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More from Adrian Fort

Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese

Famous Fleet street pub dating from the sixteenth century, haunt of a gamut of literary types including Mark Twain, Arthur Conan Doyle, P. G. Wodehouse, Charles Dickens and the imaginary Hercule Poirot

The Inner Temple

An account of a patch of land between Fleet Street and the Thames. Now occupied residentially by judges and senior lawyers and enclosing the Inner Temple library and nearby Temple Church, the land was originally leased by the Knights Templar in the fourteenth century. Its rose garden was later – according to William Shakespeare – the place where the fifteenth century War of the Roses began.

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Ostrich feathers plucked.

Francis Lydia took some ostrich feathers from undertaker John White and was convicted for his crime. How did Lydia take the feathers and what would an undertaker do with them?

Whoresnest: the story of the Bankside Stews

Until the C16th, the area next to the river in Lambeth was home to the so-called Bankside Stews, a collection of bathhouses that doubled as brothels.