Tagged with London

Flirting with the Prosecution?

This seems a case of some legal gents being flumoxed by a pretty face, or was it late in the day and they were desperate for last orders at the local hostelry? This is from 1812: COMMON SCOLD- Hannah Monroe, a decent-looking young woman was indicted for misdemeanour being a Common Scold and disrupter of … Continue reading

English Towns

These days, the soaring cost of housing means that a growing number of people who work in London cannot afford to live there. A few years back I read that the closest a London fireman could afford to buy a house was in mid Wales. That’s why traffic to the capital is so bad on … Continue reading

Spaniards Aping the Brits

London in the 18th century became the place to make money, but also to pick up new skills to take home and make money from. I recently discovered that while Harrison was working on his famous Longtitude clock, he welcomed people to come and view it, despite the fact that he was chasing the huge … Continue reading

Still shocking After 4 Centuries

We are often told how many murders and other acts of violence we are exposed to in the modern media, and how this makes us, especially kids, immune to its effects, but a production of Shakespeare’s Titus Andronicus is showing this is far from the case. It includes 14 murders, rape, mutilation and a final … Continue reading

In Ruins

Art historian Christopher Woodward’s brilliant book, In Ruins begins with a description of Charlton Heston as an astronaut returned to earth in the closing scene of Planet of the Apes when he sees the ruined Statue of Liberty and realised what happened to the idiots that had been the all conquering human race. In a csimilar vein, … Continue reading

London Vs England

Capital cities are always a world apart from their hinterlands, and London, being by far the largest city in the realm, is the centre of almost everything – government, banking, the arts, tourism etc. Property prices are too high for many people to live there, but the wages are also considerable, so many people are … Continue reading

Women and Wealth

I’ve just started on a wonderful book, The Wealth of Wives Women, Law and Economy in Late Medieval London. The title sounds a bit dry, but it is really fascinating as the author, Barbara A. Hanawalt has spent years trawling through the various London archives to piece together some idea of the role of women … Continue reading

Shelley and Gunpowder at School

Here’s another gem from the book ‘And So to Bath’, this time dealing with the school on the outskirts of London, opposite Syon House, where the engineer Sir John Rennie, poet Shelly and his biographer Medwin were sent.  At the time of the author’s visit, the house seemed on the brink of demolition, but it … Continue reading

Streets of London and Elsewhere

Streets of London and Elsewhere

England’s cities, especially London, grew without the modern advantages of town planning and building regulations. Archenhoz describes London of the 1760s as “the worst paved city in Europe. From almost every house an enormous sign was suspended, which darkened the street, often fell down, and sometimes killed people. Malcolm  notes ‘the streets were generally badly … Continue reading