Imatges de pÓgina


agent or servant, and I cannot get on alone, she made her way through the rooms and for people would overreach me. So I ask down the staircases, pale as a ghost and you to be my agent, to manage my busi- shaken with misgivings. But Paul had ness for me. I will pay you something, of come back for her, and her delight at seeing course ; but money is very scarce. this swept away the sharp bitterness of a

Paul's passion subsided, and he bent his few minutes. Paul was in wonderful exbrows and considered the miser's offer. He citement during all the walk home. Even seemed the sport of some mischievous spirit May's bright spirit had to get on tip-toe that ruled him for the hour with rapidly to be even with him. changing moods, whose fitful shiftings were imperceptible to himself. His pang

CHRONICLES OF LONDON of disappointment had vanished, and also

STREETS. bis vision of lost contentment, and he only thought now of the value of the proposal

LONDON BRIDGE. that had been made to him. It was less THERE is no certain record of when the than he had dreamed of while walking that first London Bridge was built. It is true morning through the Woods of Tobereevil; that Dion Cassius, writing nearly two hunbut in his present hunger for power any dred years after the invasion of Britain by morsel was a boon.

Claudius, speaks vaguely of a bridge across "I will be glad to do my best,” he the Thames in the reign of that emperor; answered, presently.

but it is more probable that no bridge really "That is well,” said the miser, “but existed till the year 994, the year after the you must work heart and soul for me. And invasion of Olaf the Dane, in the reign of if

you can make a little money for me it King Ethelred. It is at least certain that will be better for yourself. If you serve in the year 1008, in the reign of Ethelred me faithfully and learn thrifty habits you the Second, the Unready, there was a shall have any little penny I possess, when bridge, for, according to Snorro SturlesI die."

onius, an Icelandic historian, Olaf the "Indeed, sir !" said Paul; and the idea Norwegian, an ally of Ethelred, attacking of this heirship seemed to grow into some the Danes, who had fortified themselves in brilliant thing that dazzled him. His head Southwark, fastened his vessels to the got quite giddy, and he tingled with de- piles of London Bridge, which the Danes light. He felt himself already the master held, and dragged down the whole strucof Tobereevil. Only yesterday morning he ture. This Olaf, afterwards a martyr, is had held such a title to be the least de- the patron saint from whom the church, sirable in the world; but now a different now standing at the south-east corner of humour swayed him, and he craved it as London Bridge, derived its christian name. if it were life. No curse should ever hurt Tooley-street below, a word corrupted from him. He was a strong, brave man, and he Saint Olave, also preserves the


of would use his power well. He had shud- the Norwegian king, eventually slain near dered at a myth, and wasted his strength Drontheim by Knut, King of Denmark. upon a phantom. He had come face to Still, whenever the churchwardens and face with the temptation he had so dreaded vestry of St. Mary Overies, on the Bankall his life, and found himself as triumph- side, meet over their cups, the first toast, ant and happy as a king.

says an antiquary who has written an ex“What now about that dread and dis- haustive history of London Bridge, is to like ?" jeered Simon, as he watched joy their church's patron saint, “Old Moll.” start suddenly into the young man's face.

This Old Moll was, according to Stow, “I have changed my mind,” said Paul, Mary, the daughter of a ferryman at this “ but only since you have treated me like part of the river, who left all her money an honest man.

to build a house of sisters, where the east When the interview was over this heir part of St. Mary Overies now stands. In of the miser was in such a state of elation time the nunnery became a house of priests, that he quite forgot May, and walked out who built the first wooden bridge over several yards into the snow without think the Thames. There is still existing at the ing of her. And May, from an upper church of St. Mary Overies a skeleton window, saw him thus leave the place. effigy, which some declare to be that of She was cold and tired, but she had been Audery, the ferryman, father of the imwaiting for him patiently. Wounded, and mortal Moll. The legend goes that this John distraught, and half blind with vexed tears, Overy, or Audery, was a rich and covetous miser, mean, penurions, and insanely fond The first stone London Bridge was begun of hoarding his hard-earned fees. He had in 1176, by Peter, a priest and chaplain of a pious and beautiful daughter who, though St. Mary Colechurch, a building whichkept in seclusion by her father, was loved till the Great Fire made short work of it, by a young gallant, who secretly wooed and stood in Conyhoop-lane, on the north side won her. One day the old hunks, to save of the Poultry. There long existed a sensea day's food, resolved to feign himself dead less tradition that pious Peter of the Poultry for twenty-four hours, vainly expecting that reared the arches of his bridge upon woolhis servants, from common decency, would packs ; the fact, perhaps, being, that Henry fast till his funeral. With his daughter's the Second generously gave towards the help, he therefore laid himself out, wrapped building a new tax levied upon his subjects' in a sheet, with one taper burning at his wool. Peter's bridge, which took thirtyhead, and another at his feet. The lean, three years building, boasted nineteen half-starved servants, however, instead of pointed stone arches, and was nine hundred lamenting their master's decease, leaped up and twenty-six feet long, and forty feet overjoyed, danced round the body, broke wide. It included a wooden drawbridge, open the larder, and fell to fcasting. The and the piers were raised upon platforms old ferryman bore all this as long as flesh (called starlings) of strong elm piles, and blood could bear it, but at last he covered by thick planks bolted together, scrambled up in his sheet, a candle in each that impeded the passage of barges. On hand, to scold and chase the rascals from the tenth pier was erected a two-storied the house ; when one of the boldest of them, chapel, forty feet high and sixty feet long, thinking it was the devil himself, snatched to Saint Thomas A’Beckett. The lower ap the butt-end of a broken oar, and struck chapel could be entered either from the out his master's brains. On hearing of this chapel above, or from the river, by a flight unintentional homicide, the lover came post- of stone stairs. The founder himself was ing up to London so fast, that his horse buried under the chapel staircase Peter's stumbled, and the eager lover, alas! broke bridge was partly destroyed by a great fire his neck. On this second misfortune, Mary in 1212, four years after it was finished, Overy, shrouding her beauty in a cowl, re- and while its stones were still sharp and tired into a cloister for life. The corpse of white. There were even then houses upon the old usurer was refused Christian burial, it, and gate - towers, and many people he being deemed by the clergy a wicked and crowding to help, or to see the sight, got excommunicated man. The friars of Ber- wedged in between two fires by a shifting mondsey Abbey, however, in the absence of of the wind, and some three thousand were their father abbot, were bribed to give the either burnt or drowned. King John, after body a little earth for charity. The abbot this, granted certain tolls, levied on foreign on his return, enraged at the friars' cupidity, merchants, towards the bridge repairs. had the corpse dug up and thrown on the Henry the Third, according to a patent back of an ass, that was then turned out of roll, dated from Portsmouth, 1252, perthe abbey gates. The patient beast carried mitted certain monks, called the Brethren the corpse up Kent-street, and shook it off of London Bridge, with his special sanction, under the gibbet, near the small pond once to travel over England and collect alms. called St. Thomas-a-Waterings, where it In this same reign (1263), the bridge bewas roughly interred. The effigy is really, came the scene of great scorn and insult, as Gough, in his Sepulchral Monuments, shown by the turbulent citizens to Henry's says most of such figures are, the work queen, Eleanor of Provence, who was opof the fifteenth century; now, the real posed to the people's friends, the barons, Audery, if he lived at all, lived long before who were still contending for the final the Conquest, for the first wooden bridge settlement of Magna Charta. As the queen was, it is thought, probably built to stop and her ladies, in their gilded barge, were the Danish pirate vessels.

on their way to Windsor, and preparing to The first wooden bridge was destroyed shoot the dangerous bridge, the rabble by a terrible flood and storm, mentioned above assailed her with shouts and rein the Annals of Waverley Abbey, which, proaches, and casting heavy stones and in the year 1091, blew down six hundred mud into her boat, upon her and her brightLondon houses and lifted the roof off Bow clothed maidens, drove them back to the Church. In the second year of Stephen, a Tower, where the king was garrisoned. fire, that swept away all the wooden houses Towards the end of the same year, when of London, from Aldgate to St. Paul's, de- Simon de Montfort, Earl of Leicester, stroyed the second wooden bridge.

marched on London, the king and his



foreas occupied Southwark, and, to thwart fighting of a gayer and less bloodthirsty the citizens, locked up the bridge gates, and kind took place on the bridge. No dandy threw the ponderous keys into the Thames. Eglinton tournament this, but a genuine But no locks can bar out Fate; the gates grapple with spear, sword, and dagger. Sir were broken open by a flood of citizens, the David Lindsay, of Glenesk, who had marking was driven back, and Simon entered ried a daughter of Robert the Second, London. After the battle of Evesham, where King of Scotland, challenged to the joust the great earl fell, the king, perhaps remem- Lord Wells, our ambassador in Scotland, bering old grudges, took the half-ruinous a man described by Andrew of Wyntoun, bridge into his own hands, and delivered a poetical Scotch chronicler, as being it over to the queen, who sadly neglected

Manful, stout, and of good pith, it. There were great complaints of this

And high of heart he was therewith. neglect in the reign of Edward the First, Sir David arrived from Scotland with and again the holy brothers went forth to twenty-nine attendants and thirty horses. collect alms throughout the land. The The king presided at the tournament. The king gave lands also for the support of the arms Lindsay bore on his shield, banner, bridge ; namely, near the Mansion House, and trappings were gules, a fesse chequé Old Change, and Ivy-lane. He also ap- argent and azure; those of Wells, or, a pointed tolls-every man on foot, with lion rampant, double queuée, sable. At merchandise, to pay one farthing; every the first shock the spears broke, and the horseinan, one penny; every pack carried crowd shouted that Lindsay was secured on horseback, one halfpenny. This same to his saddle. The earl at that leaped off year, 1281, four arches of London Bridge his charger, vaulted back, then dashed on to were carried away by the same thaw-flood the collision. At the third crash Wells fell that destroyed Rochester Bridge.

heavily, as if dead. In the final grapple LindThe reign of Edward was disgraced by say, fastening his dagger into the armour the cruel revenge taken by the warlike of the English knight, lifted him from the monarch on William Wallace. In August, ground, and dashed him, finally vanquished, 1305, on Edward's return from the fourth to the earth. According to Andrew of Wyninvasion of Scotland, "this man of Belial,” toun, the king called out from his as Matthew of Westminster calls Wallace, castle,” “Good Cousin Lindsay, do forth was drawn on a sledge to Smithfield, there that thou should do this day;" but the hung, embowelled; beheaded, quartered, generous Scotchman threw himself on and his head set on a pole on London Wells and embraced him till he revived. Bridge. An old ballad in the Harleian Nor did he stop there; during Wells's Collection, describing the execution of sickness of three months Lindsay visited Simon Fraser, another Scotch guerilla | him in the gentlest manner, even like the leader, in the following year, concludes most courteous companion, and did not

omit one day. For he had fought, says Many was the wives-child that looked on him that day Boethius, “without anger, and but for And said, Alas! that he was born and so vilely for- glory.” And to commemorate that glorious

lorn, So fierce man as he was.

St. George's Day, the Scotch earl founded How stands the head above the town bridge,

a chantry at Dundee, with a gift of fortyFast by Wallace's, sooth for to say.

eight marks (thirty-two pounds) yearly for The heads of these two Scotch patriots seven priests and divers virgins to sing were placed side by side on the gate at the anthems to the patron saint of England. north or London end of the bridge.

In 1392, when Richard the Second reThe troublous reign of the young pro- turned to London reconciled to the citizens, fligate, Richard the Second, brought more who had resented his reckless extravagance, fighting to the bridge, for Wat Tyler and his London Bridge was the centre of splendid fierce Kentish and Surrey men then came pageants. At the bridge gate the citizens chafing to the gates, which the mayor, presented the handsome young scapegrace William Walworth, had chained and barred, with a milk-white charger, caparisoned in pulling up the drawbridge. Upon this the cloth of gold, and hung with silver bells, wild men shouted across to the wardens of and gave the queen a white palfrey, capathe bridge to let them over or they would risoned in white and red; while from every destroy them all, and, from sheer fear, the window hung cloths of gold and silver. wardens yielded. In that savage crowd The citizens ended by redeeming their forthe Brethren of the Bridge, as Thomas of feited charter by a payment of ten thousand Walsingham says, were pressing with pro- pounds. In 1396, when Richard had lost

cessions and prayers for peace. In 1390, his first queen, Anne of Bohemia, and 땁


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married the child-daughter of Charles the half blue velvet, embroidered with anteSixth of France, the crowd was so great lopes (the arms of the Bohun family), to welcome the young queen, that at having large flowers springing between London Bridge nine persons were crushed their horns. These trappings were afterto death in the crowd. The reign of wards utilised as copes for Westminster Richard the Second was indeed a memo- Abbey. rable one for London Bridge. The year Lydgate, that Suffolk monk who sucRichard the Second was deposed, Henry of ceeded Chaucer in the bede roll of English Lancaster laid rough hands on four knights, poets, wrote a poem (the authorship is not who had three years before smothered the undisputed) on this day's celebrations. old Duke of Gloucester, by the king, his “Hail London !” he makes the king ex. nephew's, commands. The murderers were claim at the first sight of the red roofs, dragged to Cheapside, and there had their “Christ you keep from every care;" and hands lopped off at a fishmonger's stall. the last verse of the quaint poem runs The heads were spiked over the gate of thus: London Bridge, and the bodies strung to- And at the drawbridge that is fast by gether on a gibbet. Nor did these heads Two towers there were up'pight;

An antelope and a lion standing hym by, long remain unaccompanied, for in 1407.

Above them Saint George our lady's knight. 1408, Henry Percy, Earl of Northumber- Benedictus they gan sing, land, was beheaded, and Lord Bardolf, one

Quis venit in nomine domini, Gode's knight.

Gracias Dei with you doth spring, of his adherents, who had joined in a

Wot ye right well that thus it was northern insurrection, was quartered, and Gloria tibi Trinitas. the earl's head and a flitch of unfortunate Seven years after this rejoicing-day the Bardolf were set upon London Bridge. corpse of the young hero (only thirty

There was a great rejoicing on London four) was borne over the bridge on its Bridge when Henry the Fifth returned way from Vincennes to Westminster Abbey. with his long train of French captives from On a bier covered with red silk and beaten the red field of Agincourt, in November, gold lay a painted effigy of the king, robed 1415. The mayor of London, with all the and crowned, and holding sceptre, ball, aldermen and crafts in scarlet gowns and ) and cross. Six richly-harnessed horses red and white hoods, welcomed him back drew the chariot, the hangings blazoned to his capital, and on the gate-tower stood a with the arms of Saint George, Normale and female giant, the former having the mandy, King Arthur, Saint Edward the keys of the city hanging from a staff, while Confessor, France, and France and Eng. trumpeters with horns and clarions sounded land, quarterly. A costly canopy was held welcome to the conqueror of the French. over the royal bier, and ten bishops in In front of the gate was written, “ The their pontificals, with mitred abbots, priests, King's City of Justice.” On a column on and innumerable citizens, met the corpse, one side was an antelope, with a shield of and received it with due honour, the priests the royal arms hanging round his neck, and singing a dirge. Three hundred torchholding a sceptre, which he offered to the bearers, habited in white, surrounded the king, in his right foot. On the opposite bier ; after them came five thousand moun. column stood a lion rampant, with the ted men-at-arms in black armour, holding king's banner in his dexter claw. At the their spears reversed, and nobles followed foot of the bridge rose a painted tower, bearing pennons, banners, and bannerols

, with an effigy of Saint George in complete while twelve captains preceded bearing armour in the midst under a tabernacle. the king's heraldic achievement. After The saint's head was crowned with laurel, the body followed all the servants of the interwoven with gems, and behind him household in black, James the First of spread a tapestry emblazoned with escut- Scotland as chief mourner, with the princes cheons. The turrets, embossed with the and lords of the royal blood clad in black, royal arms, were plumed with banners. while at the distance of two miles followed Across the tower spread two scrolls with Queen Katherine and her long train of the mottoes, “To God only be honour and ladies. glory,” and “The streams of the river Readers of Shakespeare will remember, make glad the city of God.” In the house in the first part of Henry the Sixth, how adjoining stood bright-faced children sing. he makes the serving-men of the Protector ing welcome to the king, and accompanied Gloucester wrangle with the retainers of by the melody of organs. The hero of the bishop of Cardinal Beaufort, till tawny Agincourt rode conspicuous above all on coat beats blue, and blue pommels tawny. a courser trapped with party colours, one- Brawls like this twice took place on

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London Bridge, when the proud and am- rode on in scarlet, followed by the City bitious cardinal assembled his archers at companies in blue gowns and red hoods. his Bankside palace, and attempted to Again Lydgate tuned his ready harp, and storm the bridge.

produced some certainly most unprophetic The dangers of shooting London Bridge verses, in which he called the savage Marwere exemplified as early as 1428 (in the garet “the dove that brought the branch same reign-Henry the Sixth). The barge of peace, of the Duke of Norfolk, starting from St.

Resembling your simpleness columbyne. Mary Overies, with many a gentleman,

In 1450, and the very month after Marsquire, and yeoman, about half-past four of the bell on a November afternoon, struck garet's favourite, De la Pole

, had been

seized in Dover Roads, and his head (through bad steering) on a starling of brutally chopped off on the side of a boat, London Bridge, and sank. The duke and the great insurrection, under Jack Cade, two or three other gentlemen fortunately broke out in Kent. After routing a deleaped on the piles, and so were saved by tachment of the royal troops at Sevenoaks, - ropes, cast down from the parapet above.

Cade marched towards London, and the Several Lollards' heads had already adorned the bridge, and in 1431 the skull at Mile End, the City, after some debate,

commons of Essex mustering threateningly of a rough reformer, a weaver of Abing, admitted Cade over London Bridge. As don, who had threatened to make priests' the rebel passed over the echoing drawas plentiful as sheeps' heads," was

bridge, he slashed in two the ropes that supspiked upon the battlements

. The very ported it. Three days after, the citizens, next

year the child - king, Henry the Sixth, who had been crowned at Notre bridge at night, and penned him close

irritated at his robberies, barred up the Dame in 1431, entered London over this in his head-quarters at Southwark. The bridge. Lydgate, like a true laureate, care- rebels then flew to arms—

- tried to force less who or what the new king might be, nibbed his ready pen, and was at it again bridge, and burning many of the houses

a passage, eventually winning the drawwith appropriate verse. At the drawbridge that stood in a close row upon it.

Now there was a tower, he says, hung with silk the battle raged by St. Magnus Corner, and arras, from which issued three em

now at the bridge foot, Southwark side, presses, Nature, Grace, and Fortune.

all the while the Tower guns thundering And at his coming, of excellent beauty,

on the swarming maddened men of Kent. Benign of port, most womanly of cheer, There issued out empresses three,

At nine the next morning, both sides, faint Their hair displayed, as Phæbus in his sphere, and weary, retired to their respective quarWith crownets of gold and stonès clear,

ters. Soon afterwards Cade's army melted At whose out-coming they gave such a light That the beholders were stonied in their sight. away, and Cade, himself a fugitive, was With these empresses

slain in a Kentish garden where he had came fourteen

hid himself, and his grim defaced head was crowned maidens, with blue baldrics, who presented the king with gifts, and sang a he had himself but recently, in scorn and

placed on the very bridge gate on which roundel of welcome.

If old London Bridge had a fault, it triumph, placed the ghastly head of Lord was, perhaps, its habit of occasionally Round Cade's head, when the king re

Say, the murdered Treasurer of England. partly falling down. This it did as early entered London, were placed the heads of as 1437, when the great stone gate and tower on the Southwark end, with two eight of his captains.*

At the entry of Edward the Fourth into arches, suddenly subsided into the Thames. London, in 1461, before his coronation, he

There was another gala day for the bridge in 1445, when the proud and im- the mayor and his fellows in scarlet, and

passed over London Bridge, escorted by petnous William de la Pole (afterwards four hundred commoners, “well horsed and Duke of Suffolk) brought over Margaret, clad in green.” In 1471, when Henry daughter of René (that weak, poetical was prisoner in the Tower, the Bastard of monarch, immortalised in Anne of Geier. Falconbridge, one of the deposed king's stein), as a bride for the young king of piratical partisans, made a dash to plunder

a England, and the City welcomed her on London. While three thousand of his their river threshold. The Duke of Glou.' cester, who had opposed the match, pre, the rest set fire to London Bridge, and

men attacked Aldgate and Bishopsgate, ceded her with five hundred men clad burnt thirteen houses. But the citizens, in his ducal livery, and with gilt badges on their arms, and the mayor and aldermen * See ALL THE YEAR ROUND, New Series, vol. iii. p. 181.

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