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The hospital of St. Mary Spital, when it surrendered, was valued to expend 4781.; and, besides church ornaments, the goods belonging to the foundation consisted of one hundred and eighty beds, for the reception of needy persons.
In 1559, Queen Elizabeth came in great state from St. Mary Spital, attended by one thousand men in harness, with sheets of mail, corslets, and morrice pikes, and ten great pieces, drawn through the city, to her palace; the cavalcade was attended with drums, flutes, and trumpets, two morrice dancers, and two white bears in a cart. This was in the mayoralty of Sir William Hewitt, and, as probably was usual on such occasions, the queen in the first year of her reign, honoured the Spital sermon with her
presence. On the side of Bishopsgate Street Without, nearly opposite Whitegate Alley, is a public house of a curious construction ; which, though now degraded from its original desa tination, was originally the residence of Sir Paul Pindar, who was ambassador nine years to the Ottoman Porte, in the reign of James I.
" He was faithful in negociation, and eminent for piety, charity, loyalty, and prudence. He was an inhabitant twenty-six years, and a bountiful benefactor to this parish; and died in 1650, at the age of eighty-four.”
A few houses toward the south is The LONDON WORK. HOUSE. This is a large and commodious structure, for the reception, employment, and relief of the indigent and helpless, as well as for the punishment of the vagrant and disorderly. To embrace all the benevolent purposes of this institution, in 1649, a corporation was formed by full legislative authority, with a common seal; the lord mayor always being president. The corporation were allowed to purchase lands or tenements to the annual value of 3000l. and the common council were empowered to rate the respective wards, parishes, and precincts of the City, for the support of the workhouse.
Formerly the parishes paid one shilling per week for each child, beside the usual assessment; but in 1751, the go. vernors came to a resolution that no more children paid for Vol. II, No. 44.
by the parishes should in future be received; and it was further resolved, that only such children should be taken into the house, as were committed by the city magistrates, found begging in the street, pilfering on the Keys, or laying about in glass houses, or uninhabited places. , They are dressed in russet cloth, with a round badge upon their breasts, representing a poor boy, and a sheep, with this motto: “God's PROVIDENCE IS OUR INHERITANCE ;” and when they arrive at a proper age, the boys are apprenticed to trade or navigation, and the girls placed to service.
A portion of this building, called the Keeper's Side, is appropriated for the confinement of those who have no honest means of employ; and prostitutes, who are kept to hard labour in beating of hemp, and in washing linen. In cases of sickness, or other accidents, they have, besides their support, physical advice and assistance gratis.
When the city gates were pulled down in 1761, the deb. tors in Ludgate, citizens of London, were removed to a part of this house, in apartments allotted for that purpose; and here they remained till removed a few years since to their present place of confinement, behind Giltspur Street Compter.
In Old BETHLEM, stood a priory, founded in A. D. 1246, by Robert Fitzmary, sheriff of London, for the support of a community of brothers and sisters, who wore a star upon their upper garments, as being dedicated to St. Mary of Bethlehem. This priory having undergone the fate of other religious houses in the reign of Henry VIII. was purchased from the crown by the mayor and commonalty, in 1546 ; and it was by them converted into an hospital for the cure of lunatics, at a certain expence to be paid weekly by the relations or parish of the patient admitted. Besides, the citizens, at a court of aldermen, on the 7th of April, 5 Ed. ward VI. cancelled a former agreement in regard to tythes and oblations, &c. and ordered, “ That the inhabitants within the precinct of Bethlehem, should be from thenceforth united to the parish of St. Botolph without Bishopsgate, and to be allotted and charged to all officers and charges, tythes and clerk's wages excepted. : In consideration whereof, the parson of the said parish was to receive yearly 20s. and the clerk 65. 8d. out of the chamber of London."
charges, * Vol. I. p. 415. 3 E 2
This priory inclosed all the estate and ground, in length, from the king's high street, meaning Bishopsgate Street east, to the great ditch in the west, which was called Deep Ditch, dividing the said lands from Moorfields; and in breadth, to the land of Ralph Downing, viz. Downing's Alley, in the north, and to the land of the church of St. Botolph, in the south.
The priory being dissolved, and the site and lands disposed of to the city of London, it was immediately let out to tenants, and was all built upon, and divided into streets, alleys, and courts; except a square piece of ground, of about one acre, thạt lies at the north east extremity of the Lower Moorfields, known by the modern name of Broker Row; where once was the above Deep Ditch.
Sir Thomas Rowe, Merchant Taylor, and lord mayor in 1569, caused this ground to be inclosed with a brick wall, for a common burial ground, at a low rate, to such parishes in London as wanted convenient burial places: he gave it the name of the New Church Yard, near Bethlehem, and established a sermon to be preached there on Whitsunday, annually; which was honoured with the presence of the lord mayor and aldermen for many years.
Returning from Broker Row, towards Bishopsgate Street, we pass the Broad Streets. This plot of ground, formerly a laystall, was afterwards denominated Petty France, on account of the refugees who were residents here; the mean buildings which had been erected becoming ruinous, a vast pile of buildings was constructed, bearing the present names of New BROAD STREET, &c.*
In this street is a Meeting House for the class of Dissenters from the Church of England, denominated INDEPENDENTS.
These compose a large body of Protestants, who are sometimes denominated Congregationalists'; because they
hold that every congregation hath a complete power of jurisdiction within itself, independent of either bishop, synod, or council ; though they own that synods bave a considerative power, and are an ordinance of God.--Let it in this place be understood that we do not intend to discuss controversial points of religious principles; but merely describe, as nearly as possible, the church government and principal tenets of the various classes of religious bodies, with which this great metropolis abounds, in illustration of the general object of the present work.
In Bishopsgate Street is an antient inn, bearing the date of the year 1480 ; it is now the White Hart. Considering the above boundary of the hospital of Old Bethlem, on the south, to abut on the church land of St. Botolph, building, from its antiquity, must have been part of the hospital ; and probably the hostellary, or inn, for the en: tertainment of strangers, as was customary in those times,
St. BOTOLPH, BISHOPSGATE.
RESPECTING this church the registers go no higher with the rectors than John de Northampton, who was rector, and resigned on the 4th of June 1323. It was then, and
it still remains in the gift of the bishop of London. The old church was built of brick and stone, plaistered over, and escaped the fire of London, but became so ruinous, that it was made necessary to apply to parliament to pull it down and build a new church. The present fabric was begun in 1725, and finished in two years, and is both massy and spacious; the body is built with brick, and well en. lightened ; the roof being also. hid by a handsome balustrade. The steeple, though heavy, is magnificent. In the centre of the front is a large, plain, arched window, deco. rated with pilasters of the Doric order. Over this window is a festoon, and above an angular pediment; on each side is a door, crowned with windows; and over these are others of the port-hole kind. Above the port-holes rises a square tower, crowned by a dome, with a circular base surrounded by a balustrade in the same form: by the side of which, on the corners of the tower, are placed urns with flames. From this part rises a series of coupled Corinthian pillars, sup. porting similar urns to the former, and over them rises the orgive dome, crowned with a very large vase, with fiames. This structure all together is upon a simple, beautiful, and harmonious plan; and the steeple more in taste than most about the metropolis, notwithstanding a door is wanting in the centre. This however is easily accounted for; it was necessary to make the fabric ornamental to the street, and being the east end, the altar is placed (where the grand door would otherwise have been) under a noble arch, bes neath the steeple. The inside is arched, except over the galleries, and two rows of Corinthian columns support both the galleries and arch, which extends over the body of the church, and is neatly adorned with fret-work.
To remedy some defects occasioned by the light obscured in consequence of the closeness of houses on the north side, a dome was formed in the cieling, and a large window at the west end; the latter, however, is completely hid by a large and elegant organ, erected by subscription in 1764. The pulpit is in a grand stile, richly ornamented and inlaid.