The map below locates thirty-one plates of itinerant traders taken from Modern London, an 1804 guide to the city published by Richard Phillips. The guide’s descriptions of the traders and their locations are also provided. For more details about Modern London, please see the introduction. The images here are from British Library General Reference Collection 10349.h.13.
|BAKING OR BOILING APPLES - Stratford Place |
BAKING OR BOILING APPLES.
BAKING and Boiling Apples are cried in the streets of the metropolis from their earliest appearance in summer throughout the whole winter. Prodigious quantities of apples are brought to the London markets, where they are sold by the hundred to the criers, who retail them about the streets in pennyworths, or at so much per dozen, according to their quality. In winter the barrow-woman usually stations herself at the corner of a street, and is supplied with a pan of lighted charcoal, over which, on a plate of tin, she roasts a part of her stock, and disposes of her hot apples to the labouring men and shivering boys who pass her barrow.
Stratford Place, the scene in the Plate, is on the north side and near the west end of Oxford-street. It has no thoroughfare; the lower stories of the houses, which are lofty and handsome, are built on a regular design, and faced with rustic stone-work. The house at the north end, facing towards Oxford-street, was lately the property and residence of the Earl of Aldborough, whose family name is Stratford, but is now occupied by the Duke of St. Albans. The late Lord Aldborough erected a pillar, in the form of a candlestick, surmounted with a most disproportioned statue of his Majesty, at the upper end of this place. This triumphal monument, if it deserved that name, was erected in honour of several memorable victories, and built of a composition resembling stone; but it is already nearly destroyed, two sides of the railing being pulled down, and the inscription, which recorded the cause of its erection and the titles of his Lordship, almost defaced. Barren as London is of the classic decorations of statues and public monuments, we cannot wish to sec the pillar of Stratford-place repaired upon the same inelegant and puerile design in which it was originally executed. The object was however good.
|BAND-BOXES - Tabart's Juvenile Library |
GENERALLY made of pasteboard, and neatly covered with coloured papers, are of all shapes and sizes, and sold at every intermediate price between sixpence and three shillings. Some made of slight deal, covered like the others, but in addition to their greater strength having a lock and key, sell according to their size, from three shillings and sixpence to six shillings each. The crier of Band-boxes or his family manufacture them; and these cheap articles of convenience are only to be bought of the persons who cry them through the streets.
The Bibliotheque d'Education, or Tabart's Juvenile Library, seen to the left of the Plate, is in New Bond-street, at the corner of Grafton-street. It is a very admirable and unique Institution, where all elementary books of science and education are to be found, in addition to every moral and amusing publication that can
— "teach the young idea how to shoot,
|BASKETS - Whitfield's Tabernacle |
MARKET, fruit, bread, bird, work, and many other kinds of Baskets, the inferior of rush, the better sort made of osier, and some of them neatly coloured and adorned, are to be bought cheaply of the criers of Baskets.
Whitfield's Tabernacle, in Tabernacle-street, north of Finsbury-square, is the place of worship belonging to the Calvinistical Methodists. It is a large octagon building, with galleries. The body is divided into pews, to which every member subscribes a small sum quarterly, and have equal access to all. The Tabernacle is numerously attended on Sundays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
|BELLOWS TO MEND - Smithfield |
BELLOWS TO MEND.
THE Bellows-mender carries his tools and apparatus buckled in a leathern bag to his back, and, like the Chair-mender, exercises his occupation in any convenient corner of the street. The Bellows-mender also sometimes professes the trade of a Tinker.
A part of Smithfield is seen in the Plate on one of the days of the market for hay. Those days are Tuesdays and Thursdays. Mondays and Fridays the great cattle market of London is held in Smithfield; on which days it is disagreeable, if not dangerous, to pass the avenues of Smithfield in the early part of the day, on account of the droves of oxen passing from the market, on whom the drovers sometimes exercise great cruelty. The barbarous practices of these men have been, however, greatly checked by a law, which compels them to wear a badge with a number on one arm; and it is a duty which every person owes to the public to order into immediate custody a drover who shall be seen to maltreat, the animals under his guidance. There is likewise a horse-fair in Smithfield once a week.
Smithfield has been alternately the field for gallant tilts and tournaments in the age of chivalry; the scene of trials by duel in the infancy of legislation; and, in the age of bigotry, of our autos da fè. Here is now held the popular show of Bartholomew-fair, which was granted, by charter of Henry the Second, to the neighbouring priory of St. Bartholomew, for three days in the month of September; where fire-eaters, jugglers, and mountebanks of every description exhibit their dexterity. Formerly, however, the best actors exhibited here, and it was the resort of much good company. Bartholomew fair is the favourite holiday of the lower classes, and its crowded scene usually affords a plentiful harvest to pickpockets and petty sharpers. Its humours, however, will never be totally lost so long as Hogarth's inimitable plate exists.
The principal entrance to St. Bartholomew's hospital is in Smithfield.
|BRICK-DUST - Portman Square |
IS carried about the metropolis in small sacks on the backs of asses, and is sold at one penny per quart. As Brick-dust is scarcely used in London for any other purpose than that of knife-cleaning, the criers are not numerous; but they are remarkable for their fondness and their training of bull-dogs. This predilection they have in common with the lamp-lighters of the metropolis.
Portman Square, which forms the other subject of the Plate, is large and handsome. It stands in Marybone, to the north of Oxford-street. In the middle of the square is an oval enclosure, which is ornamented with clumps of trees, flowering shrubs, and ever greens. In the background of the Plate, the large centre house is the town residence of the Duke of Athol: it was formerly occupied by the French ambassadors. The ceilings and compartments of the wainscot are decorated, with great taste, with paintings by Cipriani and Angelica Kauffman. In the salle a manger, and the breakfast-room, the subjects are taken from Virgil's Georgics, and those in the drawing-room from the Æneid. The staircases are also ornamented with some fine designs by the former artist. On the left of the Plate, in the north-west corner, standing obliquely to the square, and surrounded by an extensive garden, stands Montague House, the residence of the late celebrated Mrs. Montague, the foundress of the well-known meeting of literary ladies, distinguished by the name of the Blue Stocking Club; an appellation which it received from the singular dress of a gentleman (in always wearing blue stockings), who was the only male person permitted to intrude into this female coterie, and who acted as moderator upon any question which occasioned difference of opinion. The corner house, seen in the Plate, adjoining to the Duke of Athol's, is the residence of Mr. Hamilton Nesbitt, where are deposited the curious antiquities sent by his brother-in-law, Lord Elgin, from Egypt; and in the stables are several very fine Arabian horses, sent over by the same nobleman.
|BUY A BILL OF THE PLAY - Drury Lane Theatre |
BUY A BILL OF THE PLAY.
THE doors of the London Theatres are surrounded each night, as soon as they open, with the criers of Play-bills. These are mostly women, who also carry baskets of fruit. The titles of the Play and Entertainment, and the name and character of every performer for the night, are found in the bills, which are printed at the expense of the Theatre, and sold by the hundred to the criers, who retail them at one penny the bill, unless fruit is bought, when, with the sale of half a dozen oranges, they will present their customer a bill of the play gratis.
Drury-lane Theatre. Part of the colonnade fronting to Russel-street, Covent-garden, with the door leading to the galleries of this superb Theatre, are seen in the Plate. There are also separate entrances to the pit and boxes under the same colonnade. On the west front of the Theatre is a very handsome entrance, through a vestibule with pillars, to the boxes only. In Russel-court is another hall, leading to the pit, boxes, and orchestra boxes: the stage-door is in Drury-lane. The paling seen on the right hand of the Plate is a temporary enclosure of some ground on the west front, where a large and elegant tavern is intended to be erected.
|CATS AND DOGS' MEAT - Bethlem Hospital |
CATS AND DOGS' MEAT,
CONSISTING of horse-flesh, bullocks' livers, and tripe cuttings, is carried to every part of the town. The two former are sold by weight at twopence per pound, and the latter tied up in bunches of one penny each. Although this is the most disagreeable and offensive commodity cried for sale in London, the occupation seems to be engrossed by women. It frequently happens in the streets little frequented by carriages that, as soon as one of these purveyors for cats and dogs arrives, she is surrounded by a crowd of animals, and were she not as severe as vigilant, could scarcely avoid the depredations of her hungry followers.
Bethlem Hospital stands on the south side of the quarters of Moorfields, and has the following inscription in gold letters on the front, immediately over the grand entrance: Bethlem Hospital, founded by Henry VIII. for the cure of lunatics, was rebuilt by voluntary contribution in 1675, and the wings added, by subsequent benefactions, in 1733, for the reception of incurable and dangerous lunatics. It was built on the plan of the Tuilleries at Paris. Louis the Fourteenth was so enraged that the design of his palace should be adopted for a lunatic hospital, that he ordered a plan of St. James's to be taken, resolving it should be a model for offices of the vilest nature. The Hospital is five hundred and forty feet in length. A high wall in front of each wing encloses a garden, where the patients are allowed to walk. The centre of the building is seen through iron gates, which open to a paved court leading to the steps of the grand entrance. On each side the iron gate is a figure, one of melancholy and the other of raging madness. These figures are in recumbent postures on the pillars of the gate, and are finely executed. The artist was Caius Gabriel Cibber, father of the poet. Part of the gate, the east wing, and the wall enclosing the garden of that wing, are seen in the Plate.
|CHAIRS TO MEND - Soho Square |
CHAIRS TO MEND.
THE business of mending Chairs is generally conducted by a family or a partnership; one carries the bundle of rush, and collects old Chairs, while the workman, seating himself in some convenient corner on the pavement, exercises his trade. For small repairs they charge from fourpence to one shilling; and for new covering a chair from eighteen pence to half a crown, according to the fineness of the rush required, and the neatness of the workmanship. It is necessary to bargain for price previous to the delivery of the Chairs, or the Chair-mender, like other itinerant artists, will not fail to demand an exorbitant compensation for his time and labour.
Soho Square stands on the south side and near the eastern extremity of Oxford-street. It has a square enclosure, with a shrubbery in the centre. This square was begun in the time of Charles the Second. The Duke of Monmouth lived in the centre house facing the statue, from which circumstance it was originally called Monmouth Square; and, after the execution of that unfortunate nobleman, received the name of King's Square. The admirers of the Duke however had the art to get it changed to Soho, which was the word of the day at the fatal field of Sedgemoore. In this square is the residence of Sir Joseph Banks, the President of the Royal Society, whose library and collection of natural curiosities are well known. On the south side of the Square, in the right-hand corner leading from Greek-street, stands a house in which Fashion once revelled in all its splendour and dissipation. It was the residence of the once celebrated Mrs. Cornelys, who for taste, wit, vivacity, and elegance of manners, was unrivalled in her day. In this house she established her coteries, which were supported by the subscriptions of all the first persons in the country. The entertainments consisted of concerts, dancing, cards, &c. which were followed by Pic Nic suppers. Mrs. Cornelys' taste for magnificence and variety of decoration was unbounded; and the magistrates discovered that her entertainments required a license. Her expenses exceeded her subscriptions, and Fashion led to some more novel scene of amusement. Hence this unfortunate lady was doomed to a prison, where, after a confinement of several years, she, who had been the life of the fashionable world, and "the soul of pleasure," ended her days in poverty and distress. This house was also the residence of Field Marshal Conway, but is now divided into two dwellings. A Roman catholic chapel, much frequented, stands in Sutton-street, on the east side of the Square.
|CHERRIES - St James's Palace |
APPEAR in the London markets early in June, and shortly afterward become sufficiently abundant to be cried by the barrow-women in the streets at sixpence, fourpence, and sometimes as low as threepence per pound. The May Duke, and the White and Black Heart, are succeeded by the Kentish Cherry, which is more plentiful and cheaper than the former kinds, and consequently most offered to sale in the streets. Next follows the small black Cherry called the Blackaroon, which is also a profitable commodity for the barrows. Other kinds of Cherries, bearing a higher price, are only to be bought in the markets, or at the shops of fruiterers. These barrow-women undersell the shops by twopence or threepence per pound, but their weights are generally to be questioned; and this is so notorious an objection that they universally add full weight to the cry of Cherries.
The entrance to St. James's Palace, which stands at the west end of Pall-mall, and fronting to St. James's street, is seen in the Plate. The gate opens to the principal court, on one side of which a covered passage leads to the grand staircase belonging to the guard-rooms, drawing-room, and other state apartments. This entrance and the whole palace is of brick; nor does its external appearance convey any idea of magnificence.
|DOOR MATS - Charing Cross |
OF all kinds, rush and rope, from sixpence to four shillings each, with Table Mats of various sorts, are daily cried through the streets of London.
Charing-Cross divides the Strand from Parliament-street to the south, and from Cockspur-street to the west. It derives its name from being the site of one of the Crosses, the celebrated memorials of the affection of Edward the First for Queen Eleanor. It was the last spot on which the body rested in its way to the Abbey. This Cross was replaced by a most beautiful and animated equestrian statue in brass of Charles the First, cast in 1633 by Le Sœur for the Earl of Arundel. It was erected in 1678, when it was placed on the present pedestal, the work of Grinlyn Gibbons. The spirit and beauty of the horse have not often been surpassed. To the left of the Plate, and distinguishable by its stone parapet and square tower, is seen part of the magnificent screen of Northumberland House. A spacious court intervenes between this screen and the house itself. Behind the house are extensive gardens. The screen contains two stories of apartments occupied by domestics, and their offices. The entrance gate is in the centre of the screen, which runs from Charing-cross to Northumberland-court, each extremity terminating with a square tower.
|DUST O! - St. Mary-le-Strand |
ONE of the most useful among the numberless regulations that promote the cleanliness and comfort of the inhabitants of London, is that which relieves them from the incumbrance of their dust and ashes. Dust-carts ply the streets through the morning in every part of the metropolis; two men go with each cart, ringing a large bell and calling Dust O! These men daily, if necessary, empty the dust-binns of all the refuse that is thrown into them. They receive no gratuity from the inhabitants of the houses; the owner of the cart pays them, like other labourers, weekly wages; and the dust is carried to yards in the outskirts of the town, where a number of women and girls are employed in sifting it, and separating the cinders and bones from the ashes and other refuse. The ashes, &c. are sold for manure, the cinders for fuel, and the bones to the burning-houses. The inhabitants of a crowded city are thus relieved from an incumbrance which, in its accumulation, would prove a dangerous nuisance; employment is afforded to a number of persons; and the dust-carts and yards are a profitable concern to their proprietors.
New Church, properly St. Mary-le-Strand, is in the Strand, contiguous to Somerset-house. This beautiful church stands in the very centre of the street, dividing it into two branches.
|GREEN HASTENS - Newgate Prison |
THE earliest pea brought to the London market is distinguished by the name of Hastens; it belongs to the dwarf genus, and is succeeded by the Hotspur. This early pea, the real Hastens, is raised in hotbeds, and sold in the markets at the high price of a guinea per quart. The name of Hastens is however indiscriminately given, by the venders, to all peas, and the cry of Green Hastens resounds through every street and alley of London to the very latest crop of the season. Peas become plentiful and cheap in the latter end of June, and are retailed from carts in the streets at tenpence, eightpence, and sixpence per peck.
[Note: The print has 'hasteds', the text 'hastens'; which is correct is currently unclear.]
Newgate, a lossy and massy structure standing at the west end of Newgate-street and at the top of the Old Bailey, on the north side of Ludgate-hill, is built entirely of stone within and without. In the centre of the front, and distinguishable by its windows, on the right hand of the Plate, is the Keeper's house. The range of building, continuing from the Keeper's house to the corner of Newgate-street, part of which is seen to the left of the Plate, is the Debtor's Side. An equal portion on the other side is appropriated to Felons; and there is a hall of entrance to each, over the doors of which are stone tablets with knots of chains finely executed in stone. In the front wall are four projections with niches: two of them have statues; in one Liberty with the Cap, and in the other a figure bearing the Fasces.
|HAIR BROOMS - Shoreditch Church |
HEARTH Brooms, Brushes, Sieves, Bowls, Clothes-horses, and Lines, and almost every household article of turnery, are cried in the streets. Some of these walking turners travel with a cart, by which they can extend their trade and their profit; but the greater number carry their shop on their shoulders, and find customers sufficient to afford them a decent subsistence, the profit on turnery being considerable, and the consumption certain.
Shoreditch Church, standing at the northern extremity of Holywell-street, commonly called Shoreditch, is a church of peculiar beauty. It has a portico in front elevated upon a flight of steps. The area before the church, enclosed with an iron railing, is disgraced by a plantation of poplar trees.
|HOT LOAVES - St. Martin's in the Fields |
FOR the breakfast and tea-table, are cried at the hours of eight and nine in the morning, and from four to six in the afternoon, during the summer months. These loaves are made of the whitest flour, and sold at one and two a penny. In winter, the crier of Hot Loaves substitutes muffins and crumpets, carrying them in the same manner; and in both instances ringing a little bell as he passes through the streets.
St. Martin's Church, called St. Martin's in the Fields, is in St. Martin's lane, near Charing-cross. It has a lofty portico of six pillars raised on a flight of steps. The design of this portico was taken from that of an ancient temple at Nismes, in France, and is peculiarly grand and beautiful.
|HOT SPICED GINGERBREAD - The Pantheon |
HOT SPICED GINGERBREAD.
HOT Spiced Gingerbread, sold in oblong flat cakes of one halfpenny each, very well made, well baked, and kept extremely hot, is a very pleasing regale to the pedestrians of London in cold and gloomy evenings. This cheap luxury is only to be obtained in winter; and when that dreary season is displaced by the long light days of summer, the well-known retailer of Hot Spiced Gingerbread, pourtrayed in the Plate, takes his usual stand near the portico of the Pantheon, with a basket of Banbury and other cakes.
The Pantheon stands about the middle and on the south side of Oxford-street. It has a fine portico, and the building is of simple and beautiful architecture, but is liable to be overlooked by strangers, as the effect is nearly destroyed by its being erected in a busy and crowded street, and not detached from the surrounding houses. The Pantheon was originally designed for concerts. It contains one large room, finely ornamented with pillars painted in imitation of Scagliola marble, and mirrors in the pannels, with a handsome orchestra, and several retiring rooms, where tea, coffee, jellies, &c. &c. were served. It is at present only used for occasional masquerades in the winter season,
|KNIVES TO GRIND - Whitehall |
KNIVES TO GRIND.
THE apparatus of the Knife-grinder is accurately delineated in the annexed Plate. The same wheel turns his grinding and his whetting stone. On a smaller wheel, projecting beyond the other, he trundles his commodious shop from street to street, and generally finds some employment in each. He charges for grinding and setting scissars one penny or two pence per pair; for pen-knives one penny each; and table-knives one shilling and sixpence or two shillings per dozen, according to the polish that is required.
Whitehall. This beautiful and memorable structure stands in Parliament-street, facing the Horse-guards. It was begun in 1619, from a design of Inigo Jones, in his purest manner, and cost 17,000l. The present building is only a small part of a vast plan left unexecuted by reason of the troubles which succeeded. The ceiling, which cannot be too much admired, was painted by Rubens: the subject is the Apotheosis of James the First. The front of the Banquetting-house is seen in the Plate. The northern end of the palace, to the left of the Plate, is that through which King Charles passed to the scaffold. The breach in the wall made for that purpose is now covered on the outside by the adjoining building; but within the palace the same passage is the entrance into that building. The Banquetting-house has for many years past been converted into a chapel.
In the square behind Whitehall palace is an uncommonly fine statue in brass of James the Second, executed by Gibbons the year before that monarch abdicated his throne. At the north end of the Banquetting-house still remains a very high gilt vane, erected by order of James. When the reports were current of the Prince of Orange's intentions to come over and claim the crown, James lodged at Whitehall, and had his bed-room in a part of the palace from which he could see this vane; and by it his hopes and his fears were daily decided. The west wind was the popish, and the east the protestant: if the latter blew, it had a visible effect upon his spirits the whole of the day.
|LAVENDER - Temple Bar |
"SIX bunches a penny sweet Lavender" is the cry that invites in the streets the purchasers of this cheap and pleasant perfume. The distillers of Lavender are supplied wholesale from the nursery-grounds, and a considerable quantity of the shrub is sold in the streets to the middling classses [sic] of inhabitants, who are fond of placing Lavender among their linen (the scent of which conquers that of the soap used in washing), yet are unwilling to pay for the increased pungency of distillation.
Temple Bar. This Gate was erected to divide the Strand from Fleet-street in 1670, after the great fire; previous to which there were only posts, with rails and chains. On the east side, which forms the background of the Plate, in the niches, are the statues of James and Anne of Denmark; and on the opposite side are those of Charles the First and Charles the Second: all executed by Bushnell. On the top of this Gate were exhibited the heads of the unfortunate victims to the justice of their country for the crime of high treason. The last sad mementos of this kind were the rebels in 1746. This Gate is the western extremity of the city of London.
On the left of the Plate is the entrance to the Middle Temple. The old Gate was erected by Sir Amias Powlet on a singular occasion. About the year 1501 Sir Amias had placed Cardinal Wolsey, then parson of Lymington, in the stocks. Being sent for to London in 1515 by Wolsey, then raised to the rank of Cardinal, he was, on account of this old grudge, ordered not to quit London until further orders. In this gateway he lodged for five or six years, and rebuilt it. To pacify his eminence, he adorned the front with the Cardinal's cap, badges, cognizance, and other devices. This Gate being burnt by the great fire, the present one was afterwards erected.
|MACKEREL - Billingsgate |
MORE plentiful than any other kind of fish in London, are brought from the western coast, and afford during their season (which commences in May, and lasts to the close of July,) a livelihood to numbers of men and women, who cry them through the streets every day in the week, not excepting Sunday; Mackerel boats being allowed by act of Parliament to dispose of their perishable cargo on Sunday morning, previous to the commencement of divine service. No other fish partake that privilege. Mackerel are at first sold at one shilling and sixpence each; but the quantity brought shortly reduces them to tenpence, eightpence, sixpence, and not unfrequently three may be bought for one shilling. A second season for Mackerel is in autumn. The preference is given to the spring Mackerel, and many more of them are brought to London: those of autumn are dried by the inhabitants of the coast of Mount's Bay, where they are chiefly caught for their winter stock of provision.
Billingsgate, situated in Lower Thames-street, eastward of London-bridge, is the great fish-market whence the metropolis and its neighbourhood are wholly supplied with fish. Billingsgate, as seen in the Plate, is built in the form of a quay, and the fishing-vessels come close to it to deliver their fish. Each day is market-day at Billingsgate. The market commences at three o'clock in the morning in summer, and four in winter. Salesmen receive the cargo from the boats, and announce, by a crier, of what kinds they consist. These salesmen have a great commission, and generally make fortunes. The market is attended thus early by fishmongers, who keep shops in various parts of London, and, serving the richer inhabitants, buy the prime fish; and by the hawkers, who cry fish in the streets, with all their stock in baskets on their heads. The market for wholesale buyers is over by six or seven o'clock. Many private families send their servants to Billingsgate to purchase fish, as persons keep retail stalls in the market throughout the day, and are supposed to sell cheaper than the fishmongers or the hawkers. Nearly opposite to Billingsgate, on the north side of Thames-street, is the Coal Exchange.
|MATCHES - The Mansion House |
THE criers of this convenient article are very numerous, and among the poorest inhabitants of the metropolis, subsisting more on the waste meats they receive from the kitchens, where they sell their Matches at six bunches per penny, than on the profits arising from their sale. Old women, crippled men, or a mother followed by three or four ragged children, and offering their Matches to sale, excite compassion, and are often relieved, when the importunity of the mere beggar is rejected. The elder children of a poor family, like the boy seen in the Plate, are frequent traders in Matches, and these generally sing a kind of song, and sell and beg alternately.
The Mansion House is a stone building of considerable magnitude, standing in Mansion-house-street, at the west end of Cornhill; it is the residence of the Lord Mayor of London. In the front is a portico of fluted pillars, with two pilasters on each side the portico, which is raised above, a lower story opening to the offices. A flight of steps, enclosed with a stone balustrade, leads to the grand entrance under the portico. When it was first resolved in the Common Council to build a Mansion-house for the residence of the Lord Mayor, Lord Burlington, zealous in the cause of the arts, sent down an original design of Palladio, worthy of its author, for their approbation and adoption. The first question in Court was not whether the plan was proper, but whether this same Palladio was a freeman of the city, or no. On this great debates ensued; and it is hard to say how it might have gone, had not a worthy Deputy risen up and observed gravely, that it was of little consequence to discuss this point, when it was notorious that Palladio was a papist, and incapable of course. Lord Burlington's proposal was then rejected nem. con. and the plan of a freeman and protestant adopted in its room. The man pitched upon (and who afterwards carried his plan into execution) was originally a shipwright; and, to do him justice, he appears never to have lost sight of his first impressions. The front of his Mansion-house has all the resemblance possible to a deep-laden Indiaman, with her stern-galleries and gingerbread-work. The stairs and passages within are all ladders and gangways, and the two bulk heads on the roof, fore and aft, not unaptly represent the binacle and windlass on the deck of a great north country catt.
|MILK - Cavendish Square |
EVERY day in the year, both morning and afternoon, Milk is carried through each square, street, and alley of the metropolis, in tin pails, suspended from a yoke placed on the shoulders of the crier, as represented in the Plate. Milk is sold at four pence per quart, or fivepence for a better sort: yet the advance of price does not ensure its purity, for it is generally mixed in a great proportion with water by the retailers before they leave the Milk-houses. It is calculated that 8,500 cows are kept for the supply of Milk, and that 6,980,000 gallons are annually sold in London. The adulteration of the Milk, added to the wholesale cost, leaves an average profit of cent. per cent. to the venders of this useful article. Few retail trades are exercised with equal gain. A retailer of Milk, in opulent parts of the town, employs two or three carriers: these are, almost universally, Welsh girls, whose uncommon strength and hardiness of constitution peculiarly fit them for an employment of such great labour and constant exposure to the inclemencies of the weather. Milk Walks, that is, a certain proportion of neighbouring streets served by a particular person, are sometimes disposed of by advertisement, and often for a considerable premium. Cream is sold by the Milk-carriers at one shilling and fourpence per pint.
Cavendish Square is in Marybone, on the north side of Oxford-road. In the centre of an enclosure, erected on a lofty pedestal, and standing on a round platform, is a bronze statue, in the exact uniform of the guards (probably for the assistance of the regimental taylors), mounted on an antique horse, all very richly gilt and burnished. The singular inscription, which takes care to inform us, to prevent mistakes, that it is an equestrian statue, is as follows: — "William Duke of Cumberland, born April 15, 1721 — died October 31, 1765. This equestrian statue was erected by Lieutenant-general William Strode, in gratitude for his private friendship; in honour to his public virtue; —Nov. 4, Anno Domini 1770."
The possessive pronoun his is very happily introduced here, because it may be applied to either of the antecedent persons, and will no doubt create subject of learned dispute some ages hence. This statue is seen peeping, like a piece of gilt gingerbread in a green grocer's stall, through a plantation of trees, shrubs, and flowers. In the background of the Plate are two very elegant houses, striking for their unity of design, built by the late Mr. Tuffnell. It was intended to have built the whole square on the same plan, but the expense occasioned the project to be dropped. The house at the corner of Harley-street was occupied by the late Princess Amelia, and now by the Dutch Banker, Mr. Hope.
|NEW POTATOES - Middlesex Hospital |
ABOUT the latter end of June and in July become sufficiently plentiful to be cried at a tolerably cheap rate in the streets. They are sold wholesale in the markets by the bushel, and retail by the pound. Three halfpence or a penny per pound is the average price from the barrows.
Middlesex Hospital is situated at the northern end of Berners-street, Oxford-street, and is the county hospital for diseased persons. The building consists of a centre and wings, and stands in a large court with trees, covered by a wall in front with two gates, one of which is represented in the Plate opening to the west wing. In the front of the centre of the building is placed a stone tablet, with the following inscription: — "Middlesex Hospital, erected in MDCCLV. supported by voluntary Contribution."
|OLD CLOTHES - Fitzroy Square |
OLD Clothes are the traffic of the early hours of morning between the Jews, who engross this trade, and servants that are allowed the perquisites of their masters cast-off Clothes. At twelve o'clock the dealers in Old Clothes carry their mornings purchases to a fair held daily in Rosemary-lane, commonly called Rag-fair, adjoining Tower hill, where they barter or sell to other dealers who keep shops, and with alterations and repairs sell again to the public. A busier scene cannot be imagined than Rosemary-lane presents in the fair hours. The broad street and the avenues to it are crowded with buyers and sellers of both sexes, so as to be nearly impassable. A commodious Exchange is built adjoining Rosemary-lane, for the dealers in Old Clothes; and many attempts have been made by the civil power to compel them to take possession of it; but nothing less than military force constantly exercised would prevail over the obstinacy of habit: they constantly abandon the Exchange, and return to their ancient privilege of holding their busy market in the street, to the great annoyance of those whom business compels to pass that way between the hours of twelve and three.
Fitzroy Square. This elegant and beautiful square, situated west of Tottenham-court road, has only the south and east sides completed; the ground intended for the remaining part lies waste. The houses have stone fronts, and are built as a centre and wings, each side of the square representing an uniform building. The enclosure of Fitzroy-square is circular; a dwarf hedge lines the railing, and is succeeded by a broad gravel walk and circular shrubbery, intersected by gravel walks, and sloping downwards to another broad circular gravel walk surrounding a grass plat, which forms the centre.
|POOR SWEEP - Blackfriars Bridge |
IN all the public streets and thoroughfares of the metropolis boys and women employ themselves in dirty weather in sweeping crossings, from one side to the other, at convenient distances. The foot passenger is constantly importuned, and frequently rewards the Poor Sweep with a halfpenny, which indeed he sometimes well deserves; for in the winter after a heavy fall of snow, if a thaw should come before the scavengers have had time to remove it, many of the streets cannot be crossed without being up to the middle of the leg in dirt. Many of these Sweepers who choose their station with judgment, reap a plentiful harvest from their labours.
Blackfriars Bridge crosses the river from Bridge-street to Surry-street. From the latter end the annexed view is taken. The width and loftiness of the arches, and the whole light construction of this bridge, is uncommonly pleasing to the eye. St. Paul's cathedral, never distinctly seen as a whole, displays much of the grandeur of its extensive outline when viewed from Blackfriars-bridge. The Temple gardens, the terrace of Somerset-house, and Westminster-bridge, give beauty to the prospect on the other side. At each end of the bridge watermen ply with their boats. A broad flight of steps with an iron balustrade conducts to the boats, which are neatly painted, and kept perfectly clean. The number of the boat and the waterman's name are always painted in some conspicuous part, in default of which the waterman is liable to a heavy penalty. This regulation prevents, or is intended to prevent, impositions and misbehaviour.
|RABBITS - Portland Place |
THE crier of Rabbits in the Plate is a portrait well known by persons who frequent the streets at the west end of the town. Wild and tame rabbits are sold from nine pence to eighteen pence each, which is cheaper than they can be bought in the poulterers' shops.
Portland Place is a spacious and elegant street to the north of Marybone. At the south end is Foley-house, the property of Lord Foley, but now let to Mr. Thellusson, a city merchant. From the opening at the upper end of Portland-place is a fine view of Harrow and the Hampstead and Highgate hills; and this opening makes Portland-place one of the most airy situations in town, at the same time that it is one of the finest streets in London, the houses being of perfect uniformity both in height and ornament, and no shops or meaner buildings interrupting the regularity of the design.
|RHUBARB - Russell Square |
THE Turk, whose portrait is accurately given in the Plate, has sold Rhubarb in the streets of the metropolis during many years. He constantly appears in his turban, trowsers, and mustachios, and deals in no other article. As his drug has been found to be of the most genuine quality, the sale affords him a comfortable livelihood.
Russel Square, on the north side of Bloomsbury, is built on the site where Bedford house and its gardens lately stood. This new square is one of the largest in London. Broad streets intersect it at the corners, and in the middle, which add to its beauty, and remove the general objection to squares by ventilating the air. The square is uniform in its outline, with the exception of Baltimore-house, on the east side, at the corner of Guilford-street, whence the annexed view of the square is taken. The centre houses on the north side are ornamented with pilasters of stone, and the ground floors of both south and west sides are stuccoed, having balconies all round. The extensive enclosure is a square with rounded corners. Next the railing is a dwarf hedge. A grass border and broad gravel walk succeed, which surround a square lawn patched with oval shrubberies, and intersected with gravel walks. In the centre is a large circular plantation bordered by a gravel walk. Adjoining Russel-square to the north, and now building, is Tavistock-square, the east side of which is finished. The houses are of brick with stuccoed ground floors, the wings pilastered, and the whole of uniform design, having balconies and a neat stuccoed cornice. The enclosure, an oblong square with the corners rounded off, is agreeably laid out. In Tavistock-place, on the east side of the square, is a new Gothic chapel. This beautiful specimen of Gothic architecture deserves particular notice from the curious stranger. An elegant building also in Great Coram-street, west of the square, is worthy attention: the centre, having a handsome portico with four pillars, is an assembly room; one wing is appropriated to billiard rooms, and the other contains hot and cold baths. These baths are fitted up in a very neat and commodious manner.
|SAND O! - St Giles's Church |
SAND is an article of general use in London, principally for cleaning kitchen Utensils. Its greatest consumption is in the outskirts and suburbs of the metropolis, where the cleanly housewife strews sand plentifully over her floor, to guard her newly scoured boards from dirty footsteps, a carpet of small expense and easy to be renewed. Sand is sold by measure; red sand twopence halfpenny, and the white five farthings per peck.
St. Giles's Church, called St. Giles's in the Fields, stands at the west end of Broad St. Giles's. It is a very handsome structure. Over the gate, entering the church-yard, is fixed a curious basso-relievo in brass, representing the Last Judgment, and containing a very great number of figures. It was set up about the year 1686.
|A SHOWMAN - Hyde Park Corner |
THIS amusing personage generally draws a crowd around him in whatever street he fixes his moveable pantomime, as the unemployed persons or children who cannot afford the penny or halfpenny insight into the show-box are yet greatly entertained with his descriptive harangues, and the perpetual climbing of the squirrels in the round wire cage above the box, by whose incessant motion the row of bells on the top are constantly rung. The show consists of a series of coloured pictures, which the spectator views through a magnifying glass, while the exhibitor rehearses the story, and shifts the scenes by the aid of strings. These Showmen carry their box on their backs, and frequently travel into the country.
Hyde-park Corner. Two very handsome houses that stand at Hyde-park Corner form the other subject of this Plate. This entrance to London is worthy of the grandeur and extent of the metropolis. On one side of the spacious street of Piccadilly arc lofty and elegant houses; and on the other, through an open railing, is a fine view of the Green-park, St. James's park, and Westminster-abbey.
|SLIPPERS - Somerset House |
THE Turk in the annexed Plate is a portrait. Habited in the costume of his nation, he has sold Morocco Slippers in the Strand, Cheapside, and Cornhill (during the hours of Exchange), a great number of years. To these principal streets he generally confines his walks. There are other sellers of Slippers, particularly about the Royal Exchange, who are Jews, and are very importunate for custom, while the venerable Turk uses no solicitation beyond showing his Slippers. They are sold at one shilling and sixpence and two shillings per pair, and are of all colours and all sizes.
Somerset House, on the south side of the Strand, is an extensive and noble structure, built by Government principally for the concentration of the offices of public business. The Plate shews the west side of the entrance, which contains a centre gate for carriages, and two foot ways, through an arched portico. The window on the right hand of the Plate is one of that suite of apartments which belongs to the Royal Academy. A visit to the various departments of Somerset-house will amply repay the trouble of the stranger.
|SOOT O! - The Foundling Hospital |
THE occupation of sweeping Chimneys begins with the break of day. A master Chimney-sweeper patroles the street for custom, attended by two or three boys, the taller ones carrying the bag of soot, and directing the little diminutive creature who, stript perfectly naked, ascends and sweeps the Chimney. The common price is six pence per Chimney; but for those of large kitchens, where much scraping is required, they usually demand a shilling. The greatest profit arises from the sale of the soot, which is used for manure.
Formerly it was the custom to cry "Sweep for the Soot O!" the sale of the soot then being the only compensation of the sweeper. The hard condition of Chimney sweeping devolves upon the smallest and feeblest of the children apprenticed from parish workhouses. The employment in itself stints their growth, and it is unhappily too much the interest of the master so to feed his apprentices as they shall not be liable to outgrow their occupation. It is very common to see Chimney-sweepers of twelve and fourteen years of age who do not exceed the ordinary stature of boys of seven and eight. Many hardships to which these defenceless beings were subjected, have been alleviated by the exertions of the celebrated and benevolent Mr. Jonas Hanway, who obtained an act of parliament, enacting that every Chimney-sweeper's apprentice shall wear a brass plate in front of his cap, with the name and abode of his master engraved on it, thus enabling any humane person to take immediate cognizance of their treatment. Happily, however, for the cause of humanity, a society has been lately established to alleviate the misery of these unfortunate beings, by the adoption of a mode of sweeping Chimnies by a machine, which, upon the examination of several intelligent persons, has been highly approved.
Foundling Hospital, a handsome, plain, and commodious building in Guilford-street, to the north of Holborn, has a centre and wings, and stands at the upper end of a large piece of ground, in which the children of the foundation are allowed to play in fine weather. The whole is enclosed by a wall with gates. At the western gate is a neat porter's lodge. Divine service is performed in the chapel of the Foundling-hospital twice every Sunday, at eleven in the morning and seven in the evening, and is constantly attended by a crowded and elegant audience. Several of Hogarth's pictures, presented by himself, are in the Foundling-hospital, and claim the attention of strangers, particularly his celebrated March of the Guards to Finchley. The apartments of the Hospital may be seen Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. For particulars of this admirable institution see page 204.
|STRAWBERRIES - Covent Garden Market |
BROUGHT fresh gathered to the markets in the height of their season, both morning and afternoon, are sold in pottles, containing something less than a quart each. The crier adds one penny to the price of the Strawberries for the pottle, which, if returned by her customer, she abates, or will take it again at the same price on another occasion. Great numbers both of men and women are employed in crying Strawberries during their season, which is June, through the streets in suburbs of London. Their profit is from threepence to fourpence in the shilling. Strawberries are frequently to be bought in London at sixpence per pottle.
Covent-garden Market occupies a large square on the estate of the Duke of Bedford, lying between the Strand and Long-acre. This market is entirely appropriated to fruit and vegetables. On the south side is a range of shops, which contain the choicest fruit and vegetables. The most expensive productions of the hot-house are also to be purchased in these shops. An alley is left for foot passengers between the fruiterers' shops and a row of stands, on which are displayed greenhouse plants, and all kinds of flowering shrubs. The effect is very beautiful. The centre of the market, as shewn in the Plate, although less pleasing to the eye, is more inviting to the general class of buyers. It is crowded with stands, where excellent fruit and vegetables are sold at moderate prices. The wholesale buyers attend early in the morning, and purchase of the gardeners, who supply this market with fresh vegetables Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. On the west of the square which surrounds the market, stands the church of St. Paul's Covent- garden. It was built by Inigo Jones, who, being unfortunately cramped in his design by a limitation of expense, contrived only to make it the finest barn in England. By the happy manner of placing it, however, some effect is produced, in spite of the injudicious simplicity of the fabric. It was nearly destroyed by fire some years ago, but has been since repaired upon the same plan. The piazza extends along the north and part of the east sides of the square. The Theatre, and the Bedford Arms tavern, with several others, are under the piazza. The Hummums, justly celebrated for their convenient and elegant lodgings for gentlemen, are on the east side of the square.
|WATER CRESSES - Hanover Square |
WATER Cresses are sold in small bunches, one penny each, or three bunches for twopence. The crier of Water Cresses frequently travels seven or eight miles before the hour of breakfast to gather them fresh; but there is generally a pretty good supply of them in Covent-garden market, brought, along with other vegetables, from the gardens adjacent to the metropolis, where they are planted and cultivated like other garden-stuff. They are, however, from this circumstance, very inferior from those that grow in the natural state in a running brook, wanting that pungency of taste which makes them very wholesome; and a weed very dissimilar in quality is often imposed upon an unsuspecting purchaser.
Hanover Square, also represented in this Plate, is on the south side of Oxford-street. Here is a circular enclosure in the middle, with a plain grass-plat. The noble house seen in the Plate is the residence of Lord Harewood. In George-street, which leads into this square, is the curious and extensive anatomical museum of Mr. Heaviside the surgeon; to the inspection of which respectable persons are admitted, on application to Mr. Heaviside, once a week, from the first Friday in January to the second in May. In this square is a very extensive building, containing an elegant suite of apartments, appropriated principally for Subscription Concerts. In these the King's Concert of Ancient Music is now held; previous to which, Miss Linwood's matchless performances in needle work were exhibited there. These rooms were built by Sir John Gallini, formerly one of the managers of the Opera, to whom they now belong.