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dren." So in fact it was; and yet, among our childish recollections, not the least vivid was the pleasure which we derived from watching the savage figures striking the hours with their clubs, on the quaint dial-piece of St. Dunstan's Church.*

When labour and when dulness, club in hand,
Like the two figures at St. Dunstan's stand ;
Beating alternately, in measured time,
The clockwork tintinnabulum of rhyme:
Exact and regular the sounds will be,
But such mere quarter-strokes are not for me.

COWPER. Table Talk.

The late Marquis of Hertford used to mention, that (when a boy on his way to and from school), he never failed to prevail on the servant who accompanied him, to stop opposite St. Dunstan’s Church, for the purpose of watching the performances of these grotesque automatons. So great, indeed, was the delight which he took in them, that he determined, should it ever lie in his power, to obtain possession of them. Nearly half a century afterwards, on the demolition of the old church, he had, singularly enough, the opportunity of gratifying his childhood's fancy; and accordingly they were purchased by him, and set up in his villa in the Regent's Park.

*“We added, too, to the number of fools, and stood a little, making our ears do penance to please our eyes, with the conceited notions of their (the puppets') heads and hands, which moved to and fro with as much deliberate stiffness as the two wooden horologists at St. Dunstan's, when they strike the quarters."—NED WARD's London Spy, Part v.

The Fire of London was arrested within three doors of St. Dunstan's church, on one side of Fleet Street; and, on the other side, within a short distance from the Inner Temple Gate.

The statue of Queen Elizabeth, a conspicuous object on the exterior of St. Dunstan's Church, anciently ornamented the front of old Lud-Gate.

THE FLEET PRISON.

THE FLEET USED AS

A STATE PRISON AT AN EARLY DATE.-PER

SONS INCARCERATED THERE : BISHOPS GARDINER AND HOOPER,

DR. DONNE, - MARTIN KEYS,- PRYNNE, — LILBURNE, — JAMES, HOWEL,—LORDS SURREY AND FALKLAND, -SIR RICHARD BAKER, -OLDYS,—WYCHERLEY,-SANDFORD. TYRANNY AND TORTURES PRACTISED IN THE PRISON. GENERAL OGLETHORPE. PRISON

BURNT AT THE GREAT FIRE. - FLEET MARRIAGES. -KEITH, THE

NOTORIOUS FLEET PARSON.

COULD the walls of the old Fleet Prison have spoken, what fearful tales of vice, misery, and misfortune might they not have unfolded! At the time when the author commenced this brief memoir of it, the hand of destruction was at work, and that interesting pile, with its host of melancholy and historical associations, was passing away for ever. Only a short time before its demolition he wandered through its dingy apartments and narrow corridors, nor will he readily forget the striking contrast presented by their utter stillness and desolation, compared with the scenes of reckless riot and crowded wretchedness of which they had so recently been the scene.

The Fleet,--prisona de la Fleet,—was used as a state prison at least as early as the twelfth century. In the first year of the reign of Richard the First we find him conferring the custody of it on Osbert,

brother to Longchamp, Chancellor of England, and on his heirs for ever; and, again, in the third year of the following reign we find King John installing the Archbishop of Wells in the care and custody of the Fleet Prison. From this time till it was burned by the followers of Wat Tyler, in 1381, we discover but very slight records connected with its history. Indeed, till the period of the Reformation, our chroniclers are singularly silent both in regard to the prisoners who were incarcerated in its dungeons, and the many distressing scenes which must necessarily have taken place within its walls.

During the reign of Queen Mary, and afterwards during that of her sister Elizabeth, the Fleet Prison appears to have been constantly filled with conscientious sufferers in the cause of religion, many of whom, in the former reign, suffered martyrdom in the flames.

Hither was committed, shortly after the accession of Edward the Sixth, the learned but unfeeling Stephen Gardiner, Bishop of Winchester, who was doomed to experience within its walls, and subsequently in the dungeons of the Tower, those rigors which he had formerly so unrelentingly practised against the unfortunate Protestants. Hither, also, was committed, on the 1st of September 1547, the infamous Edmund Bonner, Bishop of London, for refusing to take the oath of supremacy to the young King. Neither of these unworthy prelates appear to have been long

inmates of the Fleet. Gardiner was removed to the Tower, and Bonner, after suffering an imprisonment of six weeks, obtained the freedom which he so little deserved.

But the most illustrious prisoner about this period was Bishop Hooper, who has left us a very interesting account of his sufferings in the Fleet, as preserved by Fox in his “Book of Martyrs.”—“On the 1st of September 1553,” he writes, “ I was committed unto the Fleet from Richmond, to have the liberty of the prison; and within five days after I paid for my liberty five pounds sterling to the warden for fees, who immediately upon the payment thereof complained unto Stephen Gardiner, Bishop of Winchester, and so I was committed to close prison one quarter of a year, in the lower chamber of the Fleet, and used very extremely. Then, by the means of a good gentlewoman, I had liberty to come down to dinner and supper; not suffered to speak with

any

of my friends, but, as soon as dinner and supper were done, to repair to my chamber again. Notwithstanding, while I came down thus to dinner and supper, the warden and his wife picked quarrels with me, and complained untruly of me to their great friend, the Bishop of Winchester. After one quarter of a year, and somewhat more, Babington, the warden, and his wife, fell out with me for the wicked mass; and thereupon the warden resorted to the Bishop of Winchester, and obtained to put me into the ward, where I have continued a long time, having nothing appointed to

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