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well Green, were built upon; and Holborn stretched away -imperceptibly westward, till it came into contact with the village of St. Giles in the Fields *. Aldgate, the eastern inlet of the city, being in a ruinous state, was at the same time rebuilt.
In 1610 the number of inhabitants having increased exceedingly, it was wisely considered by the mayor and citizens in what manner they might be supplied with all necessary provisions : for this purpose they erected twelve new public granaries at Bridewell, capacious enough to hold six thousand quarters of corn, to be sold to the poor at prime cost, in case of a scarcity, or any combination by the dealers in corn or meal.
The year 1612 is sacred to one of the noblést acts of philanthropy which can dignify human nature. The monastery of the Carthusian Friars, by corruption called the Charter House, on the suppression of the order, having been granted to the Earl of Suffolk, Mr. Thomas Sutton, a wealthy bachelor, purchased it of that noble family for the sum of 13,0001. and laid out 7000l. more in repairs and improvements; intending to make it at once a seminary of literature, and a receptacle for decayed gentry. He obtained letters patent, and an act of parliament, for establishing this benevolent foundation, and endowed it with lands, even then producing 44901. a year, which at a very moderate computation may be now valued at double
But this seemed to be an æra of patriotism and public spirit. In the tenth year of James, Sir Baptist Hicks, one of the justices of the peace for the county of Middlesex, afterward created Lord Viscount Campden, at bis own expense built a sessions-house for the accommodation of the county magistracy, at the bottom of St. John Street; it was called Hicks's Hall, in honour of the founder.
A matchless benefactor to London, at this period, however, was Sir Hugh Middleton, the author of one of the principal sources of health, cleanliness, and comfort, * Anderson's History of Coinmerce.
norivalled in their Greenland fishery ; insomuch, that the Dutch, excited by their success, sent out several ships the ensuing year, 1612, in the same pursuit; whereupon the English company's ships seized on the whale oil of the Durch, and on their fishing tackle, implements, &c. and obliged them to return home, with a menace, that if ever they were found on those seas hereafter, they would make prizes of both ships and cargoes; their master, the king of Great Britain, having the sole right to that fishery, in virtue of a prinary discovery. The next year this menace was literally tultiiiel; for the English seized on, and brought home, every Dutch ship that attempted to fish there, and they were deemed legal prizes. The Merchants Adventurers company, those of the Staple, the Russia, and the East India companies, all made such an astonishing progress in the different branches of their commerce, that in the year 1613, the money paid for exports and imports in Lon. don alone, amounted to 109,5721. 185. 4d. which was very near thrice as much as all the other ports of England paid for customs in the same year. So great and extensive a commerce,--s0 numerous a fleet of merchant ships, and ships of war,—such extensive settlements in every quarter of the globe, --with such an amazing supply of different manufactures at home, thrust into every corner of the earth where any traffic could be had, -and all this established in so short a time, became a subject of great amazement to the world, and gave an early proof of British courage, industry, and perseverance.
Stow, who wrote most of his history during this reign, tells us, in his simple manner, that behind the nunnery in the Minories, “were fields in his time; one Trolop, and afterwards Goodman, were famous there; and that in the fields were a farme belonging to the said nunrie; at the which farme, he says, I myselfe in my youth, have fetched manye a halfe peny worth of milk, and never had lesse then three ale pints for a halfe peny in the summer, nor less than one ale quart for a halfe peny in the winter, alwaies hot from the kine."
• After a reign of twenty-two unprofitable years James died, in consequence of a Tertian ague, at Theobalds, in the fifty-ninth year of his age. His character is not to be formed either from the adulation, or the passionate invective, of the two parties that disturbed the realm during his government. That he was peaceable is undoubted; but this has been stated to be the effect of mere pusillanimity ; that he was learned is equally a fact; but his dogmatical mode of displaying it, proved his impertinence, more especially when he took upon him to devise rules for the direction of a kingdom, to the honour of which he had so badly administered. His liberality was always misplaced ; it bordered on prodigality, which was more blameable, being directed to unworthy objects. The due maintenance of his prerogative was certainly justifiable; but when he took upon him to dictate mandates to the other branches of the legislature, he committed an error, the magnitude of which could not be effaced, till all the horrors of anarchy had overwhelmed the British dominions and the blood of the future sovereign, and thousands of loyal and virtuous men had procured a dreadful expiation !
The unhappy reign of Charles I. during which the nation was involved in rebellion, protracted every mode of improvement in the metropolis, except in very few instances.
The learned Howell *, in his entertaining letters, relates some singular circumstances which happened on the proclamation of this monarch. King Charles was proclaim'd at Theobalds court-gate, by Sir Edward Zouch, knight marshal, master Secretary Conway dictating unto him, That
• This gentleman first brought the art of making glass from Venice into England. He is described by Granger as “master of more languages and author of more books than any Englishman of his time;' having published nearly one hundred volumes besides his Londinopolis. During the civil wars, after having been a member of parliament, he was committed to the feet for his loyalty, and compelled to write for a subsistence. At the Restoration, he was appointed historiographer, which he enjoyed till 1666, when he died and was buried in the Temple church, where a monument is erected to his memory.
whereas it had pleas'd God to take to his mercy our most gracious soveraign King James of famous memory, we proclaim Prince Charles, his rightful and indubitable heir, to be king of England, Scotland, France, and Ireland, &c. The knight marshal mistook, saying, his rightsul and dubitable heir, but he was rectified by the secretary. This being done, I took my horse instantly, and came to London first, except one, who was come a little before me ; insomuch, that I found the gates shut. His now majesty took coach, and the Duke of Buckingham with him, and came to Saint James's; in the evening he was proclaim'd at White-Hall gate, in Cheapside, and other places, in a sad shower of rain ; and the weather was suitable to the condition wherein he finds the kingdom which is cloudy; for he is left ingag'd in a war with a potent prince, the people by long desuetude unapt for arms, the fleet-royal in quarter repair, himself without a queen, his sister without a countrey, the crown pitifully laden with debts, and the purse of the state lightly ballasted, though it never had better opportunity to be rich, than it had this last twenty years : but, God Almighty, I hope, will make him emerge, and pull this island out of all these plunges, and preserve us from worser times.”
The same author gives also a curious account of the mode of apprenticing at this time, in a letter to his father. “ Our two younger brothers which you sent hither, are disposed of; my brother Doctor Howell, (afterwards bishop of Bristol) hath placed the elder of the two with Mr. Hawes, a mercer, in Cheapside, and he took much pains in it; and I had plac'd my brother Ned with Mr. Barrington, a silk-man in the same street, but afterwards for some inconveniences, I remov'd him to one Mr. Smith, at the Flowerde-luce in Lombard-street, a mercer also; their masters are both of them very well to pass, and of good repute; I think it will prove some advantage to them hereafter, to be both of one trade; because when they are out of their time, they may joyn stocks together; so that I hope, Sir, they are well plac'd as any two youths in London, but you must