Londina Illustrata. Graphic and Historical Memorials of Monasteries, Churches, Chapels, Schools, Charitable Foundations, Palaces, Halls, Courts, Processions, Places of Early Amusement, and Modern Present Theatres, in the Cities and Suburbs of London and Westminster, Volume 1

Wilkinson, Robert


Zoar Street, Gravel Lane, Meeting House and School.

Zoar Street, Gravel Lane, Meeting House and School.




In the reign of King James the , who was not only himself a bigoted Papist, but wished to bring back the nation also into subjection to Popery and arbitrary power, every method was tried to instil Popish principles into the minds of the youthful part of the community; among these was the establishment of seminaries, into which children, of both sexes, were admitted on very easy terms. , a zealous Papist, having opened a school somewhere in , gave notice that he would teach the children of the poor This having excited considerable attention, gentlemen of parish, Mr. Arthur Mallet, Mr. Samuel Warburton, and Mr. Ferdinande Holland, who were all members of Mr. Nathaniel Vincent's Church in , agreed to use their utmost endeavours to counteract Poulter's designs. Taking advantage of King James's indulgence to dissenters, in they obtained the lease of a piece of ground in what was called the Park, ; a populous neighbourhood, consisting chiefly of the lower classes, on which they erected a building at the expense of , for the double purpose of a School and a Meeting-house, the former being under a part of the latter. The Minister for the time being, who might be appointed to preach in the Meeting-house, was to superintend the concerns of the School, and make collections towards its support; for this purpose an annual sermon was preached in the place by different Ministers in rotation; and when it was no longer used as a place of worship, the service was removed to the Meeting-house in . Thus originated the , the of the kind established by Protestant dissenters, and which has continued to the present day. Though it was at founded, and has since been chiefly supported, by class of dissenters, it has ever been conducted on so liberal a plan, as to admit the children of parents belonging to any other denomination. The management of the School has always been committed to the gentlemen who are trustees of all the property appropriated to the support of the School, assisted by gentlemen chosen from among the subscribers. The number of children educated was, for many years, confined to ; but was afterwards increased to more than double that number. In , it was thought prudent to reduce them to , which is about the present number. The children are all taught reading, writing, and accounts; and the girls are also taught plain-work and knitting: books &c are provided for them without any expense to the parents. It has hitherto been supported by annual subscriptions, collections at lectures, legacies, and donations; but in consequence of the rise of several institutions of a similar kind, the deaths of subscribers, and the failure of other resources, it has been latterly on the decline. The lease of the building, which contained the original school-room, being nearly expired, and being in a very ruinous condition, it is not thought advisable to expend any money in repairing it; but when the lease shall have terminated, it is hoped that, through the kind liberality of a religious public, some other place may be provided for the carrying on this ancient and useful School.

The Meeting-house was a good building, of a moderate size, having galleries: the Minister who occupied it was Mr. John Chester, a worthy man of the Presbyterian denomination, who had been ejected from Wethelley, in Leicestershire, by the Act of Uniformity, and had undergone much persecution on account of his principles; he continued to preach here till his death, which took place in . He was succeeded by Mr. Henry Read, who, in , was followed by Mr. Samuel Palmer, who occupied the place till , when he conformed to the Established Church, and was succeeded by Dr. Zephaniah Marryat. In , the Doctor removed with his congregation to Deadman's Place, and after his departure the building was let to different persons successively, and the profits devoted to the support of the School.

N. B. Dr. Marryat continued the Minister of the congregation in Deadman's Place till his death, in . Mr. Timothy Lamb was chosen in his room, and he continued with them till , when his ill state of health obliged him to resign his charge. He was succeeded by Dr. James Watson; upon whose death, in , Mr. John Humphrys, who was educated in Homerton Academy, was chosen to succeed him; and, a short time after his settlement a new Meeting-house was erected for him in , to which the congregation removed, and where Mr. Humphrys continued his ministerial engagements till , when he resigned his office, having been chosen Principal of the Protestant Dissenters' Grammar-School, at .

This place was for some time called Shallet's Meeting-house, though it was generally known in the neighbourhood by the name of John Bunyan's (as it is called on the Plate of the Exterior, given in the volume). The lease of the ground is dated , and the building must have taken some months to erect it; and as John Bunyan died , he could scarcely have preached in it above once, and that in his last visit to London, just before his death, as he visited London ut once a year; being Pastor of the Church at Bedford at the time he died.

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 Title Page
 Howell's View of London
 View of the Fire of London
 City Wall
 The Conduits of Cheapside and Cornhill
 Plan of the Fire in Bishopsgate Street, Cornhill, and Leadenhall Street: November 7th, 1765
Frost Fair on the River Thames
 Part of the Strand: St. Clement's Danes
 Ancient Structure in Ship Yard: Temple Bar
 St. Paul's Cross and Cathedral: With King James I and his Court at a Sermon
 Ancient Cathedral Church of St. Paul, London
 Paul's Cross (and Preaching There)
Elsinge Spital, Sion College, and the Church of St. Alphage, London Wall
 Elsinge's Hospital; or, as it is otherwise denominated, Elsynge Spittle
 Sion College
 The Priory and Church of St. Bartholomew the Great, West Smithfield
 The Church of St. Bartholomew the Less: Giltspure Street, West Smithfield, in the Ward of Farringdon Without
Crosby Hall, Bishopsgate Street
The Priory and Church of St. Helen, Bishopsgate Street
 Monument of Sir Andrew Judde, Knight: In the Church of St. Helen, Bishopsgate Within
St. Michael's Church: Cornhill
The Parish Church of St. Paul, Shadwell: In the County of Middlesex
 The Parish Church of St. Peter upon Cornhill: In Cornhill Ward
Extracts from the Vestry Books of the Church of St. Peter upon Cornhill
 St. Saviour's Church
 St. Saviour's Church, Southwark
 Winchester Palace, Southwark
 Chapels at the Eastern End of the Church of St. Saviour, Southwark
 Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem
 An Account of Bermondsey, its Manor, Priory, and Abbey
 Priory of the Holy Trinity: In the Ward of Aldgate
 St. Martin-le-Grand College, and St. Vedast, Foster Lane
 Guildhall Chapel
 A short Account of Lazar Houses in and near London
 Knightsbridge Chapel
 Lambe's Chapel and Alms-Houses: Monkwell Street, Cripplegate
 The late Mr. Skelton's Meeting House, Erected Near the Site of the Globe Theatre, Maid Lane, Southwark
 Zoar Street, Gravel Lane, Meeting House and School
 Oratory, Under the Antient Mansion, or Inn, of the Priors of Lewes in Sussex
 Whitehall: Plate I
 Whitehall: Plate II
 Whitehall: Plate III
 St. James's Palace
 Fawkeshall, or Copped Hall, Surrey
 Toten-Hall, Tottenham Court Road
 King John's Palace
 Clarendon House, called also Albemarle House
 Somerset House
 Suffolk House
 York House
 Durham, Salisbury, and Worcester Houses
 Sir Paul Pindar's House
 Montagu House: Great Russel Street, Bloomsbury
 The British Museum
 Bedford House, Bloomsbury Square
 Peterborough House, afterward Grosvenor House, Millbank, Westminster
 Craven House, Drury Lane
 Ancient Mansion called Monteagle House: Montague Close, Southwark
 Oldbourne Hall, Shoe Lane: In the Parish of St. Andrew, Holborn