Tags » Henry Mayhew

London Stories: Watercress Girl by Henry Mayhew

The little watercress girl who gave me the following statement, although only eight years of age, had entirely lost all childish ways, and was, indeed, in thoughts and manner, a woman. 

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‘The Smallness of the World’: Dickens, Reynolds and Mayhew on Wellington Street

In this special guest blog post, Dr Mary Shannon writes about the remarkable London street where a number of noted Victorian journalists worked

Last week, I turned a street corner near Oxford Circus and bumped into a friend from university who I had not seen in a good while. 1,473 more words


origin of ‘barmy’ (crazy)


“T. C. E.” corrects the phrase “balmy in the crumpet.” It should be, he declares convincingly, “barmy on the crumpet”—barmy being derived from the term barm, signifying yeast.

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tace is Latin for candle

The Excommunication of Robert the Pious (1875), by the French artist Jean-Paul Laurens (1838-1921) – Musée d’Orsay, Paris
The officiants have just excommunicated Robert by bell, book, and candle… 1,092 more words

Two street urchins try (and fail) to argue the toss with a magistrate

Charles McCarthy and John Harrison were described by the Standard’s  court reporter as ‘urchins’. We should probably understand that to mean that, in the late 1870s, they were young members of the working class. 527 more words

Marketa Luskacova's street music.

Portobello Rd., 1978.

From London Labour and the London Poor by Henry Mayhew, 1851: Concerning street musicians, they are of multifarious classes. As a general rule, they may almost be divided into the tolerable and the intolerable performers, some of them trusting to their skill in music for the reward for their exertions, others only making a noise, so that whatever money they obtain is given to them merely as an inducement for them to depart. 592 more words

London Types