Gates and Posterns. 21

Gates and Posterns.

then lately Edified by the same Dame Agnes, for the enlarging of the Prison of Ludgate, from thenceforth should be had and taken, as a Part and Parcel of the said Prison of Ludgate, so that both the old and new Work of Ludgate aforesaid, to be one Prison, Goal, Keeping, and Charge for evermore.

Articles for Relief of the poor Prisoners in Ludgate.

The said Quadrant, strongly Builded of Stone, by the forenamed Stephen Forster and Agnes his Wife, containing a large Walking-place by Ground of 38 Foot and an Half in Length, besides the Thickness of the Walls, which are at the least 6 Foot, makes all together 44 Foot and an Half; so that the Thickness of the Walls maketh it 35 Foot and an Half in Breadth. The like room it hath over it for Lodgings, and over all fair Leads to walk upon, well Embattelled, all for fresh Air, and Ease of Prisoners, to the end they should have Lodging and Water free without Charge; as by certain Verses graven in Copper, and fixed on the said Quadrant, I have read in Form following:

The Length, Breadth, and Largeness of the Quadrant.

Devout Souls that pass this way,     
For Stephen Forster, late Maior,     
heartily pray,
And Dame Agnes his Spouse,     
to God consecrate,
That of Pity, this House made     
for Londoners in Ludgate.
So that for Lodging and Water,     
Prisoners here nought pay,
As their Keepers shall all answer     
at dreadful Dooms-day.

At Ludgate engraved on a Copper Plate.

This Place, and one other of his Arms, being Three Broad Arrow-heads, taken down with the old Gate, I caused to be fixed over the Entry of the said Quadrant; but the Verses being unhappily turned inward to the Wall, the like, in effect, is engraven outward in Prose, declaring him to be a Fishmonger; because some, upon a light Occasion, (as a Maiden's Head in a Glass Window) had fabled him to be a Mercer, and to have begged there at Ludgate, &c. Thus much for Ludgate.

All the inside of this Gate, which consisted of Timber, was consumed in the Fire, 1666. and the Stone very much damnified; but of late Years built up very substantially, and hath a convenient Chapel for Divine Service; and beautifully repaired. On the East- side in three Nitches are still remaining the Effigies of King Lud and his two Sons. And on the West-side that of Queen Elizabeth, with the Arms of England and France quartered over her.]

Damaged by the great Fire.

R. B.

Next this, there is a Breach in the Wall of the City, and a Bridge of Timber over the Fleet Dyke, betwixt Fleet Bridge and Thames, directly over against the House of Bridewell.

A Breach in the Wall against Bridewell.

These are the several Land-Gates and Posterns through the Wall, built for the Convenience of Passage into and out of the City. Besides these, there were certain Water Gates, of which we shall now proceed to speak.]

J. S.



Water Gates on the Banks of the River Thames have been many; which being purchased by private Men, are also put to private Use, and the old Names of them forgotten. But of such as remain from the West towards the East, may be said as followeth.


The Black-Friars Stairs, a free Landing-Place.

Black Friars.

Then a Water-Gate at Puddle Wharf, of one Puddle, that kept a Wharf on the Westside thereof, and now of Puddle Water, by means of many Horses watered there.

Puddle Wharfe.

Then Paul's-Wharf, also a free Landing-Place, with Stairs, &c.

Paules Wharfe.

Then Broken-Wharf, and other such like.

Broken Wharfe.



But Ripa Reginæ the Queen's Bank, or Queen-Hith, may well be accounted the very chief and principal Water-Gate of this City, being a common Strand or Landing Place, and much resorted to by Barges and Lighters; which bring up Goods from the Western Parts of the Kingdom; as Corn, Wood, &c. here being a very great Meal- Market weekly kept. This Place is also of great Resort for the Western Watermen.] Yet equal with, and (of old Time) far exceeding Billinsgate, as shall be shewed in the Ward of Queen-Hith.

Queen Hith.

R. B.



The next is Downgate, so called (as may be supposed) of the sudden descending, or down-going of that way from St. John's Church upon Walbrook, unto the River of Thames. Whereby the Water in the Channel there hath such a swift Course, that in the Year 1574, on the Fourth of September, after a strong Shower of Rain, a Lad of the Age of Eighteen Years, minding to have leapt over the Channel, was taken by the Feet, and born down with the Violence of that narrow Stream, and carried towards the Thames with such a violent Swiftness, as no Man could rescue or stay him, till he came against a Cart-Wheel that stood in the Water-Gate; before which time, he was drowned and stark dead.


A Lad of Eighteen Years old drowned in the Channel at Downegate.

This was some time a large Water-Gate, frequented by Ships and other Vessels, like as the Queen's-Hith, and was a Part thereof, as doth appear by an Inquisition made in the 28th Year of Henry III, wherein was found, That as well Corn as Fish, and all other things coming from the Port of Downgate, were to be ordered after the Customs of the Queen's-Hith, for the King's Use. As also, that the Corn arriving between the Gate of the Guild-Hall of the Merchants of Cullen [viz. the Still-yard] which is East from Downgate, and the House then pertaining to the Archbishop of Canterbury, West from Baynard's-Castle, was to be measured by the Measure, and Measurer of the Queen's- Soke, or Queen-Hith. I read also in the 19th of Edward III. That Customs were then to be paid for Ships and other Vessels resting at Downgate, as if they rode at Queen-Hith. And as they now do at Billinsgate. But now it is fallen to such great Decay, that not only there is no Use made thereof, but also by reason that the Water-Gates are not repaired, it is very dangerous to Passengers travelling through in the Night-season. And thus much for Downgate may suffice.

An Inquisition concerning Downgate.

Merchants of the Hanse landed their Corn betwixt their House and the Black Friers.



The next after Downgate (of old Time) was callen Wolfsgate in the Ropary, in the Parish of Alhallows the Less, of later Time called Wolfe-Lane; but now out of use, for the lower Part was builded by the Earl of Shrewsbury; and the other Part was stopped up, and builded on by the Chamberlain of London.

Wolfes Gate in the Ropary.

Lib. Horne,

Lib. S. Alban.



The next is Ebgate, a Water-Gate so called of old Time, as appeareth by divers Records of Tenements, near unto the same adjoining. It standeth near unto the Church of St. Lawrence Pountney, but is within the Parish of St. Martin Ordegare. In Place of this Gate, is now a narrow

Lib. Horne.

Lib. S. Albane.

Ebgate. Lib.

Trinitat. Lib.

S. Albane.

Record E. 3.