Lincoln's Inn is one of the four Inns of Court.
"In the years of Inigo Jones the square was the most fashionable in London."
Lincoln's Inn Fields
"Thanks to a decree dating from the 1640s, the green area was preserved for generations of Londoners. The Society of Lincoln's Inn and adjoining parishes objected to a proposal in 1613 for a license to build on the fields, and a petition was launched 'to restrayne and forbid building" for general commoditie and health for walks in the same manner as Morefieldes'."
Wow! How enlightened!
Edwin Shaw • Link
Just off Lincoln's Inn is, or was, Clare Market, an area now occupied by the distinctly Pepysian London School of Economics. Has anybody got anything on Clare Market in the 17th century?-it was a picaresque place, given, amongst other things, to some of the private diversions that so absorbed Mr P...
Brian • Link
The Rocque map shows the Lincoln's Inn Fields very clearly. The area seems to have grown over the years with an 'old' square, a 'new' square, and the Fields.
Cumgranissalis • Link
No 59-60 Lincoln Inn appears to be a survivor from the works of Indigo Jones
Michael Robinson • Link
Lincoln's Inn Fields
"At the beginning of the C 17 Lincoln's Inn Fields was some leftover fields surrounded by small property of no quality. William Newton, the developer of houses in Great Queen Street just to the west, bought the Fields in 1629 and in 1638 and, against the wishes of the gentlemen of Lincoln's Inn, who wanted them to be a public open space like Moorfields, obtained a licence to build thirty two houses. By 1658 there were houses on the west, north and south sides. ... The earlier survivors are on the west side ...."
"Lindsey House, Nos. 59 - 60. The name comes from the Earl of Lindsey's occupation in the early C 18th. This is the only one surviving early original house ... built in 1639-41 as a speculation by Sir David Cunningham. Colen Campbell illustrated it in Virtuvius Britannicus [1715-25] and attributed the design to Inigo Jones., but the only further evidence known which might point to this is that Cunningham was a friend of Nicholas Stone. The house is well set back, in a forecourt defined by rustic brick piers. When built it formed a tall centerpiece on the west side, with a balustraded parapet instead of the eves cornices of its neighbors. A broad front of five bays, with rusticated ground floor and six ionic pilasters above. Built of red brick with pilasters stuccoed to look like stone (the walls have later stucco now, 1998, painted red) Summerson [Georgian London, 1945, rev. 1988] found it 'pioneering roughness and course craftsmanship;' Pevsnner argued that the broad proportions and emphatic detail - the wreathed capitals and the boldly pedimented first-floor windows, the central pediment open and segmented --- added character. Whether or not by Jones, this design with piano nobile and pilasters is a rare early survival of the type of regular classically detailed street elevation that Jones had promoted at Covent Garden, and which was beginning to appear elsewhere in the 1630's. The Virtuvius Britannicus plan shows a double-pile plan with further rooms to the rear of a small well light. The house was altered inside when subdivided in 1751-2, possibly by Isaac Ware. The lowered first floor windows may date from this time. (Inside some C 17 joinery remains, and an alcove attributed to Ware)"
Buildings Of England, London 4: North, 1998, pp 306, 307 - 8.
Michael Robinson • Link
Wenceslaus Hollar (Czech/British 1607-1677)
Prospect of Lincoln's Inn Fields, 1641-1653
View of square with buildings on three sides and low railing around; troops drilling behind tent in the middle; cavalry moving to right carrying banner preceded by two trumpeters.
Lincoln's Inn Fields, a noble square, immediately west of Lincoln's Inn. In the reign of Elizabeth and the early years of James I. the site was an open waste, the haunt of beggars and idle persons, and the occasional scene of military exercises and of public executions. Babington and his thirteen associates in the conspiracy which bears his name were executed here on September 20 and 21, 1586, seven on the first day and seven on the second. In George Whetstone's contemporary narrative (1587) the place is described as "a field at the upper ende of Holborne, harde by the high waye side to S. Giles." The Lords of the Privy Council wrote to the County Justices in September 1613 to restrain certain proposed buildings in Lincoln's Inn Fields. James I. having resolved to have it "laid out in walks like Moorfields," by a patent of November 16, 1618, appointed Francis Bacon, Lord Chancellor, and others, a commission "to reduce Lincoln's Inn Fields into walks." The commissioners called Inigo Jones to their aid, and he, it is said, reduced the fields to the exact dimensions of the base of one of the pyramids of Egypt—but the great pyramid occupies 13 1/2 acres, while this square contains only 12 acres. The west side, all that Inigo lived to build upon, was called The Arch Row; here he designed Ancaster House, afterwards called Lindsay House; the east side was bounded by the wall of Lincoln's Inn Gardens (as it now is by the hall of that Inn); the south side was known as Portugal Row, and the north as Holborn Row, but in the 18th century it was more commonly called Newman's Row. The laying out of the walks did not check the concourse of idlers, and it stimulated the passion for building, much to the annoyance of the members of Lincoln's Inn, till Oliver Cromwell put a peremptory stop to it by a Proclamation, dated Whitehall, August 11, 1656.
---London, Past and Present. H.B. Wheatley, 1891.
Chart showing the number of references in each month of the diary’s entries.