6 Annotations

First Reading

Hhomeboy  •  Link

Re: travelling modes & times; From T.B. Macaulay

Hhomeboy  •  Link

Macaulay on 17th century social alienation owing to the fearsome and chaotic state of the roads, due to parochial taxation policies:

The chief cause which made the fusion of the different elements of society so imperfect was the extreme difficulty which our ancestors found in passing from place to place. Of all inventions, the alphabet and the printing press alone excepted, those inventions which abridge distance have done most for the civilisation of our species. Every improvement of the means of locomotion benefits mankind morally and intellectually as well as materially, and not only facilitates the interchange of the various productions of nature and art, but tends to remove national and provincial antipathies, and to bind together all the branches of the great human family. In the seventeenth century the inhabitants of London were, for almost every practical purpose, farther from Reading than they now are from Edinburgh, and farther from Edinburgh than they now are from Vienna.

Vicente  •  Link

Travel times: two days by coach from the Strand to Portsmouth distance: 73 miles;

Cumgranissalis  •  Link

Seeing a map of the John Ogliby and seeing the modern map, most of the roads still be there especially at the Fluvius crossings :
One day trip Guilford to Portsmouth. By using the the London - Portsmouth street roads in/out of the main towns, one follows most of the old SP route.
Mileage in miles and furlongs: Guildford 4.4 to Godalming 12.2 [including that nice climb at Hindhead Puff- Puff] Lippock 8.4 Petersfield 7.2 Harnden 6.4 Portsey Bridge [M25 ] 4.2 to the Portsmouth [Old Portsmouth]

Cumgranissalis  •  Link

Errata S/B M27/A27 not the ring road the Dreaded M 25

Second Reading

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Several times Pepys records "going out of his way" meaning he arrived later than anticipated. Getting lost must have been an on-going problem, and according to this article in 1697 Parliament ordered that "finger posts" be installed at remote crossroads showing the way.

I was brought up to call them signposts.
Unsurprisingly they are an endangered species these days. I hope they are protected soon ... they are a useful part of British tradition and a way of showing children how the world worked before cellphones. You never know ... they may come in useful again someday if/when the satellites fail.


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