Esoteric London

No. 962: Barbon Close, WC1

Posted in Lettering, Transport by esotericlondon on November 5, 2013

Barbon Close, London, WC1. Photo © Roger Dean 2011

Sketches By Boz – Charles Dickens, 1835:

There is a hackney-coach stand under the very window at which we are writing; there is only one coach on it now,  but it is a fair specimen of the class of vehicles to which we have alluded – a great, lumbering, square concern of a dingy yellow colour (like a bilious brunette), with very small glasses but very large frames; the panels are ornamented with a faded coat of arms, in shape something like a dissected bat, the axletree is red, and the majority of the wheels are green. The box is partially covered by an old great-coat, with a multiplicity of capes, and some extraordinary looking clothes; and the straw, with which the canvass cushion is stuffed, is sticking up in several places, as if in rivalry of the hay, which is peeping through the chinks in the boot. The horses, with drooping heads, and each with a mane and tail as scanty and straggling as those of a worn-out rocking-horse, are standing patiently on some damp straw, occasionally wincing, and rattling the harness; and now and then one of them lifts his mouth to the ear of his companion as if he were saying, in a whisper, that he should like to assassinate the coachman.

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