1893 text

Lion Key, Lower Thames Street, where the famous Duchess of Suffolk in the time of Bishop Gardiner’s persecution took boat for the continent. James, Duke of York, also left the country from this same place on the night of April 20th, 1648, when he escaped from St. James’s Palace.

This text comes from a footnote on a diary entry in the 1893 edition edited by Henry B. Wheatley.

2 Annotations

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Lion Key, Lower Thames Street.
Next to this [Billingsgate] is Sommer's Key, which took that name of one Sommer dwelling there, as did Lion Key of one Lion, owner thereof, and since of the sign of a Lion.
--Stow, p. 78.

When the Duchess of Suffolk escaped from Bishop Gardiner's persecution she, after much difficulty, took boat from Lion Key—

The Duchess of Suffolk seeing this,
Whose life likewise the tyrant sought
For fear of death was fain to fly,
And leave her house most secretly.
--Duchess of Suffolk's Calamity.

Okey, the regicide, was a chandler at this quay. When James, Duke of York (James II.), on the night of April 20, 1648, made his escape from St. James's Palace, he put on women's clothes in the house of one Loe, a surgeon, near London Bridge; and, attended by Bamfield and his footman, went "to Lyon Key, where there waited a barge of four oars, into which they entered, and so went down the river, the tide serving for the purpose."
---London, Past and Present. H.B. Wheatley, 1891.

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