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IN THE NEWS

Westfield Stratford City East
Westfield Stratford City East Retail Theme

TOUR OF THE MONTH

The Rolling Stones London Tour
The Rolling Stones London Tour

ON THIS DAY IN LONDON

29th March 1992 Princess Diana's father dies from a heart attack in a London hospital.

29th March 1979 Caryl Churchill's Cloud Nine, premieres in London

29th March 1959 Born today: Marina Sirtis, London, actress (Troi-Star Trek: The Next Generation)

29th March 1871 the Albert Hall was opened by Queen Victoria.go to related location

29th March 1869 Born today: Edwin Lutyens, architect, London

A Garden with a Gruesome Past



A Garden with a Gruesome Past

A place of public hangings and statues with added fertility

Location: West Smithfield Garden, EC1

Description: In the Middle Ages this was a plain, grassy space just outside the city walls, known as Smooth Field, where fine horses were sold. A cattle market was established in 1638 and remained until 1855, when it was moved to Islington.

Smithfield was a place of public execution for over 400 years. Here heretics, rebels and criminals were burnt, beheaded or boiled. In 1305 Scottish hero William Wallace was hanged, drawn and quartered after being dragged there behind a horse. In 1381 Wat Tyler, leader of the Peasants' Revolt, gathered his army there and was stabbed by the Mayor of London. The injured Tyler was taken to the hospital at St Bartholomew's Church - but dragged out again and beheaded.

The gallows were moved to Tyburn in the 15th century but Smithfield was also used for the executions of religious martyrs. These reached a peak when more than 200 Protestants were burnt at the stake during Queen Mary's reign in the 1550s.

Today the area is a peaceful, hidden corner of London - but one with a terrible past.

Plus, the statue of the young woman has a wedding band soldered to her finger - and why - well the Superintendent at the time could not find the owner and thus created a point in history by placing it here... she's also represented fertility since 1873.

Tagged in this Tour: Rebels, Radicals & Rough Justice

Themes: Public AmenitiesPublic Amenities Theme  SculptureSculpture Theme  HistoricalHistorical Theme
Ranking This Month: 891/2670
Pages Hit This Month: 118
Link to This Page: http://www.shadyoldlady.com/location/1300
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A Garden with a Gruesome Past

A place of public hangings and statues with added fertility


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