Esoteric London

No. 979: Clerkenwell Road, EC1

Posted in Meteorological by esotericlondon on November 28, 2013

© Roger Dean RED_5760 copy

Clerkenwell Road, London, EC1. Photo © Roger Dean 2013

Picturesque Sketches of London Past and Present – Thomas Miller, 1852:

SUCH of our readers as have never been in London in November can scarcely imagine what it is to grope their way through a downright thorough London fog. It is something like being imbedded in a dilution of yellow peas-pudding, just thick enough to get through it without being wholly choked or completely suffocated. You can see through the yard of it which, at the next stride, you are doomed to swallow, and that is all. It is a kind of meat and drink, and very sorry sustenance for those who are asthmatical, as you may tell by hearing one old cough answering to another from opposite sides of the street, and which, although you cannot see the passengers, you can tell, from their grumbling, that they do not like the fare at all. You have the same soft-soapy atmosphere served up at breakfast, dinner, tea, and supper; every time you open your mouth you partake of it, and all day long you are compelled to burn lights, and, in addition to the fog, inhale the fumes from gas, candle, or lamp, which have no more chance of escape than you have, so burn on dim, yellow, and sulkily, as if the very lights needed all the warmth they could obtain, and thus confine themselves to illuminating the smallest possible space.

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