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Globe Tavern, Fleet street : London coffee houses and taverns
A historical site about early London coffee houses and taverns
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GLOBE TAVERN, Fleet street.
In the last century, when public amusements were comparatively few, and citizens
dwelt in town, the Globe in Fleet-street was noted for its little clubs and
card-parties. Here was held, for a time, the Robin Hood Club, a Wednesday Club,
and later, Oliver Goldsmith and his friends often finished their Shoemaker's
Holiday by supping at the Globe. Among the company was a surgeon, who, living on
the Surrey side of the Thames (Blackfriars Bridge was not then built), had to
take a boat every night, at 3a*. or 45. expense, and the risk of his life ; yet,
when the bridge was built, he grumbled at having a penny to pay for crossing it.
Other frequenters of the Globe were Archibald Hamilton, "with a mind fit for a
lord chancellor;" Carnan, the bookseller, who defeated the Stationers' Company
upon the almanac trial ; Dunstall, the comedian ; the veteran Macklin ; Akerman,
the keeper of Newgate, who always thought it most prudent not to venture home
till daylight ; and William Woodfall, the reporter of the parliamentary debates.
Then there was one Glover, a surgeon, who restored to life a man who had been
hung in Dublin, and who ever after was a plague to his deliverer. Brasbridge,
the silversmith of Fleet- street, was a frequenter of the Globe. In his
eightieth year he wrote his Fruits of Experience, full of pleasant gossip about
the minor gaieties of St. Bride's. He was more fond of following the hounds than
his business, and failure was the ill consequence : he tells of a sporting party
of four — that he and his partner became bankrupt ; the third, Mr. Smith, became
Lord Mayor ; and the fourth fell into poverty, and was glad to accept the
situation of patrol before the house of his Lordship, whose associate he had
been only a few years before. Smith had 100,000l. of bad debts on his books, yet
died worth one-fourth of that sum. We remember the Globe, a handsomely-appointed
tavern, some forty years since ; but it has long ceased to be a tavern.
Lots of references are made to two sources on the
Edward Callows, Old London Taverns &
John Timbs, Club life of London Volume 2
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