The History and Antiquities of London, Westminster, Southwark, and Parts Adjacent, vol. 3
A handsome edifice of brick, compoed. It is situated on the site of a mansion called Stody-place, or the
which was given to the company,
by sir John Stody, or Stodie, vintner, lord mayor in . The vintners
These buildings were all destroyed in the great fire of , after which the present fabric was raised: it forms sides of a quadrangle, with an iron palisade, and neatly wrought iron gates, in front. The hall, which occupies the south side of the quadrangle, is a large and lofty apartment, formerly paved with marble, but now floored; it is neatly wainscotted, and ornamented with a handsome screen, and various shields of arms of different masters of the company. On the walls are painted in golden letters, in compartments, the names of numerous benefactors towards the re-building of the hall after the great fire, &c. and of subscribers towards the re-building of the vintner's alms-houses, at Mile End, since the year . In different windows also, in painted glass, were the arms of the company, the royal arms of Charles II. and a sun dial, with a fly upon it,
The court room, which is an elegant apartment, the wainscot &c. being elaborately carved, and the ceiling ornamented in stucco work, was finished in . Over the fire place is a small, but well painted old picture of
agreeably to the ancient legend, which represents the saint on horseback, as passing the gates of Amiens on a cold winter's day, when meeting with a poor beggar who was almost naked, he drew his sword, cutting off half of his cloak (which was the only garment he had remaining, having already bestowed the rest to the like charitable uses) he presented it to the shivering mendicant, reserving the other half for his own use. In this room are also some good portraits of Charles II. a half length: William III. and his queen Mary, both full lengths, prince George of Denmark; a half length of sir Thomas Rawlinson, lord mayor in , and clever modern heads of Mr. John Wright, a late master, by Opie, and Benjamin Kenton, esq. who was master in ; both the latter were esteemed very excellent likenesses. Mr. Kenton died in , at the advanced age of ; the life of this gentleman, who was professionally a vintner, affords the most striking illustration of the apothegm, that
for although of the most humble origin, and possessed of no other education than what he had received at a common charity school, he realized upwards of the greatest part of which, nearly he bequeathed to various charitable establishments and uses; of this sum he gave to the general fund of the vintners' company, and for the re-building, &c. of the almshouses at Mile-End.
Around the court room are disposed the shields of arms of various members of this company who have served the office of mayor.
In the ante room, which adjoins, is a curious painting on pannel by Taverner. The staircase is very handsome, the ballusters representing fruit baskets, the whole appears to be carved in oak, and has been most injudiciously painted.
Over the court room is the drawing-room, an elegant apartment. The only painting is a landscape, with figures of St. Martin dividing his cloak with a beggar. Over it is the following inscription :--
A little west of Vintners-hall, stood Worcester-place, the house of the accomplished John Tiptoft, earl of Worcester, lord high treasurer of England.
Adjoining the Southwark-bridge, is the Cranes wharf, which in old times, by royal order, was allotted for the landing of wines, as the name imports. The cranes were the machines used for the landing of wines, such as are used at this day. In the
|adjacent lane was the painted tavern, famous as early as the time of Richard II.
On the east side of is the church yard of St. Thomas the Apostle, some remains of the ancient church were visible till plaistered over in the early part of the present year.
 Mal. Lond. Red. vol. iv. p. 520. The statue and picture of St. Martin and the cripple, the figures of Bacchus. etc and the fine piece of ancient tapestry, are mentioned by Mr. Malcolm as being here in the year 1780. They were not here when Mr. Brayley made his survey. The picture of St. Martin is here, and the principal part of the tapestry is at the alms houses in the Mile-End road; there is however remaining at the hall a curious embroidered pall, with the figure of our Saviour and the Virgin, St. Martin, &c. At one corner is a shield of arms, barry of six, ermine and gules, a crescent for difference--T. A.