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the character of this interesting spot. The mulberry-trees,-probably transplanted from the mulberry-gardens of the old Priory,—the aged figtrees wbich supplied the dainty tables of the Priors, -their shady walks,—their very piscatorium,—still remain.

The interior of the mansion also is well deserving of a visit. Among other relics, which remind us of the past, it contains a carved mantelpiece of the reign of Elizabeth, and a stone passage, or corridor, in which is a Tudor doorway of considerable beauty and elegance, ornamented by the rebus of Prior Bolton.*

We must not conclude our notices of the Priory of St. Bartholomew, without a brief mention of the celebrated fair, which derived its name from its connection with that great religious house. The privilege of holding a fair at Smithfield, during St. Bartholomew Tide, was originally granted to the Priory by Henry the Second. It lasted for three days, and was principally frequented by the drapers of London, as well as by clothiers who flocked hither with their goods from all parts of England. These persons were allowed to place

The author is indebted to Knight's “ London” for many interesting particulars connected with the priory of St. Bartholomew, and its founder Rahere.-See Knight's “ London," vol. ii. p. 33, et sequent, and p. 49, et sequent. The public are no longer admitted to view Canonbury Tower. Those who may be desirous to obtain admission to its interior, are forewarned that, as recently happened to the author, they will only expose themselves to disappointment and incivility.

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their booths and standings within the walls of the church-yard, the gates of which were carefully locked at night.*

But in the reign of Henry the Eighth, Bartholomew Fair had ceased to be the great cloth mart of England, and in its place sprung up those humours and saturnalia, for which it continued to be celebrated even in our own time. The ancient custom of the Lord Mayor opening the fair in person is still adhered to; but he no longer stops his

) horse at Newgate in his way, to receive from the hands of the keeper of the prison a “cool tankard of wine, nutmeg, and sugar.” In 1688, this custom proved fatal to Sir John Shorter, Lord Mayor, grandfather of the beautiful Catherine Shorter, the first wife of Sir Robert Walpole. While holding the tankard, the lid suddenly fell, when his horse, frightened at the noise, plunged and threw his rider. The injuries which he received were so severe, that he died on the following day.

Bartholomew Fair was long celebrated for its theatrical entertainments. Pepys writes on the 30th of August 1667. “I to Bartholomew Fayre to walk up and down; and there, among other things find my Lady Castlemaine at a puppet-play, and the street full of people expecting her coming out. I confess I did wonder at her courage to come abroad, thinking the people would abuse her. But they, silly people, do not know the work she makes, and therefore suffered her with great re

* Stow, p. 141.

the character of this interesting spot. The mulberry-trees, probably transplanted from the mulberry-gardens of the old Priory,—the aged figtrees wbich supplied the dainty tables of the Priors, —their shady walks,—their very piscatorium,—still remain.

The interior of the mansion also is well deserving of a visit. Among other relics, which remind us of the past, it contains a carved mantelpiece of the reign of Elizabeth, and a stone passage, or corridor, in which is a Tudor doorway of considerable beauty and elegance, ornamented by the rebus of Prior Bolton.*

We must not conclude our notices of the Priory of St. Bartholomew, without a brief mention of the celebrated fair, which derived its name from its connection with that great religious house. . The privilege of holding a fair at Smithfield, during St. Bartholomew Tide, was originally granted to the Priory by Henry the Second. It lasted for three days, and was principally frequented by the drapers of London, as well as by clothiers who flocked hither with their goods from all parts of England. These persons were allowed to place

* The author is indebted to Knight's "London" for many interesting particulars connected with the priory of St. Bartholomew, and its founder Rahere.-See Knight's “ London," vol. ii. p. 33, et sequent, and p. 49, et sequent. The public are no longer admitted to view Canonbury Tower. Those who may be desirous to obtain admission to its interior, are forewarned that, as recently happened to the author, they will only expose themselves to disappointment and incivility.

their booths and standings within the walls of the church-yard, the gates of which were carefully locked at night.*

But in the reign of Henry the Eighth, Bartholomew Fair had ceased to be the great cloth mart of England, and in its place sprung up those humours and saturnalia, for which it continued to be celebrated even in our own time. The ancient custom of the Lord Mayor opening the fair in person is still adhered to; but he no longer stops his horse at Newgate in his way, to receive from the hands of the keeper of the prison a “cool tankard of wine, nutmeg, and sugar.” In 1688, this custom proved fatal to Sir John Shorter, Lord Mayor, grandfather of the beautiful Catherine Shorter, the first wife of Sir Robert Walpole. While holding the tankard, the lid suddenly fell, when his horse, frightened at the noise, plunged and threw his rider. The injuries which he received were so severe, that he died on the following day.

Bartholomew Fair was long celebrated for its theatrical entertainments. Pepys writes on the 30th of August 1667. “I to Bartholomew Fayre to walk up and down; and there, among other things find my Lady Castlemaine at a puppet-play, and the street full of people expecting her coming out. I confess I did wonder at her courage to come abroad, thinking the people would abuse her. But they, silly people, do not know the work she makes, and therefore suffered her with great re

* Stow, p. 141.

spect to take coach, and she away without any trouble at all.” It was at Bartholomew Fair that Rich is said to have first met with Walker, the original Macheath, performing in a booth, when, being struck with his talents, he engaged him for the theatre in Lincoln's Inn. The unfortunate poet, Elkanah Settle, was once so reduced in circumstances, as to be compelled to accept an engagement from a Mrs. Mynn and her daughter, to write pantomimes and contrive machinery for a Smithfield booth. Here, at the close of life, in one of his own wretched theatrical exhibitions, called “St. George and the Dragon,”—he was reduced to personate the dragon, enclosed in a case of green leather. It is to this circumstance that Dr. Young, the author of the “ Night Thoughts," alludes in his Epistle to Pope :

Poor Elkanah, all other changes past,
For bread in Smithfield-dragons hissed at last ;
Spit streams of fire to make the butchers gape,
And found his manners suited to his shape.

Such is the fate of talents misapplied, &c. We have the authority of Mrs. Piozzi, that Dr. Johnson's uncle, Andrew Johnson, “ for a whole year kept the ring at Smithfield-where they wrestled and boxed—and never was thrown or conquered.”*

* Croker's “ Boswell,” p. 178. Ed. 1848.

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