1666 and all that!
This week on Facebook: Last week saw the 350th anniversary of The Great Fire Of London, which broke out on the 2nd of September 1666. It has since been dwarfed — at least in scale — by subsequent man made wartime infernos, but this was time when cities like London were potential fire traps.
Monday 5 September 2016 Buildings that Survived the Great Fire of London: Although the Great Fire of London destroyed over 13,000 houses, almost 90 churches and even the mighty St Paul’s Cathedral, a handful of survivors managed to escape the flames and can still be seen to this day.
Tuesday 6 September 2016 The Great Fire of London: Although Londoners were well-used to fires, a long, hot summer, a sudden period of strong winds, and a fire breaking out late at night were all that was needed to start the worst fire Britain had ever seen. Here we present all of the key details of the Great Fire, the people involved, and the aftermath.
Wednesday 7 September 2016 Here’s what it would have been like to be caught in the Great Fire of London: Great explosions rang out in London’s Lower Thames Street: the sound of houses, shops, warehouses and taverns being blown up, a method intended to halt the spread of the seemingly unstoppable flames. It was September 2, 1666. The Great Fire was sweeping through London in the worst conflagration the city had seen.
Thursday 8 September 2016 Retrace the footsteps of Samuel Pepys during the Great Fire of London: This was the world of Samuel Pepys, Clerk of the Acts to the Navy Board and diarist. He had grown up in the city and, with a talent for administration and hard work, was a rising star in the English Admiralty of King Charles II. The diary he kept for nearly ten years from 1660 eventually became one of Britain’s most celebrated and a unique records of everyday life for an upper middle-class person in Stuart England. Historians have long admired Pepys’ diary because it features many minor day-to-day happenings that other contemporary documents do not cover. London had flirted with disaster before, having seen a recent fire in 1632 and the Great Plague arrive in 1665, but swiftly off the back of one awful time, came another – the Great Fire.
Friday 9 September 2016 How the Great Fire of 1666 shaped modern-day London: It embodies the prejudice, the ambition, the Enlightenment fervour and the disappointment that followed in the ashes of the Great Fire of London. The 202ft-tall Monument — which stands 202ft from the site of the bakery in Pudding Lane where the Great Fire of London was sparked off 350 years ago — is one of the strangest and most enduring markers in a city that has been engulfed in flames many times, from Boudicca’s torching of the Roman city to the Blitz.
Important Dates in British History – a timeline: Well mostly — some took place elsewhere. Like the Romans besieging Masada and the fall of Jerusalem to the crusaders. Then there is the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in which the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum were buried beneath millions of tons of rock, pumice and ash. Perhaps I’m missing the point where the butterfly effect kicked in, although such events clearly influenced the history that I was taught at school!
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