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war. Between that and the king, is the figure of Mars, with a chaplet in his hand, an emblem, that an approaching honourable peace would be the consequence of the war.
And above this, round the cornice of the pedestal, are noble enrichments of trophy work and the royal arms; also the sword, mace, cap of maintenance, &c. and at each angle a very spacious and fierce dragon, exquisitely carved in stone, by the ingenious statuary, Cibber, father of Colley Cibber, the comedian.
Round the base of the pedestal, near the reglets, are inscribed the following words, which were expunged in the time of James II. and very deeply re-inscribed in the reign of William III.
This Pillar was set up in perpetual Remembrance of that most dreadful burning of this Protestant City, begun and carried on by the Treachery and Malice of the Popish Faction, in the beginning of September, in the Year of our Lord 1666, in order to the car. rying on their horrid Plot for extirpating the Protestant Religion and Old English Liberty, and the introducing Popery and Slavery.
« This monument," says the author of The Review of Public Buildings, " is undoubtedly the noblest modern column in the world ; nay, in some respects, it may justly vie with those celebrated ones of antiquity, which are consccrated to the names of Trajan and Antonine. Nothing can be more bold and surprizing, nothing more beautiful and harmonious: the bas relief at the base, allowing for some few defects, is finely imagined, and as well executed; and nothing material can be cavilled with but the inscriptions round about it.” These, however, Sir Christopher Wren had prepared in a more elegant and masculine stile, as appears by the Parentalia ; but he was over-ruled.
The beautiful column we have been describing, stands upon the site of the church of St. MARGARET, New Fish STREET, which had been destroyed by the fire. The church.yard is preserved for the use of the parishioners, a few doors towards Little Eastcheap.
Turning Turning into this street, the firsť object of attention is PUDDING LANE. It was here that the Fire of London began; of which we have given a copious account, and its consequences, in our former volume *. On the house built over the spot where this calamity began was placed, by authority, the following inscription :
Here, by the permission of Heaven, Hell broke loose upon this Protestant City, from the malicious hands of barbarous Papists, by the hand of their agent HUBERT: who confessed, and, on the ruins of this place, declared his Fact for which he was hanged, viz. “ That here began the dreadful Fire, which is described, and perpetuated, on and by the neighbouring Pillar erected Anno 168-in the Mayoralty of Sir Patience Ward, Knt.”
This Hubert was proved to be deranged in his senses; and suffered more from the terror of the times, than the verity of his confession.
The inhabitants having been incommoded by the multitudes who resorted to view the house and inscription, the latter has been removed.t In this lane is
BUTCHER'S HALL, which is a very neat place for the use of that company. The fraternity seems to have been of very antient date ; they were fined by Henry II. in 1180, as an adulterine guild, for being set up without the king's licence; though they were not incorporated till the year 1605. This company consists of a master, five wardens, twenty-one assistants, and two hundred and fourteen liverymen.
In the former part of this work, we have mentioned several laws respecting offal, &c. in the streets; but the most particular is the law enacted by statute 4 Henry VII. cap. 3. which declares that “ No butcher shall kill any flesh within his scalding house, or within the walls of London ; on pain to forfeit for every ox so killed, 12d. and for every other
* Page 221.
+ Pudding Lane was antiently called Rother Lane, or Red Rose Lane, from a sign of the Rose; but received its present name, because formerly the butchers of Eastcheap had here their scalding house for hogs; whence the puddings, and other filth from slaughtered cattle, were voided to the dung-boats in the Thames, Vol. II. No. 41,
beast, 8d. to be divided between the king and the prosecutor."
The many nuisances of this kind, at present subsisting within the walls of the city, are so shameful, that, even op the Sabbath, some of its streets in the neighbourhood of the several markets are totally obstructed by means of car. cases exposed, and the channels are running on other days, impregnated with the filth from slaughter-houses ; whilst the noisome smells are obnoxious to the passengers,
, who are compelled to pass on their several avocations.
In Eastcheap was the church of St. Leonard, which having been burnt, its site was converted to a burial ground, and the parish united to that of St. Benedict, Gracechurch Street. At the corner of Love Lane is situated
THE KING's WEIGHHOUSE, on the ground formerly occupied by the parish church of St. Andrew Hubbard, united to the parish of St. Mary at Hill.
The institution of this house was laudable, to prevent frauds in the weight of merchandize, and agreeably to the chartered right of tronage granted to the city of London by several kings. It was intended to weigh all merchandizes, brought from beyond seas, by the king's beam: it is governed by a master; and under him four master porters, and labouring porters under them; who used to have carts and horses, to fetch the goods from the merchants warehouses to the beam, and to carry them back. The house belongs to the Grocer's Company, who have the appointment of the several porters, &c. thereunto belonging. But this wise institution of our forefathers has nearly fallen to decay: : for the merchants, either to save the charge and trouble, or not being obliged to weigh their goods here by any compulsive power, have brought almost into disuse the weighing of their goods at the king's beam.
There was a more antient structure for this purpose, which we described in our account of St. Peter, Cornhill.
Over the Weigh House a large room is occupied by a very respectable Dissenting congregation.
ST. MARGARET was born at Antioch; and Olybrius, president of the East, being enamoured of her beauty, would have married her, had he not discovered that she was a Christian. He strove to recal her to Heathen opinions, and finding he could not prevail, his regard turned to hatred, he inflicted a multiplicity of torments on the virgin. Among others, he caused her to be stretched on the ground, where she was whipped in such an unmerciful manner, that streams of blood issued from the wounds. This had no effect on her constancy; therefore the inhuman tyrant commanded that her flesh should be torn by iron hooks, and great nails driven into her body. “ A cruelty so strange and so unnatural,” says Ribadeneira, “that even he that had the heart to command it, wanted the courage to see it executed: for he was forced the whole time to cover his eyes. After these sharp combats she was led back into prison; where, whilst the saint was praying with great fervour of spirit to our Lord, to enable her, and give her perseverance to the end, the room was suddenly shaken ; and there appeared before her Satan, in the most frightful and horrible shape of a dragon, hissing, and carrying death Tt 2
in his looks; and besides that with his intolerable stench he was like to poison her, he rushed furiously upon her, to devour ber. But she with an assured confidence opposed the sign of the holy cross, and saw the dragon immediately burst in the middle.” She was martyred about the year 300, during the reign of the emperor Dioclesian. The anecdotes of these sub-saints may be true, and Father Ribadeneira, may have believed them ; but in this, as well as in other parts of this history and description, we do not take upon us to vouch for their veracity. .
This church had the additional name of Pattens, as Stow says, from pattens being sold in the neighbourhood; and the lane in which it is situated obtained the name of Rood Lane, on account of a rood placed in the church-yard, whilst the old church was taken down and rebuilt; during which time, the oblations made to the rood were employed towards the building; but, on the 23d of May 1538, the idol and the tabernacle in which it was contained were broken to pieces, by some unknown reformers.
St. Margaret's church appears to have been of antient foundation, for it is recorded that the patronage was in the family of Nevill, and afterwards confirmed to Sir Richard Whittington, who bestowed it on the mayor and corporation of London, jointly with Leadenhall and St. Peter, Cornhill, as we have fully stated, and this living still continues in their presentation.
Here were several chantries founded for the family of Atvynes, at the altar of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Having been involved in the general destruction of 1666, it was rebuilt in its present elegant style, and the parish of St. Gabriel Fenchurch, annexed to the living.
The walls of the west end are of stone, ornamented with arched windows, and a handsome arched door. The steeple is a beautiful specimen of Doric architecture, and the spire forms a striking object from various parts of the city, on account of its lofty and light appearance. The other walls are brick, covered with stucco.