Old and New London, A Narrative of its History, its People and its Places. Illustrated with Numerous Engravings from the Most Authentic Sources. vol 4

Thornbury, Walter
1872-78

Hanover Square and its Neighbourhood.

Hanover Square and its Neighbourhood.

 

O could I as Harlequin frisk, And thou be my Columbine fair, My wand should, with one magic whisk, Transport us to Hanover Square: St. George's should lend us its aid.--Rejected Addresses.

 

This square--perhaps in way among the most popular in London, so closely connected as it is with the fashionable marriages solemnised in Church--was entirely unbuilt in ; but its name, which is mentioned in the plans of London of the year , bears testimony to the loyalty of the Londoners who worshipped the

rising sun

in the person of George I. Both in the square itself, and in adjoining, there are several specimens of the German style of building. covers about acres of ground, and the centre is enclosed with a neat iron railing, within which, on the north side, is a colossal bronze statue of William Pitt, by Sir Francis Chantrey. This statue was not set up until , when the statesman had been dead for more than a quarter of a century; it cost ; and Mr. Peter Cunningham, who was present on the occasion, records the fact, that on the very day of its erection some advanced reformers endeavoured, though in vain, to pull it down with ropes. The figure is upright, in the act of speaking, and is of the finest statues in London.

The , in , contains the following observations, which are interesting at the present time:--

Round about the new square,

which is building near

Oxford Road

[now

Oxford Street

], there are so many other edifices that a whole magnificent city seems to be risen out of the ground, that

one

would wonder how it should find a new set of inhabitants. It is said it will be called by the name of

Hanover Square

. The chief persons that we hear of who are to inhabit that place when it is finished, having bought houses, are these following:--The Lord Cadogan, a general; also General Carpenter, General Wills, General Evans, General Pepper, the

two

General Stuarts, and several others whose names we have not been able to learn.

It would appear, therefore, that its tenants were mostly of the military order.

Strype tells us that the houses which in his time were in the process of creation were rapidly taken up; of them he specifies by name, the mansion of

My Lord Cowper, late Lord High Chancellor of England;

and he adds that it was in contemplation to change the common place of execution from Tyburn to somewhere near Kingsland, in order to spare that square and the houses thereabouts--it must be supposed that he really means their inmates--the inconvenience and annoyance which might be caused by the execution of malefactors, which at that time went on rather by wholesale. But the square, though so aristocratic in its earlier inhabitants, does not appear to have been well looked after. At all events, we find plenty of complaints as to its condition half a century later.

As to

Hanover Square

,

writes the author of

Critical Observations on the Buildings and Improvements of London,

published in ,

I do not know what to make of it. It is neither open nor enclosed. Every convenience is railed out, and every nuisance railed in. Carriages have a narrow, ill-paved street to turn round in, and the middle has the air of a cow-yard, where blackguards assemble in the winter to play at hustle-cap, up to the ankles in dirt. This is the more to be regretted, as the square in question is susceptible of improvement at a small expense.

We gather from Dr. Hogg's work on

London as it is,

published in , that several, at all events, of the streets near , on the Grosvenor property, were not originally public thoroughfares. But the only gate now existing which bars the passage of carriages in this neighbourhood is that in , between the north side of this square and .

On the north side of the square, with its stables facing , is Harewood House, the residence of the Earl of Harewood. Of the interior of this mansion, Mr. T. Raikes gives us the following peep in his amusing

Journal:

--

The finest collection of old china in England will be found in the house of Lord Harewood, in

Hanover Square

, a nobleman whose agricultural pursuits and simple habits would give little reason to suppose that he was possessed of such an expensive article of luxury and taste. Fagg, the Chinaman, since the renewed rage in England for

old valuables

, has in vain offered Lord Harewood immense sums for this collection; but it was originally made by his elder brother, well known then as Beau Lascelles, who died unmarried, in

1814

, and is always preserved in the family as a

souvenir

of him. The brothers were much attached to each other; but never was a greater contrast seen than in the refinement of the

one

and the simplicity of the other. Beau Lascelles was the essence of fashion of that day. He was a handsome man, rather inclined to be fat, which gave him a considerable resemblance to George Prince of Wales, whom he evidently imitated in his dress and manner. He was very high bred and amicable in society, and his taste in all that surrounded him was undeniable; his house, his carriages, horses, and servants, without any attempt at gaudy trappings, were the admiration of all the town, from the uniform neatness and beauty of their

tenue

. The

ensemble

of his equipage when he went to Court on a birthday might really be compared to a highly-finished toy. His house, though not large, was a museum of curiosities, selected with great taste and judgment, at a time when he had few competitors; and, had they all been preserved, they would now be of incalculable value. His life was luxurious but short, as he died at the age of

fifty

.

The gallant admiral, Lord Rodney, was living in this square in . It is well known that his favourite daughter eloped to Gretna Green with Captain Chambers, a son of the eminent architect, Sir William Chambers. At he was inclined to be angry, but he soon relented, and merely said,

Well, well! what is done can't be undone; but it's odd that my own family is the only crew that I never could manage, and I only hope that Jessy will never mutiny under her new commander!

The large house in the south-western corner, towards the close of the last century, was the town residence of Lord and Lady Palmerston, the father and mother of the late Premier. The house, which was of the great centres of political and social reunions, is noted by Lambert, in his

History of London,

as

the best piece of brick-work in the metropolis.

In [extra_illustrations.4.316.1]  was residing in this square along with her parents, Sir William and

p.316

Lady Fairfax, and gratifying her new-born taste for astronomical and other science by attending the lectures at the Royal Institution. Here the Fairfaxes used to have little evening parties, and it was here that the late Sir Charles Lyell (as recorded in Mrs. Somerville's

Life

) met his future wife, the beautiful Miss Horner.

Among the other distinguished residents in the square have been Field-Marshal Lord Cobham, the owner of Stowe, and the friend of Pope; Sir James Clark, Physician to Her Majesty the Queen in ; and Ambrose Philips, the poet satirised by Pope, and author of the

Distressed Mother,

who died in . The mansion at the corner of , now rebuilt and turned into the London and County Bank, was formerly called Downshire House. In it was inhabited by the Marquis of Salisbury. In it was held by another tenant, Prince Talleyrand, the ex-Minister of State in France, who used to gather round him the wits, , and diplomatists of the time. We shall meet him again at Kensington.

Of the houses which form the north-east side, is occupied by the Zoological Society, whose offices have been located here since about . The society was instituted in the year , under the auspices of Sir Humphry Davy, Sir Stamford Raffles, and other eminent individuals,

for the advancement of zoology, and the introduction and exhibition of subjects of the animal kingdom, alive or in a state of preservation.

In the society had a museum in , and subsequently in . This society took the place of the Zoological Club of the Linnaean Society, which had been broken up by internal differences. We shall have more to say about this society presently on reaching its gardens in the .

The Royal Agricultural Society of England has its offices at No. (next door to the above). This society was established in , for improving the general system of agriculture in this country, and engaging talented men in the investigation of such subjects as are of deep practical importance to the British farmer. Agricultural meetings are held annually in London and the country; the latter including a cattle-show, an exhibition of agricultural implements and inventions, and the awarding of prizes in either department. Its presidents, chosen annually, are almost always noblemen of high standing as practical farmers and breeders of stock.

At No. , on the north side of the square, and extending back into , is the Royal College of Chemistry. It was founded in

for the purpose of affording adequate opportunities for instruction in practical chemistry at a moderate expense, and for promoting the advancement of chemical science by means of a wellappointed laboratory and other appliances.

The stone of the laboratory, which has a handsome elevation on the south side of , was laid by the late Prince Consort in . The fees for the students are in proportion to the number of days in each week that they attend.

At the north-west angle of the square, facing , is the Oriental Club, founded about the year , mainly through the influence and exertions of that accomplished writer and traveller, the late Sir John Malcolm. It was at intended for gentlemen who have belonged to the civil or military services in India, or have been connected with the government of any of our Eastern dependencies. The building is constructed after the manner of club-houses in general, having only tier of windows above the ground-floor. The interior received some fresh embellishment about the year , some of the rooms and ceilings having been decorated in a superior style by Collman, and it contains Come fine portraits of Indian and other celebrities, such as Lord Clive, Nott, Pottinger, Sir Eyre Coote, &c. This club is jocosely called by of the critics of

Michael Angelo Titmarsh,

the

horizontal jungle

off .

At No. was established, about the year , the Arts Club. It was instituted

for the purpose of facilitating the social intercourse of those who are connected, either professionally or as amateurs, with art, literature, or science.

Charles Dickens belonged to this club, which numbers among its members very many of the Royal Academicians and others of the most rising artists of the day, with a goodly sprinkling of literary celebrities.

On the east side of the square, at the southeastern corner of , the large building now known as the Hanover Club, or Cercle des Etrangers, had for many years, down to the beginning of , borne the name of the Queen's Concert Rooms, more popularly known as the Rooms. The site of the building was anciently called the Mill Field (from a mill which adjoined it, and which , hard by, still commemorates), or Kirkham Close. It was originally in the parish of St. Martin's-in-the-Fields, though in it was joined on to that of , . It appears to have formed part of the premises in the occupation of Matthew, Lord Dillon, the ground landlord being the Earl of Plymouth, who sold it to Lord Denman,

p.317

who re-sold it to Sir John Gallini, by whom the house and the original concert-room were erected, in the half of the reign of George III. Gallini, an Italian by extraction, but a Swiss by birth, who, coming to England, was engaged to teach dancing to the then youthful royal family, realised a fortune at the West-end, received the honour of knighthood, and married Lady Betty Bertie, daughter of Lord Abingdon. In Gallini, joining with John Christian Bach and Charles F. Abel, converted the premises into an

Assembly Room,

no doubt, in order to act as a counter attraction to the fashionable gatherings in , under the auspices of Mrs. Cornelys, and other places where music went hand-in-glove with masked balls and other frivolous dissipations. years later we find Gallini buying up the shares of his partners and carrying on the rooms upon his own account. Supported by the musical talent of Bach, Abel, and Lord Abingdon, and also, in emergencies, by the purse of the last, Gallini carried on here, from to , a series of concerts, for which he contrived to gain the patronage of the Court. George III. himself was accustomed frequently to attend these concerts, together with Queen Charlotte; and it is said that his Majesty showed such an active interest in the performances that he had a room added to the side, called the Queen's Tea Room: in this apartment, over the mantelpiece, was fixed a large gilt looking-glass, which he presented to the rooms for ever. In a committee of noblemen and gentlemen, consisting of Lord Sandwich, Lord Dudley and Ward, the Bishop of Durham, Sir Watkin Williams Wynn, Sir R. Jebb, and the Hon. Mr. Pelham, established the wellknown

Concerts of Ancient Music,

to the directorship of which soon afterwards were added Lord Fitzwilliam and Lord Paget, afterwards the Earl of Uxbridge. These memorable performances, which commenced their season at the Rooms, near (subsequently converted into a theatre), and which from to had their head-quarters at the King's Theatre in the , were removed hither in the latter year, and continued to flourish under the patronage of royalty and the leaders of the aristocracy-including the late Prince Consort, the Duke of Wellington, Lord Westmoreland, and others-down to , when they were discontinued. King George III. took the warmest interest in these concerts, and not only occupied the royal box with his Queen and family night after night, but would constantly write out the programmes of the performances with his own hand. It is said the directors of these concerts paid Sir John Gallini a rental of a year for the use of the rooms. Mr. Greatorex was the conductor of these concerts from the commencement of the century down to his death in , when he was succeeded by Mr. W. Knyvett.

The Concert of Ancient Music, at present more generally known by the appellation of the King's Concert,

writes Sir Richard Phillips, in ,

is a branch that seceded from the Academy of Ancient Music. . . .It generally commences in February, and continues weekly on Wednesdays till the end of May.

Six

directors, chosen from among the nobility, select in turn the pieces for the night, and regulate all its principal concerns. The leading feature of its rules is the utter exclusion of all modern music. So rigid are its laws on this head, that no composition less than

twenty-five

years old can be performed here, without the forfeiture of a considerable sum from the director of the night.

He adds, that difficulties arise out of this stringent rule, a want of variety in the performances, and the

discouragement of living genius.

[extra_illustrations.4.317.1] 

These rooms were also long used for the Philharmonic Concerts, established by Messrs. Cramer and Co., in , under the auspices of the then Prince Regent. They were held in the Argyll Rooms, at the corner of Argyll Place, and on those premises being burnt down in , they were given at the concert-room of the Opera House; but they were transferred to in . It may not, perhaps, be out of place to mention here that the annual performance of the for the benefit of the Royal Society of Musicians was given here from to .

In Jesse's

Life of Beau Brummell,

the incident which is said to have given rise to the estrangement between the Prince Regent and the

Beau

is stated to have occurred at these rooms, although other writers have fixed upon as the scene, as we have mentioned in our account of that street; nevertheless, the story told by Jesse will bear repeating:--

Lord Alvanley, Brummell, Henry Pierrepoint, and Sir Harry Mildmay, gave at the

Hanover Square

Rooms a

fête

, which was called the Dandies' Ball. Alvanley was a friend of the Duke of York; Harry Mildmay, young, and had never been introduced to the Prince Regent; Pierrepoint knew him slightly; and Brummell was at daggers-drawn with his Royal Highness. No invitation, however, was sent to the Prince; but the ball excited much interest and expectation, and to the surprise of the amphitryons, a communication was received from his Royal Highness, intimating his wish to be present. Nothing,

therefore, was left but to send him an invitation, which was done in due form, and in the name of the

four

spirited givers of the ball. The next question was, how were they to receive their guest? which, after some discussion, was arranged thus:-- When the approach of the Prince was announced, each of the

four

gentlemen took, in due form, a candle in his hand. Pierrepoint, as knowing the Prince, stood nearest the door with his wax-light, and Mildmay, as being young and void of offence, opposite. Alvanley, with Brummell opposite, stood immediately behind the other

two

. ,The Prince at length arrived, and, as was expected, spoke civilly and with recognition to Pierrepoint, and then turned and spoke a few words to Mildmay; advancing, he addressed several sentences to Lord Alvanley, and then turning towards Brummell, looked at him, but as if he did not know who he was or why he was there, and without bestowing on him the slightest symptom of recognition. It was then, at the very instant he passed on, that Brummell, seizing with infinite fun and readiness the notion that they were unknown to each other, said aloud, for the purpose of being heard,

Alvanley, who's your fat friend?

Those who

Harewood House.

were in front, and saw the Prince's face, say that he was cut to the quick by the aptness of the satire.

The entertainments provided in these rooms were not strictly confined to balls and concerts, for lectures,

readings,

and public meetings innumerable have been held here: and in Miss Linwood here exhibited her

needlework pictures,

prior to their final removal to . In -, Dr. Chalmers, the celebrated Scotch divine, here delivered a series of lectures on the Church of England.

In , at the death of the Misses Gallini, Sir John's nieces (the founders of the Roman Catholic Church in , Wood), their freehold interest in Rooms was bought by Mr. Robert Cocks, the eminent musical publisher, who subsequently let them on a lease of years to the committee of the club above mentioned. It is not, however, only with the ancient institutions named above that the history of these rooms was interwoven, but with that of Mr. Henry Leslie's choir, and with the concerts of the Royal Academy of Music in close by, which renewed its

p.319

performances here in . The large room, in its original state, was dull and heavy, owing to the architectural style of the date at which it was built; at end was the ponderous royal box, and almost the only tasteful decoration consisted of some paintings by the hand of Cipriani. In the winter of -, however, the rooms underwent a complete restoration and re-decoration, and they became the most comfortable concert-rooms in London, to say nothing of their great superiority to most large buildings in respect of acoustic properties. The large room had a slightly arched roof, richly gilt and ornamented with pictures; the walls on either side of the room were adorned with Corinthian columns with ornamental capitals,
also gilt. The panels over the looking-glasses were filled with medallions, painted in , of the most celebrated composers-Handel, Beethoven, Bach, Rossini, Purcell, Weber, Haydnaccom- panied by their names and dates; and the plinth round the room was decorated in imitation of marbles of various patterns and colours.

On Saturday evening, , took place the very last entertainment ever given in these time-honoured rooms. Mr. Cocks having placed them at the disposal of the Royal Academy of Music, a full orchestral and choral concert was given under the direction of Mr. Walter Macfarren. The work of altering the building to suit the requirements of a club was commenced immediately

p.320

afterwards. The large room has been preserved unaltered, as far as possible; but in other respects the building has undergone a thorough transformation, and has been raised a couple of storeys in height; the additional floors being devoted to chambers for such members as may wish to make the club their home, either permanently or temporarily. On the ground-floor is the newspaperroom, which occupies the position of the old supper-room, to the left of the entrance in ; the secretary's office, and also a writingroom. The principal lavatories, &c., are in the basement. The grand staircase, entirely of stone, is ornamented with statues holding jets of gas, and at the top is a large skylight, with an inner light of coloured glass. The floor contains a smoking-room, card-room, wine-bar, and also the dining-hall. The last-named apartment has been formed out of the old concert-room, which has been somewhat contailed in length; the east end, where the royal box formerly stood, is new; the pictures in the ceiling, mentioned above, where practicable, have been restored, and new ones inserted where necessary. On the floor is a billiard-room, and also the drawing-room, which overlooks . The Hanover Club, as now established-whose object is much the same as that of the Travellers', embracing the introduction of foreigners--is not the of that name which has existed; and it is probable that some house in the neighbourhood, in the time of the Georges, formed the head-quarters of a political association of persons zealous for the Hanoverian succession, which bore the same name; but the exact house which it occupied is not known.

In the of contains the following paragraph, which shows pretty clearly the condition of the immediate neighbourhood of at that time, so far as the building of streets is concerned :--

Two

rows of fine houses are building from the end of

Great Marlborough Street

through the waste ground and his Grace the Duke of Argyll's gardens into

Oxford Road

, from the middle of which new building a fine street is to be made through his Grace's house,

King Street

, and

Swallow Street

[now covered by

Regent Street

], to the end of

Hanover Square

,

Brook Street

, and the north part of

Grosvenor Square

, the middle of his Grace's house being pulled down for that purpose; and the

two

wings lately added to his house are to be the corners of the street which is now building.

The street here spoken of is now called , which opens into the north-east corner of the square. This and , which connects the square with at its south-east corner, were built about the same time, and bear testimony to the strong hold which the succession of the House of Brunswick had already taken on the feelings of the nation. Both streets are deficient in literary or personal associations; but it may be noted, that in the former Miss Emily Faithfull started her

Victoria Press,

through which she inaugurated her efforts to obtain remunerative employment for women.

In , which connects the square at its north-west angle by a circuitous route with and the northern end of , is the Royal Academy of Music. It has been devoted to its present use almost since the formation of the Academy. The Academy itself was established in the year , and a few years afterwards a charter was obtained from George IV. Here the Academy used to give its concerts until , when the latter were transferred, as already stated, to the Rooms. The object of the Academy is the instruction of youth of either sex in every branch of musical education; and they are taught in classes by the professors at a trifling charge. Since its foundation, it has supplied a large number of instrumental performers of no mean eminence to the various orchestras of London; and many of its pupils have become leaders and conductors of concerts, and also eminent musicians, whilst several have distinguished themselves as composers. Among the students here was Mr. Charles Dickens's sister Fanny, to fetch whom the future

Boz

would call at its doors every Sunday morning, and bring her back at night after spending the day in their wretched home in . The house, No. , on the north side, opposite the Oriental Club, was at time the town residence of the Herberts, Earls of Carnarvon, who here used to entertain King George III. and his family with syllabub and tea in the terraced garden behind, which commanded a view of the Uxbridge or Tyburn Road. On the gardens of Lord Carnarvon's House, at the back, stands the carriage-factory of Messrs. Laurie and Marner, of which we shall have more to say when dealing with .

, which connects the south-west angle of the square with and , will be more properly treated in a future chapter. Only a few of its houses stand to the east of , and to these no literary interest attaches, unless it is worth while to mention the fact that of them was the last abode of

p.321

Messrs. Saunders and Otley, librarians and publishers to the Queen, before the break--up of that firm, about the year .

, which dates its erection from the building of the square itself, and which, as we have observed above, is similar to it in the character of its architecture, passes from the centre of the south side of the square into . Of this street the author of

A New Critical Review of the Public Buildings of London

remarks that there is an inconsistency and a departure from the true rule of taste in making it wider at the upper than at the lower end, as quite reversing the perspective; and yet he says that the view down from the top of the square, with in the front, is fine, and indeed

the most entertaining in the whole city,

though it ought properly to end in something more attractive to the eye than Trinity Chapel, in , of which we shall speak presently.

In a somewhat similar strain, but more rhapsodical style, Ralph remarks:

The sides of the square, the area in the middle, the breaks of building that form the entrance to the vista [of

George Street

], but above all the beautiful projection of the portico of

St. George's Church

, are all circumstances that unite in beauty and make the scene perfect.

For ourselves, we prefer decidedly the view looking the street towards the square, which throws the portico into bold relief against the sky. An cending view of a church, too, is almost always preferable to what may be called a descending view.

The parish of was

carved

out of that of St. Martin's-in-the-Fields, and Mr. John Timbs says that the site of the church was given by a General Stewart. The fabric has been much admired by those who think that style of architecture appropriate for religious edifices. It was built in -; the designer and architect was named James. This was, to use Pennant's quaint expression,

one

of the

fifty

[new churches] voted by Parliament, to give this part of the town the air of the capital of a Christian country.

The writer of

A New Critical Review of the Public Buildings of the Metropolis,

in , mentions it as

one

of the most elegant in London; the portico is stately and august, the steeple handsome and wellpropor- tioned, and the north and east prospects very well worth a sincere approbation ;

he complains, however, that its position is such as not to allow its beauties to be seen, for,

though situated in the very centre of the vista that leads to

Grosvenor Square

,

it is so blocked up by houses as

only to be seen in profile.

No doubt the beautiful proportions of its lofty Corinthian portico would form a fine object if there had been a broad street leading from to its western front; nevertheless, as it is, it is seen to great advantage from the junction of and . The interior has been decorated in an ecclesiastical style, so far as possible, of late years. Over the altar is a fine painting of the Last Supper, ascribed to Sir James Thornhill; it is surmounted by a painted window, said to be of the century; but the ornaments do not harmonise. The window itself is said to have formerly belonged to a convent at Malines. The subject is

The Genealogy of Our Lord, according to His human nature, as derived from Jesse through the

twelve

kings of Judah, previous to the Babylonian captivity. In the centre of the lower part is the figure of Jesse seated; the roots of a vine are on his head; on his right are Aaron and Esaias; on his left, Moses and Elias.

Till within the last few years-or between the close of the last century and the year , when was the centre of rank and fashion-[extra_illustrations.4.321.1]  enjoyed a monopoly of

fashionable

weddings, which has passed into a proverb. Here Sir William Hamilton was married on the , to Emma Harte, afterwards so well known as

Emma Lady Hamilton,

the friend of Nelson. Horace Walpole, in announcing the marriage to the Miss Berrys, tells them that

Sir William has just married his gallery of statues,

alluding to the fact that his wTfe used to sit as a model to artists. Here, too, was married in the year , the Marquis of Douro (now Duke of Wellington). The attesting witnesses, whose signatures may be seen in the marriage register, are his noble father, the great duke, and his brothers-all peers of the realm--the Marquis Wellesley, Lord Maryborough, and Lord Cowley.

Mr. F. Locker, in of his charming volumes of

Vers de Societe,

takes off

to perfection a fashionable wedding at , and epigrammatically expresses all the good wishes which usually attend the brides who are

led to the altar

there :

She pass'd up the aisle on the arm of her sire, A delicate lady in bridal attire, Fair emblem of virgin simplicity. Half London was there, and, my word! there were few Who stood by the altar or hid in a pew, But envied Lord Nigel's felicity. O beautiful bride! still so meek in thy splendour, So frank in thy love and its trusting surrender, Going hence you will leave us the town dim!

May happiness wing to thy bosom unbought, And Nigel, esteeming his bliss as he ought, Prove worthy thy worship, confound him!

p.322

 

But

fashionable

as the marriages mostly were that were performed in this church, they had their rude accompaniments: for instance, there were fees to be paid to

his Majesty's Royal Peal of Marrowbones and Cleavers: instituted

1719

.

The book of their receipts,

says a writer in ,

it seems, they carefully preserve. By the proceedings against the

St. George's

Marrow-bone and Cleaver Club

at

Marlborough Street

Office, by the Dowager Lady Harland, in their attempting to extort from her newly-married daughter, to whom they presented their silver plate, ornamented with blue ribbon and a chaplet of flowers, it appears the constable presented before the magistrate the book belonging to them, containing the names of a great many persons of the

first

consequence, who had been married at

St. George's

,

Hanover Square

; all of whom had put down their names for a sovereign. In the course of a year, the sum gathered by these greasy fellows, as marriage-offerings, was

£ 416

!

[extra_illustrations.4.322.1] 

The rectors of , in spite of the fashionable situation of the church, have not been on the whole distinguished, nor have many of them attained high dignities in the Church. To obtain this rectory the notorious Dr. Dodd offered to Lady Apsley, wife of the then Lord Chancellor, a of .

There are burying-grounds belonging to this parish- in the rear of , , and the other on the north side of the , . In the latter burial-ground for nearly years reposed the remains of the gallant general, [extra_illustrations.4.322.2] , who fell at Waterloo; but in they were removed and deposited, with all due military honours, in . There, too, lies poor Lawrence Sterne: we shall speak of him again when we reach Bayswater.

No. , about half way down on the eastern side, was the residence, for nearly a century, of John Copley, the Royal Academician, and afterwards of his son, [extra_illustrations.4.322.3] , both of whom died here; the former in , and the latter in . The future Chancellor was born in America in , and at an early age was brought over to England by his parents, who were staunch royalists. The father was presented at Court, obtained the favour of George III. and Queen Charlotte, and enjoyed a prosperous career. The son obtained the highest honours at Cambridge, was called to the bar in due course, entered Parliament in middle life, and soon rose to be Solicitor and Attorney-General, and Master of the Rolls, and in succeeded Eldon as Lord Chancellor. He enjoyed the confidence of the Duke of Wellington and Sir Robert Peel, and at time was sent for by the King to form an administration. The Whig party for many years feared nothing so much as the withering sarcasm of his annual reviews of the Parliamentary session, delivered by him in his place in the . He again held the Great Seal under Sir Robert Peel in - and in -. The walls of his house in were hung with his father's historical paintings, including the

Death of Wolfe,

the

Death of Lord Chatham,

&c. It is remarkable that the united ages of the painter, the ex-Chancellor, and a sister amounted to nearly years. After Lord Lyndhurst's death his house and the adjoining were pulled down, and on their site was built the magnificent mansion of Mr. Gore-Langton.

The house, No. , formerly the town residence of the late Sir George Wombwell, of the leaders of fashion in his day, and a friend of Count D'Orsay and the Fitzclarences, is now the Junior Travellers' Club.

, which runs from to the east end of , dates from about , and is probably named after the enterprising person who built it. In this street is the Museum of Building Appliances, which is in direct communication with, and indeed forms a part of, the Architectural Societies' House in . This museum, which was established in , and enlarged in , is

devoted to the reception of drawings, prospectuses, models, and specimen manufactures of every kind pertaining to the building trades.

It was founded chiefly as a means of affording to patentees and inventors an

opportunity for the introduction of their improvements to those most interested in their adoption.

The museum is open free daily throughout the year.

In this street is an inn now called the

Golden Star,

but formerly the

Coach and Horses.

It is remarkable that the

Golden Star

does not figure in Mr. Larwood's

History of Sign-boards.

Less than half a century ago there were more than inns in London rejoicing in the sign of the

Coach and Horses;

but their number is much reduced now, having been superseded by railways and steam.

Close by , and also at the back of , is , which perpetuates the fact of the mill standing hard by the site of , as mentioned above.

, which extends from to , across the south end of , still preserves the memory of the

p.323

conduit which stood in the centre of Conduit Mead--a large field--as lately as the year , on which and its neighbouring streets have since been erected, but whereon Carew Mildmay told Pennant, in , that he remembered shooting woodcocks when a boy. The same thing is said also of his contemporary, General Oglethorpe, who died in , having lived to be upwards of , and who, as Macaulay tells us, had

shot birds in this neighbourhood in Queen Anne's reign.

The Conduit Field in old days was a great

meet

for the Nimrods of the City.

On the

18th of September, 1562

,

writes Stow,

the Lord Mayor Harper, the aldermen, and divers other worshipful persons, rid to the Conduit-head before dinner. They hunted the hare, and killed her, and thence to dine at the Conduit-head. The Chamberlain gave them good cheer; and after dinner they hunted the fox. There was a great cry for a mile, then the hounds killed him at

St. Giles's

; great hallooing at his death and blowing of horns; and thence the Lord Mayor and all his company rode through London to his place in

Lombard Street

.

It is amusing, after an interval of more than years, to read of a Lord Mayor going out from and finding the hare and the fox in Marylebone, or possibly even nearer to the City, and thence making his return journey to his home in to the yelping of dogs and the lusty cheer of the huntsman's horn.

At the corner of and is Limmer's Hotel, once an evening resort for the sporting world; in fact, it was a midnight

Tattersall's,

where nothing was heard but the language of the turf, and where men with not very clean hands used to make up their books.

Limmer's,

says a popular writer,

was the most dirty hotel in London; but in the gloomy, comfortless coffee-room might be seen many members of the rich squirearchy, who visited London during the sporting season. This hotel was frequently so crowded that a bed could not be had for any amount of money; but you could always get a good plain English dinner, an excellent bottle of port, and some famous gin-punch.

At the corner of this and is the sign of the

Coach and Horses,

serving as a sort of tap to

Limmer's,

still bearing testimony to the sporting associations of the neighbourhood. Whilst the gentlemen Jehus put up at

Limmer's,

their coachmen and grooms met here, and discussed all sorts of questions connected with horseflesh at a sociable

free and easy.

In this street was the

Prince of Wales

coffeehouse, in which the mad Lord Camelford picked up, most gratuitously, his last quarrel with his friend Mr. Best, about a lady named Simmonsa quarrel which led to the duel fought by them in the grounds of Holland House, and his lordship's tragic death.

At No. , on the north side, between and , is a house formerly the town residence of the Earl of Macclesfield, but now entirely devoted to the architectural and building interests, for it contains within its walls the offices and rooms of the Architectural Association, the Architectural Publication Society, the Architectural Union Company, the District Surveyors' Association, the Photographic Society, the Provident Institution of Builders' Foremen and Clerks of Works, the Royal Institute of British Architects, the Society of Biblical Archaeology, the Society for the Encouragement of the Fine Arts, and also an entrance to the Museum of Building Appliances, mentioned above. The rooms and gallery of the Architectural Association are used constantly during the

season

for exhibitions of architectural designs and paintings. The Royal Institute of British Architects was established in for the purpose of

facilitating the acquirement of architectural knowledge, for the promotion of the different sciences connected with it, and for establishing a uniformity and respectability of practice in the profession.

The society has here founded a library of works, manuscripts, and drawings, illustrative, practically and theoretically, of the art; the publication of curious and interesting communications; the collection of a museum of antiquities, models, casts, &c.; with provision for performing experiments on the nature and properties of building materials. Its president is Sir George Gilbert Scott, R.A.

On the south side of the street, nearly facing , is Trinity Chapel, a curious and interesting relic of London in the days of the Stuarts. Although they did not form part of the original edifice, yet the walls of the chapel which now present themselves to our view stand on the site of a movable tabernacle, or chapel on wheels, which was built by order of James II., to accompany him in his royal progresses and on his visits to the camp at Hounslow, in order that mass might be celebrated in his presence by his chaplain. The camp was at Hounslow when in the autumn of the king withdrew and abdicated; and as soon as his abdication was known to be a fact, the chapel was brought up by road to London, and placed upon the site now occupied by its successor. Dr. Tenison-afterwards Archbishop of Canterbury

p.324

p.325

but at that time rector of St. Martin'sin-the-Fields-- begged the new king and queen, William and Mary, to make over to him the structure, in order to turn it into a temporary church, or rather chapel of ease, for the use of the outlying portion of the inhabitants of his then wide and scattered parish. It was actually opened for service according to the rites of the Established Church in , and among those who were present to hear the Protestant sermon preached within its walls was John Evelyn, who thus writes in his diary:--

This church, being formerly built of timber on Hounslow Heath by King James for the mass priests, being begged by Dr. Tenison, was set up by that public-minded, charitable, and pious man.

Pennant tells us that,

after having made as many journeys as the holy house of Loretto,

it was altered into

a good building of brick, and has ever since rested on the same site.

The houses on either side of the chapel were erected at the same time, forming part of the same insipid design, but such was the prevailing taste that they were then

considered by the public in general as highly ornamental to the street.

It appears not to have been Dr. Tenison's fault that Trinity Chapel remained a mere

chapel

Lansdowne House, In 1800.

of ease,

without a district assigned to it; for the commissioners for church building in those days refused to allow a proposal which he made to that effect, on the ground that the site was not freehold. The latter, it appears, had been bestowed on the vicar and churchwardens of for the benefit of the poor of the parish, by whom it was turned into money, being purchased at the close of the last or very early in the present century for a

proprietary

chapel. The speculation would seem to have been successful, for a writer in the mentions it as of the most fashionable places of worship at the West-end,

no pulpit being more frequently honoured by voluntary discourses from the most eminent dignitaries.

Towards the commencement of the present century, the Rev. Dr. Beamish made it by his fervid and eloquent discourses, if not so fashionable, at all events so crowded, that it was impossible to accommodate the congregations which he drew together, without the erection of galleries. The chapel was plain and ugly enough before, but by this addition it was made fairly the most ugly of the then existing proprietary chapels. In the early part of the year , it was decreed by the ground

p.326

landlord that the site was required for secular building, and that the services in this chapel should be discontinued, and the fabric itself demolished.

[extra_illustrations.4.326.1]  lived for several years at No. , next door to the chapel, afterwards the residence of the excellent and benevolent Dr. Elliotson, to whom we are mainly indebted for the science of mesmerism, a study to which he devoted many years of his life,

and whose name,

as Mr. John Forster observes,

was for nearly

thirty

years a synonym with all for unwearied, self-sacrificing, and beneficent service to every

one

in need.

On the same side of the street was formerly, for very many years, before they removed into , the shop of Messrs. Saunders and Otley, booksellers to the Queen, and for some time the publishers of

Lodge's Peerage.

In this street died quite suddenly, in , Mr. E. Delme Radcliffe, Gentleman of the Horse to George IV., whose racing studs he superintended. In his youth he was the best gentleman jockey in England, and lived much in the sporting circles of Carlton House. Mr. Raikes says, in his

Diary,

that

from the time that he left Eton he never changed the style of his. dress, wearing a single-breasted coat, long breeches,. and short white-topped boots.

Michael William Balfe, the composer, also resided in this street.

The eminent surgeon, Sir Astley Cooper, whom we have already mentioned in our account of , lived in this street towards the end of his most successful professional career, after the futile attempt he made to retire from practice, making the large income of a year; and here he died

in harness

in .

 
 
Footnotes:

[extra_illustrations.4.316.1] Mrs. Somerville

[extra_illustrations.4.317.1] Fancy Dress Ball at Royal Academy of Music

[extra_illustrations.4.321.1] St. George's

[extra_illustrations.4.322.1] Copley's Siege of Gibraltar--Exhibited in Green Park

[extra_illustrations.4.322.2] Sir Thomas Picton

[extra_illustrations.4.322.3] John Singleton Copley, Lord Lyndhurst

[extra_illustrations.4.326.1] George Canning

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 Title Page
 Chapter I: Westminster: A Survey of the City: Millbank, and its Neighbourhood
 Chapter II: Westminster.-Tothill Fields and Neighbourhood
 Chapter III: Westminster.-King Street, Great George Street, and the Broad Sanctuary
 Chapter IV: Modern Westminster
 Chapter V: St. James's Park
 Chapter VI: Buckingham Palace
 Chapter VII: The Mall and Spring Gardens
 Chapter VIII: Carlton House
 Chapter IX: St. James's Palace
 Chapter X: St. James's Palace (continued)
 Chapter XI: Pall Mall
 Chapter XII: Pall-Mall.-Club-Land
 Chapter XIII: St. James's Street.-Club-Land (continued)
 Chapter XIV: St. James's Street and its Neighbourhood
 Chapter XV: St. James's Square and its Distinguished Residents
 Chapter XVI: The Neighbourhood of St. James's Square
 Chapter XVII: Waterloo Place and Her Majesty's Theatre
 Chapter XVIII: The Haymarket
 Chapter XIX: Pall Mall East, Suffolk Street, &c.
 Chapter XX: Golden Square and its Neighbourhood
 Chapter XXI: Regent Street and Piccadilly
 Chapter XXII: Piccadilly.-Burlington House
 Chapter XXIII: Noble Mansions in Piccadilly
 Chapter XXIV: Piccadilly: Northern Tributaries
 Chapter XXV: Hanover Square and its Neighbourhood
 Chapter XXVI: Berkeley Square, and its Neighbourhood
 Chapter XXVII: Grosvenor Square, and its Neighbourhood
 Chapter XXVIII: May Fair
 Chapter XXIX: Apsley House and Park Lane
 Chapter XXX: Hyde Park
 Chapter XXXI: Hyde Park (continued)
 Chapter XXXII: Oxford Street, and its Northern Tributaries
 Chapter XXXIII: Oxford Street.-Northern Tributaries (continued)
 Chapter XXXIV: Oxford Street, and its Northern Tributaries (continued)
 Chapter XXXV: Oxford Street East.-Northern Tributaries
 Chapter XXXVI: Oxford Street: Northern Tributaries.-Tottenham Court Road
 Chapter XXXVII: Bloomsbury.-General Remarks
 Chapter XXXVIII: The British Museum
 Chapter XXXIX: The British Museum (continued)
 Chapter XL: The British Museum (continued)
 Chapter XLI: Bloomsbury Square and its Neighbourhood
 Chapter XLII: Red Lion Square, and its Neighbourhood
 Chapter XLIII: Queen Square, Great Ormond Street, &c.
 Chapter XLIV: Russell and Bedford Squares, &c.
 Chapter XLV: Gordon and Tavistock Squares, &c.
This object is in collection:
Edwin C. Bolles papers
Subjects
London (England)--Description and Travel
London --England
Permanent URL
http://hdl.handle.net/10427/14824
ID: tufts:UA069.005.DO.00063
To Cite: DCA Citation Guide
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