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Chaucer of “the whole of the dwelling-house above the gate of Algate with the rooms built over, and a certain cellar beneath the same gate, on the south side of that gate, and the appurtenances thereof,” he undertaking that he “will competently and sufficiently maintain and repair” them under penalty of being “ousted” on the neglect to do so. On the other hand he is not to let any portion of the said gate or dwelling, and “in time of defence of the city” the mayor and authorities are, when, and as often as it shall be necessary, to be free “to enter the said house and rooms, and to order and dispose of the same, in such times, and in such manner as shall then seem to us to be most expedient.”1 Great evils resulted from the occupation of the city gates as residences, and in 1386 the city enacted “that no grant shall from henceforth in any way be made unto any person, of the gates, or of the dwelling-houses above the gates, etc.
On her accession in 1553, Queen Mary entered London by this gate; the princess Elizabeth, escorted by 2000 horse, was in waiting to receive her, and the greeting of the sisters was in appearance warm and affectionate.
This is one and the first of the four principal gates, and also one of the seven double gates mentioned by Fitzstephen. It hath had two pair of gates, though now but one; the hooks remaineth yet. Also there hath been two portcloses : the one of them remaineth, the other wanteth ; but the place of letting down is manifest.Stow, p. 12. The gate described by Stow was taken down in 1606, and a new one erected in its stead, the ornaments of which are dwelt upon at great length by Stow's continuators. Two Roman soldiers stood on the outer battlements, with stone balls in their hands, ready to defend the gate: beneath, in a square, was a statue of James I., and at his feet the royal supporters. On the city side stood a large figure of Fortune, and somewhat lower, so as to grace each side of the gate, gilded figures of Peace and Charity, copied from the reverses of two Roman coins, discovered whilst digging the new foundations for the gate. The whole structure was two years in erecting. The inscription, from the amusing assumption of the Corporation, is worth preserving :
Senatus Populus Que Londinensis
Humfrey Weld, Maior. Many things that seem foul in the doing, do please, done. . . . You see gilders will not work but inclosed. ... How long did the canvas hang before Aldgate? Were the people suffered to see the City's Love and Charity, while they were rude stone, before they were painted and burnished ?-Ben Jonson, The Silent Woman, Act. i. Sc. I. The "City's Love and Charity” were standing in 1760 ;the other statues had been long removed. The apartments over the gate were in the early part of the 18th century appropriated to one of the Lord
1 Riley, Memorials, p. 377.
2 London and its Environs, 1761
Mayor's carvers, but afterwards used as a charity school. The gate was taken down in 1761; the materials sold for £177: 10s.1
Here in the 14th century was a garden, marking probably the site of an earlier hermitage.
19 Edward III. (1325). —The garden at the south side of Aldgate, called The Hermitage, which Roger atte Wattre, the serjeant, held, was granted to Peter de Stanndone, blader (corn dealer), for the whole term of his life, at a yearly payment of ten shillings.
Aldgate (Ward of). One of the twenty-six wards of London, , and so called from Aldgate, the gate in the City wall towards the east. General Boundaries.-Bevis Marks and Duke's Place; Crutched Friars; the Minories; St. Mary Axe and Lime Street. Before the Reformation the main feature in the ward was the Priory of the Holy Trinity, called Christ's Church; founded by Matilda, Queen of Henry I. [See Duke's Place.] There are three parish churches : 1. St. Catherine Cree, or Christ Church; 2. St. Andrew Undershaft; 3. St. Catherine Coleman. And in Stow's time, there were three halls of companies :1. The Bricklayers' Hall; 2. The Fletchers' Hall; 3. The Ironmongers' Hall.
The East India House was in this ward. (See all these names.]
Aldgate High Street. The main street from Leadenhall Street to Jewin Street, the site of the ancient City gate, is known as Aldgate; the street eastward to Mansell Street and Petticoat Lane (now Middlesex Street), where Whitechapel High Street commences, is called Aldgate High Street At the north-west corner of Aldgate High Street is St. Botolph's Church. The Three Nuns' Inn, and the Pye Tavern, over against the end of Houndsditch, are mentioned by De Foe in his History of the Plague. The Three Nuns continued to be a busy coaching inn till coaches were superseded by railways. It has lately been rebuilt on a large scale. The Bull was another large coaching inn. In Aldgate was the Saracen's Head—the site marked by Saracen's Head yard. A token was issued from "The Pye without Aldgate" as early as 1648.—Burn, p. 14. The Pye was one of the old inns “in which plays were occasionally acted. In 1661 was published The Presbyterian Lash, or Noctroffe's Maid Whipped; a tragi-comedy as it was lately acted in the great room at the Pye Tavern at Aldgate.” When Foxe, the martyrologist, returned to London in 1559, the Duke of Norfolk received him at his “Manor House, Christ Church, Aldgate." The south-side of Aldgate High Street is lined with butchers' shops, and known as Aldgate Market.
Aldgate Pump, at the junction Leadenhall Street and Fenchurch Street in ALDGATE.
1 Dodsley, 1761, vol. I, p. 151; Hughson, vol. Rothley Castle, an eye-trap which he erected on iii. p. 181. Sir Walter Blackett of Wallington, the crags of that name, near Wallington.- Notes Northumberland, obtained some of the orna and Queries, ist S. vol. iv. p. 131. mental stones and used them in decorating
The principal street of this ward [Aldgate Ward] beginneth at Aldgate, stretching west to sometime a fair well, where now a pump is placed.–Stow, p. 52. The bailiff of Romford, in Essex, was executed in 1549, on a gibbet near “to the well within Aldgate.” “I heard the words of the prisoner," says Stow, "for he was executed upon the pavement of my door where I then kept house.” 1
“A draft (draught) on Aldgate Pump," a mercantile phrase for a bad note.-Fielding's Works ("Essay on the Character of Men”), vol. viii. p. 172. The water from Aldgate pump long enjoyed great local celebrity ; but being found by chemical analysis to be impure, the pump was closed by authority in 1876. A drinking fountain has since been erected on the site. Close to the pump, and beneath the pavement of the street and the house separating Leadenhall Street and Fenchurch Street, was the chapel or crypt (engraved in Wilkinson's Londina Illustrata, and in Gentleman's Magazine, 1789, vol. i. pp. 293, 495) of the church of St. Michael, Aldgate, built by Norman, Prior of St. Katherine of the Holy Trinity, about 1110. The crypt was about 48 feet by 16, the walls of hard chalk, the pillars of stone, with good early English vaulting. In 1870 the house above it was removed to widen the thoroughfare, when, the vaulting being considered insecure, it was removed, and the crypt filled in and destroyed.
Alfred Club, was held at No. 23 ALBEMARLE STREET. Established 1808; limited to 600 members. In December 1811 Byron mentions that it had 354 candidates for six vacancies.—Works, vol. ii. p. 99. It was formerly known by its cockney appellation of Half-read.
I was a member of the Alfred. It was pleasant; a little too sober and literary, and bored with Sotheby and Sir Francis D'Ivernois; but one met Peel, and Ward, and Valentia, and many other pleasant or known people ; and it was, upon the whole, a decent resource in a rainy day, in a dearth of parties, or parliament, or in an empty season.—Byron's Journal, 1816, Works, vol. iii. p. 233.
The Rev. William Beloe devoted several pages of his Sexagenarian to a notice of some of the chief members of the Club, viz., Sir James Mackintosh, George Ellis, William Gifford, John Reeves, and Sir William Drummond. He styled the Club the "Symposium," and the members “Symposiasts.”
It never recovered from the blow dealt it by the establishment of the Athenæum, and its separate existence ended about 1855, when it was absorbed into the Oriental Club.
Alfred Place, BEDFORD SQUARE, ending in North and South Crescents. The ground is the property of the Corporation of London. The Place and Crescents were laid out 1790-1814 by George Dance, jun., then Clerk of the Works to the Corporation. Sheridan Knowles lived at No. 29 in 1838. His father, James Knowles, author of the English Dictionary, died there in 1842. Thomas Campbell, the poet. was in lodgings in Alfred Place in 1837.
i Stow, p. 55.
Agreement between Master Roger de Horsete, Precentor of St. Paul's, and the master and brethren of the Hospital of St. Bartholomew, respecting certain land called “Alfrichburi,” which the former claimed as belonging to the prebend of Portepol, A.D. 1240.--Report by H. C. Maxwell Lyte (Appendix to Ninth Report, Historical MSS. Comm. p. 25.
Alhambra Theatre, on the east side of LEICESTER SQUARE, oriental in character, with a central dome and lofty minarets at the angles, was erected as the Panopticon of Science and Art, in rivalry with the Polytechnic Institution. It was designed 1851-1853 by Messrs. Finden and T. Hayter Lewis, architects, at a cost of about £100,000. It was sold May 1857, and converted into a circus, music hall, etc., under the name Alhambra, and acquired notoriety by its ballet performances. It is now licensed as a theatre ; but rests its attractiveness on music, ballets, comediettes, and refreshments. The building was destroyed by fire in September 1883, and was at once rebuilt by Messrs. Perry and Reed, architects.
Alice's Coffee House, WESTMINSTER HALL.
May 5, 1808.- Alice's Coffee House. Excise Officer came to me to know if it was considered that this house was like Bellamy's, and did not require any license as a general victualler's. I answered, Yes ; it was so to be considered, as only for Lords, Commons, and Barristers. To this the Excise Officer replied he was quite satisfied. —Lord Colchester's Diary, vol. ii. p. 148.
All Hallows. This name, which is attached to eight parishes in the city of London, is of great antiquity, and most if not all of these small parishes appear to have been divided off from a large mother parish of the east of London, extending outside the walls as far as Stepney. The Rev. W. J. Loftie, in a valuable article on the Church in Old London, writes :
First we have the great mother parish, probably All Hallows, but sparsely settled, and all the property of the bishop, who commences to disintegrate it by giving a portion to Barking Abbey. Next we see it broken up into smaller portions, two of which become the manor or aldermanry of a city magnate.-Church Quarterly Review, July 1884. Then these parishes became separated by the formation of others dedicated to favourite saints of the time.
Allhallows Barking, a church at the east end of Great Tower Street, in the ward of that name, dedicated to Allhallows and St. Mary, said to be the most complete mediæval church remaining in London.” The distinguishing title of Barking was appended thereto by the Abbess and Convent of Barking, in Essex, to whom the vicarage originally belonged. Richard I. added a chapel to the building, and Edward I. a statute of “Our Lady of Barking” to the treasures of the church. Richard III. rebuilt the chapel, and founded a college of priests, suppressed and pulled down in the ad of Edward VI. It is 180 feet long, 67 wide, and 35 high; the tower (rebuilt 1659) rises about 80 feet from the ground. The whole building had a narrow escape at
the Great Fire, for, as Pepys records, the dial and porch were burnt, and the fire there quenched. This church, from its near neighbourhood to the Tower, was a ready receptacle for the remains of those who fell on the scaffold on Tower Hill. The headless bodies of Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey (the poet), Bishop Fisher, and Archbishop Laud were buried here, but have been long since removed. The body of Fisher was carried on the halberds of the attendants and buried in the churchyard. Laud's body was removed after the Restoration to the chapel of St. John's College, Oxford. John Kettlewell the nonjuror was buried here, April 1695. The brasses (some six or seven in number) are among the best in London. The finest is a Flemish brass to Andrew Evyngar and wife (circ. 1535, and well engraved in Waller's Brasses), but the most interesting is one injured and inaccurately relaid, representing William Thynne, Esq., and wife. We owe the first edition of the entire works of Chaucer to the industry of this William Thynne, who in 1532 (when the fine old folio was published) was “chefe clerk of the kechyn” to King Henry VIII. The cover to the font is of carved wood, and much in the manner of Grinling Gibbons. Three cherub-shaped angels are represented supporting with upheld hands a festoon of flowers surmounted by a dove. The wreaths about the altar are evidently by the same hand. The organ, by Harris, 1677, was enlarged by Gerard Smith in 1720, again by England in 1813, and lastly by Bunting in 1878. The interior of the church was restored, the west gallery removed, and the walls decorated under Messrs. Francis, architects, in 1870, and painted glass inserted in some of the windows. William Penn, the Quaker, was baptized in this church on October 23, 1644.
On May 23, 1667, George Jeffreys (the judge) was married here to his first wife, Sarah Masham. This marriage is not mentioned in Maskell's History of Allhallows Barking, 1864, but the marriage of John Quincy Adams (afterwards sixth President of the United States) to Louisa Catherine Johnson, on July 26, 1797, is there noted. The living is a vicarage, valued at £2000 a year, in the gift of the Archbishop of Canterbury.
Over against the wall of Barking churchyard, a sad and lamentable accident befel by gunpowder, in this manner. One of the houses in this place was a shipchandler's, who upon January 4, 1649, about 7 of the clock at night, being busy in his shop about barrelling up of gunpowder, it took fire and in the twinkling of an eye blew up not only that, but all the houses thereabouts to the number (towards the street and in back alleys) of 50 or 60. The number of persons destroyed by this Blow could never be known, for the next house but one was the Rose Tavern, a House never (at that time of night) but full of company; and that day the parish dinner was at that house. And in three or four days after, digging, they continually found heads, arms, legs, and half bodies miserably torn and scorched, besides many whole bodies, not so much as their clothes singed. --Mr. Leyborne, in Strype, B. ii. p. 36, and see Maskell's History of Allhallows Barking.
Dr. George Hickes, whose Thesaurus is so well known, was vicar
1 Life of Jeffreys, p. 24.