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Aldermanic Depression

Andrew Saint: London is good for you, 4 February 1999

London: A History 
by Francis Sheppard.
Oxford, 442 pp., £25, November 1998, 0 19 822922 4
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London: More by Fortune than Design 
by Michael Hebbert.
Wiley, 50 pp., £17.99, April 1998, 0 471 97399 8
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... cities of the world London has ... for centuries had a uniquely ascendant position,’ asseverates Francis Sheppard. From their respective standpoints of two millennia of ebullient trading and a century of, to put it mildly, muddled planning, Sheppard and Michael Hebbert paint their pictures in the same bright ...

Short Cuts

Matthew Beaumont: The route to Tyburn Tree, 20 June 2013

... the Paddington frisk’. ‘The whole vagabond population of London,’ the diarist Francis Place wrote, ‘all the thieves, and all the prostitutes, all those who were evil-minded, and some, a comparatively few, curious people made up the mob on those brutalising occasions.’ The memorial to the execution site at Marble Arch is embedded in the ...

Canterbury Tale

Charles Nicholl, 8 December 1988

Christopher Marlowe and Canterbury 
by William Urry, edited by Andrew Butcher.
Faber, 184 pp., £12.95, May 1988, 0 571 14566 3
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John Weever 
by E.A.J. Honigmann.
Manchester, 134 pp., £27.50, April 1987, 0 7190 2217 7
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Rare Sir William Davenant 
by Mary Edmond.
Manchester, 264 pp., £27.50, July 1987, 9780719022869
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... on the literary scene of the last Elizabethan years. Other ‘minor’ figures we encounter here (Francis Meres, Robert Allott, William Covell) will repay investigation. Honigmann also provides a photo-facsimile edition of the Epigrammes, from a copy in the Bodleian Library. Another impeccable biography, also from the Revels Companion Library, is Mary ...

What news?

Patrick Collinson: The Pilgrimage of Grace, 1 November 2001

The Pilgrimage of Grace and the Politics of the 1530s 
by R.W. Hoyle.
Oxford, 487 pp., £30, May 2001, 9780198208747
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... new year. The only outcome of this ‘mad, inept, ill-prepared rising’, led by the maverick Sir Francis Bigod, was to give the King the excuse he needed to take his revenge. Now, while the rank and file of the Pilgrimage melted back into their natural obscurity, Henry proceeded to execute the bigger names, including not only Aske but Darcy, who went to the ...

Horrid Mutilation! Read all about it!

Richard Davenport-Hines: Jack the Ripper and the London Press by Perry Curtis, 4 April 2002

Jack the Ripper and the London Press 
by Perry Curtis.
Yale, 354 pp., £25, February 2002, 0 300 08872 8
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... The Lodger: The Arrest and Escape of Jack the Ripper (1995). This indicts a ferocious misogynist, Francis Tumblety (c.1833-1903), an American quack who peddled a patent medicine known as the Tumblety Pimple Destroyer. (He was arrested for complicity in Abraham Lincoln’s assassination, was suspected in the Whitechapel murders, and was charged in November ...

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