ic

wylle

l>at

get beon eallra

J>CEra

laga weor-Se
l>ast

gyt wasran on Eadwerdes daege kynges.

and

ic

wylle
ic

ask

cyld

beo
I>£et

his faeder

yrfnume.
aenig

asfter

his faederdaege.

and

nelle

geJ>olian

aenig

man eow

wrang beode.

God eow

gehealde."


A COMPREHENSIVE SURVEY
Of which document
portreeve, and
friendly.
all

5

the following

is

the translation

:

" William the king greeteth William the bishop and Godfrey the
the burgesses within

London, French and English,
will

And

I

acquaint you, that

I

that ye be all those laws

worthy, that ye were in King Edward's day.
child be his father's heir, after his father's day.
that any

And I will that And I will not

every
suffer

man do you any wrong.

God

preserve you."

It is a

very intelligible piece of worldly wisdom to have to note, that

he followed this charter up by building " the White Tower," the chief
feature in our imposing fortress, the
1

Tower

of London.

In the year

100, his son,

Henry

I.,

gave the

city a fresh charter, distinctly

enume-

rating the privileges of the citizens, which
prescriptive
;

had been hitherto merely
Sheriff-

and he granted to the Corporation the perpetual

wick of Middlesex.

But the greatest instance of the influence which London displayed,
and which she has ever since exerted on the national
history,

was the

fact

that in the fierce contest for the crown, between Stephen of Blois and

Matilda,

it

was the

citizens of

London who decided

the question in favour

of the former.

By

that time the population of the city had received a

very large foreign element.

Not only Danes, but Normans and Gascons
fiill

had been welcomed with readiness and admitted to
course the

citizenship.

Of
was

Norman Conquest had done

this.

The

rich merchants of
It

Rouen and Caen were
the

a strong acquisition to

London commerce.

Norman

element which turned the scale in the contest for the crown,

and there were two causes which operated on the Normans.
between the Normans and Angevins.

Matilda

had married Geoffry, count of Anjou, and there was a traditional jealousy

But

further, the

Londoners were
to which
I

now under

the spell of a strong religious
refer,

movement

shall

have presently to

and the Angevin princes already bore, and con-

tinued to bear, the character of blasphemers of

God and His Church.
now
claimed

Mr.

J.

R. Green vividly points out how, on the vacancy of the

throne, the Londoners, in the absence of noble and bishop,
for themselves the right

of election.

"

Undismayed by
their

the want of the

hereditary

counsellors

of the Crown,

aldermen

and

crier-folk

gathered together the folk-mote, and these providing at their
for the

own

will

good of the realm, unanimously agreed

to choose a king.

The

6

MEDIEVAL LONDON

very arguments of the citizens are preserved to us as they stood massed
doubtless in the usual place for the folk-mote at the east end of Paul's,

while the bell of the

commune
*

rang out

its

iron

summons from
all

the

detached

campanile
'

beside.

Every kingdom,' urged alderman and
rule

prudhomme,

was open to mishap, where the presence of
!

and

head of justice was lacking

It

was no time

for waiting

;

delay was in

fact impossible in the election

of a king, needed as he was at once to

restore justice of the law.'

But quick on these considerations followed

the bolder assertion of a constitutional right of pre-election, possessed

by

London

alone.

'

Their right and

special privilege

it
;

was, that on their
'

king's death his successor should be provided

by them

and

if

any, then

Stephen, brought as
already on the spot.

it

were by Providence into the midst of them,
as the claim was,
in

Bold

none contradicted

it

;

the

solemn

deliberation ended
all,

the

choice of Stephen, and amidst the

applause of
It

the aldermen appointed

him king."

will

be convenient to pause at this point to look at the great

change which had taken place westwards.

The

stately

Abbey of Westhad been rebuilt

minster had arisen on what was once a thorny waste.

Originally founded
it

by

Sebert, the

first

Christian

King of the East Saxons,
in the
It

by King Edward the Confessor
real

Norman

style,

of which he was the
his

introducer into England.

was consecrated only a week before

death, January,
diatelv after, as

1066, and the

ill-fated

Harold was crowned

in

it

imme-

was William the Conqueror before the year had ended
Westminster Abbey has been the scene of the
Later on,

From

that day to this
all

Coronation of

the English monarchs.
his

Edward

the Confessor

was canonised, and
place,

remains were removed from their original restingstately

and

laid

in

a

shrine

prepared

by Henry
was

II.,

who was

present, along with his Chancellor and
lation."

Archbishop Becket,
It

at the " trans-

This was on the 13th of October, 11 63.
it

in

consequence

of the honour thus conferred upon

that the

Abbey was

declared by the

Pope exempt from the
was " mitred,"

jurisdiction of the Bishop of

London, and subject
Its

only to the authority of the Pope and the King of England.
i.e.,

Abbot

he was privileged to wear the Episcopal habit, and to

claim a seat on the Episcopal bench in the

House

of Lords.

The
Henry

thirteenth

century saw a yet Rirther honour for the Abbey.

III.,

who

always held the

memory of Edward

the

Confessor in

A COMPREHENSIVE SURVET
*'

7

prodigious value " (which he showed by naming his eldest son after

him), resolved on rebuilding the

Abbey

in the beautiful style
it

which we
and
at

commonly
church
the

call

" Early English,"

though he had seen
it.

in France,

once became, not unreasonably, enamoured of
is,

The

present beautifiil
it
:

in large measure, his

work, though later abbots continued

material
as

additions

since

have been the

Lady

Chapel,

commonly
It
is

known
hard to

Henry

the Seventh's, he being the founder, and the western

towers, by Sir Christopher
realise, until

Wren,

at a date outside

our

limits.

one has seen similar buildings on the Continent,
entirely dividing the choir,

that there

was a partition wall

which be-

longed to the monks, and the nave, to which the general congregation

was admitted.

This wall was removed

in the

time of

Henry

VII.

The
in the

road between London and Westminster passed amidst detached

houses and farms.

The monks

of Westminster cultivated their produce
lives on,

Convent Garden
is

the

name

though the "n"

in the first

word

gone.

After the peaceable settlement of the Danes, a portion of
set apart for

territory

was

them

to dwell in between

London and Westsailor's saint
is

minster.

As they were
St.
it

seafarers,

they naturally took the

for their patron,

and the church which they

built for themselves

known

to us as

Clement Danes.
is

But

time to
St.

return

to
a

our

City.

We

have seen that the

Cathedral of

Paul's was

now

noble building, worthy of the capital

of the kingdom.
his palace

The Bishop

lived

on the north

side

of the Cathedral,

and gardens extended back to Paternoster Row; the chapter
it,

house, and the cloisters round

lay

on the south

side of the nave

;

fragments of

it

may

be seen to this day.
St.

Adjoining the S.W. wall of the

nave was the church of

Gregory-by-St. Paul.

The

parish

still exists.

In that church the body of St.
years before
it

Edmund, King and Martyr,
town which

lay for

some
the

was buried

at the

bears his name.

On

east side of the

churchyard was a large grass-grown space, just such a
see so constantly

spot as
villages

we

still

on the borders of country towns and
fact.

— the

"village green," in

Across

it

came the great Roman

road, which started from

London

Stone, passed along what
as

Newgate

Street,

and went away to Cheshire, following,

we now call we may say,

the course of the

N.W.
Street,

Railway.
i.e.,

This, after

name of WatHng

"Atheling Street

Roman times, received the " (= High Street). It does

8

MEDIEVAL LONDON
is

not, indeed, so far as the city
Street, for after leaving

concerned, answer to the present Watling
call

what we

Budge Row, which was
is

part of

it,

it

went

straight

on over ground which
It

now

covered with the streets south

of Cheapside.

became necessary,

later on, to

change

its

course,

owing

to difficulties connected with the enlargement of St.

Paul's Churchyard,

and the new Watling Street
*'

is

the substitute.
after

But to return to the
times,

Green

"

by

St.

Paul's.

This,

Norman
"

was

the

site

of the Folkmote, of which the
elected
representatives.

present
citizens

Common
on

Council " are the

The

met

this

green

in

the

open

air,

seats being plentifully

dispersed about,
on.

and here the public

business

of the city was
Cross,"
at

carried
east

Nor must we omit mention
of the
north
transept

of " Paul's

the

corner

of the
is

Cathedral, the site of which was discovered

by Mr. Penrose, and

now

marked by an
there

inscription

on the ground.
street,

At

the east end of the green

was a
is

short,

narrow

passing through which you came (just

where

the fine plane-tree) into Cheapside.

But

it

will tax the

imagina-

tion of the reader considerably to realise

how

different

was

this locality

from that which bears the same name to-day.
" part."

" Side "

means "
It

place," or
as

Cheapside means, therefore, " Market-place."
as that

was

much
It

the

London market-place

of any provincial town of to-day.
as far as the present
it,

was

a large square, reaching

back

Honey

Lane, and
streets

other streets in a straight line with

and with booth-decked

branching away as

far as the

Guildhall and Basing Hall.
:

Here, then, we have the two centre places of Old London
Cathedral, with
its ecclesiastical

the

surroundings (a large, populous, and im-

portant district in
streets, the

itself),

and the Chepe, into which, north and south, ran
carried

names of which indicated the nature of the commerce

on

there.

Thus

there was Bread Street, where the bakers congregated,
river

and to which were brought the supplies of corn landed from the
close by, having been

conveyed thither
Isle

chiefly

from the great cornfields
St,

which covered the whole

of Thanet.

The name of

Mildred's

Church

in

this street

is

a relic of the respect paid to her as being the

tutelary saint of that bread-growing island.
Street,

Ironmonger Lane,

Milk

Street,

and the Poultry

tell

their

own

story.

Wood Budge Row

was so

called

because here were sold robes of Budge, a kind of fur, for
officers.

Aldermen and other public

Milton talks of the " budge

A COMPREHENSIVE SURVEY
doctors."

9
Paul's and
it

Friday Street,

in close contiguity

with

St.

some

of the other great religious houses, was so called because
to the sale offish for fast-days, &c.

was devoted
East Cheap.

At

a later time
it

it

became necessary

to have an additional market-square, and

was found

in the

All through the Plantagenet times, the "golden age of chivalry,"
the great square of "the Chepe "
martial

was the scene of tournaments and
of
it

pageants.

Adjoining the church

St.

Mary-le-Bow was

a

scaffold projecting into the street,

which

was the privilege of Royalty
Once, in the reign of
of this scaffold,
in the

and the courtiers to occupy on such occasions.

Edward

III.,

a sad accident occurred

by the

falling in

whereby some not only of the occupants, but of the spectators
street beneath,

were

killed.

It

is

said that the King, with true Plan-

tagenet violence,

ordered the head carpenter to be
at Calais,

hanged,

and was

turned from his purpose, as
It

by the intercession of the Queen.
gallery

led

to

an alteration.

The Royal

was firmly

fixed

to the

wall of the church, and so remained.

Years

later, after
it

the Great Fire,
its

when Wren
gallery."
I
it is

rebuilt the church,

and surmounted

with

present

beautiful spire,

there was a stipulation that there should be a " Royal
there
it

And

is

still,

the passer-by can see

it

from the

street.
it,

doubt whether Royalty
is

in

our time has ever mounted into
ancient
in

but

an historical
only

relic

of the

pageants
that

of Cheapside.*
In
ancient

Nor
times

this the

relic

of the

past

church.

there

was

a great

chamber, resting on arches, in the tower, and the
;

church was called the Church of Sancta Maria de Arcubus
present

hence

its

name of
of

" St. Mary-le-Bow."

That chamber was the

rightflil

possession of the Archbishop of Canterbury,

who

held

it

as his court for

the

trial

ecclesiastical

causes brought

before

him

as

Metropolitan.

Hence came
of years,
" the

the

title

of " Court of Arches" the Spiritual Court of the
office

Metropolitan.
it

Strangely altered as the
exists
;

has become in the course
is still

still

the judge of ecclesiastical cases

known

as

Dean of Arches."
of 1666,

after the Fire

And when this St. Mary's Church was Wren placed its magnificent spire on an
still

rebuilt

arched

base

a memorial of the ancient ecclesiastical dignity.
remains in Ironmongers' Hall, an ostrich on which
a

* One of the "properties"
black boy was seated

The beautiful drawings in a seventeenth-century Mayoralty pageant. of Anthony Munday's " Chrysanaleia," a pageant prepared for Sir John Leman's Mayoralty
procession in 1616, are preserved at Fishmongers' Hall.

lo

MEDIjEVJL LONDON

We

are

now

in a position to look back,

and take a comprehensive

survey of our great city in the Middle Ages.
First.

We
sea,

have the

Tower on

the east side, guarding the approach
city.

from the

and the high and spacious wall surrounding the whole

Fitzstephen, a

monk
II.

of Canterbury, gives an interesting picture of the

times of

Henry

He

describes

London

as

bounded on the land

side

by a high and spacious

wall, furnished

with turrets and double gates.

These were

Aldgate, Bishopsgate, Cripplegate, Aldersgate, Newgate,

Ludgate, and probably Bridgegate.
1842, page 11).
calls

But

see Stow's

comment (Ed. Thoms,
Tower.

There was

also a postern near the

The
at

latter

he

"the

Tower

Palatine," and also

names "two

castles well fortified" in

the west, Baynard and Montfichet.

The former
site

stood

the western

extremity of the city wall on the

of the present Castle Baynard

Wharf, and adjoining Carron Wharf.

The name
was
it

survives also in the

name of "

Castle Baynard

Ward."

It

built

by Baynard, a follower
it

of William the Conqueror, and though

was burnt more than once,
It

was duly restored, and lasted
palace,

till

the Great Fire.
title

became

a

Royal
VIII.

and
it

in

it

Edward

IV. assumed the

of King.

Henry

made

one of his residences.

So did Edward VI., on whose death

Queen Mary was
the

here proclaimed Queen. Montfichet

Tower was between

the site of Ludgate Hill Station and Printing

House
Cheap

Square.

A bastion

of

London Wall
Secondly.

still

remains in the churchyard of

St. Giles',

Cripplegate.

The

great market-place
it,

the

— with

the principal

streets all leading into

represents the commercial magnitude of the city.

The
its

residences of the merchants and traders had, for the
It
is

most

part, each
is

garden, large or small.

a

commonplace saying
you cannot
to-day.

that there
see a tree.

not

a street in

London from some
a

part of which
it

This
a

was more true
beautiful

few years ago than

is

Thus, there was
Street,

plane-tree in front of Grocers' Hall, in Princes
its

but

exigencies of building-space led to
still

destruction but lately.

Cheapside

rejoices in its fine tree at the corner

of
it.

a great poet to write pleasantly about

Wood Street, which has found Down in secluded streets the
The memory
parish

London
of
St.

saunterer comes on

more of

these trees, relics of old citizens'

gardens and resorts, as well as those in closed churchyards.

Martin Pomeroy preserves

in its

second name the

of the

ancient orchard which once gladdened the Londoner's eyes.

Z S

r"

^ ^

H

« D O

> w
^

^

^ ^ ^

I

A COMPREHENSIVE SURVEY
Then,
thirdly^

ii

there were the Religious Houses.

Fitzstephen says

that in his day (iemp.

and 126 parochial.

Henry II.) there were thirteen conventual churches Some were of pre-Norman times, like the Collegiate
1056, and
this
;

Church of
stood
the

St.

Martin's-le-Grand, founded by one Ingelric in

confirmed by a charter of William the Conqueror in 1068.
in

Though
civic

the

heart of the city

it

was independent of
endeavoured
in

control

Mayor and Corporation
it.

often

vain

to

exercise

authority over

Criminals on their
within
its

way

to execution

now and
were
Bell

then
safe

managed
in

to slip

boundaries, in which
this

case they

sanctuary.

It

was from

church that the

Curfew

for

London

tolled out each evening, a signal for closing the city gates, as

well as the taverns.

An
This
is

event of vast importance in the religious

life

of this nation was

the great Cistercian

movement
tell

in the

beginning of the twelfth century.
it,

not the place to

the history of the origin of

the mighty

endeavour to reform the decadent Benedictine order made by Robert of

Molesme, who
soon found
near

settled himself in the

hamlet of Citeaux (Cistercium),

near Dijon, and set
its

up the

first

reformed monastery.
first
it

The movement
at

way to England,
;

the

Abbey being founded
had
its

Waverley,

Farnham
It

and

before

long

devotees

in

London,

the most noteworthy of

whom

was Gilbert Becket,
this

a wealthy trader in

Cheapside.

was the excitement of

which was upon the Londoners

when,

as

we have

already had to note, they chose Stephen for king against

the supposed irreligion of the
this religious revival a

House of Anjou.
to

Under

the influence of

new impulse seemed
it

come upon the Church,
in the affections of the

which bound
people.

it

closer than

had ever been before

Gilbert Becket's son,

Thomas, became known to

the Archbishop

of Canterbury, Theobald, for his intense religious earnestness, became his right hand in administration, guided him unfalteringly through the
troubles which

came out of the dreadful

civil

war between Stephen and

Matilda, and finally gave peace to distracted England.

How

the eager
for

young Londoner himself became Archbishop, and how he came
a year to be regarded as the very chief of English saints,
tell

many

we need not

here.

And
its

this

new

religious impulse told in the city to the extent

of changing

very aspect.
for a while to

The

Cathedral which Bishop Maurice had

begun seemed

be languishing.

Now

barges came up the


12
river with

MEDIAEVAL LONDON
stone

from Caen

for

the great arches which

excited

the

popular wonder.
St.

Rahere, the king's minstrel, raised his noble Priory of
in Smithfield,

Bartholomew

of which enough

still

remains to make

it

the finest

Norman building in London. Alfune, in 1090, built St. Giles's, Cripplegate. The dissolution of the Cnichten Guild (a body of thirteen
knights as old as King Edgar, which continued to hold land on fanciful

tenures

down

to

1 1

15) was followed by the bestowal of their property

on

the Priory of the
teresting episode.

Holy Trinity in Aldgate, and out of this arises an inThe first prior, Norman, built his cloister and church,
liberal a scale that there

and bought books and vestments on so
nothing
left

was

to

buy food.

The

citizens, visiting the place

on Sundays

according

to custom,

saw that the poor canons were famished with

hunger.

"Hie
"
It

est
is

pulcher apparatus, sed panis unde veniet.^" exclaimed
a fine

somebody.

show

to be sure

;

but where

is

the bread to

come from.^"
Very pretty
his

The women
is

present, Becket's

mother among them, vowed
spare.

to send a loaf every Sunday,

and soon there was enough and to
life

the story of the early

of the future martyr,

how

mother, Rohese, used to weigh him on each birthday, and send money,

clothes,

and provisions, according to
Cistercian
is

his weight.

The

the

first

of the great religious movements which

have wrought an enduring

effect

upon our
in

national

life.

The
;

Crusades,

which have also
the period
Friars,

left their

mark

London, made

a second

and within

we

are considering

we have

also to place the preaching of the

the

Lollardism

of Wyclif,

and the Reformation.

Later on,

past mediaeval times,

came the Puritan Rebellion, the preaching of the

Wesleys, the Oxford Tract Movement, and the work of F. D. Maurice

and the " Broad Church.''

But

it

will

be

well to set

down

in

order the principal religious

establishments which

grew up with the

years.
:

Here

is

a

list

of them as

they existed at the time of the Reformation

Friaries and Abbeys.
Ludgate
to

— The

Black Friars (Dominicans)

between

Hill
Fleet
earl

and the Thames,
River.

extending

from

St.

Andrew's Hill

the

Their

house
It

was

founded

by

Hubert

de

Burgh,

of Kent, in 1221.

had

a church

and precinct with

four gates.

In this church Archbishop Courtenay was

condemning the
city."

writings of Wyclif,

when "

a great earthquake

shook the

Here

;

A COMPREHENSIVE SURVET
Charles V. lodged

1,3

when he was

visiting

Henry
it

VIII.

The

latter

king

held a Parliament here,

but transferred
it

to

the house of the Black

Monks At the
Anne's,

of Westminster, hence
Dissolution
Blackfriars).
site

was

called

"the Black Parliament."
to

the

church was

given

the parishioners

(St.

The Grey
is

Friars (Franciscans)

had
will

a

noble

house on the
to
as
be,

of what

at this

moment, though

it

soon cease

Christ's

Hospital.

Parts of the old buildings remained as late

1820

(see Gentleman's

Magazine, May, 1820), indeed, there

is

a

small

portion

even

now.
in

The
Dutch
their
at

noble
still

church
exists

of the
off

Augustinian
Street,

(Austin) Friars (founded

1253)

Broad

the

nave
Friars
1

being

used

by the
had

Protestant
east

Church.

The

IVhiie

(Carmelites)
It

church
the

of the Temple, founded

241.

was

pulled

down
it

Dissolution,

and

houses were

built

on the

site,

but
a

still

preserved the right

of sanctuary, and
debtors.

was consequently
privilege

haunt of thieves and fraudulent
till

The

was not abolished

1697.

The
;

Crutched

(=

crossed) Friars,

so called because they wore a cross on their backs, had their church on

the

site

of

St.
;

Olave's,

Hart

Street

the Carthusians, on that of the

Charterhouse

the

Cistercians

New Abbey

was

in

East Smithfield

and the Brethren de Sacca, or " Bonhommes," were
under Augustinian rules
in

a small

community

Old Jewry.
That
of
St.

Then
abbeys
or

there were the Priories, religious houses subject to greater
religious

bodies.

John

of

Jerusalem,

at

Clerkenwell, was founded in 11 00 by Jordan Briset and his wife Muriel,

and was endowed
Knights Templars.
the old

in

1324 with the revenues of the dissolved English
ancient gateway remains, the only one
houses.
left

Its

of

all

London monastic

In the

Wat Tyler
now

rebellion

(1381)

the prior was beheaded in the great courtyard,

St.

John's Square.

Of

the Priory of
St.

Holy

Trinity, Aldgate,

we have

already spoken, as

we

have also of
priory
is
still

Bartholomew's, Smithfield, the noble chancel of which
finest buildings in

one of the

London.
St.

Across the river

the beautiful church of the Augustinian Priory of
built

Mary Overy was
two
the

by Giffard, bishop of Winchester,
knights.

in 11 06, at the expense of

Norman

At
St.

the Dissolution,
for

Henry
part of

VIII.

gave

it

to

parishioners of

Southwark

their parish church,

and the name was
;

changed to that of

Saviour.

How

it

tumbled down

how

14
it

MEDIEVAL LONDON
rebuilt
in

was

Brummagem
know.
note

Gothic

;

how
last

this also,

happily, went to

pieces,

and has been replaced within the

few years by a handsome

restoration,

we

all

Of Nunneries, we
Priory of the

St.

Helen's, Bishopsgate, the church of the

Nuns of St. Helen, founded in 12 12 by " William the son of William the Goldsmith." The church formerly had a partition dividing It was taken down at the nuns' portion from that of the parishioners.
the Dissolution, but plenty of remains of the old arrangement are
still

evident

in

the

church, which

is

in

many
year

features one

of the

most

1799 the old Hall of the nunnery was standing, having been bought by the Leathersellers' Company
interesting in

London.

Until

the

at

the Dissolution for their Hall.
a sweet well there,

Holywell, Shoreditch, was so called
as the population

from

which was spoiled

came to

increase in that part.

There was here
founded
in 13 18

a Benedictine

Nunnery, dedicated
which

to St.

John

Baptist,

by Gravesend, bishop of London.
site,

In later days the famous Curtain Theatre was built on the
again has given place to
earl
St.

James's Church, Curtain Road.

of Leicester, brother of King
St. Clare,

nuns of the Order of
in a
street

Edward III., commonly called the

Edmond, founded an Abbey of
Minorites, in 1293,
the
Dissolution,

between Aldgate and the Tower.

On

Henry VIII. gave
Trinity, Minories)
dictine

the chapel to the people for a parish church
;

(Holy

the rest of the site was built over.

The Bene-

Nunnery of
St.

St.

Mary, Clerkenwell, was contiguous to the Hospital

or Priory of

John.

The name Clerkenwell
It

(Fons Clericorum) was

derived from a well, at which once a year the Parish Clerks of

London
years

assembled and performed a religious play.

was

at
less

the S.E. corner

of Ray Street.
ago,

A pump

marked the
"

site

until

than
it

fifty

when

the water was found to be so polluted that

was removed.

When

the " Black

Nunnery

was dissolved, the

site

was given to the

Earl of Aylesbury, hence the present Aylesbury Street, Clerkenwell.

Of Colleges,

i.e.,

communities of religious men,
(2)
St.

were

(i)

Sl

Martin s-le-Gr and (already mentioned);
Becket,

Thomas of Aeon
sister

(alias

Acre), a military sanctuary founded by Agnes, the

of

St.

Thomas
of the

over

her

brother's

birthplace.

It

was

on the

site

present Mercers' Hall, and was

much regarded by

the Corporation of

London

in

the

Middle Ages.

Richard Whittington, Mercer, thrice

A COMPREHENSIVE SURVET
Lord Mayor
and Mary,"
site still

15
**

(last

time,

1419), founded the College of

Saint Esprit

in the

Vintry Ward, and the Almshouse for Mercers.

The
The

bears the
to
St.

name of College
Barnard's
Inn,

Hill.

Mercers' School was removed
a

from

hence

Holborn,

few

years

since.

College of

Michael, Crooked

Lane, was founded by
the

Sir

William

Walworth, who was buried within

church.
to

This church was
Bridge,

removed to make room
in

for

the

approach

new London

1831.

Of Hospitals,
Matilda, queen of

note

St. Giles' s-in-the-Fields for
I.;
;

Lepers, founded by

Henry
Palace

St.
St.

James's Hospital " for leprous maidens,"

now St. Abbey of
land

James's

Mary
It

of Rounceval^
stood on the
site

a

priory of the

Roncevalles in Navarre.
at

of NorthumberCripplegate,

Avenue

Charing

Cross.

Elsing Spital,

by

was

founded by

Wm.

Elsing in 1329, for the sustentation of a hundred blind
;

men.
that
Sir

The site was afterwards occupied by Sion College was moved to the Thames Embankment the ground was
in
his

but

when

built over.

John Pountney founded and endowed a College
Candlewick
Street, calling
priests.
it

own house

in

Corpus Christi, to maintain a master and

twelve mission
St.

Their chapel was attached to the Church of
in

Lawrence Pountney, which was burnt

the Great

Fire and

not

rebuilt.
St.

The

Papey, a house for worn-out priests, was in Be vis Marks.
is

Bartholomew the Less

now
was

the Chapel of

St.

Bartholomew's Hospital

precinct.

The Lock

Spital

for the reception of lepers, the derivation
St.

being loques^ rags.

The

old Hospital of

Katharine's by the Tower

was removed,

in 1828, to

make room

for St. Katharine's

Docks, and

set

up anew by the Regent's Park.
Episcopal Residences were those of the Archbishops of Canterbury

and York,

Lambeth and Whitehall respectively of the Bishop of Durham (Durham House, Strand) of those of Bath, Chester, Lichfield,
at
;
;

Llandaff, Worcester, Exeter, Carlisle,

all

in the Strand;

of Hereford, on
:

Fish Street Hill.
chapel
still exists,

The Bishop

of Ely dwelt in Ely Place, Holborn

the

in the possession of the

Roman

Catholics.

Readers of
his
;

Shakespeare will
garden.
St.

remember how the bishop grew

strawberries in

The Bishop

of Salisbury's house was in Salisbury Square
;

of

David's, near Bridewell

of Winchester and Rochester,
still

in

Southwark.

Parts of Winchester

House

exist there.

;

i6

MEDIEVAL LONDON
As
the

Thames on

the south side of the city did noble service as
its

the principal highway for

commerce and

its

corn supply, so the
its

fields

on the north furnished
fields a

large pasture-land for

cattle.

Across these

road led away to the village of Islington.

In the

Moor

Fields

were the Artillery Butts, whither young London resorted to be trained
in the use of the
in the

bow.

Readers

may remember

the description of

them

opening portion of Lord Lytton's novel, The Last of the Barons.
walls adjacent to this part the manufacturers of
settled.

Within the
arrows were
associations

bows and
for

Very strange and curious have been the various

of the

name " Grub

Street."

Grobes were feathers
in

arrows,
finished.

and originally Grub Street was that

which arrows were
being in a Puritan

That manufacture died

out,

and the

street,

neighbourhood, in the days
for violent attacks

of Elizabeth became the publishing place
*'

upon the bishops.
class

Martin Marprelate," the wellstreet.

known

series

of that

of publication, was issued from this

Then, by a natural

transition, scurrilous

lampoons

in general,

and not

merely theological, came to be called " Grub Street tracts," because the
phrase had become current
literary rubbish of
;

and the name stuck, and was applied

to

any kind, Pope having endorsed the

title in his satire.

The name has, unfortunately, disappeared from the street within the last The authorities, because the name had become obnoxious to decade.
fastidious ears, have

changed

it

to Milton Street, the poet having been
in

borne

down

it

from Bunhill Fields, where he died, to be buried

St. Giles's

Church,
site

Partly on the

of Liverpool Street Station, and partly across the
stood, in

road

as

far

as

the

Underground Railway,

mediaeval times,

the " Hospital of St.
in

Mary of Bethlehem."
it

From

early times, certainly

1402, this religious foundation was devoted to the care of the insane,
at

and

the Dissolution
for

became one of the Royal
inmates.
all

Hospitals, with

lunatics exclusively

its

It

was the Great Fire of 1666

which permanently changed
the greater part had been

this

neighbourhood.

Up

to that time

fields,

but

now
tents

the poor burned-out citizens
here,

came
on
and

and

(literally)

pitched

their

and

stowed

within
carried

them the goods which they had been
their business,

able to save.

Here they

and gradually substituted rough houses
rebuilt, a

for these tents
arisen,

thus,

by the time the City was

new suburb had

and

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l

A COMPREHENSIVE SURVEY
a well-inhabited suburb from that time
it

17

remained.
as

Bethlehem Hospital
monastic
buildings

was removed to London Wall

in

1675-6,

the

had decayed, and the increasing number of patients required larger room. It found its present home in St. George's Fields in 18 12-15. ^^^ ^^ere

we may
round

note that " Finsbury Fields,"

i.e.^

Finsbury Circus and the land
citizens

it,

formed the favourite summer lounge of the London
beginning of the eighteenth century.
with paths and bordering
trees.
It

up

to the

was

laid

out in

formal

style,

Merchants and tradesmen
of to-day
goes
to

•came hither at eventide, as the

fashionable world

Hyde

Park.

Poets and pamphleteers met publishers, and playwrights

made appointments with managers.

A

large

body of spectators
tail.

fre-

'quently gathered here to see a thief whipped at the cart's

And now we
In

will

simply name the most prominent events in the

history of the city during our period.

Pre-Norman
his

times, after Alfred had restored the lost prosperity

of London,
and

grandson Athelstan (925-940) established a royal palace

a royal mint,

and gave an impulse to the commerce of the
gentility

citv

by promising patents of

to every merchant

who

should

make
"

three voyages to the Mediterranean in his

own

ship.

His "

redeless

grandson Ethelred abandoned London to the Danes, and Cnut levied an
impost of 11,000/. upon
it,

a proof of the great wealth

which

it

had

now

acquired.

It

was

a seventh part of that of the

whole kingdom.
is

Norman
day book.
It

Times.
is

—As

already mentioned,

London

not in

Domes-

probable that there was a separate survey, the records
lost.

of which are

now

Domesday
and
a

incidentally mentions ten acres of

land near Bishopsgate, Norton Folgate, as belonging to the

Dean and

Chapter of
the Crown.

St.

Paul's,

vineyard

in

Holborn, the property of

The founding
have already

many The mentioned.
of the

religious houses during this period

we
by

building

of the

first

stone

bridge
its

Peter of Colechurch, which also belongs to this period, finds
in another page.

place

We

note the orders of

Henry

Fitzailwin, the
to

first

Mayor,

for the

prevention

of

fires.

All

houses were

be of brick or stone, with
tiles.

party walls of the same, and to be covered with slates or
'.building

The

of houses round the Walbrook, Oldbourne, and

Langbourn
c

8

1

MEDIEVAL LONDON
fresh supply from'
a conduit in Cheapside with water in leaden pipes

had diminished the supply of water, so they sought a

Tyburn, and supplied
which they brought

from thence,
chronicles

(a.d. 1255).

The

of

Evesham

say that in

1258, 20,000 persons died of hunger through a
stories are told

scarcity of corn,

and ghastly

of another famine

in

1270.
rule.

But on the whole London increased and prospered under Norman
In 1264 there was a massacre of the Jews on some trivial pretext.

They
from

were expelled the kingdom

in

1291.
division of the city into wards dates

Plantagenet Times.
Death.

— The

the beginning of this period or earlier.

In 1348 came the terrible Black
at least

"In London
pit,

it

was so outrageously cruel that every day

twenty, sometimes forty or sixty, or more, dead corpses were thrown,
together into one

and the churchyard not

sufficing for the dead, they

were

fain to set apart certain fields for additional places
especially,

of burial

....

But

between Candlemas and Easter
Hist, of

in 1349, there
III.).

were buried
chronicled

200 corpses per diem " (Barnes's
that

Edward
The

It is

more than 50,000 persons were
precincts

buried, during this pestilence, within
trial

the

of the Charterhouse alone.

of Wyclif in

St.

Paul's was a

memorable event, when John of Gaunt stood forth

as his

champion.
In

1380 came the

Wat

Tyler rebellion, and the death of the leader
Sir

from the dagger-stroke of

William Walworth.
"

Hence
in the

the

long-

exploded but hard-dying theory of the " dagger

City Arms.
saint,,

The
and

charge in question
it

is

the sword of St. Paul, London's patron
before the deed of

was borne on the City shield

Walworth.
plain field,

Smithfield,

where the event took

place,

was then

^'

a great

without the gates," where on every Friday was " a great
horses, whither
earls,

market for
and

barons,

knights,

and

citizens repair, to see
II.

to purchase."

Our

quaint illustration depicts King Richard

going

forth on his ill-fated expedition against Ireland.

Lancaster and York.
City was
Sir
at the

—The
Henry

first

recorded

illumination of the

Coronation of

IV.

Ten

years later, the
lit

Mayor,

Henry

Barton, ordered that the streets should be

with lanterns

every night.

Jack Cade's rebellion
the city was concerned.

in

1450 seemed
took

at

first

successful, so far as
it,

He

possession

of

and

for

a while-

Richard

II.

riding out of London to the
of Froissarfs Chronicles.
British

War

in

Ireland.

From

a

MS.

Museum, Harl. 4380.

A COMPREHENSIVE SURVEY
maintained order
rages,

19
into out-

among

his

followers.

But they broke out
other
persons

slew Lord-Treasurer
citizens,

Saye, and

of consequence,

and the

with the assistance of the Governor of the Tower, rose

up and expelled him.
citizens inclined to the

Soon afterwards he was

House of York, and

in

As a rule consequence Edward
killed.

the

IV.

steadily favoured the Londoners.

The

setting

up of Caxton's printingof the world.
six

press in his reign

was

a great

epoch

in the history

Tudor
The
1498

Period.

—Two
city.

Lord Mayors and
first

Aldermen died of
the Seventh's reign.

the sweating sickness in the
citizens, as

year of

Henry

we have

already noted, had been accustomed to practise

archery north of the
in Finsbury,

A

regular field was enclosed for

them

in

which was the origin of the present Artillery ground.
as
far

The
of
St.

river Fleet

was made navigable

as

Holborn Bridge, and
the
royal
palaces

Houndsditch was arched over.
James's and Bridewell.

Henry
Stricter

VIII.
rules

built

were made for the pre-

servation of order, nuisances were removed, and the streets were widened

and paved.

The

first

Act

for

the

pavement and improvement of
foul and full of pits and sloughs,
all

London
back

describes the streets as

"very

very perilous and noyous, as well for
as well as

the King's subjects on horse-

on foot and with
note
1

carriages."

We
Common
;

should

the

sumptuary law passed by the

Mayor and

543 by which the Mayor was ordered to confine the Aldermen and Sheriffs himself to seven dishes at dinner or supper
Council in
;

to six

and the Sword-bearer to four.

In the reign of

Edward VI.
were

the hospitals of St.

Thomas,

St.

Bar-

tholomew,

and

Christ

founded,

and the palace of Bridewell
of South wark was

was also converted into a hospital.
constituted a

The borough

ward of the

city.

Passing over the terrible martyr-fires of Smithfield in the days of

Mary, we come
as

to the reign of Elizabeth, a very prosperous one as far

London was concerned. The refugees from Alva's cruelties in the Netherlands found a home in London, and did wonders for the improvement of its manufactures. There were, as elsewhere, extravagances in the way of spectacles and tournaments, and much opportunity was seized It was apparently to flatter Gloriana, who was nowise averse thereto.
looked upon
as

always the correct thing, to

flatter

sovereigns.

The


20

MEDIEVAL LONDON
his

Preface to the Authorised Version of the Bible and Bacon's Dedication

of

Advancement of Learning
is

will

be sufficient illustrations of
to

this.

Here

the inscription to a

monument

Queen
in

Elizabeth, which was
:

put up

in the

Church of All Hallows the Great Rome's

Dowgate

" Spain's rod,

ruin, Netherlands' relief.
chief.

Heaven's gem, Earth's joy, World's wonder, Nature's
Britain's blessing,

England's splendour,

Religion's nurse, and Faith's defender."

In the neighbouring Church of
year,

St.

Michael, Crooked Lane, the same

was

set

up the following
**

inscription.

The

contrast

is

refreshing

:

Here
I

lieth,

wrapt

in clay.

The body
Soon
after the accession

of William Ray.

have no more to say."

of Elizabeth, Ralph Aggas published a very
title

curious plan and view of London, with the
It

Civitas Londinensis.

how much of field and garden there was then in the very The most crowded part was from Newgate Street, heart of the city. With the exception of Coleman Cheapside, and Cornhill to the river.
reveals
Street,

and

a

few scattered buildings from Lothbury to Billingsgate and
all
;

from Bishopsgate to the Tower,

(N. and E.) was open or garden ground.

Whitechapel was a small village

Houndsditch, a single row of houses
;

opposite the city walls, opened behind into the fields

Spitalfields,

from

the back, of the church, lay entirely open
the road to
St.

;

Goswell Street was known as
cluster of houses,

Albans

;

St. Giles's

was a small

known
all

then, as indeed

it is still,

as " St. Giles's in the Fields,"

Beyond,

was

country, both N. and
sides.

W., Oxford
a

Street having trees

and hedges on both

As

late as

1778

German

writer on

the place of execution, as being

"

London speaks of Tyburn, From two miles from London."
a road, called the

Oxford

Street

round to Piccadilly there was

Way

from

Reading, proceeding through

Hedge Lane and

the

Haymarket

—which

avenues were entirely destitute of houses

—to

St.

James's Hospital, aftersite

wards the Palace

;

and a few small buildings on the

of Carlton

House were
was open

all

that existed of the present Pall Mall.
;

Leicester Square

fields

St.

Martin's Lane had

only a few

buildings

above

the church toward the Convent Garden, which extended to Drury Lane.

A COMPREHENSIVE SURVET
The
as

2r
had

Strand was a street with houses

;

those on the South side
the

gardens right

down
in

to the river, and were

property of nobles,

mentioned
site

another

chapter

;

the
;

present

Treasury occupies
to
it

the

of
of

the

Cockpit and Tilt Yard

opposite

stood
VIII.

the

Palace

Whitehall,

which

since

the

days

of

Henry

was

occupying the former residence of the Archbishop of York.

From

King

Street,

which has

this year disappeared, to the

Abbey

the buildings

were close and connected,

as also

from Whitehall to Palace Yard.

The
at

noblemen who

lived in the

Strand used to

proceed to the Court
'

Whitehall in their
a

own

barges from their River
their

stairs,'

and retained

number of watermen, whom

livery

protected

from impress-

ment.

On

the Surrey side there were but six or seven houses between

Lambeth
houses

Palace and the shore opposite Whitefriars.

There
to

a line

of

with gardens
Palace,

began which was

continued

the

Bishop of
Brewery.

Winchester's

where now

is

Barclay

and

Perkins's

Opposite Queenhithe was a great circular building for bull and bearbaiting.
It

was largely patronised, by Queen Elizabeth among
a
little

others.

way down High Street. London Bridge was crowded with buildings. Along Tooley Street to Horsley Down there were many buildings. Such was London towards the end of what we have defined as
Southwark extended but
the Mediasval period.

But

it

was, thanks to the enterprise of the time,

on the rapid move.

The

citizens

were able to send sixteen ships

fully

equipped, and armed with 10,000 men, against the Spanish Armada.
In 1594 the
In
1

Thames water was

first

raised for the supply of the city.

6 13

Sir

Hugh Myddleton

completed the

New
first

River.

In

16 16

the paving of the streets with flagstones was
years,

introduced.

Many

however, were to elapse before sanitary science could be called
In 1603 ^^^ plague destroyed 30,578
lives.

in for the public health.

CHAPTER
CIVIC RULE.
Guildhall

II.

— Other Ancient Crypts — Royal Control— Civic — Punishment for Trade Offences — The City Prisons — The Mayoralty —''Ridings and Pageants" — The Marching Watch — The Common Council— — Guildhall Chapel and Library — of Sheriff— Historic Scenes at Guildhall —
Its

Porch

and Crypt

Govern7tient

Office

The Livery Companies.

In the very centre of the old
noise and bustle of
its

city,

and only just removed from the

great thoroughfare, the Chepe, lay the Guildhall,

the seat of civic government.
feeling,

The name
all

itself is

eloquent of mediaeval

when

the citizens were

enrolled under their various guilds,

each owing

strict
;

obedience to the master and wardens of his guild seated

at their hall

and the guilds themselves, close upon one hundred in
in their turn

number, being
Aldermen,

under the jurisdiction of the Mayor and
at the Guildhall.

sitting in their
;

Court

These were not the

times of social liberty

the oppressive rule of the great feudal lords had

been exchanged for the close personal supervision of the ward, the guild,

and the church.

The

site

of the old Guildhall corresponded with that of the present

structure, but the original entrance was

from Aldermanbury.

An

en-

largement of the ancient building appears to have taken place in the year
1326, during the Mayoralty of Richard
repairs
le

Breton, and further extensive

were carried out
old
hall,

in the years

134 1-3.
as

The The

which Stow describes
and great house
as

" a
it

little

cottage,"

was
1.

replaced by

"a

large

now

standeth," in

141

building occupied ten years, the funds being procured from gifts
fees,

of the livery guilds,
offences.

fines,

and money payments
survived in

in

discharge of

beauty.

The porch and crypt have The former consists of two

much

of their original

vaulted bays richly groined, with

CIVIC
moulded

RULE

23

principal and secondary ribs, :the intersections being

adorned

with sculptured bosses, the two principal of which bear the arms of Edward the Confessor and Henry VI.

The porch was known
gate which was

as the Guildhall Gate,
line

and there was

a lower
St.

probably situated in a
in

with

the Church of

Lawrence Jewry,

Gresham

Street.

one of the best of the few mediaeval examples remaining It forms the eastern portion of the sub-strucrure of the in London. hall, and is 76 feet by 45I, with an average height of 13 feet 7 inches.
crypt
is

The

It is

divided into three equal portions by clustered columns of Purbeck

marble, from which spring the stone-ribbed groins of the vaulting.
bosses
at

The
usual

the

intersections

are

all

carved with

devices

of the

mediasval character, and include the arms assigned to the Confessor and
those of the See and City of London.

Of these

crypts

a beautiful feature of ancient architecture in

which

London formerly abounded
those of the Church of

— the great part have disappeared.
Bartholomew the Great,
;

There are
;

St.

Smxithfield

Bow
;

Church, Cheapside (used
Place
;

for burial purposes)
St.

Etheldreda's Chapel, Ely
;

the Priory Church of

John, Clerkenwell
St.

Lambeth Palace

Merchant Taylors'

Hall

;

and

Stephen's

Chapel,

Westminster.

Several fine examples have been destroyed within quite recent times,

including the crypt or

Hall crypt

in

Lower Chapel of Old London Bridge, Gerard's Basing Lane, and that under the Manor of the Rose in
Hill, the

Lawrence Pountney

two
of

latter buildings being fine

examples

of the houses of distinguished

citizens.

To

this
in

tale

of destruction
Street,

must be added the

crypts

Lamb's Chapel

Monkwell

Leathersellers' Hall, St. Martin's-le-Grand, and St. Michael, Aldgate.

The
ment.

Guildhall was, in a very real sense, the centre of civic governIn early times the Mayor, Aldermen, and Sheriffs were practi-

cally the King's servants,

and responsible to him
city.

at

their personal peril
this

for the

good and

quiet

government of the

For

purpose an
life

adequate authority was conferred upon the civic magnates over the

and

liberty

of each

individual

citizen.

The

city

was divided into

twenty-five wards, over each of which an Alderman presided,
responsible
for
its

who was
In 1388,

good government

to the

Mayor.

Severe was the

punishment

for an insult offered to

one of these dignitaries.

24

MEDIEVAL LONDON
of
in

Richard Bole, a butcher, for insulting William Wotton, alderman

Dowgate, was, by order of the Mayor, imprisoned
bare legs and

Newgate, and

ordered, as a penance, to carry a lighted torch, with head uncovered and
feet,

from

his stall in St. Nicholas'

Shambles to the Chapel

of the Guildhall.

Rough-and-ready justice was administered by the
In

Mayor and his who was found
carcases,

brethren, the Aldermen.

13 19, William Spertyng,

guilty of exposing for sale at the shambles
in the pillory,

two putrid

was sentenced to be put

and to have the carcases
in

burnt beneath him.

A

vintner

named John Penrose, convicted

of selling bad wine, was ordered to drink a

1364 draught of the " same wine
his head,

which he sold to the people," the remainder to be poured on
and he to forswear the
ever.
calling of a vintner in the City
in

of London for
set in

For giving short weight,

1377, two charcoal dealers were

the stocks on Cornhill, whilst six of their badly filled sacks were burnt
beside them.

A
city

baker, for selling bread of light weight, was dragged

through the
neck.

on

a hurdle with the

offending loaf
is

hung about

his

An

illustration

of this punishment

given in an ancient book
" Liber de assisa panis.'^

belonging to the city records,

known

as the

Another punishment which must have been
of whipping at the
cart's tail for

sufficiently deterrent

was that

petty larceny and other minor offences.

One of the most
the
site

ancient prisons of the city was the
still

Tun,

in Cornhill^

of which

is

marked by the Cornhill pump.
by Henry Wallis, Mayor,

The

prison,

consisted of a

wooden

cage, with a pillory and pair of stocks
built

attached.

Below

it

was the conduit

in 1282.

The
chiefly

City Gates were also used for the confinement of prisoners,
;

Ludgate and Newgate

the former was devoted to prisoners for

debt, and the latter to those charged with criminal offences.

The

scanty

accommodation afforded by these structures caused grievous suffering
to the

unhappy

offenders, gaol-fever frequently breaking out,

and raging
the judges,

not only amongst the prisoners themselves, but also

among

and other

officials

of the neighbouring Courts of Justice.

Close by, on the east side of Farringdon Street, near Ludgate Circus
o\ to-day,

was the Fleet Prison, which,

like that

of Ludgate, had

a grate,

behind which the prisoners used to beg for relief from the passers by.
Its early history

can be traced back to the period of the Conquest

;

it

formed part of the ancient possessions of the See of Canterbury, and was.

CIVIC
held in conjunction with the

RULE

^S

Manor of Leveland, in Kent, and with the" King's Houses " at Westminster, The wardenship or sergeancy was anciently held by eminent personages, who also had custody of the King's
Palace at Westminster.

This, with other city prisons, was burnt
in

dowa

by the followers of Wat Tyler

Richard the Second's reign.

Besides the King's prisons were the Compters, or city prisons, two in

number

—one belonging

to each of the Sheriffs.

They were
for trial,

used for the

confinement of debtors, for remands and committals
custody of minor offenders.

and for the

London brought its citizens a. large measure of wealth and influence. They were thus enabled, by gifts and loans to the various English sovereigns, who had constantly to
great prosperity of the City of

The

contend with financial
liberties
far

difficulties, to

secure for themselves franchises and

exceeding those of any other city or town.

In several

of

their early charters they are addressed

by the King

as his

Barons of the
fi-equently

City of London.

These

privileges,

or

some of them, were
offences

revoked by the early kings for
citizens, but

real or alleged

on the part of the
a sufficient fine.
is still

were always re-granted on the payment of
charter,
as

William the Conqueror's
in

we have

seen,

preserved
right

the

Guildhall.

King John granted the Londoners the
in the following reign they

of

electing their

Mayor, and

were permitted to

present their newly elected

Mayor

for the King's approval to the Barons-

of the Exchequer whenever the King was absent from Westminster. Previous to the election of a new Mayor, a religious service, consisting of the Mass of the

Magdalen, adjoining

Holy Ghost, was held in the Chapel of St. Mary The ceremony of swearing in the the Guildhall,
still

new Mayor on
last

the day before his assumption of office
little

takes place

annually at the Guildhall, and has probably but
four centuries.

altered

during the

Besides presiding over the Court of

Aldermen and
it

the Courts of

Common

Council,

Common

Hall, and Husting,

was the

duty of the Mayor,

assisted

by the Recorder and
as

Common
as
in at

Serjeant, to

administer justice in the
Sessions.

Mayor's Court,
St.

well

the

Newgate

He

also

attended

Paul's

Cathedral

state

on several

occasions in the year, as well as minor religious services at the Guildhall

Chapel and elsewhere.

The

religious processions
still

on these occasions, and.

the secular pageantry which was

more

frequent, were ardently looked

i6

MEDIEVAL LONDON
Chaucer, speaking of the city apprentice of his day, says that
"

forward to by the citizens and their apprentices as an excuse for a
holiday.

When
And And

there any riding was in
thider
all

Chepe
lepe.

Out of the shoppe
till

wold he

that he had
well,

the sight ysene

danced

he would not come agen."

The

great City Fairs were opened by the

Mayor with much
in

state,

the proceedings displaying a curious mixture of religious and secular
ceremonial.

To

open the Fair of Our Lady

Southwark, the Mayor

and

Sheriffs rode to St.

Magnus' Church,

after dinner, at

two o'clock
After
in

in the afternoon.
officials,

They were

attended by the Sword-bearer and other
in their scarlet

and were met by the Aldermen
the whole of the

gowns.
the

-evening prayer,

company rode over
fair,

bridge

procession, and, after passing through the

returned to the Bridge

House, where

a

banquet was provided for them.
St.

With

equal solemnity,

the well-known Fair of
the civic fathers.

Bartholomew

in Smithfield

was opened by

Here

a

Court of Piepowder * was held for settling

disputes without delay, this Court being described by Blackstone as being

the most expeditious court of justice

known

to the law of England.

The
as they

chief pageant of the year was that prepared for the
his installation into office.

Mayor of

London upon

The

origin of these " ridings,"

were termed, dates back to King John's charter of 1215, already

mentioned, which stipulated that, after his election by the citizens, the

new Mayor should be submitted

to the

King

for approval.

From

this originated the procession to

Westminster, when the
citizens

Mayor

was accompanied by the Aldermen and chief
minstrels and other attendants.
retained

on horseback, with

For nearly two centuries the procession

much of

its

original simplicity.

The

first

recorded instance of

a pageant approaching the character of the spectacles of the sixteenth

and seventeenth centuries occurs

in the year 141 5.

John Wells, Grocer,
at

was Mayor, and three wells running with wine were exhibited
Grace, and Pity,

the

conduit in Cheapside, attended by three virgins to personate Mercy,

who gave
is

of the wine to

all

comers.
;

These wells were
according
to Sir

* "Piepoudre, so called from the dusty feet of the suitors

or,

Edward

Coke, because justice
•Comment., vol.
iii.,

there done as speedily as dust can
2.

fall

from the foot."

Blackstone^s

chap.

CIVIC
surrounded with
trees laden

RULE

27

with oranges, almonds, lemons, dates, &c.,

in allusion to the Mayor's trade and Company.

The

greatest

of these spectacular

efforts
I.

were reserved from

for

Royal

visits to the City.

On

the return of

Edward

his Scottish victory

in 1298, Stow

tells

us "every citizen, according to their severall trades,

made

their

several

shew, but
passed

specially

the fishmongers, which
citie,

in

a

.solempne procession

through the
gilt,

having amongst other

pageants and shews foure sturgeons

carried

on foure horses

;

then

foure salmons of silver on foure horses, and after them sixe and fortie

armed knights riding on
one representing
with
a
St.

horses,

made

like sluces
it

of the sea; and then
St.

Magnus

(because

was on

Magnus's day)
procession

thousand

horsemen," &c.

At

the

Coronation

of

Henry

IV., in 1399, there were seven fountains in Cheapside running

with red and white wine.

The King was
servants
in their

escorted by a large

number

of gentlemen with of
the
their trade.

their

in liveries

and hoods

;

and the City

Companies attended, clothed

proper
at

liveries,

and bearing banners
in 141 5,

When Henry

V, arrived

Dover from France

the Mayor, Aldermen, and " craftsmen " rode to Blackheath to meet

King on

his

road to Eltham with his prisoners.

They were attended

by three hundred of the
wearing rich
collars

chief citizens, uniformly clad, well mounted, and

and chains of gold,
the

Another picturesque ceremony was the Marching Watch, on
of
St.

Eve

John the Baptist and

St. Peter's

Eve, which developed

at a later

period into a costly and sumptuous pageant.

Elaborate dresses were

worn both by the citizens who attended in the procession and by the men who carried cressets and other lights. The Mayor's household, from small beginnings, came eventually to consist of nearly forty officers under the control of the four esquires, who were the Sword-bearer, the Common Hunt, the Common Crier, and the Water Bailiff. To these must be added the Lord Mayor's Jester or Fool the name of one who
;

held this

office.

Kit Largosse, has come

down

to us.
privileges of the
I.,

The office of Common Hunt recalls the hunting Mayor and citizens. Under the charter of Henry
*'

dated

iioi,

the citizens received a grant and confirmation of their "chaces" to hunt
as well

and fully

as their ancestors

had

" in the forests of

Middlesex

and

Surrey, and on the Chiltern Hills.

This much-valued right has

"

28

MEDIEVAL LONDON
Sheriffs,

long since been commuted by the grant of venison warrants, under

which the Lord Mayor,
still

with the Recorder and other
forests to the total

officers^

receive deer

from the Royal

number of twelve
rest

bucks and twelve does annually.

The
of the

city sceptre

is

undoubtedly of Anglo-Saxon date, but the
mace, and swords of
state

civic insignia

city purse,

—belong

to

Tudor
seal,

or later times.

There

are
St.

two

city

seals

:

one, the corporate

with an ancient obverse of

Paul, bearing a sword and banner
;

Baronum Londoniarum the reverse originally bore the effigy of St. Thomas a Becket, for which, in 1530, the city arms were substituted. The other seal, that of the mayoralty, was made in 138 1 to replace an older seal. It bears
surrounded

by the

inscription,

" Sigillum

the images of

St.

Peter and

St.

Paul with the arms of the city beneath,
is,

supported

by two lions; the encircling legend

"Sigillum

Officii

Majoratus Civitatis Londini."

the

The Court of Common Council had an origin subsequent to that of Court of Mayor and Aldermen. In 1273, divers men whose names
books were elected by the whole community to
the affairs of the city.

are recorded in the city

consult with the

Mayor and Aldermen on
gave way,
in

This

method of

election

1347, to the selection of representatives

from each ward.
sentation of the

Under

a precept of

Edward
latter

III., in

1376, the repre-

commonalty was transferred from the men of the wards
nominating from two to six
Council.

to the

men

of the guilds, each of the
as

of their number

members of the

Common

This

lasted until

^3^3y when the right of election was restored to the wards, and a proportionate

number of

representatives assigned to each.

Both the Lord

Mayor and Aldermen formed
Court of

then,

as

now, constituent parts of the

Common
office

Council.

The Norman
after
his

of Sheriff of
its

London

dates back to a period before the

Conquest, and
accession
in

origin cannot be traced.

King Henry
of

I.,

soon
the

iioo, granted to the

citizens

London

revenues of the county of Middlesex to farm, on their paying an annual
rent of 300/., and gave

them

liberty also to appoint

from among them-

selves a sheriff to receive the

demesne dues.

The

Sheriff of Middlesex

therefore represented the whole

body of

citizens acting in their corporate

capacity, the duties of the office being performed

by the two

sheriffs.

;

CIVIC
jointly.

RULE
place annually at Guildhall

29

The election of sheriffs took Midsummer Day, the liverymen of the

on

various Companies being there

assembled in
sheriffs

Common

Hall for that purpose.

In civic ceremonials the

ranked below the aldermen, being,

in fact, the

Mayor's deputies
in the

as they are styled

by John Carpenter,

Common

Clerk

time of Sir
sat as

Richard Whittington.

Each

sheriff

had

a Court, in

which he

judge

and, besides other obligations to the Sovereign and the Mayor, they were
responsible for the safe keeping of the prisoners in the city prisons,
as well as for the carrying out of sentence

on those

capitally

condemned.

They
office,

also

had their " ridings
were

and

when they attended accompanied by the members of
"

to

be sworn into
guild

their

with

drummers and

minstrels.

Before leaving the subject of the Corporation,

we may pause

for a

moment

to recall

some of the more

striking scenes

which have taken
length completed at

place at the Guildhall.

the close of the reign
object with
its

The fine of Henry

building,

when

at

IV., was a beautiful and conspicuous

high-pitched roof and two handsome louvres.

Among
all

the

principal contributors to this great

work were
paved the
of

the

King

himself,
Sir

the

aldermen,

who between them
Queen

glazed

the windows, and
hall

Richard

Whittington, who, by
In January, 1308,

his executors,

with Purbeck stone.

Edward II., wrote from Windsor to the Mayor, Aldermen, and Commonalty of London to inform them of the birth of her son. The whole of the week following was
Isabella, the wife

given up to solemn thanksgivings mingled with

festivities,

the latter in-

cluding a sumptuous repast at the Guildhall, " which was excellently well
tapestried

and dressed out."

Another sumptuous entertainment took
his

place

in

May, 1357,
as

in

honour of Edward the Black Prince and

prisoner, John, king of France.

One of

the last public acts of Sir Richard

Whittington
and
his

Mayor was

to

entertain in princely fashion

Henry V.
banquet

Queen
is

at the Guildhall.

This was one of the

earliest occasions

of the use of the new building for such a purpose.

At

this

Whittington

reported,

with what
fire

truth

it

is

impossible

now

to

determine, to have thrown into the

bonds under which the King was

indebted to him to the extent of some 60,000/.
Scenes of a sterner kind have cast their shadows over the memories which surround this ancient hall. One of the earliest trials recorded

30

MEDIEVAL LONDON
its

to have taken place beneath

roof arose out of a conflict between
1340.

the^

poulterers and fishmongers in the year
Sheriff^s,

The Lord Mayor and
riot,

while endeavouring to suppress the

were assaulted
trial

;

two

of the ringleaders, having been arrested, were brought for
Guildhall.

to the

Andrew Aubrey,, The King, on the Mayor, and were forthwith beheaded in Cheapside. being informed of the matter, commended the Mayor for the action which he had so promptly taken. Others who suffered in medieval

They were

at

once condemned to death by

times, after condemnation in Guildhall, were Master

Roger and Master
in

Thomas, who were
Bolingbroke,

tried

for
in

treason

and sorcery

1441

;

Roger

found

guilty

the

same year of conspiracy against
Guildhall was the scene of a

Henry

VI.

;

and Lord Say, who was brought from the Tower to
1450.

Guildhall to be tried in July,

when the Duke of Buckingham, who had been sent by the Protector Gloucester to win the citizens of London over to his cause, drew from them a most unwilling consent tomomentous
decision on June 24th, 1483,

the proclamation of his patron as

King Richard

III.

There were two important buildings within the precincts of Guildhall.
Adjoining the Guildhall
Chapel, and
placed under the charge of
its

College of priests and chaplains, was a "fair Library" founded by Richard

Whittington, through
Bury, in 1425.

his executors,

and by the executors of William
itself,

The

building stood by
floor.
It

and was substantially
as the "

built

with an upper and lower
at Guildhall,"

was known

common

library

and John Carpenter,

Common

Clerk, one of Whittington's

executors, left a selection of his books at the discretion of his executors,

to be chained in the Library for the use of

its

visitors

and students.

The

story of the despoiling of this noble institution belongs to a later

period,

when
all

the Protector Somerset, not content with destroying churches
in the Strand, in the year

and mansions to build himself a Palace

borrowed

the books from Whittington's Library at

1550 Guildhall and
Yard.

never returned them.
joined
Guildhall

Blackwell

Hall, another famous building, adGuildhall

Chapel to the south, facing

The
its

building was originally the

property of the Basings and the Cliffords,

and passed subsequently to the Banquelles or Blackwells, whence

name was
it

derived.
in

Reverting afterwards into the hands of the Crown,
II.

was sold

1398 by Richard

to the

Mayor and Corporation

for

CIVIC
50/.,

RULE

31
for the sale of all

and was then thrown open

as a market-place

descriptions of woollen cloth.

The appointment
is

of keeper of Blackwell

Hall was in

later times vested in the Drapers'

Company.
in

The

origin of the

Livery Companies
to trace

wrapped
to

impenetrable
times,
in

obscurity.

The attempt

them back
is

Roman

though
evidence

put forth by some writers of authority,
for
its

entirely

wanting

support

;

and the want of continuity

in the early history

of this of such
in

country between
a theory.

Roman and

later times forbids the acceptance

Other writers have found the origin of the Guilds
is

the

Gilda Mercatoria or Guild Merchant, but this view
evidence, as in
are to

equally without

London no traces of the existence of a Guild Merchant be found. The derivation of the term. " Guild " is from the

Anglo-Saxon verb "gildan," to pay, and the primary obligation of each member of a guild was to contribute his fixed annual payment to the

common

fund of the brotherhood

;

his other duties included attendance
at the funerals

at the business

and religious meetings of the guild, and

of deceased brethren.
the

Two,
its

at least,

of the Guilds

Weavers

—the

Saddlers and

clearly date

back to the Anglo-Saxon period.
side,

At

the west

end of Chepe, and on
of West Chepe.
In

north

was a

locality

known

as the Saddlery

Its

midst, adjoining Foster Lane, was Saddlers' Hall,

and
of
is

close by, to the west,

were the precincts of the ancient monastery
institutions

St.

Martin-le-Grand.
a

The two
in the

were on friendly terms,

as

shown by

document

Chapter House, Westminster, undated,

but ascribed to the

latter half

of the twelfth century, which records the

terms of a convention
stance

between the Guild and the church, the subfollows
:

of which
St.

is

as

In

return

for

the

prayers

of

the

Brethren of

Martin for the souls of the members of the Fraternity

of Saddlers, both living and deceased, the Saddlers covenant to make
their

offerings

at

St.

Martin's

shrine,

and

to

pay

all

other

lawfid

demands.

This deed, within one hundred years of the Conquest,
statutes then existing

makes mention of ancient
there
is

between the two bodies

;

consequently
to

belongs
least

doubt that the origin of the Guild of Saddlers The Guild of Weavers is at Anglo-Saxon times.
little

of equal antiquity.
the

into

King's

This powerful body paid the sum of Exchequer in the year 11 30 by the hand

16/.

of

Robert, son of Lefstan,

who was

probably Alderman of their Guild,.

;

32
the head

MEDIEVAL LONDON
of
a

guild

being

known by

the

title

of Alderman in the

earliest times.
It
is

not easy to decide whether the guilds were at
artificers

first

bodies of

London
social

who were

subsequently associated
their

for

religious
social

and
and

purposes, or whether they had
side,

origin

on the

religious

their

connection with a particular trade being of sub-

sequent date.
craft

In either case the association between the guild and the

must, fi-om the conditions of
arisen.
city.

London

society in the

Middle Ages,
in

have inevitably
districts

The

different

trades were

located

separate

of the

Besides the Saddlers, there were the Goldsmiths
east,

of West Chepe, the Mercers further

the Poultry adjoining, the

Pepperers of Soper
lived
;

Lane

;

Cordwainer

Street,

where the shoemakers
;

Threadneedle

Street, the

home of

the tailors

Stocks Market for

the fishmongers, the Shambles for the butchers, Bread Street for the
bakers, the Vintry for the wine-sellers or vintners, and so on.
It

seems

most probable that
craft

in

the

first

instance the

association

between guild and

was

a local one,

namely that of neighbours who

met together

for

purposes of good-fellowship and for association in

religious duties.

This view

is

strengthened

by the

fact

that

all

the

older guilds have a patron saint, on whose day their annual elections

were held with

full civic

and religious formalities, which survive
present

in

many

of
the

their

details

to

the

day.

Thus, the Fraternities of the
other

Mercers,

Drapers,

Pewterers,

and

Guilds
a

were dedicated to
patron saint
artificer

Virgin
;

Mary.

The Haberdashers
St.

possess

in

St.

Catherine

the Goldsmiths in

Dunstan, the famous
in

in metals

and courageous Bishop of London
:St.

Saxon times.
Cecilia
is

The

Vintners claim

Martin for

their

patron,
St.

and

St.

is

the patroness of the

Musicians'

Company.
St.

Anthony

the

patron

of the

Grocers'

Company,

Clement presides over the

destinies of the Founders,
saints,
viz.,

and
St.

the Barber -Surgeons are under the protection of two

'Cosmo and

St.
II.

Damian.
as
*'

Henry
up,

amerced several of the guilds
King's
licence,

adulterine," that

is,

set

without the

among them being
III.

the

Goldsmiths,

Pepperers, and Butchers.

Henry

granted charters to the Cappers

and Parish Clerks, and confirmed

that of the Burrillers or Cloth Dressers

and Edward

I.,

his successor,

incorporated the Fishmongers,

and the

"^

T.

to

Basiion ok

Till:

Cnv

Walt., in

ihk Ciukchvaki) ok Sr. Giles's, Ckiimm
IVykehain Archer,
1

kc.atk.

Froiii a Dra'i'hi;^ by J.

84 1.

British Mnsciim.

~^

1^

Crvit

oi-

St. Michai:i.s, Alim;aii:,

dhstkovkd

in

1670.

/^/vm a Diini'ingby J. IVykeham Archer, 1S41.

British Miihuiii.

Ckvi'T

under Mekcham Taylors- Hail, destrovki.
a

in

1855.

From

Drawing

by J. IVykeham Archer.

British

Museum.

CIVIC RULE
Linen Armourers or Merchant Taylors.
laid

T^^

In

the

following reign was
privileges
citizens,

the foundation

of the municipal functions and
in his charter to the

of the
ordered

guilds.

Edward

II.,

Mayor and
Freedom of

that no person should be admitted to the

the City unless

he were a

member of one of

the trades or mysteries.

Up

to this period, the control of the various crafts and trades carried
in the

on within the City had been directly

hands of the Court of

Mayor

and Aldermen, who summoned to their

aid

when

necessary the leading

men of any

particular trade, with

the time being.
their recognition to

whose concerns they were occupied for Owing to the growing importance of the guilds and
fathers gladly delegated

by Royal incorporation, the City

them the settlement of minor trade matters and disputes, and permitted them to draw up draft Ordinances for the regulation of their These Ordinances were then submitted to the legal officers of trade.
the city, and if found not to conflict with the privileges of other crafts,
the rights of the City
itself,

and those of the citizens

in general, they

were

duly sanctioned by the Court of Aldermen.

The
Mysteries

transformation

of the Guilds
in

or Fraternities into Crafts
reign

or

was rapidly effected

the

of Edward
a

III,

That

monarch, recognising that these

societies

had

powerful influence in

extending the trade of the kingdom, showed them especial favour.

To
of

many he granted Charters of Incorporation, under which Company was styled the Master or Warden, instead of
Alderman
scription
;

the head of the

the old

title

the privileges which they had previously exercised by pre-

being

became

a

now member of

confirmed

by

letters

patent.

The King
his

himself

the Linen Armourers'

Company, and

example

was followed by
nobility,

his successor,

Richard
laity.

II.,

and by large numbers of the
the other Companies so
a
later

both of the clergy and

Among

honoured were the Mercers and
Grocers and Fishmongers.

Skinners,

and, at

date,

the

During
the

this reign also a
craft,

new grade
members

or rank was established

among
dis-

members of each
livery,

namely

that of

Liverymen.

They were

tinguished from the ordinary
or

or freemen by a distinctive dress
chief of which was that
the

and by higher

privileges, the

selection of

members of

the governing body, or Court of Assistants, was

made

solely

from the liverymen.

An

interesting

example
D

of

the

34
^'

MEDIEVAL LONDON
is

clothing " or livery In the fifteenth century

depicted on the charter

granted by
dress
is

Henry

VI., in

1444, to the Leathersellers' Company.

The

parti-coloured of red and blue divided into equal halves after
It
is

the peculiar fashion of the period.
sleeves
girdle.

furred at the bottom, at the

and round the

collar,

and closed

at the waist

by

a light-coloured
scarlet

The

figures
at

have the hair closely cropped, and wear
the toes.
all

pantaloons peaked

An

important Act passed in 1364 obliged

artificers

and people

of

own mystery, and, having so chosen it, to At the close of Edward the Third's reign, in 1376, a use no other. further ordinance was made, as we have seen, by the City Commonalty,
mysteries to choose each his
transferring the right to elect
all

City dignitaries and

officers,

including

members of Parliament, from
of the Trade Guilds.
Council was

the ward representatives to the

members

The

right of electing to

members of the Common
of the wards, but the
officers

soon

restored

the

inhabitants

election of the

Lord Mayor,

Sheriffs,

Chamberlain, and other

has continued in the hands of the livery

down

to

the present day, a

privilege unique in the history of the country.

From

an early period certain of the chief Companies have been

separated from the remaining Guilds, and

known

as the
after

Twelve Great
them
in

Companies, the

rest

of the

Companies following

an

acknowledged precedence.

by

their greater wealth,

qualification for office to

The Twelve Companies were distinguished and the Lord Mayor was obliged as a necessary be a member of one of these Guilds.
in

The
during

inner

life

of these ancient Guilds, which were
fifteenth centuries,

high prosperity
in

the fourteenth and

abounds

features of

quaint and picturesque interest.
in the life of the Guild
feasts,

The

chief event of annual importance
its

was the Election Day, with

religious services,

and ceremonies.

A

solemn dirge or requiem was held on the Eve

of the Festival for the repose of the souls of the deceased brethren and
sisters

of the Fraternity.
garnished with
'*

The

procession was lighted by numerous
(/.<?.,

wax

torches,

points "

bows) and streamers of ribbon.

A

frugal repast followed, consisting of a kilderkin of ale, white buns,

cheese,

and spiced bread.
of the
at festival

The
itself,

important proceedings of the following

day,

that

began with a solemn performance of
at

grand mass

one of the great monastic churches or

one of the

Y.

75

.»,

u

o
as

^

5 i

z

^^ <:

-

-3

"^

>
a

^

^
^
a

<^

CIVIC

RULE
The
brethren attended in

3^

larger parish churches, the musical part of the service being rendered

by the Company of Parish Clerks.

their

new

liveries,

and the invited guests included

Priors,

Abbots, nobleofficials.

jnen, and

the

Mayor and

Corporation, with
in

the

chief City
to

From
•dinner,

the

church they returned
first

the same

state

the

Hall to

but

the chief business of the day, the election of the
all

new

Master and Wardens proceeded with

due formality.

The

retiring

Master and Wardens entered with garlands on their heads, preceded "by the beadle and by minstrels playing. Then the garlands were

taken

off,

and

after

a

little

show of trying whose heads among
best fitted,
it

the

assistants the

said

garlands

was found by

a remarkable

-coincidence that the persons previously chosen were the right wearers.

The
in,

oath of

office

was then administered

;

a loving

cup was next brought

from which the old Master and Wardens drink to the new Master
fully installed in their offices,

and Wardens, who, being now
acknowledged by the

were duly

fraternity.

We
%eauty.

have been talking of Royal

processions

and their spectacular

Our
ist

illumination

gives

us

one scene of a tragic character.
Bolingbroke,
to

On

the

of September,
II.

1399,

duke of

Lancaster,

-conveyed

Richard

as

a

prisoner

London.

He

was taken to

Westminster,

and next

day to the Tower.

On

the 30th, in

West-

tminster Hall (which he

had

rebuilt), the

unhappy King was declared

-deposed,

amid uproarious shouts of joy, and Bolingbroke immediately
the

rose and claimed

vacant throne.

His claim was acknowledged,
seat.

and the two Archbishops placed him in the royal
inscription tells

The French

how

*'

the

commons and

the

away

their

King to Westminster, while the
"

by the " maistre porte

of London

mob " of London led Duke turned and entered
his

" washing

hands of him,"

adds the old chronicler, " like Pilate."

;

CHAPTER

III.

THE THAMES.
The
Bridge — The Bridge Houses and Signs — — Swan-upping — Borough of Southward — City JurisFairs — Early Lords of Southivark — TVinchester House — Our Lady Fair — Paris Garden Manor— Bull and Bear Baiting — Famous Inns — The Marshalsea — Bridge House and Bridge Masters and King's Bench Prisons —
*•'•

IVaterworki —

Silent

Highway^'
Ice

— London

their

diction

— Sports on the Thames— Water Pageantry.
The
extension
facilities

Tooley Street

the

of transit afForded by the river highway led to the
City
its

of the

towards the

East,

where

the

necessities

of

commerce converted
and wharves
filled
;

banks into a continuous succession of quays

whilst on the

West

the social

life

of the Court and City

the entire frontage of the waterway between

London and WestHighway,"
of their state-

minster with the palaces of the great.
all

Here, on
in

*'

the Silent

classes

met.

Kings and queens

the royal

pomp

barges were

rowed from the Tower to the Palace of Westminster

nobles passed East or
to

West from
Court
;
;

their river mansions in their journeys

the

City

and

the

the

merchant

brought his goods

to
at

Queenhithe and the wharves
Billingsgate
;

fish

and other provisions were landed

watermen
;

carried passengers to Greenwich, or

up stream to

Hampton Court
other sports,
described
in

and the City apprentices practised water-quintain and
preparation
for the

grand Easter aquatic tournament

by the old chronicler of Henry the Second's time, Fitz-

Stephen.

The
but

great obstacle to the navigation of the river was the picturesque

obstructive
piers

Old London Bridge.
on huge
sterlings,

Its

numerous narrow
a
fall

arches,
in

whose

rested

caused so great

the

stream that the passage through was a feat which none but experienced

boatmen could

safely attempt.

John Mowbray, the second Duke of
in his

Norfolk, a companion of

Henry V.

French wars, nearly perished

THE rNAMES
here in 1428.

37

Taking barge with

his retinue at St.
;

Mary Overv

he

prepared to pass through the
the barge struck against the
party perished, but the

bridge
piles,

but, through unskilful steering, Several of the

and was overturned.

Duke and two
piles,

or three other gentlemen saved

themselves by leaping on to the
to the bridge above.

and were drawn up with ropes

The
shown
beautiful

great

fall

of the rushing tide through the narrow arches

is

well

in the earliest

known view of

the bridge, which

is

given

in

the

illumination of the

manuscript

poems of

Charles,

duke of
date of

Orleans,

who was

a prisoner in the

Tower of London.

The

this interesting pictorial record has

been assigned to the year 1500.

The
four
feet.

bridge consisted of a drawbridge and nineteen broad-pointed

arches, with massive piers varying in breadth from twenty-five to thirty-

Outside the piers were immense wooden

sterlings,

which were

probably added later to keep the foundations of the piers from being

undermined.
reduced from

By
its

these obstructions the entire channel of the river was

normal breadth of 900

feet

to

a total

waterway of

194

feet, or

less

than one-fourth of the whole.

Peter of Colechurch was the architect and builder of
replacing the older
in
1

London

Bridge,

wooden bridge by

a stone structure

which was finished

176.

The weakness
that
its

of the new building, however, soon showed
its

itself.

In 1280, less than eighty years after

completion, the bridge
it,

was so decayed

men were

afraid to pass over

and
later

a subsidy
its

was

granted towards

restoration.

A

hundred years

condition
all

•engaged the attention of " a great collection or gathering of
bishops, bishops, and other persons."
this distinguished assembly, things

arch-

Notwithstanding the counsels ot
to worse
;

went from bad

and

in

a

professional survey
<:racked,

made

in

1425, one of the arches was found to be

This and the water-course of the Thames was seen below. was the reason of an Act made by the Court of Aldermen, that no person should drive a cart or car shod with iron over the bridge, upon
6s.

pain of " punishment of his body and to pay

Sd"

In 1492, a reward

of five

was given to John Johnson, that the King's "great gonne " The should not pass over the bridge, but rather by another way." -other way" involved at this date a journey up river to Kingston, where
shillings

the

first

bridge was to be found.

38

MEDIEVAL LONDON
For the greater part of
its

length, houses were built completely over the

bridge, leaving only three vacancies, one an open space called the Square,

not far from the

city,

and another

at

the Southwark end where the

drawbridge
of the

was.

The
side.

thoroughfare
the
houses,

passed

through
kind

the

centre

bridge

beneath

forming a

of tunnel
it

with
safest

shops

on

either

As

there was
a

no footway,

was the

and most usual custom to follow
across.

carriage

which might be passing

The
early

practice of erecting houses

on bridges frequently prevailed
being
to

in

times,

the

object

doubtless
In

secure

property

for

the

maintenance of the bridge.

many

instances, too, a chapel

was added«

A

curious instance of this custom was on the bridge at Droitwich, where

the road passed through the chapel, and separated the congregation from

the reading-desk and pulpit.

Another famous bridge chapel was erected

over the river Calder at Wakefield.

London Bridge had

a beautiful chapel dedicated
floors, the

to

St.

Thomas of
river, its

Aeon, and consisting of two

upper being on a level with the

Bridge road, and the lower only slightly above the level of the

apartment occupying the interior of the chapel

pier.

Another notable

building was the Bridge Gate or Tower, situated at a distance of about
one-third

of the

length

from the Southwark end, and forming the and that borough.
which could

boundary

limit between the City

Adjoining

it

on

the Surrey side was the drawbridge,

be lowered for the

passage of vessels up the river, and for defence of the City from the

south in times of invasion.
into Southwark,

Another tower stood almost
pier.

at the

entrance

on the second

Here,
1

in

1263, Simon de Montfort

forced a passage into the city.

In 147

the Kentish Mariners, under

the bastard Falconbridge, burnt the gate, and

some fourteen houses on
not, however, before
at the

the bridge.

Sir

Thomas Wyatt,

in
its

1554, was repulsed, after a deterdefenders
;

mined attack on the bridge and
his books,

he

had attacked the Bishop of Winchester's palace
cut to pieces
all

bridge foot, and
to their

" so that

men might have gone up
Over
this

knees

in

the leaves so torn out."
in the sixteenth century,

tower the

traitors'

heads

were fixed

having been removed from the Gate
leafy
wall,.

Tower, north of the drawbridge.

These gates were decorated with

boughs and garlands of flowers on Midsummer Day.

On

the west

THE THAMES
set

39

1492, was a statue of the patron and supposed guardian of the bridge and City, St. Thomas of Canterbury.
in

up

From

a period

which may perhaps be assigned to the

earlier part of

the thirteenth century, enterprising City tradesmen had availed themselves

of the excellent business situation of the bridge thoroughfare. A grant of the above-named period exists, made to the fraternity and proctors of
the bridge, of
le

one shop upon the bridge, between the shop of Andrew Ferun and the shop of the bridge." The shops with their various
''

quaint signs tempted the wayfarer with a great variety of enticing wares.

The

Bridge Records of the fourteenth century refer to the trades of

Cutter, Pouchmaker, Glover, Goldsmith, and Bowyer.

At

a later date

we meet with
de-Lice,"

the sign of the

"Three Shepherds," "The
"Bell,"

Botell,"

"Floure-

" Horshede,"

" Ravynshede,"

"Bore," " Cheker,"
the "Nonnes,"

"Castell," "Bulle,"

"Whyte Horse," "Panyer," "Tonne,"
"Three Cornysshe Chowys

"Holy Lambe,"
many others. The great
.

the "Chales" (chalice), "Catte," "Bore's Head," "Seint
" (choughs),

Savyoures," " Redde Rose,"

and

rush of water, through the narrow arches of the old bridge,
river,

which proved so dangerous to the navigation of the
usefiil

was turned to
Early

account by the citizens as a motive power for water supply.
in

attempts were made in this direction
take practical form
till

1479-80, but the project did not
erected under the

1582,

when waterworks were
river,

arches nearest to the City

bank of the

on a plan devised by an

Dutchman named Peter Morris. London Bridge was the scene of a grand pageant of chivalry in 1390, when two doughty champions representing England and Scotland,
ingenious

engaged
II.

in a passage

of arms or jousting

in the presence

of King Richard

and

his courtiers.

The

Scottish

champion was
by
Sir

Sir

David Lindsay,

who was opposed on

behalf of England
it is

John Welles.

The

Scotsman was victorious, and

characteristic of the condition of society

at that period, that a safe-conduct

was provided

for Sir

David Lindsay,
was

both for his journey to London and return to Scotland. Old London Bridge, after existing considerably over 600
finally

years,

demolished in 1832, when the bones of

its

builder, Peter of Cole-

church, were found beneath the masonry in the foundation of the chapel.

Before

its

removal, the obstruction of

its

numerous arches and

their

40

MEDIEVAL LONDON
in

ponderous sterlings frequently caused the river to become ice-bound
winter.

In times of
fairs

more than usual

severity, the frost lasted for several
all
is

weeks, and

with amusements of

kinds were held upon the

ice.

The

earliest

of these frosts on record
till

that in the year

1092, and they
18 14.

continued at frequent intervals

so recent a period as
these times,
all

Work
and

being largely brought to a stop

at

the Londoners disscenes,

ported themselves on the

ice,

and several prints of the
ice,

chap-books and broadsides printed upon the
but are very scarce.

have come

down

to us,

The swans which

are

met with

in the

upper reaches of the Thames,

belong to the Crown and
Vintners and the Dyers.

two of the City Companies, namely the
These Companies have by immemorial usage
as
it

kept a " game of swans,"
is

is

called,

on the Thames,

a right

which

strictly confined

to the

Crown and
a

those to

whom
young

grant

the privilege.

Once

year
to
;

an expedition

Crown may was made by the
the
birds

swan-herds

of the

Companies

mark
this

the

with

each
a
as

Company's distinguishing nicks
festive gathering of the

was

members of
the

the

made the occasion of Company, and was known
of the
district

" Swan-upping."

The importance which
seen
in

attached to this privilege in
in

former

days

is

nomenclature

Lower
Swan

Thames
Pier,

Street,

closely

adjoining

London
the

Bridge, where

Old

Swan Lane, &c., remain
to

to this day.

At one time
probably

the Bridge

House appears
of swans,"
usage.

have possessed
has

privilege of

keeping a " game through

but this

long

since

lapsed,

non-

the

From very early London Bridge

times

down

to the middle of the eighteenth century,
its

of Peter of Colechurch, and
only thoroughfare across the

little-known pre-

decessors, formed the
limits of the

Thames within

the

Metropolis.
at the

Quite naturally

therefore, the

Borough of

Southwark, situated

southern approach to the bridge, early became
it

a place of importance.

For many centuries

consisted almost solely of

the main thoroughfare leading to the foot of the bridge.

This wellwhilst

frequented route was under
localities

strict

order

and government, and skirting the

the

behind the highway on either

side,

river's

banks,

were the resort and hiding-place of lawless persons and offenders of every
description.

To

provide for the large number of travellers passing to

THE THAMES
and from London and the southern
Early
counties, Southwark's

41

main

street

was

occupied almost exclusively by inn-keepers.
in the fourteenth century the citizens of

London
a

petitioned the

King

for jurisdiction over

Southwark, v/hich

v^^as

harbour for felons,
in

thieves,

and other malefactors.
III.

They

succeeded in 1327

obtaininf^

from Edv/ard

a charter

by which the King sold the

vill

or

town of
Lordship

Southwark
•of the

to the citizens of

London, retaining

for himself the

Manor and
till

the appointment of the

bailiff.

Some few
in

years later

the inhabitants regained their former privileges, and kept possession of

them

the reign of

Edward

VI.,

when

the

Crown

1550, by another

•charter,

made
a

a second grant of

Southwark

to the City of

London

for a

valuable consideration.

Within
1550,
the

month of the grant of this charter, namely on 1 2th May, Court of Aldermen appointed Sir John Ayloffe, Barberfor City municipal purposes.

Surgeon, as Alderman of the ward of Bridge Without, by which term
the

Borough of Southwark was designated

An Act
borough.

of

Common

Council was also passed in the following July,

providing for the election of an alderman by the inhabitants of the

This ordinance was never acted upon, the appointment of

Alderman of Bridge Without remaining in the hands of the Court of Aldermen. The constitution of the ward was never completed, no
representatives were elected as

Common

Councilmen, and the
a sinecure.
It

office

of

alderman for

this

ward consequently became

has long

been held by the senior member of the Court of Aldermen, or the next when a vacancy occurs it is in seniority who is willing to accept it
;

offered to the senior alderman, and on his refusal to the next in seniority,

and so on.
City,

The alderman who
duly declared.

accepts

it

is

called the Father of the
his

and thereupon vacates the aldermanship of
is

own ward,

for

which

a vacancy

The

curious spectacle

is

thus seen of a ward

presided over by an alderman, but being without a constituency or any
local representation.

The Corporation of London, having

been Lord of the

Manor of

Southwark, exercised their rights through the Recorder of London, whom they appointed High Steward of Southwark. In that capacity he
held Courts Leet as Steward of the Corporation, charging the
leet juries

and appointing days

for receiving their reports as to nuisances.

This

42
slight

MEDIEVAL LONDON
jurisdiction

of

the

City

over

the

ancient

borough has

now

disappeared,

consequent upon
itself.

the

constitution of

Southwark into a

municipality by

Now, having spoken of
seen,

the

City's jurisdiction, which, as

we have

was of

a

very light description,

we must
1

revert shortly to the

earlier history

of the borough.
in the possession

The

year

347 found the larger part of

Southwark

still

of the powerful family of the Earls

De

Warren, whose ancestor, William de Warren, was a great favourite of
the Conqueror.

This young lord married William's daughter or stepEarly
in the

daughter, and received as her dowry some 300 manors.
reign of
for the

Edward
toll

III.

the Earl's Bailiff and the King's had a

common box

collected.

The

King's Bailiff had the box, and the Earl's
toll

Bailiff the

keys.

At

each division of the

the

King received twoIn course of

thirds

and the Earl one-third of the amount

collected.

time the manors became vested in a larger number of owners.

This

appears from the names of the manors, of which the principal were the

" Gildable Manor,"

or the

Liberty of the Mayor, the
(the

Manor of

the

Maze, the Liberty of my Lord of Barmesey
the Liberty of the Archbishop

Abbot of Bermondsey),.
of

of Canterbury, the Liberty of Paris

Garden,

and the Suffolk

Manor, which comprised the property

Brandon, duke of Suffolk.

Winchester House, situated west of
built in
1

St.

Mary

Overy's Church, was.

107 by Bishop Giffard.
:

It

has had famous occupants besides
;

the prelates
Stuart,

such were Simon de Montfort and his wife
of
Scotland,

and James
niece

king

who was

married

here

to
its

the

of

Cardinal Beaufort in 1424.
times, with

No

less interesting

was

history in later

which we have

here, however,

no concern.
great

From the Bridge foot, looking south, extends the called Long Southwark. In this main street was held
the end of the great

highway

the market of

the Borough, which also occupied the Churchyard of St. Margaret, at
thoroughfare.

Close

by, opposite St. George's
- post,

Church, were the cage,
correction

pillory, stocks,

and whipping

for
at

the

of oftenders

sentenced

at the

Court of Piepowder
the

Our
for

Lady

Fair.

Behind

Winchester

House was
Fair,

ducking-stool

sousing scolds in the river.

Southwark

Fair, or

Our Lady

was held

at

Michaelmas, under

THE THAMES
a charter granted

43;
It

by Edward IV.

In

1462.

occupied the main

thoroughfare of the

Borough, and overflowed on either side into the courts and inn-yards, invading even the bridge itself. In 1499, as

we

learn

from the Bridge House Records,

yj.

%d.

was " leveid and

gaderid of divers artificers stonding and selling their wares and chefres on the said bridge in the tyme of Oure Ladye Faire in Southwerke."

The Manor of Paris Garden took its name from Robert de Paris, who held the manor in the reign of Richard II. That part of the Liberty of Paris Garden bordering on the Thames was known as Bankside, and was the site of several early theatres. Long before the
legitimate

drama made

its

appearance, bull and bear-baiting flourished

at Bankside.

The

bull-ring

was the

special delight of the

Southwark
fro,
filled

people, and boats

by hundreds were always passing
city.

to

and

with sightseers from Westminster and the

Many
Such were
Bull

of the

Southwark inns had signs
Chained Bull,"

referring

to

this

sport.

"The
Dog."

"The
foot,

Bull and Chain," and

"The

and

At

the

bridge

Southwark,
its

was the famed

tavern of "

The

Bear," and the token of
a collar

proprietor was impressed

with a bear passant, with

and chain.

Of
at

the

theatres

which

took the place of these exhibitions, and were

first

contemporaneous

with them, the most famous was the Shakespearian playhouse known
as the

Globe.

It

was

built in
I.

was granted by James
here in

1593 for William Burbage. A licence permitting Shakespeare and others to act
in

1603.

The
it

building was of wood, hexagonal
as a

form, and
also

was used by Shakespeare
connected with
as
fire

summer

theatre.

Ben Jonson was

a
in

partner, playwright, or actor.

The

building

was destroyed by
its

161

3,

but was rebuilt in the following year;

site is

now

covered by a portion of Barclay and Perkins's brewery.
probably the oldest theatre upon Bankside, excepting

The Rose was
in

the early circuses in Paris Garden already mentioned.

These were

leased

James the

First's reign

by Edward Alleyn, the founder of Dulwich
;

College, and Philip
for several years.

Henslow

the
in

latter

also held

the Rose Theatre
aft:er

The Swan was
used

high repute before 1598, but

1620 both the Rose and Swan were occasionally used by gladiators

and

fencers.

The Hope,

both

for

bear-baiting

and

as a

play-

house, was situated near the Rose.

In 16 14 Ben Jonson's

Bartholomew

44
Fair was
first

MEDIEVAL LONDON
acted here
;

at a later date

the

building was used for
In

prize-fighting;

and

in

1632

again

for

bear-baiting.

1648

all

theatres were suppressed.

Southwark was famous
of the City of London
date,

for its inns.

The

Hostelers or Inn-holders
a
a

formed themselves into
still

guild at an early

and the Company

flourishes,

and has
" the

quaint old hall in

College Street,
its

Dowgate
1473
;

Hill.

A

curious

petition

was presented by
the Fratitle

members

in

it

complained that

members of

ternity, in being called hostellers

and not inn-holders, had no

by

which to distinguish themselves from their servants," and prayed that
they might be recognised as the " misterie of Innholders."

More than
of ostler,

500 years

later

we

find that the servant

still

keeps the

title

while the master has to be content with the roundabout expression of
hotel-keeper or proprietor.

Aubrey,
Reformation

the

antiquary,
inns

writing
rare
;

in

1678,

says

:

" Before

the
at

public

were

travellers

were entertained
literally a

religious houses if occasion served."

The word "inn,"

dwelUng

or abiding-place, was formerly used in a wide sense.
still

The

Inns of Court

retain the

name
in

;

but the town houses or resting-places of great

personages, whose business brought

them

to

London, were often

so called.

Thus, there were

Southwark the inns of the Bishop of Rochester and
;

of the Abbot of Waverley, south of Winchester House

those of the

Abbot of Hyde and
of Lewes.

the

Abbot of

Battle,

and the hostelry of the Prior

The inn of the Cobhams was the Green Dragon in Foul Lane, and was still known in 1562 as Cobham's Inn. But it is of the hostelry proper that we have now to speak.
Space will

admit of

little

more than an enumeration of the most
in

notable hostelries.

The Chequers Inn
its

Chequer Court, High

Street,

appears to have taken

name from

the arms of the
its

De

Warrens.

The

Boar's Head, though not as famous as

namesake

in Eastcheap,

was the

scene of a performance of stage-plays in 1602, by the servants of the Earls

of Oxford and Worcester.

The Tabard,

so well

known

as the starting-

place of Chaucer's Canterbury Pilgrims, was
Street.
It

on the

east side of the

High
as the

was

built probably in the

fourteenth century, and continued

until quite

modern times

to possess an apartment which was

known

Pilgrims' room.

Other well-known inns were the George and the Falcon.

THE THAMES
Among
the

4^
the

many

places of interest in

High

Street

were the

famous prisons of the Marshalsea and the King's Bench. was so called " as pertaining to the Marshals of England."

The former The Court

of the Marshalsea was held by the Steward and Marshal of the King's Both court and prison can be traced as early as Edward the house.
Third's
reign,

and they no doubt existed

at as

a

The

King's Bench Prison, familiarly
Marshalsea, from which
this prison,
it is

known
it

much earlier " The Bench,"

period.
closely

adjoined the
houses.

was separated by about twenty
Prince of Wales, wasseated on the

To

said,

Henry V. when
striking

committed by Judge Gascoigne
bench.

for

him when

Among

its

prisoners have been

many

notable persons, especially

in later times.

Tooley
derived
the
its

Street,

skirting

the river

eastward from the bridge foot,
St.

name from a corruption of Christian King of Norway, came to
the

Olave's Street.

St.

Olaf,
II.

the assistance of Ethelred

against

Danes
in

in

1008,

and destroyed

was then

their

possession.

He

pulled
his

London Bridge, which down the piles of the
This friendly
act,

bridge by means of ropes attached to

ships.

together

with

his

reputation as a Christian sovereign, procured

him

the gratitude of the

English nation.

No

less

than four churches in

London were
Hart

dedicated to this saint

those, namely, in

Tooley

Street,

Street, Silver Street,
St.

and Old Jewry.
Olave's Church was the Bridge
its

Closely adjoining

House, the
institution

centre of administration for the bridge and

repairs,

and an
"

hardly second in importance to any in Southwark.
has no other heraldic device than the curious "

Indeed, the Borough

mark

ol-

the Bridge

House, which
of the
the early

it

has adopted as

its

heraldic cognisance.

The

origin

Bridge House Trust extends back probably to the period of

wooden bridge which
as

existed before the

building

of Peter

of Colechurch's stone bridge in 11 76.

London
national

Bridge, being regarded,

and with good reason,
long
roll

a

work of

importance, attracted a

of wealthy benefactors.

William Rufus
predecessors)

and

his successors
tolls

(probably, too, his

Norman and Saxon

made grants of

and taxes

for its support.

Other benefactors included

Richard, arch-

bishop of Canterbury (Becket's successor) in 11 74; Cardinal
Petraleone, papal
legate to this country in

Hugo

di

1176

;

Henry

Fitzailwin,.

46
first

MEDIEVAL LONDON
Mayor
of

London

;

and numerous wealthy citizens and

ecclesiastics

who,

either in their lifetime or

by

their wills, left valuable property to
in early times

the Bridge

House

funds.

This was administered

by the
the

Bridge Masters or Wardens, two in number,

who were appointed by

Mayor, Aldermen, and Commonalty of the
This post was one much coveted

City.

in early times,

and was bestowed
duties

upon men of the
were
honourable
responsibilities.

highest position in the City.

The Wardens'
they
entailed
all

and

doubtless

profitable,

but

great

They had
if

in their

ward and keeping
tenements, or

the

goods

of the bridge, whether lands,
possessed
large,

rents,

commodities, and

not

absolute,

powers of dealing with the bridge

property by

sale or

otherwise for the profit of the Trust.

On

the other

hand, their responsibility was strictly personal, and unthrifty wardens

were removed from

office.

This was the

case in 135

1,

when

the wardens

were removed

after ten years' service for

showing

a deficit

of 21/. odd.

The

unfortunate wardens for the year T440,

Thomas Badby and Richard
the loss having arisen from

Lovelas,

owed no

less

than 327/.

9^, 10^.,

many

of the houses on the bridge being dilapidated and unlet.

The
in full

wardens obtained the King's intercession on their behalf, and the Court

of Aldermen compromised the matter by accepting 200 marks
•discharge

of the debt.
great
state
at

The wardens kept

the

Bridge

House, which was
Behind the Tooley

necessarily an establishment of considerable extent.

Street frontage the premises extended to the river, where for landing stone, timber, and
all

was

a

wharf

other necessaries for the repair of the

bridge, the houses
estate.

upon

it,

and the large property belonging to the
offices,

Besides the necessary
for
official

the Bridge
the

House

contained state

apartments

meetings,
fact,

and

sumptuous entertainments
in mediaeval

already mentioned.

In

the Bridge

House

times largely

resembled and took the place of the Mansion House of modern days.

The

building

itself

must have been pleasantly

situated

;

it

possessed

extensive grounds, which were laid out as a garden with
a fountain.

ponds and
" of swans,

The wardens
its

kept, as

we have

seen, a

''

game
in

and, moreover, a pack of hounds.
Besides
great service to the citizens of

London

establishing

their world-wide

commerce, the Thames

also largely contributed to the


THE THAMES
health and recreation of the inhabitants of London.

^y

Fitzstephen, writing in the twelfth century, thus describes the water sports in his " In day
:

the Easter holidays they play at a

game resembling

a naval
is

engagement.
fixed in the

A

target

is

firmly fixed to the trunk of a tree, which
river,

middle of the

and

in the

prow of

a boat, driven along
is

by oars and

the current, stands a young man,
lance.
If,

who

to strike the target with his
lance

in

hitting

it,

he

break

his

and keep
;

his

position

unmoved, he gains

his point

and attains
is

his desire

but, if his lance be
river,

not shivered by the blow, he
passes by, driven along

tumbled into the
motion.

and

his boat

by

its

own

Two

boats,

however, are

placed there, one on each side of the target, and in them a number of

young men
or when

to take

up the

striker

when he
rises

first

emerges from the stream,

'

A

second time he

from the wave.'

"

On

the bridge, and in balconies on the banks of the river, stand well disposed to laugh.' " *
fishing, as the

the spectators,
'.
.

.

.

Other recreation was afforded by
with
fish

Thames abounded

of

all

kinds, from the noble sturgeon and the salmon to the

shoals of smelts and whitebait.

The
classes

river presented a gay scene, being the great

highway
for

for

all

of society, both for purposes of locomotion and

conveyance

of goods.

The

traflic

between the court and

city

was naturally carried

on by wherries from London Bridge or Blackfriars to Westminster.

The King and Queen had
for approach

their

royal

barges,

so had

the

noblemen
stairs

whose mansions lined the south
from the
patron,
to
river.

side of the Strand, each

having

Gower
and

gives a charming picture of his

meeting

his

King Richard
his

II.,

on the

river,

when

the

King

summoned him The thinge."
fessio

barge

asked

him

to

write "

some new
his

poet

obeyed

by presenting the King with

" Con-

Amantis."
time to time, gay pageants were seen on the Thames.
at

From

The
to the

Sovereign would proceed in state from the Palace

Greenwich

Tower, or from the Tower, Baynard's
* This extract from Fitzstephen
is

Castle, or other residence, to the
in

from the translation

Thorns' edition of Stow,

i

842.

;

48

MEDIEVAL LONDON
sheriffs^

Palace of Westminster, and the City guilds accompanied their
or mayors on their

way

to Westminster to take oath of office.

The

1436 mention payments for the hire of barges to attend the sheriffs' show; but John.
accounts of the Grocers'
for

Company

the year

Stow, the historian of London, describes the water procession
innovation

as

an

made by John Norman, mayor in 1450. He writes: " This John Norman was the first mayor that was rowed by water to Westminster to take his oath, for before that time they rode on horseback.

He

caused a barge to be

made

at his

own
a

charge, and every

company

had several barges, well decked and trimmed, to pass along with him
for joy whereof, the
'

watermen made
"

song

in

his praise,

beginning,

Row thy boat, Of the more

Norman,'

important buildings which formed conspicuous orna-

ments of the
palaces.

river's

banks we

shall

speak when describing the

royal,

X

-1-

y.

'~-

-

s

a:

V3

^

-r oo

A
From

C1-.1.L

i.\

IHK LOLLARDa TuWER, LaMBETH.

a Draiuing by

J

.

Wykeham Archer,

1841.

British

Museum.

Entrance to

iiik Loi.i.aki»'

Towek, La.mbeih.
British

FromaDraiviugbyJ. Wykeham

Archer, 1S41.

Museum.

iU

The Guard Room, Lambeth

Palace.

From

a Drazohig by J.

Wykeham

Archer,

i^j,i.

British

Museum.

Crvit

oi

St. Stei'Men's, West.min.stkr.
I

From a Dnnuiiighj J.

f'yhiham Archer, 1S42.

British

Museum.

CHAPTER

IV.

RELIGIOUS LIFE.
Introduction of Christianity Foundation of the See The First Prelates: Mellitus St. Erkenwald, St Dunstan Monastic Foundations St. Paul's Cathedral : its Officials^ Services, Shrines— Old St. Paul's Described— PauTs Cross and Spital

Sermons — The

— The Jewry — London Parish
summit

Churches

— Lambeth Palace

and Chapel

Lollards' Tower.

On
many

the

of the hill which slopes on the south to the

Thames,

and more steeply on the west to the rapid stream of the

Fleet, has for

centuries stood a church dedicated to the great Apostle of the

Gentiles.

The

ancient statute-book of

St.

Paul's Cathedral

states

that

Lucius, king of Greater Britain, in the year 185 was converted by the
emissaries of the Pope,

who founded

three metropolitical sees, the

first

of which was London.

This legendary foundation of the See of London

has been associated by some writers with the Cathedral
Paul, and

Church of

St,

by others with the Church of

St.

Peter on Cornhill.
into

But

King Lucius has long ago been dismissed
Whilst, however,
it

the region of myth.
first

is

unknown how London

received Christi-

anity, the date can be pretty closely fixed.

" There can be no doubt,"

says

Dean Milman, "

that conquered and half-civilised Britain gradually
St.

received, during the second and third centuries, the faith of Christ.

Helena, the mother of Constantine, probably imbibed the

first

fervour of

those Christian feelings which wrought so powerfully in the Christianity

of her age, in her native Britain."

The memory
London

of

St.

Helena

has,

from

a very early period, been enshrined in

in

the dedication of St.
St.

Helen's, Bishopsgate, formerly the Church of the

Nunnery of

Helen,

the site having apparently been originally occupied by a

Roman

building.

The

parish church in Bishopsgate was built before 10 10, and close ad-

joining was the Priory of the

Nuns of

St.

Helen, founded about 1212.

In the year a.d. 314, more than a century before the departure of

50

MEDIEVAL LONDON
present at the Council of Aries
;

the Romans, Restitutus, bishop of London, appears in the hst of prelates

who were

and we may take
at that time.

it

for

granted that the Christian Church was duly organized

But

the advent of the English was the absolute and complete destruction of
it

for the time being.

The

English were entirely heathen.
St.

The end
became

of the sixth century saw the memorable mission of
his

Augustine and

band of Christian workers.
In the year 604, as

Ethelbert, king of Kent,

his first convert.

we

learn

from Ralph de
the

Diceto, the historian and
built

the

Church of

St.

Dean of St. Paul, London

Paul's,
;

" Ethelbert,
St.

King,

"

and

Augustine himself
of Tillingham,
still

consecrated Mellitus as Bishop of the See.

The Manor

one of those with which that King enriched the Church,
the possession of the

remains in

Dean and Chapter.
of this
first

What was
wood
or stone,
says that the

the form

Cathedral, and whether built of

we have no

evidence to show.

Maitland, in his History,

first

Cathedral was built in the Prastorian

camp of
for

the

Romans, and destroyed under Diocletian.
this

He

gives no authority for
there
are

statement, but

it

has

no inherent improbability,

several examples in
e.g.,

England of churches standing within ancient camps,
already seen, was driven

the recently discovered church at Silchester.
Mellitus, as

we have
King
to

away by the

relapse of

the East Saxon
faith

into

Paganism

after Ethelbert's death.

But the
See of

was firmly implanted, and

after a while burst forth

in strength.
his

Mellitus returned

England

in

February, 619, not
as

to

London, but
honour
in the

to succeed Laurence

Archbishop of Canterbury.

He

died five years afterwards (24th April, 624), a day long observed with

Church of London,
above

as

may

be seen in

its

ancient calendar.

Another of London's

early prelates deserves special mention.
his predecessors,

Fourth
and
said

in succession, but towering

both
in

in history

legend, stands

St.

Erkenwald, who was consecrated

675.

He
when

is

to have been the son of Offa, king of East England, and,

a boy,

to have heard Mellitus preach in

London.
:

Before he became bishop,
for himself, at
at

he had founded two famous monasteries
in

one

Chertsey
in

Surrey; the other for his
held
the

sister

Ethelburga,
to

Barking

Essex.

Erkenwald
canonised.

See

from

675

693,

and

was

afterwards

Large crowds of pilgrims flowed to

his shrine in St. Paul's.

RELIGIOUS LIFE
The day
of his death, April 30th, and the day of
his translation,

51

Novem-

ber 14th, were long observed as festival days in

St.

Paul's Cathedral.
life

At an
to

early period the retirement of a hermit's

became familiar

Englishmen, chiefly by reports from their countrymen who had travelled abroad. One of the most famous of these religious recluses

was Peter the Hermit, the Preacher of the Crusades.
were known
as

Another

class

anchorites,

and frequently lived

in or near

churches;

sometimes over the porch, or

in other curious recesses.

In the parish

books of All Hallows, London Wall, are many particulars of Simon the

Anker

or Anchorite,

who

lived

on the wall

in or adjoining the church,
faithful.
It

and received much from the alms of the
in justice to

must be added,

Simon, that he proved a

liberal

benefactor to the Church

of All Hallows.

The

greatest

man

in

England
first

in a

the

earlier

half of the

tenth

century was Dunstan,

who was

student and afterwards
after
his

Abbot
life
is

of Glastonbury Abbey.

His popularity during and
after him.

shown by the numerous churches named
the City;
A.D.

There are two
rebuilt
his

in in

and the old church of Stepney, which Dunstan

952

(just

now,

alas!

laid

waste by

fire), is still

called

by

name.

Some of

the great monastic houses were flourishing during the late Saxon

period, but the greater part

grew up

in

Norman

times.

The

ancient house of

St.

Martin-le-Grand was founded by Witraed

about the year 700, refounded in 1056 by Edward and Ingelric, and confirmed in its privileges as a secular college by William the Conqueror.

By

the Conqueror's charter,

St.

Martin's obtained
its

its

well-known right
ecclesiastical

of sanctuary, which arose through
civil

exemption from
Priory of

and

jurisdiction.

Of

the

magnificent

St.
first

Bartholomew,
prior, finished

Smithfield,

we have
1

previously spoken.

Rahere, the

the buildings in

123, the

work having occupied twenty
great
privileges

years.

Henry

I.,

by

a

charter,

conferred
to

on the priory and
in

hospital,

including the right

hold

Bartholomew Fair
establishment

Smithfield.

The

Norman Conquest brought

the

of

many new

monastic

foundations, but the policy adopted in founding them was to rob the Instances of this are everywhere to be parishes of their endowments.

Rufus gave the endowment of Chesterfield parish church to Rahere transferred to the Augustinian Canons Lincoln Cathedral.
found.

52
settled in his Priory

MEDIAEVAL
of
St.

LONDON

Bartholomew much revenue which belonged

to churches elsewhere.

an important settlement

The Templars and the Hospitalers had each The Templars first established in London.
new Temple,
in
1 1

themselves in Holborn, at the end of Chancery Lane, in 1118, and

removed to Fleet
of
St.

Street, or the

84.

The Knights
in

John of Jerusalem founded their magnificent abode Smithfield, interesting remains of which are preserved in the
crypt lately restored and the well-known St. John's Gate.

West

beautiftil

Among

the other early foundations in Fitzstephen's time were the

hospital and church of St. Katharine,

by the Tower,

built

by Matilda,

queen of Stephen

;

St.

Mary

Overy's Priory, at the Southwark foot of
;

London

Bridge, founded in 1106

and the great Priory of the Holy and

Trinity, without Aldgate,

whose prior was an Alderman of London.
were
the
hospitals

Among
St.

the

lesser

foundations

of

St.

Giles
St.

Mary

Spital, the

nunnery of Clerkenwell, and that of

Helen,

Bishopsgate.

The
of
St.

hospital of St.

Thomas of Aeon was founded by

Agnes,

sister

Thomas
At

of Canterbury, about twenty years after his

martyrdom, the

site

being that of the house occupied by the Becket
the Dissolution the whole was granted to the

family in Cheapside.

Mercers,

who

established

on the

site their hall

and chapel.

Besides the

injury done to the parishes

by the monastic system, and the consequent
evil attaching to

impoverishment of the parochial clergy, another grave

these religious foundations was their exemption from episcopal control.

This was

especially

the

case

with

all

the

Cistercian

houses.

The

monks founded by St. Bruno in the later part of the eleventh century, had a famous London house, still known as the These Charterhouse, established in 1349 by Sir Walter de Manny.
Carthusians, an order of

various Orders had standing rivalry

among

themselves.

The

Regulars,

who

retired

from the world

in

complete monastic seclusion, were bitterly

jealous of the Seculars,
parochial clergy and
prevails
*'

who

associated themselves with the Cathedral and

mixed with the people.

Much
The

misapprehension

on the subject of these religious Orders.

There was no
hospitality for

poverty " in Monasticism, whatever the vows.
their friends praised

which

them

so

much was

often a condition of their

foundation charters, under which they were obliged to entertain their
founders

when they

travelled that way.

A

striking instance

is

seen

RELIGIOUS LIFE
in the case

^3

of Bethlehem Hospital, which was founded solely for the purpose of " entertaining the Bishop of Bethlehem if ever he should
visit

England

"

a transparent ruse for maintaining in

luxury a master

who did not even wear a habit. The coming of the Friars brought to the City still more sumptuous religious houses. The Dominicans, or Black Friars, were the first to arrive
in
1

22 1, and were followed by the Franciscans, or Grey Friars, in
all

1

224, and

these communities soon spread themselves over
melites, or
in

the land.

The

Car-

White

Friars,

came to England

in 1240,

and were established

London between
later.

Fleet Street and the

Thames

in the following year.

The

settlement of the Crouched, Crutched, or Crossed Friars was nearly a

century

Their home was near Hart
settled in 13 19

Street, leading to

Tower

Hill,

where they were

by Ralph Hosier and William Sabernes.

The house
Bohun,
earl

of the Augustine or Austin Friars was founded by of Hereford and Essex, in 1253
;

Humphrey

and the nave of the church

has fortunately been preserved for use by the Dutch Protestant Church.
It
is

to the cathedral of a city that
its

we should look
useflil

for the

main-

spring of

religious
life

life,

and

it

will

be both

and interesting to
facts in its history.

glance at the inner

of

St. Paul's,

and the leading

Although the magnificent structure of the old
Great Fire,

cathedral perished in the

we have
others,

fortunately, through

the labours of Sir William
collection

Dugdale and

and

the

extensive

of

early

records

preserved in the cathedral library, copious material for obtaining a fairly

complete picture of Old
the cathedral

St. Paul's.

In the middle of the fifteenth century
officials
:

body consisted of the following
Archdeacons,
a a

The
and

Bishop, the
Chancellor.

Dean,

four

Treasurer,

Precentor,

To

these

must be added

body of

thirty greater canons, twelve lesser

canons, a considerable
St.

number of

chaplains,

and thirty

vicars.
;

Paul's

is

one of the nine cathedrals of the old foundation
five

eight

belong to the new foundation,
the remaining Sees in
tion were

were founded by Henry VIII., and

modern

times.

The
;

churches of the old founda-

churches of secular canons

those

of the new foundation
which, therefore, the

were monastic houses

—generally

Benedictine

—of

government had to be

reconstituted.

The

monastic houses were ruled

by the Abbot, whilst

in the secular churches

of the old foundation the

Dean

presided over the Chapter.


54

MEDIEVAL LONDON
At
St. Paul's,

then, the Bishop was the highest in authority, and

was

received with great honour and ceremony on his visits to the cathedral.

In his gift were

all

the prebendal
its

stalls,

and

his episcopal palace stood

close to the cathedral at

north-west corner.
the Bishop
;

The Dean was
always

next in

office to

he was elected from and

by the body of the Chapter.
one
of the

In the Dean's absence, the Sub-Dean

minor canons

fulfilled

his

duties in

choir,

and

exercised his authority over minor

officials,

but he did not occupy the

Dean's

stall.

Next
added

in dignity to the

Dean were the
VIII.

four Archdeacons of
St.

London,

Essex, Middlesex, and Colchester, the Archdeacon of
in the reign

Albans being
all

of

Henry

The

Treasurer had charge of

the goods of the church, such as vestments, service-books, altar furniture,

&c.

He
The

was

assisted

by the

Sacrist as his deputy,

and under the

Sacrist,

by three

vergers.

Precentor, with the

assistance

of his deputy, the Succentor,

directed the music of the cathedral.

The

Chancellor was the person

from
teach

whom
;

the schoolmasters of the Metropolis received their licence to

among many

other duties, he composed the letters and deeds of

the Chapter, and had committed to

him

the punishment of clerks of the

lower grade.

The Canons
Bishop
at

or Prebendaries were thirty in number, and, with the

their

head,

constituted

the

Chapter.

They
still

elected

both
stall.

Bishop and Dean, and each had an endowment attached to his

The names
the

of the manors forming these endowments
stalls.
;

appear above
the

Prebendaries'

One

of the

stalls

still

bears

name of

Consumpta per Mare
inundation which the

the estate was in Walton-on-the-Naze, and the
to have occurred about

name commemorates seems
in

the time of the Conquest.
It

was the duty of each Canon, whether

church or absent, to recite

daily a portion of the psalter.
recited

The
they
there

first

words of the section to be
of old, over the
Prebendaries,
stall

by each

still

stand,

as

stood

of

each

of the

Prebendaries,
fift:y

As

are thirty

and a

hundred and

psalms, the portion which each was

bound

to repeat

was about

five psalms.

Dean Donne, who was Prebendary of Chiswick
:

early in the seventeenth century, wrote

"

Every day God

receives

from

RELIGIOUS LIFE
us,

^^

however we be divided from one another in place, the sacrifice of praise in the whole Booke of Psalmes. And though we may be absent

from

this

Quire, yet wheresoever dispersed,
all

we make up

a

Quire

in this

Service of saying over

the Psalms every day."

Of these

thirty Canons, a varying
offices,
all

number

residing on the spot, and

taking their part in the daily
a constant attendance during

were called Residentiaries.

Besides

the canonical

hours, each Residentiary
this

was expected to show

large

and costly hospitality, and

practice

survived in part so late as the year 1843.

Some Canons
stalls as

preferred to live

upon

their

own

estates, others

held their

one of

many

pluralities,

for they

were sometimes bestowed upon bishops, dignitaries, foreigners,

and even upon children.

Many

of them being consequently non-resident,

each Canon had a substitute called his Vicar.
after the chaplains,

The

vicars

took rank

who

in their turn

were

inferior to the

minor canons.

These corresponded with the Vicars Choral of the present day.

The
Richard
a

twelve Minor Canons, a body as old as the Cathedral
as

itself,

had a Royal Charter of Incorporation
II.

a

College granted them by

in
seal.

1394.

They

possessed estates

of their own, and had

common

One of

their

number was

elected

by them

as

Custos

or

Warden, and two were

called Cardinals,

Cardinales Chori, an office

not found in any other church in England.
large

The

chantry priests, a
at the special altars

body of men, were bound not only to say mass

to which they were attached, but also to attend in choir, and perform
there such duties as were assigned to them.

Chaucer alludes to the eagerness with which some of the country
clergy, to the neglect of their
Paul's.

own

benefices, fought for chantries in St.
his

He

contrasts with

them

model parish

priest.

"

He

sette not his benefice to hire,

And let his sheep accombred in the mire And ran to London, unto S. Paules, To seken him a chanterie for soules,
Or
with a Brotherhede to be withhold
at
;

But dwelt

home, and kepte well

his folde.

So that the wolfe ne made it not miscarry. He was a shepherd, and no mercenary."

56
It
is

MEDIEVAL LONDON
impossible to estimate the

number of persons who
its

lived within

the Cathedral Close, and were connected with

establishment.

Besides

the minor officers such as the almoner, vergers, surveyor, scribes, bookbinder, brewer, baker, &c., there were the chaplain and household of the

Bishop, the higher

officials

already enumerated, the choir-boys, the bedes-

men and The

poor, and a host of others.
baker's task was no sinecure.
It
is

calculated that the yearly

issue of bread

amounted to no

less

than forty thousand loaves.

The

weight and quality of the loaves, varying according to the rank of the
persons supplied, were matters of sufficient importance to be regulated

by

statute.

With such an ample
life

staff,

we may

naturally expect that the religious

of the Cathedral exhibited a busy scene.

Seven times a day the

bells

of the Cathedral sounded for the canonical hours.

Nocturns or Matins
at day-break,

was

a service before

day-break

;

Lauds, a service
;

quickly

following, or even joining
six o'clock
;

Matins

Prime, a
Sexts, at

late

morning
;

service at
at

Tirce, at nine o'clock
;

;

noon

Nones,
;

three

o'clock in the afternoon

Vespers, an evening service
In 1263,
it

and Compline,

a late evening service, at bed-time.

was ordered that Vespers

and Compline should be
Besides
relics,

said together.

a

very

ample
St.

supply

of

vestments,

sacred

vessels,

and ornaments, old

Paul's possessed a fine store of service-

books.

The

greatest treasures were probably the codices or manuscripts

of the Gospels.

Of

these

no

less

than eleven are mentioned in the

inventory of the Visitation in
letters

1295,

some written
ritual

in

the very large
fine

of the

Saxon period.

The
and was

books included many

examples of
graduals,

psalters,
all

antiphonals, books
beautifully,

of homilies, missals, manuals,

&c.,

even
an

gorgeously

bound.

The
and

scriptorium

of

the

Cathedral

important

department,

was ably governed.

Here were

prepared, not only the service-books
statutes.

needed for the church, but the cathedral
wrote a bold, clear hand.
full

The

Pauline scribes

The

inks, both red

and black, retain their

lustre, as

may

be seen by the beautiful examples remaining at the

Cathedral Library,

Vestments, plate, and, unfortunately, books also have

all

disappeared.

The

loss of the latter

is

irreparable.

Like Sarum, York, and Hereford,

;

RELIGIOUS LIFE
St.

57
this

Paul's had
is

a

"

Use

"

of
In

its

own, and of

Use, unfortunately,
with
the

no example
sent

extant.

141 5,

Bishop Clifford,

conin St,

of the Dean and Chapter, decreed that the Divine Office
should
henceforth

Paul's

be

conformable to

that

of the

Church of

Salisbury.

The
two

feast

days were numerous.
St.

Those of the
feasts

first

class

included

feasts

of

Erkenwald and the two

of

St.

Paul.

On

these

days the bells were rung two and two before the peal was sounded

on ordinary days they were sounded

singly.

It will

be seen that there

was thus an unceasing round of
and night.

services,

extending almost through day

The

ordinary daily services were supplemented

still

flirther

by occa-

sional services.

There were the pilgrims
and
a short

to the shrines of
a

Erkenwald

and Mellitus
to

;

form of prayer, with

hymn, which appears
late

have been used on these occasions, was printed by the

Dr.

Sparrow Simpson, Sub-Dean,
occurred
in

An

extraordinary instance of this devotion

Henry
captive

III.,

when Thomas, earl of Lancaster, grandson of and cousin of Edward IL, who was then king, was taken
1322,
his

after

defeat

at

the

battle

of Boroughbridge.

Six

days
Castle

afterwards he was tried, condemned, and beheaded in his

own
their

of Pomfret by

a court

of peers, with

Edward himself

at

head.
his

He

was sentenced
life-record

as a rebel

taken

in

arms against the King, and

was that of an unscrupulous, treacherous, and selfish man. Yet, owing perhaps to his kindness to the poor and bountifiil Miracles were patronage of the clergy, his fame grew after his death.

whole

said to

have been wrought

at

his

tomb and

at

a tablet in St. Paul's,

erected to

commemorate him.
devotion
to this saint

The
to

people prayed for his canonisation, and thronged to the Cathedral
their

pay

of their

own making.

Leaden

brooches, representing a knight holding a battle-axe, have been found
in

London, and were probably tokens given to pilgrims who had

visited

the tablet.

The

practice of distributing signs to pilgrims visiting the

shrines of saints

was a very common one
These
in

fi-om early times

down

to the

Reformation period.

pilgrim

signs,

or signacula,

were often

worn by pilgrims

their hats as a sign of distinction,

and a certam

flavour of holiness attached to the wearer,

who had braved what

m

58

MEDIEVAL LONDON

those days were the real perils of a long and painful journey on foot
to accomplish his pious purpose.

A

similar practice, as

is

well

known,

prevails in the

Mohammedan

world, where a pilgrim to Mecca, the prophet's birthplace, receives the

honourable

title

of Hadji.

The form of
Thomas
at

the signs varied greatly, and

was generally a representation of the
issued at the shrine of St.

saint or his

emblem.

Many

were

Canterbury, the Canterbury Bell

being a frequent device
escallop shell,

;

St.

James of Compostella was represented by an

and so on.

The

objects,

which were small, and seldom

much

larger than a brooch, have been found in large quantities along

the banks of the

Thames, where the mud appears to have had

a pre-

serving influence

upon the bronze of which they

are made.

We

can

well imagine the joyous return of Chaucer's Canterbury Pilgrims, each

wearing a pilgrim's sign, when their long journey was completed.

Another curious
formerly called.

service at the Cathedral

was the mock investiture
or Childermas, as
it

of the Boy Bishop on Holy Innocents'

Day

was

On

the
is

Eve of

St.

Nicholas, the special patron of

children (December 6th

his festival), the children of the choir elected

one of their number to be the Boy Bishop.
in pontifical

At

St.

Paul's he

was arrayed

vestments with a rich pastoral staff and a white embroidered
St.

mitre.

On

John's Day,

aft:er
;

evensong, the

Boy

Bishop, with his
stalls,

clerks, officiated at a service

occupying the upper canons'
in

whilst

these

dignitaries

themselves served
clerks.

the

boys'

places

as

acolytes,

thurifers,

and lower

The

next day, the Feast of the

Holy

Innocents, the

Boy Bishop
rites

preached a sermon.
printed by the

Two

of these sermons have been preserved, and

Camden

Society.

The
Dean

foolish

and profane

were

sanctioned by so eminent a

man

as

Colet,

and formed the subject
this

of regulations drawn up so early as 1263 for the performance of
function at
St.

Paul's.

A

brief description of old St. Paul's, the finest in

many

respects of

our English cathedrals, must

now

be attempted.

Crossing the unsavoury
first

Fleet and ascending Ludgate Hill, the

Londoner passed

through
great

Ludgate

a

little

west of

St.

Martin's Church, and reached the

western gate of the Close spanning the street near the ends of Creed

Lane and Ave Maria Lane.

The

cathedral

stood within a spacious

RELIGIOUS LIFE
walled enclosure.
in 1285,

59

The

wall was built in 1109, and greatly strengthened

and extended from the north-east corner of Ave Maria Lane,

running eastward along Paternoster

Row

to

the

north

end

of Old

Change

in

Cheapside, thence

southward to

Carter Lane, and

on the

north of Carter Lane to Creed Lane, back to the great western gate.
Besides this principal entrance, the enclosure had five other gates or
posterns.
is

Entering

at the

western gate, the
its

little

church of
side.

St.

Gregory

seen nestling close to the cathedral on

southern

The church

seems insignificant, and helps to show us the vastness of the cathedral,
just
as
St.

Margaret's Church brings out by contrast the magnificent

proportions of Westminster Abbey.

The

western front was flanked by two towers, the northern of which
;

was closely attached to the Bishop's palace

the southern,

commonly

called

the Lollards' Tower, was used by the Bishop as a prison for heretics.

The

most prominent feature was the
roof to a prodigious height, 493
the north-west end of the nave.
arrived at

spire,

which rose from the centre of the
all.

feet in

The

Bishop's palace was at
it

Passing beyond

and

its

grounds, you

Pardon Church Haugh.

This was a goodly

cloister,

wherein

were buried many persons of note, whose monuments surpassed those ot
the Cathedral itself in
feature of the building
walls, representing the

number and curious workmanship.
was the striking
series

The
a

chief

of paintings on the cloister
metrical

Dance of Death, and beneath them
of Bury

description

of the allegorical design, translated from the French by
a

John Lydgate,

monk

St.

Edmunds, and
Within the

the author of the

curious poem, "

London Lickpenny."

cloister

was
St.

a chapel

founded by Gilbert a Becket, the father of the famous
Cloister, chapel,

Thomas.

monuments, and paintings were

all

swept away by the

ruthless

hand of the Protector Somerset to

find materials for his palace

in the Strand.

North of the cathedral was the
of
it

college of the

minor canons, and

east

Canon Alley.
east,

and further

Between the two was Walter Sherrington's Chapel, beyond Canon Alley, was the Charnel Chapel. This

old building was also pulled

down by
in

Somerset, and the bones removed
cart-loads, to

from the crypt beneath taken,
Fields.

a thousand

Fmsbury

The

soil

required to cover them raised the ground sufficiently

for three windmills to stand on.

The windmills

are seen in Aggas'

map


6o

MEDIEVAL LONDON
Street, Finsbury,

of London, and Windmill

now marks

the

site,

as the

name " Bunhill

Fields " perpetuates the ghastly Bone Hill.

At

the

north-east angle of the choir was the famous Paul's Cross.

In passing the east end of the church might be seen the magnificent Rose

window, one of the very
tower was the
bell

finest in all

England.

In the clochier or bell-

which summoned the
it.

citizens of

London
its

to the Folkside of the

mote held

close beside

Turning westward along the south
Chapter House, with

close, the traveller passed the

high-pitched roof,
its

the house of the Chancellor, and Paul's Chain, with

many

fair

tene-

ments, and

close

adjoining Paul's

brewhouse and Paul's bakehouse.

To

the west lay the Deanery, an ancient house, given to the church by

the famous

Dean and

historian,

Ralph de Diceto,
vicars,

At

the west end, also,
officials.

were the houses of the canons,

and many other
less

The

interior of the cathedral

was no

beautiful.

The immense may

length of the building from east to west, through choir and nave, was

very striking.
still

Some remains of

the foundation of the old building

be seen on the south side of the present cathedral.
In the pre-Reformation services no place was found for preaching
;

when
this
1

provision was

made

for the delivery

of sermons,

it

was by the
as lecturer

appointment of a special preacher
being

in later times

known
clergy.

no part of the duty of the regular
Swinefield, archdeacon of

As

early as

28 1, Richard de

London, and afterwards

Bishop of Hereford, was appointed preacher of the cathedral.

A
year

few

years later, Bishop Richard de Gravesend appointed a divinity lecturer,

and Ralph de Baldock

endowed the

office

in

the

second

of

Edward II. The two

great centres of preaching were Paul's Cross and the Spital

;

the former was used also

—and,

perhaps, frequently

as a platform for

exerting political influence.

Here Dr. Shaw,

the brother of Sir

John

Shaw

Lord Mayor, harangued the multitude in support of Richard the Third's claims to succeed to the Crown, whilst the Duke of
or Shaa,

Buckingham, Richard's trusted adherent, appealed on the Protector's
behalf to the chief citizens assembled at Guildhall.

The Jews had
ministers.

a troubled time in

London,

as in other parts

of the

country, being exposed to constant extortion by the Sovereign and his

Their principal quarter was

in the

neighbourhood of the

RELIGIOUS LIFE
present churches of
St.

6i

Olave and

St.

Lawrence Jewry.

The

thoroughfare

of the Old Jewry appears from Mr. Joseph Jacob's investigations to have been deserted by them prior even to their expulsion from the realm by

Edward

I.

in the year

1291.

Besides the magnificent churches forming part of the monastic establishments, examples of which fortunately remain to us in the churches of
St.

Bartholomew, Smithfield,

St.

Saviour's, Southwark,

and the Dutch
were numerous

Church, Austin Friars, the parish churches of the old

city

and important.

From

the inventories of their possessions prepared at

the Dissolution, and preserved
Office,
it

would seem
and extent of
churches

that

in

among the records of the number of their
almost
vie

the Augmentation
chantries and the

richness

their vestments

and service books, some of the
with the
Cathedral
itself,

larger

parish

could

Although shorn of

their

magnificence by the legislation of the ReforFire, the

mation period, and the cruel devastation of the Great
buildings which escaped the latter catastrophe
bear

few

evidence of their
are
St.
;

former grandeur.
Bishopsgate, with

The most
its fine

interesting
;

of them

Helen's,
St.

monuments

All Hallows, Barking

Olave,

Hart

Street

;

and
is

St.

Giles,

Cripplegate.

The
own

large

number of the

city churches

accounted for by the obligation of each parishioner not
at

only to regularly attend the services

his

parish church, but to

ensure the attendance also of his wife and household, apprentices and

journeymen,
to provide a

A

corresponding obligation rested upon the parish

officers

pew

or other accommodation for each parishioner in his

own

parish

church.

In the smaller parishes situated in the heart of
St.

the city this was easy enough, but in border parishes like those of

Botolph, Bishopsgate, and

St.

Giles, Cripplegate,

it

must always have

been a difficulty to provide for the large populations which such parishes
contained.

one very important building of which we have scarcely as yet made mention, for it lies outside London City, the residence of the

There

is

Archbishop of Canterbury
Palace," but the
title is

at

Lambeth.

We

call

it

now "Lambeth
occupants dated
In old

of recent

date— not

older, indeed, than the earlier
its

part of the nineteenth century.
their letters
fi-om

Up

to that date

"Lambeth House"

or

"Lambeth Manor."

times the

title

Palcae was only given to a bishop's residence within his

62

MEDIEVAL LONDON
cathedral city.
;

own

The

Bishop of London's Palace was in

St. Paul's

Churchyard

his residence at

Fulham was

his " house."

Lambeth (=Loamhythe, i.e.^ "muddy bank") had been Edward the Confessor's sister gave days a royal manor.
See
after

in
it

Saxon
to

the

of Rochester
the

;

it

came back
but

for

a

short
to

time
Prior
to

to

the

Crown
Convent
under

Conquest,

was

restored

the

and

of Rochester

by

Rufus,

and was transferred

Canterbury

the following circumstances.

There had been continual

rivalry between the Cathedral
St.

Church of

Canterbury and the Monastery of

Augustine.

The

latter

had asserted

high rights, and had more than once claimed that of electing the Primate.

More

than

one Archbishop, chafing

at

all

this,

determined to have a

Chapter of secular canons of his own, and so be independent of the Monks.

But the

latter so steadfastly

resisted this that
his point

it

was not

until

1197 that

Archbishop Hubert Walter carried

by exchanging the Manor
Darenth was nearer
Situated, as

of Darenth which he held for that of Lambeth.
Rochester, and
therefore

more convenient

for that See.

Lambeth

was, immediately opposite the Royal Palace of Westminster, the
at

Archbishop became
any attempt
at

once the stay of the Court, and also a check upon

tyranny

a position

which was strongly recognised on
really the establishment in fact,

more than one
what had been

occasion.
little

This was

of

more than theory

before, the

Primacy of the Arch-

bishop of Canterbury.

Of the
is

early buildings
is

little is

known.

The

oldest part

now

existing

the crypt, but this

not older than the early part of the thirteenth
it

century.

The

present beautiful chapel was built over

by the roystering

young Archbishop Boniface, uncle of King Henry the Third's wife, Eleanor.

He
St.

had roused the wrath of the Londoners by forcing
Paul's Cathedral and claiming
all

his

way

into

sorts

of uncanonical authority over
St.

the clergy there, winding
unmercifiilly with his
as
fists. is

up by beating the Prior of

Bartholomew's

In the result he built the Chapel of

Lambeth

an amend, and

it

certainly one of the

most beautiful examples of
has undergone

Early English architecture in England.
a vast

Lambeth House

number of changes.

The

great entrance gateway was built by

Cardinal

Morton (i486),

the

two northern towers by Cranmer, and the
Later than the period with which we

long corridor by Cardinal Pole.

RELIGIOUS LIFE
are concerned,

63 and Archbishop Howley

Juxon

built the present library,

almost rebuilt the garden front.

The
that

so-called Lollards' tower
in Lollard days

is

a

misnomer.

The
it is

building bearing

name

was

at St. Paul's,

though

probable enough
interesting
if

that

some of them were confined
cut

at

Lambeth.

But the deeply

inscriptions

which may be read on the Lambeth walls were mostly,

not
is

all,

by prisoners confined here during the Puritan

wars.

There
in the

one strangely pathetic memorial, immediately opposite the door
It consists

picture.
a

of a number of holes pricked in the wainscot beside

window looking

north.

Minute examination

reveals that

some poor

creature occupied his lonely hours by pricking out a rough plan of the

Great Bear and the surrounding constellations as he saw them from the

window.

CHAPTER

V.

THE FORTRESS, PALACES, AND MANSIONS.
St. Stephen's Chapel Westminster Palace Geoffrey Chaucer Abbey of St. Peter Baynards Castle and the Westminster Hall, its Feasts and other Solemnities The City's Banner-bearer JVhitehall Strand Mansions of Fitz-Walters Crosby the Nobility : Essex House., Arundel House, the Savoy, Durham House The Tower of London. Place, Bishopsgate

— —

The two
London and

most famous of London royal residences, the Tower of
were situated respectively
at

the Palace of Westminster,

the extreme west and east of the Middlesex bank of the River Thames,

and there lay between them, mostly
stately building

at the water-side,

many

another

honoured by royal residence.
is

Although there
bability

no

direct

evidence,

there

seems

every
that
is

pro-

that

the

foundation

of the
earliest

Abbey

preceded

of

the

Palace of Westminster.

The

documentary evidence
ancient

a charter

of Edgar, which details the boundaries of the

Parish

of

St.

Margaret, the great manor with which that King endowed the Abbey.

The date assigned to this document by Kemble is 971. From Domesday Book we learn that Westminster comprised
but this estimate
exactly the
is

sixteen

hides and a half, which apparently represent about eleven hundred acres,
unreliable

on account of the

difficulty

of determining
the

modern value of a hide of land.
in

The manor of

Abbot of

Westminster

the eleventh and twelfth centuries extended eastwards

almost to the River Fleet, and included a large part of the present

Ward

of Farringdon Without.

Edward
part

the Confessor resided at Westminster during the

greater

of his reign,

and

built

a

monastic church,
It
is

on the spot where

now

stands Westminster

Abbey.

quite possible that he also laid

the foundations of the royal palace of Westminster.

>>

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FORTRESS, PALACES,
Of

&

MANSIONS
east
cloister

65

the Confessor's church, an interesting rehc remains in the

Pyx

Chapel and the adjoining structures against the
south transept.

and the

The

building was cruciform, with a high central tower.
its

The good king
Queen Editha
Henry
structure

lived until the date of

consecration, but was too

ill

to attend the ceremony, for which he had

made

elaborate preparations.

presided in the place of her husband,

who

died almost

immediately afterwards, and was buried in the church.
III. rebuilt

the church on a grander scale, removing the older

from time to time during the progress of the new work. This great undertaking was begun in 1246, when the east end, the
and
the
transept

tower,

were pulled down, to reappear

in

all

the

lightness,

beauty, and variety of the pointed style, forming a striking

contrast to the massive and simple impressiveness of the
edifice.

Anglo-Norman

Twenty-five years
of the
to

earlier, in

1221, Henry, then a mere boy, had

laid the first stone

His devoted
reign.

interest
in

Lady Chapel, and was known as its founder. the Abbey Church continued throughout his
were provided by the king, or through
his

Funds

proflision

instrumentality, both for the building itself and for the costly ornaments

to be employed in

its services.

Relics were procured to be enshrined at the

Abbey, and thus

attract

the veneration and gifts of the faithful.

Many

were the donations from
all

Henry's own royal purse, but most valuable of

was the privilege
fair

granted by the king in 1248, permitting the Abbot to hold a
Tothill, with privileges

at

of an

extraordinary character,

all

other fairs

being ordered to be closed, as well as the shops of London
the days of
its

itself,

during

continuance.

Altogether, by various methods, a

sum of

nearly _£30,ooo was raised within the short period of fifteen years, and

applied to

the rebuilding of the Abbey.

Third's long reign the new building
consisted

By the close of Henry the had made substantial progress, and
chapels
in

of the Confessor's Chapel, the four
itself,

the

choir

ambulatory, a large portion of the choir
the chapter-house.

the transepts, and probably

The work proceeded

slowly, but steadily, for rather

and ended with the completion of Henry the Seventh's Chapel, the central tower never having risen upon its

more than two
foundations.

centuries,

The

Palace of Westminster, like

its

sister

building, the

Abbey, was
F

66
remodelled by
time.
It

MEBIyEVAL
Henry
this
III.

LONDON
with the architecture of his
the apartment

in accordance

was

monarch most probably who converted

known
its

as St.

Edward's Chamber into the better-known Painted Chamber,
it

by embellishing
name.
I.

with the masterly wall-paintings from which

it

took

In this

room was
destroyed
also

signed the warrant for the execution of

Charles

Another portion of the ancient palace was the old House of
nearly

Lords,

so

by Fawkes

and

his

fellow-conspirators.

The
in

later

House of Lords
of
its

formed part of the old building, and had
various names.
First
it

the

course

history

was known,

probably, as the Hall, before Rufus had erected the grand structure

now
was

known by

that

name, and in consequence of which erection

it

designated the Little Hall.

In Richard the Second's time. Little Hall
;

had changed

to Whitehall

and, again,

under

Henry

VII,,

to the

Court of Requests, when
" the Poor Man's Court,

it

was also known, according to

Stow, as

because there he could have

right without

paying any money."

Attached to the ancient Palace of Westminster was the beautiful
Chapel of
rebuilt
St.

Stephen, built by the
I.

Norman monarch
fire

of that name, and

by Edward

It

was destroyed by

in

1298, and was again
III.,

rebuilt during the reigns of
in

Edward

II,

and Edward

and completed
period.

1363

in

the

glorious
is

beauty of the architecture

of that

All that
its

now

remains

the crypt or lower chapel, but the building in
chapel, with vestibule, crypt, cloister,

original state consisted of the

and

a small oratory with chantry above.

The

walls were adorned with

sculptures and highly artistic paintings, illustrating scenes from Scripture
narratives.

The endowments of
III.,

the collegiate establishment, as settled

by Edward

were of

a

like

sumptuous

character.

The

yearly

revenues amounted at the Dissolution to nearly

^i

100, which provided

for the maintenance of a dean, twelve secular canons, twelve vicars, four
clerks,

and

six choristers, besides

minor

officials.

Between the years 1389 and 1391 the
at the Palace

office

of Clerk of the

of Westminster was held by Geoffrey Chaucer,
at the

Works who also

had charge of the works
Cross.

Tower and
later

at the

mews

near Charing

Rather more than eighty years

Westminster received the
the
father of

new

distinction of being the

home of William Caxton,

English printing.

FORTRESS, PALACES,
Yet another building of great
is

& MANSIONS
still

67
preserved,

historic interest, happily

the stately and venerable Westminster Hall. Built originally by William
as a royal banqueting-hall,
it

Rufus

has served this purpose at the coro-

nations of our English sovereigns

down

to the

reign of George IV.

Here occurred one of the strangest and most picturesque events in our national history. Henry II., with the assent of a general assembly of his subjects, caused his son Henry to be crowned in his own lifetime. The feast in the great hall presented a striking scene. The old king
himself waited on his son at the table as server, bringing up the boar's

head with trumpets before
however, predeceased him.

it

in

the accustomed

manner.

His

son,

Henry

III.

was

specially

distinguished
1

for

his

royal

hospitality.

On
The

St.

Edward's Day (January 5th),

241-2, he feasted, we are told,

an innumerable multitude, among
latter

whom

were the

citizens of

London.

would seem to have been somewhat unwilling
a penalty of one

guests, as they
shillings if they

were subjected by royal edict to
stayed away.
earl

hundred

On

another occasion, the marriage of his brother, Richard,

of Cornwall, Henry ordered thirty thousand dishes to be prepared

for the banquet.

A

more pleasing

feature of this monarch's hospitality

was
its

his

generous entertainment of the poor,

who crowded
St.

the Hall and

apartments year after year on the day of

Edward,

his patron saint.

The

great size and imposing appearance of Westminster Hall naturally

led to its use for public assemblies of an extraordinary character.

Here Here

the Parliament frequently met before the division into

two

houses, and

the

Lords continued to assemble
III.

in

it

for

some time

after.

Edward

received his august prisoner, John, King of France,

whom
and

the Black Prince had escorted in a triumphal procession through London.

Edward's grandson and successor, Richard
covered
it

II.,

rebuilt the Hall,

with

its

wonderful roof.

The

Hall, as

we have

said,

was

the scene of the

unfortunate

Richard's deposition, and the successfiil

claim of his rival, In
later

Henry of

Lancaster, to succeed him on the throne.
has been the scene of a memorable
a part of its traditions.
fortress

years Westminster Hall
trials,

series

of state

which occupy so large

Besides the Palace of

Westminster and the

abode of the
other places
the

Tower of London,

there were within the City of
as

London
One.

which were frequently used

royal

residences.

of

most

68

MEDIEVAL LONDON
Reverting to the

celebrated of these was Castle Baynard, which was built by Baynard,

a follower of the Conqueror.
forfeiture,
it

Crown

in

1 1 1 1

by
the the

was granted to Robert Fitz-Richard, son of Gilbert, Earl
the castle came by hereditary succession
into
in

of Clare.

In 1198

hands of Robert Fitz-Walter,
Barons'

who took

a

conspicuous part

Wars

in

the

time
its

of King

John.

At

a

later

time

Castle

Baynard was held by
service

lords, the

Fitz -Walters, subject to a military

due to the City of London.
of
Baynard's
Castle

The Lord

was the Chatelain and Banner12th
Sir

bearer of the City, and as such a later Robert Fitz-Walter on

March, 1303, acknowledged
important
rights

his service for his Castle

Baynard before

Robert Blunt, Lord Mayor of London.

The

City, in return, granted
vassal,

and privileges to
as

their

great

Fitz-Walter.

These comprised,
his hereditary

we

learn

from Stow, a limited jurisdiction within

soke of Castle Baynard, and a high military

command

in

time of war.

The

old chronicler gives a picturesque description of the

formal greeting offered to their leader by the assembled citizens.
scene forms the subject of one of the

The

modern

tapestries decorating the

saloon of the Mansion House.
"

The

said

Robert ought to come, he being the twentieth
St.

man of
come to

arms on horseback, unto the great west door of
banner displayed before him of his arms.
the said door,
his

Paul, with his

And when
is

he

is

mounted and apparelled
Sheriffs,
St.

as before

said, the

Mayor with

Aldermen and
on foot

armed

in

their arms,

shall

come out of
Paul,

the said Church of

Paul unto the said door, with a banner in his
shall

hand,

all

;

which banner

be gules, the image of

St.

gold
said

;

the face, hands, feet, and sword of silver.
shall

And
Sheriffs
shall

as soon as the

Robert

see the

Mayor, Aldermen, and

come on
from

foot
his

out of the church, armed with such a banner, he
horse and salute the Mayor, and say to him,
'

alight
I

Sir

Mayor,

am come

to

do my

service,
*

which

I

owe

the City.'

And

the

Mayor and Aldermen

shall answer,

We

give to you, as to our Banneret of Fee in this city,

the banner of this city to bear and govern to the honour and profit of
this
city,

to your power.'

And

the said Robert, and his heirs, shall

receive the banner in his hands, and

go on

foot out of the gate, with the
Sheriffs
shall

banner

in

his

hands

;

and the Mayor, Aldermen, and

FORTRESS, PALACES,

&

MANSIONS

69

follow to the door, and shall bring an horse to the said Robert, worth twenty pounds, which horse shall be saddled with a saddle of the arms of
the said Robert, and shall be covered with sindals of the said arms. Also they shall present to him twenty pounds sterling, and deliver it
to the chamberlain of the said Robert, for his expenses that day."

The

Banneret then
of the city,"
all

and desires the Mayor to cause a marshal, " one to be chosen for the host, and the citizens to assemble and
sets forth
St.

go under the banner of

Paul.

If they should

go out of the

city,

then Fitz- Walter was to choose two out of every ward, the most sage
persons,
to look to the keeping of the city. Lastly, for every siege
castle, the said

which the host of London should lay against town or
Robert
shall

have one hundred

shillings

and no more.

Baynard's Castle

passed from the hands of the Fitz-Walters and came into the possession

of the celebrated "

by the

Duke Humphrey," on whose attainder Crown, and, as we have already said, became one

it

was seized

of the royal

places of abode within the city.

Close by Baynard's Castle to the west, and at the mouth of the
river Fleet, stood the palace of Bridewell,
residence, of
still

more famous

as a royal

which we have already written.
its

Old Whitehall, with
royal

Tennis Yard and Cock
times,
It

Pit, belongs, in

its

splendour,

to
early

later

although

it

existed,
built
III.

under another

name, from an

period.

was originally

by Hubert de

Burgh, the great justiciary of the reign of Henry
passed,

From him
It

it

through an intermediate grant, into the possession of Walter
of York,

de Grey, archbishop

who

purchased

it

in

1248.

then

became, and long continued, the London house of the See of York, and was known as York House. Wolsey was its last archiepiscopal owner,

and had to surrender and

it

to his imperious master,
it

Henry

VIII.,

by whom,

his royal successors,
fire

was occupied

as a palace until its destruction

by

in

1698.
side

The

mansions of the nobility which lined the south

of the

Strand, with their river gates and stairs, have an interest almost equal

to that of the royal mansions already mentioned.

On

a site extending west

from Fleet Street to the present Essex

Street anciently stood a building

known

as

the

Outer

Temple, which, with the Inner and Middle
This mansion

Temples, formed the abode of the Knights Templars.

70

MEDIEVAL LONDON

Edward III., into the hands of the Bishops of Exeter, who made it their London residence under the name of Exeter House. It afterwards became known as Paget Place and Leicester
passed, during the reign of

House, from the names of two subsequent owners
wards Lord)
Leicester.

Sir

William
the

(after-

Paget,

and

Queen

Elizabeth's

favourite,

Earl

of

The

unfortunate Earl of Essex became in turn the owner

of the

property, which was then

known

as

Essex House.

Here he

assembled his followers on Sunday, the 8th of February, 1600- J, and

marched

at

their head into

the City, hoping to rouse the Londoners

to the support of his cause.

He

signally

failed,

and with

difficulty

escaped by boat to Essex House.
forces,

Here he was besieged by
his

the royal

to

whom

he surrendered with

friend,
little

the Earl of Southa fortnight

ampton, and paid the supreme penalty a
afterwards.

more than

Another
as

stately river

mansion was Arundel House,
Place,

at first

known
of

Bath's

Inn,

or

Hampton
It

the

London

seat

of the See

Bath and Wells.
owner, Lord

was next

called

Seymour

Place,

from another

Thomas Seymour,
for

uncle of

Edward VI.

On

Seymour's

attainder and execution, the property reverted to the
sold,

Crown, and was
6s.

with other messuages

the
it

moderate sum of 41/.

8^,,

to

the Earl of Arundel,

who gave

his

own name.
artists

This nobleman was
his

the famous collector of the

Arundel marbles, and

house was the

common

resort

of the most famous

of his day,

among them
of Gresham

being Inigo Jones, Vandyck, and Wenceslaus Hollar.

Here, too, the

Royal Society found a temporary home
College in the Great Fire.

after the destruction

Soon

after,

Arundel House,

said to have

been one of the

finest
its

and most commodious of London's mansions,
being

was pulled down,
Surrey, and

site

now

occupied

by Arundel, Norfolk,
of historic fame, which

Howard Streets. Further west we come again

to a building

took

a large part in the activities of mediaeval

London.
still

This was the
bears
its

palace of the Savoy, built in 1245 on the spot which

name,

now

occupied by Wellington Street at the approach to Waterloo Bridge.
its

Peter de Savoy,

founder, was the brother of Boniface, archbishop of
III.

Canterbury,

and uncle to Eleanor, the queen of Henry

On

coming to England, he was created Earl of Savoy and Richmond, and

FORTRESS, PALACES,
was knighted
the
in

&
at

MANSIONS
by one of
a
cost

71

Westminster Abbey.
of the
Earls

The
1325,
the

house came afterwards into

possession

of Lancaster,

whom

it

was

enlarged on a magnificent scale in

of 52,000 marks.
in

John of Gaunt became by marriage
1356
it

owner of the Savoy, and

was used

as

the prison-house of John, the captive King
fulfil

of
the

France.

Here he

lived for four years, and hither, on failing to

conditions of the treaty which secured to
returned.
his

him

his liberty, he chivalrously

On

the

9th

of April, 1364, he

died

in

the Savoy, and
burial.

remains were

honourably conveyed to
his

France

for

great

Duke of

Lancaster and

Palace at the Savoy were in

The much

danger from a rising of the citizens of London under their standardbearer,

Lord Fitz-Walter,
the year of

in

a

quarrel

arising out

of the citation of
real

Wickliffe before the Bishop of London.
in 138
1,

The danger became more

Wat

Tyler's insurrection.

On

the

12th of June

the Kentish rebels had complete mastery in London, one body marching
off

to

attack

Lambeth
set
fire

Palace,

whilst

another

assembled

at

the

Savoy.

Here they

to the building, breaking

up the gold and
with treasure,

silver plate, while, to

complete the work of destruction, some barrels of
rioters
fire,

gunpowder, which the
were thrown into the

supposed to have been

filled

blowing up the Hall and surrounding houses.

For
its

a century

and

a quarter the
as a

Savoy lay waste, and when
hospital

it

arose from

ruins

it

was endowed

by King Henry VIL
of the

Much
famous

interest

attaches to the latter
lies

fortunes

Savoy and

its

Chapel, but the story

outside our present purpose.

Many
notice.

noble mansions built in later times shared the beautiful
houses,

Thames

frontage with the older

which are the proper subject of our

Beyond the Savoy

to the east lay Worcester, Rutland, and Cecil

Houses, and then we come to Durham House, one of the oldest and most interesting in this street of palaces. It stood on the site afterwards by occupied in part by the Adelphi theatre, and was originally founded

Anthony de Beck, Patriarch of Jerusalem and Bishop of Durham, in Bishop Hatfield is said by Stow to have the reign of Edward I.
rebuilt

famous joustings at Westand Queen, minster, in 1 540, entertained at dinner not only the King the Mayor with the Court, but also the whole House of Commons and
it.

Here

the

challengers

in

the

and Aldermen of London, with their wives.

In

the

following reign

;

72
the

MEDIEVAL LONDON
Royal

Mint was

established in
lived,

Durham House.
set

Here, too, the

unfortunate
uncle, the
its

Lady Jane Grey
on
her
ill-fated

under the roof of her ambitious
out in great state from

Duke of Northumberland, and
mission to

portals

be

acclaimed

Queen

at

the

Tower.

We

will

now

again turn our steps citywards to the great highway
St.

of Bishopsgate, where, closely adjoining the church of
stands the venerable mansion

Helen,

still

known

as

Crosby Place,

Sir

John Crosby,

the owner and reputed builder of the mansion, was an
Sheriff of

Alderman and

London
in

in

Edward
;

the Fourth's reign, and served the city in

Mayor of the Staple of Calais. Attaching himself to the fortunes of Edward IV., he was knighted by the King on his approach to London in 1471. Four years later Crosby
Parliament

1461

he was also

died,

and

his magnificent

abode soon became a favourite royal residence.

Richard,

Duke

of Gloucester, whilst Protector, made this his

home and

the centre of his plots to secure the
told

Crown

for himself.

In the story as

by Shakespeare, the usurper bids the Lady Anne
" presently repair to Crosby

House
King,

Where,

after I

have solemnly interr'd
this noble

At Chertsey monastery

And wet
I

his grave with

my

repentant tears,
see you."

will with all expedient

duty

There

is little

doubt that we owe the preservation of the Great Hall
rest

and so much of the

of this

fine

building to the notoriety which

it

has gained from the allusion in the above passage.

In later times the
;

Hall was used for the acccommodation of foreign ambassadors
mayoralty
feast

many

a

was held within

its

walls, the

most famous recorded one

being that given by Sir Bartholomew Read, goldsmith, in 1502,
guests were most

when

the

numerous and "of great
was on a
scale

estate,"

and the provision made

for their entertainment

of unparalleled magnificence.

Far away below bridge on the right bank of the Thames lay another
Royal Palace, that of Greenwich.
to the

The Manor

of Greenwich belonged

Crown at an early period. In 1300 Edward I. and the Prince his son made offering " at each of the holy crosses of the Virgin Mary at Greenwich." The estate passed for a time out of Royal hands, but

FORTRESS, PALACES,
Humphrey, duke of Gloucester, enclosed tower known as Greenwich Castle, and
Placentia,

&
the

MANSIONS
200

73

a park of

acres, built a

which on

his death in

more famous Palace of 1447 reverted to the Crown, the Palace
early

becoming the favourite abode of the
It

Tudor

sovereigns.

now

remains to speak of that grand national
all
its

monument

which, for

varied interest, exceeds

sister

buildings in the ancient city

—the

Tower of London.
from time to time
the city
;

Stow has well described the various uses which
it

has served

:


;

"

A

citadel to defend or
;

command
England

a royal palace for assemblies or treaties
;

a prison of State for
all
;

the most dangerous offenders

the only place of coinage for

the armoury for warlike provision

the treasury of the ornaments and

jewels of the

Crown
built

;

and general conserver of the most ancient records
at

of the King's Courts of Justice

Westminster,"

The Great
the

or

White
by
injury

Tower was

at

the

command of William
in

Conqueror

Gundulph, Bishop of Rochester, about the year 1078. was done to the new work by a storm
and
were repaired and extended by William Rufus, who, for
for the erection of

Much
this

1092, and the fortifications

purpose

Westminster Hall, cruelly oppressed

his subjects

with taxes.
to

The

building of the subsidiary forts and defences appears
reigns of

have

continued during the

Henry

I.

and

most of

his

successors to the time of

The

custody of the

Edward I. Tower was committed by
office

the Conqueror to a
hereditary.
In

Constable or Governor, whose

was

at

first

or

about the year de
Mandeville,

1

1

40

it

was held by Geoflrey, grandson of Geoflrey
created
side

who was

Earl

of Essex

by King

Stephen.

Soon afterwards he took the

of the

Empress Maud, and being
Fulham.

besieged by the citizens, sustained the attack for a long time, and in a
sally

took the Bishop of London prisoner

at

The Tower
and Geoffrey
prisoner by

seems to have been regarded
retained his possession of
it

in those days as impregnable,

until 1143,

when he was taken
it.

stratagem, and compelled to surrender
fortress

The

possession of the
as

Tower

was always regarded by the English monarchs
it

of the highest

enabled them to overawe the citizens, and also furnished Longchamp, bishop of a safe retreat for the sovereign's own person. Ely, was left by Richard Coeur de Lion as chief guardian of the kingdom
importance, as

and

in

charge of the

Tower during

the King's absence in Palestine.

74

MEDIEVAL LONDON
Longchamp, and the
latter, after

John, by his influence with the citizens, prevailed on them to desert the
cause of his royal brother and
to

handing

John the keys of the Tower, escaped, disguised

as a

woman,

to France.

During the insurrection of

Wat

Tyler, the mob, through some unac-

countable negligence or treachery on the part of the guard, got within
the

Tower and overran

its
II.,

apartments, insulting the Princess of Wales,

the mother of Richard

and dragging forth from

their refuge in the

chapel Simon, archbishop of Canterbury and chancellor, and Sir Robert

Hales,

treasurer,

both

of

whom
safe

they

immediately

beheaded.

The
I.

importance attached to the
striking

keeping of the Tower appeared in a
period,

manner

at

a

much

later

when,

in

1641, Charles

roused the whole city and both Houses almost to a frenzy by appointing

and persisting

in

maintaining Colonel Lunsford as Lieutenant of the
universally regarded as dangerous and

Tower.
unfit,

The appointment was
at

and the King was

last

compelled to

recall

it.

It

may

be

mentioned, as a fact not generally known, that the Lord
every three months a
list,

Mayor

receives

under the sovereign's sign-manual, of the daily

pass-word to the Tower.

As
Charles

a palace, the

Tower
five
is

can boast of an almost continuous use by the

English sovereigns for
II.

hundred
first

years,

ending with the accession of
is

Stephen

the

King who
in
1
1

recorded to have held his

Court within the Tower.
in
a

This was

prosperous
temptation.

state,

and the security
also

when his affairs were not of the Tower offered him a
40,
resident
here,
his

great
his

John was
Lewis, the

a

frequent

and on
abode
at

death Prince

Dauphin of France, made
all

the

Tower previous Henry III., during
the chapel
in

to renouncing
his

claim to the throne of England.

minority,

constantly

kept

his

Court here,
in

celebrating the religious festivals with great

pomp.
the

These were held

the

White Tower, perhaps
;

most perfect Norman

building existing in England

a chaplain,

of

fifty

shillings,

conducting daily
the
throne,

succeeded
fortress,

Henry on
its

who received a yearly salary service. The three Edwards who seldom resided in their London
with
the
their

but
rank.

dungeons were
Richard
II.

filled

foreign
to

prisoners
for

of
his
in

highest

visited

Tower

prepare

coronation procession.
great state and with
citizens,

On
brilliant

the

preceding

day he was welcomed

pageantry by the Mayor, Aldermen, and

and

this city reception

became from

this

time an established

The Funeral of Richard
Frovi a MS. of Froissan's Ckronkks.

II.

British Ahiseum, Harl. 4380.

FORTRESS, PALACES,
cust-om.

& MANSIONS
in

75

Froissart gives a brilliant description of the grand tournament
in

London by Richard Tower a large number of
held in
a very different

1390, when the King entertained
It

the

distinguished foreign guests.
years later,
also

witnessed
Froissart,

scene

nine

chronicled

by

when Richard
carried

abdicated the throne in favour of Bolingbroke.

In the

following year his body was brought from Pontefract to London, and

on a

bier

from the Tower to Cheapside, where

it

lay for

two

hours, while 20,000 people, says Froissart, came to gaze upon his face.
It

was then carried to King's Langley, and interred
Friars
;

in the

church of the

Dominican

but was removed by
for

Henry V.

to the

tomb which
Neither

Richard had prepared

himself in
lived

Westminster Abbey,
in the

Henry

IV. nor

Henry V.
Agincourt,

much

Tower, but Charles, duke

of Orleans, and
prisoners
at

his brother John,

count of Angouleme,

who were

taken
here.

suffered
is

many
a

years'

imprisonment

Among
the

the Harleian manuscripts

copy of the poems of the Duke,

which contains the beautiful illumination, already mentioned, representing

Tower and London
With
the reign of

Bridge, with the intervening buildings, at the
It
is

time of the Duke's captivity.

reproduced

in

our frontispiece.
of royal tragedies
alternately,

connected with the

Henry VI. begins the Tower. As king and

series

prisoner

the

unfortunate monarch spent here most of his

life,

until after the battles of

Barnet and Tewkesbury in
entered the

1471, which finally crushed his cause, he

Tower once more,

where, a few weeks

later,

he was found

dead, not without grave suspicion of foul play on the part of the

Duke

of Gloucester, the brother of his successor,

Edward

IV.

Gloucester's

brotherly regard, whether real or assumed, ceased with the King's death,

and he found no words too black
late

in

which to paint the character of the
his

monarch, and so pave the way for

own

accession to the throne.

No
all

obstacle was allowed to interfere with his ambition, and the
is

murder

of the two young princes

the saddest

and most

closely associated of

the historical events which give the walls of the old fortress an almost

sacred character.

From
its

this

cruel

crime the Bloody

Tower
its

takes

its

name.
In the records of
later years the
little

Tower kept up
St.

tradition

of violence and
close

bloodshed; the

church of

Peter ad Vincula

by bears sad witness to the dangers besetting the path which

those must tread

who

seek for high estate.

CHAPTER

VI.

THE PASSING OF MEDIEVAL LONDON.
Changes in
to

Human

Thought
<S/.

in the Fifteenth

Civilisation^

London Life for the

— Paul's Future — The Great

JVorldliness

in

— Drawbacks and Neglect of Religion — Refection of Neglect — The Struggle for Better Things — Hope
and Sixteenth Centuries
this

in

Fire.

FEW words seem called for before we leave the middle age of the The world may be said to have entered on a new life in great City. The the wonderful movements of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries.
downfall of the ancient city of Constantinople, which had driven the
scholars

A

of

the

East

westwards,

especially

into

Italy,

led

to

the

great revival of learning in

Western Europe.
all

The

splendid works of

Architecture, and of Painting and Poetry,
to this source.
that of

trace their origin in part

East.

The discovery of the Mariner's Compass had led on to a New World in the West, and of the passage round Africa to the The new learning had produced the revolt against traditional
All this was wonderfully influencing English,
life.

authority in theology.

and therefore London,
over the
seas.

And

so

we have
and

exploits of rich citizens
in

We

have the establishment of places of education,
Christ's

London pre-eminently Sir Thomas Gresham.
mediaevalism
in

Hospital,

the

good

works

of

But there were unpleasing features
religion
led

as

well.

The

revolt

from
in

to

very

much wanton

destruction

churches and religious houses.
religious art
this
is

has often been
fair.

all

The destruction put down to the
a

of beautiful works of
days of Cromwell, but

not

There was

vast

amount of vandalism by " hot

Gospellers" in the days of Elizabeth.

found the beautiful
and " patched
restorations of
like

Thus Laud complains that he stained-glass windows in Lambeth Chapel all broken One may just note here that his a beggar's coat."
in his day,

them were broken again

and were restored by

THE PASSING OF MEBIJEVAL LONDON
Archbishop Tait.

77

And
;

even more

evil

was wrought apparently by

neglect and worldliness

the casting off Papal authority was too often
all

accompanied by casting off

religious restraints.
left

This

is

all

seen too clearly in the records that are

to us of St.

Paul's Cathedral.
sixteenth century.

Grievous neglect
It is

befell

it

in

the latter part of the

doubtful whether lightning or the carelessness

of a

workman much damage

set the lofty spire

on

fire

in

1561, but

it fell

in

and did

to the roof.

This was to a certain extent repaired, but
Inigo Jones built a

the glory seemed to have departed.
in
Italian style, as that part
it

new west
Charles
out.

portico
I.

had become dilapidated.
the Civil

was
the

endeavouring to restore

when

Wars broke

At

Restoration, things had, of course, become far worse, but while

new

plans

of restoration were being discussed came the Great Fire, which for awhile
settled matters.

During the reigns of Elizabeth and James the Cathedral

was a place of exchange and of public parade, merchants met to arrange
bargains and dandies to show themselves.
Earle,

"

is

like

that of bees
feet
;

;

a strange
is

The humming
still

"

noise," said Bishop

or

buzz mixed of

walking tongues and

it

a

kind of

roar or loud whisper.

All inventions are emptied here, and not a few pockets.

The

principal

inhabitants and possessors are stale knights and captains out of service."

This agrees with what Falstaff

tells

us; he "bought Bardolf

in Paul's."

And Ben Jonson speaks of Captain Bobadil as " a Paul's man." As the light of history falls on all this, it becomes clear to fair
good and
earnest

judges

that whilst there was widespread ungodliness and worldliness, there were

striving after

men belonging to the two religious parties, who were The Puritan divines in the early times of Reformation.
Their commentaries on the
:

the Stuarts were learned and most devout.
Bible are well worth study.

So are the men on the other side

Andrewes,

Hooker, Jeremy Taylor,
triumph and
during
all

for example.

The

collision

came, the Puritan
of

failure,

the

godless

reaction.

this

time again exhibits beautiful

London examples of men who saw

The

history

opposite sides of the same good shield, and strove for the love of God to make the world better. The hand of God was visible, as J. R. Green

shaping the course of the middle age, and we believe and are assured that there is still a nobler future for the City which we love,

once put

it,

under the same Fatherly and Almighty hand.

78

THE PASSING OF MEDIAEVAL LONDON.
The
epitaph of the noble mediaeval city which

we have endeavoured

to describe
Street Hill
:

—" In

is

engraved on the north side of the

Monument on

Fish

the year of Christ 1666, the second day of September,

eastward from hence at the distance of two hundred and two feet (the
height of this column), about midnight, a most terrible
fire

broke out,

which, driven on by a high wind, not only wasted the adjacent parts,

but also places very remote, with incredible noise and fury.
eighty-nine churches, the City gates, Guildhall,
hospitals,

It

consumed

many

public structures,

schools, libraries, a vast

number of

stately edifices, thirteen
streets.

thousand two hundred dwelling-houses, four hundred
six

Of

the

and twenty wards

it

utterly destroyed fifteen, and left eight others

shattered and half-burnt.
thirty-six acres,

from the

The ruins of the City were four hundred and Tower by the Thames side to the Temple
it

Church, and from the north-east along the City wall to Holborn Bridge.

To

the estates and fortunes of the citizens

was

merciless, but to their

lives

very favourable, that

it

might

in all things resemble the last con-

flagration of the world.

The

destruction was sudden, for in a small space

of time the City was seen most flourishing, and reduced to nothing.

Three days

after,

when

this fatal fire
all, it

had

baffled

all
it

human
were by

counsels and
a

endeavours in the opinion of

stopped as

command

from Heaven, and was on every side extinguished."

1

;

INDEX
Aggas' Map of London, 20, 59 Aldermanbury, 22 Aldermen, 5, 23, 37, 41 Aldersgate, 10 Aldgate, 10 Alfred, King, i 3 Alfune, I 2
,

Bridge House, The, 43, 45 Bridge Without, Ward of, 41

Budge Row,

8

Bull-baiting, 43 Bunhill Fields, 16,

60

Burbage, William, 43

Burgh, Hubert de, 13, 69
Cade, Jack, 18

Alleyn, Edward, 43 Anchorites, j i

Angevins, The, 5 Arches, Court of, 9

Arms, City, 18 Arundel House, 70
Athelstan, 17

Aubrey, 44
Augustinians,

The,

13, 53

AylofFe, Sir John, 41

The, 13, 53 Carpenter, John, 29, 30 Carthusians, 13, 53 Caxton, 19, 66 Charles L, 74, ']'] Charter of William L, 4 Charterhouse, The, 52 Chaucer, 26, 55, 66 Cheapside, 8
Carmelites,
Christ's Hospital, 19,

Bankside, 43 Bartholomew

76
the Great, 20
;

Fair, 26, 5

Churches— All Hallows

All

Basing Hall, 8 Baynard's Castle, 10, 47, 68
Beaufort, Cardinal, 42

Beck, Anthony de, 71 Becket, Gilbert, 59
Becket,

Thomas, Archbishop of Canterbury,
52
16, 53

Hallows, London Wall, 51 ; All Hallows, Barking, 61 ; Austin Friars, 53, 61; St. Bartholomew the Great, 13,23, 61 ; St. Bartholomew the Less, 15 ; St. Botolph, 61; St. Clement Danes, 7; St. Dunstan, Stepney, 5 i ; St George,

6, II,

42;

St.

Giles,

Cripplegate,

10,

61;

Bethlehem Hospital,
1

Bishops of London Maurice, 4, 1

— Mellitus,
;

3,

Restitutus,

50; 50

St. Gregory, 7; St. Helen, Bishopsgate, 49, 61; Holy Trinity, Aldgate, 13;

St.

Katharine,

52
St.

;

St.

Lawrence,
St.
St.

Erkeiiwald, 50 ; Clifford, 57 Bishopsgate, 10, 72 Black Death, The, 18

Jewry, 23,61;

Magnus, 26;
11;

Martin's -le- Grand,

Martin
(St.

Pomeroy, 10
Saviour's),

;

St.

Mary Overy

Black Friars, The, see Dominicans
Blackfriars,

13,

47

Bow,

8, 9,

23;

42, 61 ; St. Mary-!cSt. Michael, Crooked

Black Prince, The, 29, 67 Blackwell Hall, 30, 3 i Boniface, Archbishop, 62 Borough, The, see Southwark Boy Bishop, The, 58 Bread Street, 8 Bridewell, 19, 69

Lane, 15, 20 ; St. Mildred, 8 ; St. Olave, Hart Street, 13, 61 ; St. Olavc, Jewry, 61; St. Peter, Cornhill, 49; St. Peter ad Vincula, 75; St. Thomas of

Aeon, 38 Cistercians, The,
Civic rule, 22

1

1,

I3> 5^

1

8o

INDEX
Fleet Prison,
Fleet River,

Cnichten Guild, 12 Common Council, The, 19, 28, 41 Companies, The Livery 22, 27, 31-35 ; Barber Surgeons, 32; Butchers, 32; Cappers, 32; Cloth Dressers, 32;

The, 24 The, 19, 58 Folkmote, The, 5, 8, 60 Franciscans, The. 13, 53
Friday Street, 9 75

Drapers, 31, 32; Dyers, 40; FishGrocers, 32, 48 ; Goldmongers, 32 smiths, 32 ; Haberdashers, 32 ; Hos;

Froissart,

Gates,

The

City, 10,

24
42

tellers,

44; Linen Armourers (Merchant
;

GifFard, bishop of Winchester, 13,

Taylors), 33

Leathersellers,
;

14,

34;

Mercers, 14, 33, 52

Musicians, 32 ; Parish Clerks, 14, 32, 35 ; Pepperers, 32; Pewterers, 32; Saddlers, 31; Skinners, 33; Vintners, 32, 40;

Globe Theatre, The, 43 Gower, 47 Greenwich, 47, 72 Gresham College, 70 Gresham, Sir Thomas, j6
Grey, Lady Jane, 72 Grey Friars, The, see Franciscans.

Weavers, 3 i Corporation of London, 2, 41 Courts Leet, 41 Courtenay, Archbishop, 12
Cripplegate, 10

Grub

Street, 16

Guildhall,

The,

8,

22

Crosby, Sir John, 72 Crusades, The, 12

Guilds, see Companies Gundulph, bishop of Rochester, 73
13, 53

Crutched

Friars,

The,

Crypts, Ancient, 23

Curfew, The,

1

Danes, The, 3, 5, 17 Dominicans, The, 12, 53 Donne, dean of St. Paul's, 54 Dunstan, 51

Henry L, 5, 27 Henry IL, 6, 32, 6j Henry IIL, 6, 32,65,67, 74 Henry IV., 18, 27, 29, 35,75 Henry V., 27, 29, 45 Henry VL, 34, 75 Henry VII., 7, 66, 71 Henry VIII., 19, 53
Holborn, 19

Durham House,

71

Holy Trinity, Priory of
East Cheap, 9 Editha, Queen, 61
Hospitalers, 52

the, 12, 13

Hospitals, 15, 19, 52

Edward the Confessor, 6, 64 Edward L, 27, 61, 66, 72 Edward II„ 33, 57 Edward IIL, 9, 33, 34, 45, 66, 67 Edward IV., 10, 19, 43 Edward VL, lo, 19, 41
Elizabeth, Queen, 19 Epidemics The Black

Houndsditch, 19, 20 Humphrey, duke of Gloucester, 69, 73
Ingelric,

11,51

Inns, 43, 44_ Insignia, Civic, 28
Isabella,

Queen, 29
43
18,

Death,
19
;

in

Sweating Sickness, 1603, 21

18; The The Plague

James

I.,

Jews, The,

60

Episcopal Residences, 15 Essex, Earl of, 70
Ethelbert, 50

John, King, 25, 73 John of Gaunt, 71
Jones, Inigo, 77 Jonson, Ben, 43, jy

Ethelred, 17 Etymology of London, Exeter, Earl of, 70
Fairs,

i

King's Bench, Prison of the, 45

26

Finsbury Fields, 17, 19, 59 Fire of London, The, i, 53, 78
Fitzailwin,

Lambeth, 61-63, 76 Lancaster, Thomas, earl
Lindsay, Sir David, 39

of,

57

Henry, 17, 45

Fitzstephen, 11, 46, 52 Fitz- Walter, Robert, 68, 71

Liverymen, 33 Lollards, 12, 63

London Bridge,

21,

36-40

INDEX
London, Etymology of the name,
of the City, 1-9 London Stone, 7 London Wall, 17
i
;

8i

Growth

St.
St.
St.

Bartholomew's Priory, 12, 13, 51
Botolph, 3

Helena, 49
Helen's Nunnery, 14, 50 John of Jerusalem, Priory of, 13, Mary Overy, Priory of, 13, 52
23, 52

St.

Longchamp, bishop of
Lucius, King,

Ely,

Myth

of, 2,

73 49

St.
St.

Ludgate, 10, 58 Lydgate, John, 59

St, Olaf,

45

St. Paul's Cathedral, 4, 7, 49,

53-60

Mandeville, Geoffrey de, 73 Manny, Sir Walter, 52

Thomas's Hospital, 19 Savoy, The, 70
St.

Sebert, King, 3, 6

Marching Watch, The, 27 Marshalsca Prison, The, 45 Mary, Queen,
i

Matilda,

5

Mayor, Office of, 23, 24 ; Election of, 25, 34; Duties of, 25; Household, 27; Hunting Privileges, 27 Mayors, Lord Sir Henry Barton, 18 ;

Seymour, Lord Thomas, 70 Shakespeare, 43 Shaw, Dr., 60 Sheriffs, The, 23, 28 Signs. Tradesmen's 39
Smithfield, 18 Somerset, The Protector, 3c, 59 Southwark, 13, 19, 40-45


;

Richard
14, 29,

le

Breton, 22

;

Whittington,
Fitz-

Southwark

Fair,

42

30; Henry Wallis, 24; John

Wells, 26;
aihvin,

Andrew Aubrey, 30; 45 John Norman, 48
3,

Stephen, King, 5, 73, 74 Stow, John, 10, 22, 48, 66, 71, 73 Strand, The, 21, 30
Suffolk,

Mellitus, Bishop,

50

Duke

Mercers' School, i 5 Monasticism, 11-15, 5^~53 Montfort, Simon de, 38, 42 Moor Fields, 16 Mowbray, John, duke of Norfolk, 36

Swans on the

of, 42 Thames, 40

Templars, The, 52

Temple, The, 69 Thames, The, 36, 47 6^
Theatres, 43

Newgate, 10 Newgate Street, 7 Normans, The, 5, 17

Old Jewry, 61
Orleans, Charles, duke
Pageants, 9, 26, 27, 39
Paris Garden, 42, 43 Paul's Chain, 4, 60
of,

Tooley Street, 21, 45 Tournaments, 9, 19, 39, 71, 75 Tower of London, 5, 37, 64, 73-75 Trades, 27, 32, 39
Trees, City, 10

37, 75

Tyler, Wat, 18, 71, 74

Walter, Hubert, archbishop of Canterbury, 62 Walworth, Sir William, 18

Paul's Cross, 8,

60
of,

Warren, William

de,

42

Peter of Colechurch, 17, 37, 39

Piepowder, Court

26, 42

Plantagenets, The, 18
Prisons, 24, 25, 47

Punishments for Trade Oifences, 22, 24
Rahere, 12, 51 Religious Houses, 11-15, 51-53
Religious Life,
,

Watling Street, 7 Welles, Sir John, 39 Westminster, 2, 7 Westminster Abbey, 6, 64 Westminster Hall, 66, 67 Westminster Palace, 65-67

White

Friars,

The,

see

Carmelites

Whitehall, 21, 66, 69

49-63

White Tower, The,

Richard I 73 Richard IL, 18, 30, 33, 35, 39, 47, 55, 66,
67,

74
City,

Richard IIL, 30, 60, 72, 75

5, 73 Whittington, Sir Richard, 14, 29, 30 William L, 4, 6, 11 William IL, 45, 51, 66, 73 Winchester House, 42

Roman
St.

The,

i,

2

Wolsey, Cardinal, 69 Wyatt, Sir Thomas, 38
Wyclif, 12, 18.

Augustine, 50

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JOSHUA REYNOLDS.
Collection at Hertford House.
3^.
'

By Claude Phillips, Keeper
Cheaper Edition.
7s.

of the Wallace With two Portraits on Copper,
criticism,

6d.

Also an Edition with nine Portraits,
is

6d
and very readable
withal.'

The book

of solid worth,

full

of accurate information

and sound

Times.

THE EARLIER ENGLISH WATER-COLOUR PAINTERS.
'

By

Cosmo Monkhouse. With many Illustrations, 6s. A full and accurate sketch of the masters of a distinctively English

art.

'

— Times.

LONDON SEELEY &
:

CO., LTD., 38

GREAT KUSSELL STREET.

D

000 014 819

7

II

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