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- Inns and Taverns of Old London - 1/42 -


INNS AND TAVERNS OF OLD LONDON

SETTING FORTH THE HISTORICAL AND LITERARY ASSOCIATIONS OF THOSE ANCIENT HOSTELRIES, TOGETHER WITH AN ACCOUNT OF THE MOST NOTABLE COFFEE-HOUSES, CLUBS, AND PLEASURE GARDENS OF THE BRITISH METROPOLIS

BY

HENRY C. SHELLEY

Author of "Untrodden English Ways," etc.

1909

PREFACE

For all races of Teutonic origin the claim is made that they are essentially home-loving people. Yet the Englishman of the sixteenth and seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, especially of the latter, is seen to have exercised considerable zeal in creating substitutes for that home which, as a Teuton, he ought to have loved above all else. This, at any rate, was emphatically the case with the Londoner, as the following pages will testify. When he had perfected his taverns and inns, perfected them, that is, according to the light of the olden time, he set to work evolving a new species of public resort in the coffee-house. That type of establishment appears to have been responsible for the development of the club, another substitute for the home. And then came the age of the pleasure-garden. Both the latter survive, the one in a form of a more rigid exclusiveness than the eighteenth century Londoner would have deemed possible; the other in so changed a guise that frequenters of the prototype would scarcely recognize the relationship. But the coffee-house and the inn and tavern of old London exist but as a picturesque memory which these pages attempt to revive.

Naturally much delving among records of the past has gone to the making of this book. To enumerate all the sources of information which have been laid under contribution would be a tedious task and need not be attempted, but it would be ungrateful to omit thankful acknowledgment to Henry B. Wheatley's exhaustive edition of Peter Cunningham's "Handbook of London," and to Warwick Wroth's admirable volume on "The London Pleasure Gardens of the Eighteenth Century." Many of the illustrations have been specially photographed from rare engravings in the Print Boom of the British Museum.

H.C.S.

CONTENTS

PREFACE

I. INNS AND TAVERNS OF OLD LONDON.

I. FAMOUS SOUTHWARK INNS.

II. INNS AND TAVERNS EAST OF ST PAUL'S.

III. TAVERNS OF FLEET STREET AND THEREABOUTS.

IV. TAVERNS WEST OF TEMPLE BAR.

VI. INNS AND TAVERNS FURTHER AFIELD.

II. COFFEE-HOUSES OF OLD LONDON.

I. COFFEE-HOUSES ON 'CHANGE AND NEAR-BY.

II. ROUND ST PAUL'S.

III. THE STRAND AND COVENT GARDEN.

IV. FURTHER WEST.

III. THE CLUBS OF OLD LONDON.

LITERARY.

"SOCIAL AND GAMING".

IV. PLEASURE GARDENS OF OLD LONDON.

I. VAUXHALL.

II. RANELAGH.

III. OTHER FAVOURITE RESORTS.

INDEX

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

KING'S HEAD TAVERN, FLEET STREET GEOFFREY CHAUCER TABARD INN, SOUTHWARK IN 1810 BRIDGE-FOOT, SOUTHWARK, SHOWING THE BEAR INN IN 1616 COURTYARD OF BOAR'S HEAD INN, SOUTHWARK GEORGE INN WHITE HART INN, SOUTHWARK OLIVER GOLDSMITH COCK INN, LEADENHALL STREET PAUL PINDAR TAVERN ANCIENT VIEW OF CHEAPSIDE, SHOWING THE NAG'S HEAD INN A FRENCH ORDINARY IN LONDON YARD OF BELLE SAUVAGE INN THE CHESHIRE CHEESE--ENTRANCE PROM FLEET STREET THE CHESHIRE CHEESE--THE JOHNSON ROOM DR. SAMUEL JOHNSON TABLET AND BUST FROM THE DEVIL TAVERN BEN JONSON FEATHERS TAVERN ADAM AND EVE TAVERN A TRIAL BEFORE THE PIE-POWDER COURT AT THE HAND AND SHEARS TAVERN FALCON TAVERN, BANKSIDE GARRAWAY'S COFFEE-HOUSE MAD DOG IN A COFFEE-HOUSE TOM'S COFFEE-HOUSE LLOYD'S COFFEE-HOUSE GRECIAN COFFEE-HOUSE JOHN DRYDEN JOSEPH ADDISON SIR RICHARD STEELE LION'S HEAD AT BUTTON'S COFFEE-HOUSE BRITISH COFFEE-HOUSE SLAUGHTER'S COFFEE-HOUSE OLD PALACE YARD, WESTMINSTER DON SALTERO'S COFFEE-HOUSE ST JAMES'S STREET, SHOWING WHITE'S ON THE LEFT AND BROOKS'S ON THE RIGHT THE BRILLIANTS "PROMISED HORRORS OF THE FRENCH INVASION" GAMBLING SALOON AT BROOKS'S CLUB TICKETS FOR VAUXHALL ENTRANCE TO VAUXHALL THE CITIZEN AT VAUXHALL SCENE AT VAUXHALL VENETIAN MASQUERADE AT RANELAGH, 1749 THE ASSAULT ON DR. JOHN HILL AT RANELAGH MARYLEBONE GARDENS WHITE CONDUIT HOUSE BAGNIGGE WELLS FINCH'S GROTTO, SOUTHWARK

I.

INNS AND TAVERNS OF OLD LONDON.

CHAPTER I.

FAMOUS SOUTHWARK INNS.

Unique among the quaint maps of old London is one which traces the ground-plan of Southwark as it appeared early in the sixteenth century. It is not the kind of map which would ensure examination honours for its author were he competing among schoolboys of the twentieth century, but it has a quality of archaic simplicity which makes it a more precious possession than the best examples of modern cartography. Drawn on the principle that a minimum of lines and a maximum of description are the best aid to the imagination, this plan of Southwark indicates the main routes of thoroughfare with a few bold strokes, and then tills in the blanks with queer little drawings of churches and inns, the former depicted in delightfully distorted perspective and the latter by two or three half-circular strokes. That there may be no confusion between church and inn, the possibility of which is suggested by the fact that several of the latter are adorned with spire-like embellishments, the sixteenth-century cartographer told which were which in so many words. It is by close attention to the letter-press, and by observing the frequent appearance of names which have age-long association with houses of entertainment, that the student of this map awakens to the conviction that ancient Southwark rejoiced in a more than generous provision of inns.

Such was the case from the earliest period of which there is any record. The explanation is simple. The name of the borough supplies the clue. Southwark is really the south-work of London, that is, the southern defence or fortification of the city. The Thames is here a moat of spacious breadth and formidable depth, yet the Romans did not trust to that defence alone, but threw up further obstacles for any enemy approaching the city from the south. It was from that direction assault was most likely to come. From the western and


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