The overlays that highlight 17th century London features are approximate and derived from Wenceslaus Hollar’s maps:

Open location in Google Maps: 51.514344, -0.097778

7 Annotations

First Reading

Phil  •  Link

While there is now a street called St. Paul's Churchyard running south of the cathedral, a map in Latham & Matthews places the churchyard as being to the north east of the then cathedral.

Paul Miller  •  Link

St. Paul's Cathedral, situated on the highest Ground of the City, was first founded about the Year 610, by Ethelbert King of Kent, and Segbert King of the West Saxons, in a Wood or Grove, where stood formerly a Temple of Diana, the Heathen Goddess; which Opinion was farther confirmed in the Time of King Edward the Second, about 1310, and 700 Years after the first Foundation, when Workmen digging thereabouts, they found above 100 Heads of Oxen, which were the Sacrifices offered to the foresaid Goddess. After several Disasters by Fire, it was wholly consumed in the dreadful Conflagration of 1666; however it was quickly began to be rebuilt, and finished within these few Years, so that it is now the most ample and celebrated Piece of Architecture in the whole World, and the largest Cathedral, being 20 Foot longer than St. Peter's at Rome. It is dedicated (as before) to the Apostle Paul; the History of whose Conversion, and Preaching to the Bereans, is curiously represented upon the West Portico; opposite to which in the Church Yard, is erected a most magnificent Statute of white Marble, to the Honour of the late Queen Anne.
---- W. Stow 1722

nick sweeney  •  Link

Paul's Churchyard is notable for being the centre of the London publishing and bookselling trade during the period, right on through the eighteenth century. Iain Sinclair writes about how the booksellers of St Paul's allegedly stored their wares in the cathedral crypt during the Fire, in the hope that they'd be preserved. In the end, all that paper appears to have fuelled the flames.

Second Reading

Bill  •  Link

Paul's (St.) Churchyard, the irregular area, lined with houses, encircling St Paul's Cathedral and burial-ground, of which the side towards the Thames is commonly called the bow, and the side towards Paternoster Row the string.
Before the Fire, which destroyed the old Cathedral, St Paul's Churchyard was chiefly inhabited by stationers, whose shops were then, and till the year 1760, distinguished by signs. The Cronycle of England, folio, 1515, was printed by Julian Notary, "dwellynge in powles chyrche yarde besyde y° weste dore by my lordes palyes." His sign was The Three Kinges. At the sign of the White Greyhound, in St Paul's Churchyard, the first editions of Shakespeare's Venus and Adonis and Rape of Lucrece were published by John Harrison; at the Flower de Luce and the Crown appeared the first edition of the Merry Wives of Windsor; at the Green Dragon the first edition of the Merchant of Venice; at the Fox the first edition of Richard II.; at the Angel the first edition of Richard III.; at the Spread Eagle the first edition of Troilus and Cressida; at the Gun the first edition of Titus Andronicus; and at the Red Bull the first edition of Lear.
---London, Past and Present. H.B. Wheatley, 1891.

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