The gory history of Temple Bar in London where severed heads of traitors once adorned the top of it

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The London mob has a deserved reputation for violence and has lynched several politicians over the centuries

If you enjoyed the BBC series¬†Taboo –¬†you’re probably wondering what London was really like at that time. That violent drama is set in 1814, the late Georgian period, and as luck would have it, I own several guides to London from the first two decades of the nineteenth century. One from 1804 is especially descriptive […]

London has always had its interesting landmarks but none could be so ghoulish as its regular places of execution. Up until the 19th century, there were certain places where you could be guaranteed to catch a hanging, burning or beheading – should you wish. Unfortunately, many Londoners did wish – as it was viewed as […]

It was previously referred to as Ficket’s Fields and Whetstone’s Park and was considered very dangerous because of the high level of robberies The square may also have been known as Cup and Purse Field Queen Elizabeth I and then James I forbade the building of houses on top of Lincoln’s Inn Fields preserving it […]

Dick Hughes is mentioned in the Newgate Calendar as a robber who came to London at the start of the eighteenth century to make money the dishonest way. He’d already been arrested and tried in Worcester for theft. On that occasion he’d been whipped at the cart’s tail “crying carrots and turnips” as he was […]

In the Tower of London, they still have the axe and “heading block” used for executions right up to the mid-18th century. There’s also a mask that was worn by the executioner. The block is chipped and dinted as a result of some considerable use. On it, the heads of three Scottish rebels – Lords […]