Bryn Mawr College Library Special Collections

Books on London

Social & Economic Issues


Nineteenth-century radical journalist William Cobbett referred to London as "the great Wen," embodying the centuries old fear that the city was becoming so large and unruly, so diverse and ungovernable, that it could not possibly survive. Yet despite the problems of crime, policing, housing, education, health, transportation and so on, the city has remained surprisingly stable, hardly bearing out such pessimistic fears. Some historians claim London's successful economy has made this stability possible and allowed the city to overcome major catastrophes as well as deal with the day-to-day social problems, suggesting the interconnection of social and economic issues, which forms the basis of this category of the Books on London collection. The books listed here are organized under seven subheadings: Commerce & Trade; Transportation & Public Works; Social Conditions & Charities; Prisons & Public Safety; Religion; Education, Health, Media & Scholarly Societies; and General Social Commentaries. With the exception of those listed under Religion, the majority of works are from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

In the first and largest subcategory of Commerce & Trade, Bryn Mawr owns chronicles of many of London's major companies and guilds, such as Some Account of the Worshipful Company of Ironmongers (1851) by John Nicholl, Some Account of the Worshipful Company of Grocers (1854) by John Benjamin Heath, William Henry Black's History and Antiquities of the Worshipful Company of Leathersellers (1871), Charles Mathew Clode's Early History of the Guild of Merchant Taylors (1888-89), and Philip Jones's Worshipful Company of Poulters (1939). The broad subject of advertising is well covered in the collection, especially in the many books on the famous cries of London--the witty, melodious, and at times nonsensical calls of the street vendors to passersby to promote their wares. Among these are The Cries of London (1805), The New Cries of London, or, Itinerant Trades of the British Metropolis (1823), Charles Hindley's History of the Cries of London, Ancient and Modern (1884), Andrew Tuer's Old London Street Cries and the Cries of To-day (1885), and the twentieth-century Old Cryes of London (1921) from Sir Frederick Bridge.There are also a number of works on shop signs and general business topics, as well as commercial directories like Kent's (1801) and Pigot & Co.'s (1828-29).

With London's huge population growth over the years and the resulting cramped quarters and health concerns, matters of transportation and public works were ever important. In the College's collection, such issues are addressed in, among others, the eighteenth-century government publication, Statutes Relative to the Sewers within Westminster and Part of Middlesex (1776), John Williams's Historical Account of Sub-Ways in the British Metropolis, for the Flow of Pure Water and Gas (1828), William Clay's Remarks on the Water Supply of London (1849), and the Report of the Royal Commission Appointed to Inquire into and Report upon the Means of Locomotion and Transport in London (1905-06).

Social conditions in London, primarily of the poor and working classes, were an issue frequently written about, particularly during the industrialism of the nineteenth century, and are well-represented in the London collection. Henry Mayhew, a social scientist, economist, writer and founder of Punch magazine, wrote a survey of the city's working poor--London Labour and the London Poor--in which his great innovation was to interview the workers and street folk themselves. Bryn Mawr owns several editions of this work, including the first of 1851. The same topic is covered in Thomas Beames's Rookeries of London: Past, Present and Prospective (1850) and the seventeenth-century work of Thomas Firmin, Some Proposals for the Imploying of the Poor, Especially in and about the City of London (1678). Concern for the less fortunate led to the establishment of public charities, a discussion of which can be found in Anthony Highmore's Pietas Londinensis: The History, Design and Present Sate of the Various Public Charities in and near London (1810). Godfrey Pike's Children Reclaimed for Life:The Story of Dr. Bernardo's Work in London (1875) tells the story of the Irish-born man who devoted his life to helping London's street children. On a closely related subject, Mayhew also conducted a survey of London's prisons and prison life, which he published as The Criminal Prisons of London, and Scenes of Prison Life in 1862.

The earliest works in this category come under the subheading of Religion, some in the form of sermons--Thomas Reeve's God's Plea for Ninevah: or, London's Precedent for Mercy (1657)--and some treating the topic of religious dissention and its impact on London society--Mr. Higgin's Fourteen Quaeries, With a Word to the Wise and Stephen Crisp's Scripture Truths Demonstrated, in Thirty-two Sermons, both of 1707--but most concerned with the better instruction of London society. In his work dedicated to the Bishop of London, Cobbett's Legacy to Parsons (1845), William Cobbett, too, deals with some of the social and economic issues surrounding religious dissention and in particular considers the notion of separation of church and state.

Lastly, under Education, Health, Media & Scholarly Societies and General Social Commentaries there are a few works of note. From the eighteenth century, Bryn Mawr has Thomas Sprat's History of the Royal Society of London for the Improving of Natural Knowledge (1734) and William Lewis's New Dispensatory (1753), the second containing a full translation of the London pharmacopoeia; from the nineteenth, Leigh's New Picture of London: or, A View of the Political, Religious, Medical, Literary, Municipal, Commercial, and Moral State, of the British Metropolis (1824-25) and Papers Illustrative of the Origin and Early History of the Royal Hospital at Chelsea (1872); and from the twentieth, The English Newspaper: Some Account of the Physical Development of Journals Printed in London between 1622 & the Present Day (1932) by Stanley Morison.


Commerce & Trade

Ashbee, C. R. (Charles Robert), 1863-1942
An endeavour towards the teaching of John Ruskin and William Morris : [being a brief account of the work, the aims, and the principles of the Guild of Handicraft in East London / written by C.R. Ashbee, and dedicated by him less in the writing, than in the work the writing seeks to set forth, to their memory]
[London] : Edward Arnold, 1901 ([London] : Essex House Press)
PR5083 .A85 1901

Black, William Henry, 1808-1872
History and antiquities of the Worshipful company of leathersellers, of the city of London; with fac-similes of charters, and other illustrations. By William Henry Black. (Hari Ddu)
London [Printed by E. J. Francis] 1871

Bourne, H. R. Fox (Henry Richard Fox), 1837-1909
Famous London merchants : a book for boys / by H.R. Fox Bourne ; with twenty-five illustrations
New York : Harper & Brother, 1869
HF3505 .B7 1869

Boyd, Percival
Roll of the Drapers' company of London collected ...
Croydon : J. A. Gordon, at the Andress Pr., 1934
Uncat 10,476

Bridge, Frederick, Sir, 1844-1924
The old cryes of London, with numerous illustrations and musical examples, by Sir Frederick Bridge
London, Novello, 1921
DA688 .B7 1921

Bromley, J. S. (John Selwyn)
The armorial bearings of the guilds of London : a record of the heraldry ..
London ; New York : F. Warner, c1960
Uncat 10,469

Brown, Richard, 1932-
The London bookshop: a pictorial record of the antiquarian book trade: portraits & premises [by] Richard Brown & Stanley Brett
Pinner, Private Libraries Association, 1971-
Z325 .B75 1971

Clode, Charles Mathew, b. 1818
The early history of the Guild of merchant taylors of the fraternity of St. John the Baptist, London ..
London : Harrison, 1888-89
Uncat 10,482

Cornman, Frederick
Some olde London streete signs : also fac-similes of tradesmens curious & quaint illustrated advertisements and some notable olde houses of the XVIIth & XVIIIth centurys
[London] : Privately printed by F. Cornman, 1900
DA689.S9 C83 1900

Draper, Warwick Herbert, 1873-
The historical paintings in the great hall of London of the worshipful company of Skinners ..
London : Printed at the Caradoc Press, 1909
Uncat f955

Evans, D. Morier (David Morier), 1819-1874
The city : or, The physiology of London business ..
Groombridge & Sons, 1852
Uncat 10,460

Fenwick, Mrs. Bedford
Women in professions being the professional section of the International Congress of Women, London, July, 1899
London: T. Fisher Unwin, 1900

Goss, Charles William Frederick, 1864-
The London directories, 1677-1855 : a bibliography with notes on their origin and development / by Charles W. F. Goss, F.S.A
London : D. Archer, 1932
Z5771 .G67 1932

Greer, Carl Richard, 1876-1946
Across with the ad-men; International advertising convention, London, 1924, by the Buckeye cover man (Carl Richard Greer)
Hamilton, O., The Beckett paper company [c1924]
HF5827 .G74 1924

Heal, Ambrose, Sir, 1872-
London tradesmen's cards of the XVIII century : an account of their origin and use / by Ambrose Heal
London : Privately printed, 1925 (London : Curwen Press)
NE965 .H4 1925

Heal, Ambrose, Sir, 1872-
The London furniture makers, from the Restoration to the Victorian era 1660-1840 / by Ambrose Heal
London : Batsford, 1953
fNK2529 .H45 1953

Heal, Ambrose, Sir, 1872-
The signboards of old London shops : a review of the shop signs employed by the London tradesmen during the XVIIth and XVIIIth centuries, compiled from the author's collection of contemporary trade-cards and billheads / by Ambrose Heal ; illustrated with upwards of 400 collotypes
London : B.T. Batsford, 1947
DA689.S5 H4 1947

Heath, John Benjamin, 1790-1879
Some account of the Worshipful company of grocers of the city of London .
London : [Printed by C. Whittingham], 1854
HD6461.G8 H3 1854

Hindley, Charles, d. 1893
A history of the cries of London, Ancient and modern
London, C. Hindley<the younger> [1884]

Howard, Montague
Old London silver, its history, its makers and its marks, by Montague Howard; with two hundred illustrations, and over four thousand facsimiles of makers' marks and hall-marks
New York, C. Scribner, 1903
fNK7230 .H8 1903

Jones, Philip E
The Worshipful Company of Poulters of the City of London : a short history
London : Oxford Univ. Pr., H. Milford, 1939
Uncat 10,470

Mortimer, Thomas, 1730-1810
Every man his own broker : or, A guide to Exchange-alley. In which the nature of the several funds, vulgarly called the stocks, is clearly explained, and the mystery and iniquity of stock-jobbing laid before the public in a new and impartial light ..
London : Printed for S. Hooper, 1761
332.6 M844e

Nicholl, John, 1790-1871
Some account of the worshipful Company of ironmongers. Compiled from their own records and other authentic sources of information, by John Nicholl, F.S.A
London, J.B. Nichols and son, 1851

Price, Frederick George Hilton, 1842-1909
The signs of old Lombard Street / by F. G. Hilton Price ; with sixty whole-page 4to illustrations by James West
London : Field & Tuer, Leadenhall Press, Simpkin, Marshall [and] Hamilton, Adams ; New York : Scribner & Welford, [1887?]
DA685.L8 P9 1887

Price, Frederick George Hilton, 1842-1909
The signs of old Lombard Street, by F. G. Hilton Price. With seventy whole-page 8vo illustrations by James West and others. 1887-1902
London, Leadenhall Press; New York, Scribner [1902]

Tuer, Andrew White, 1838-1900
Old London street cries and the cries of to-day : with heaps of quaint cuts including hand-coloured frontispiece / by Andrew W. Tuer
London : Field & Tuer ; New York : Scribner & Welford, 1885
dDA688 .T8 1885

William H. Robinson, Ltd
Robinson's of Pall Mall
London : William H. Robinson, Ltd, [1939?]
fZ325.R6 A2 1939

Kent's directory ... Containing an alphabetical list of the names and places of abode of the directors of companies, persons in public business, merchants, and other eminent traders in the cities of London and Westminster, and borough of Southwark ..
London, H. Kent
DA679 .K35 1801

Pigot and Co.'s London & provincial new commercial directory, for ..
London : J. Pigot & Co.,
DA679 .P59 1828-29

The cries of London : as they are daily exhibited in the streets, with an epigram in verse adapted to each, embellished with elegant characteristic engravings
Philadelphia : Printed for B. Johnson, J. Johnson and R. Johnson, 1805
DA688 .C7 1805

The New cries of London, or, Itinerant trades of the British metropolis ; with characteristic engravings
London : Harvey and Darton, 1823
GT3450 .N5 1823

The Post office London directory
London : Kelly's Directories


Transportation & Public Works

Barker, T. C. (Theodore Cardwell), 1923-
A history of London Transport : passenger travel and the development of the metropolis / by T.C. Barker and Michael Robbins
London : Allen & Unwin c1963-1974 (Plaistow, [Eng.] : Curwen Press)
HE4719.L78 B3 1963

Clay, William, 1791-1869
Remarks on the water supply of London
London : James Ridgway, 1849
Uncat 11,769

Great Britain. Laws, etc.
Statutes relative to the sewers within Westminster and part of Middlesex
London [Commissioners of Sewers for the City and Liberty of Westminster and Part of the County of Middlesex] 1776
dKD1162 .A3 1776

Great Britain. Royal Commission on London Traffic
Report of the Royal Commission appointed to inquire into and report upon the means of locomotion and transport in London
London, Printed for H.M. Stationery Off., by Wyman and Sons, ltd., 1905-06
fHE4719.L71 A7 1905

Humphreys, George William
The main drainage system of London
London : published by The Institution, 1917
Uncat 10,502

London County Council
History of London Street Improvements, 1855-1897 / by Percy J. Edwards
[London : Printed for the London County Council by Truscott and Son, 1898]
Uncat f1259

Thomas, John Pattinson
Handling London's underground traffic, by J. P. Thomas
Westminister, London's Underground, 1928

Williams, John, patentee of subways
An historical account of sub-ways in the British metropolis, for the flow of pure water and gas into the houses of the inhabitants, without disturbing the pavements, including the projects in 1824 and 1825, by John Williams
London, Carpenter and J. M. Richardson, 1828
TD64.L8 W7 1828

Worth, John Edward
The main drainage of London / by John Edward Worth and William Santo Crimp. And the purification of the Thames / by William Joseph Dibdin
London : Published by the Institution, 1897
Uncat 10,503

A new plan of the road from London to Dover and from Calais to Paris
London : for C. Smith, [n.d.]
Uncat 7257


Social Conditions & Charities

Beames, Thomas, 1814 or 15-1864
The rookeries of London: past, present, and prospective. By Thomas Beames
London, T. Bosworth, 1850
HV4088.L8 B48 1850

Booth, Charles, 1840-1916
Charles Booth's descriptive map of London poverty, 1889
London : London Topographical Society, 1984
ffG1819.L7E74 B6 1984

Firmin, Thomas, 1632-1697
Some proposals for the imploying of the poor, especially in and about the city of London : And for the prevention of begging, a practice so dishonourable to the nation, and to the Christian religion. In a letter to a friend / by T. F. [i.e. Thomas Firmin]
London : Printed for Brabazon Aylmer, 1678
339 F518s

Greenwood, James
The wilds of London, by James Greenwood; with twelve illustrations by Alfred Concanen
London, Chatto and Windus, 1874
HV4088.L8 G78 1874

Highmore, Anthony, 1758-1829
Pietas londinensis : the history, design, and present state of the various public charities in and near London / by A. Highmore
London : Printed for R. Phillips, 1810
HV250.L8 H6 1810

Mayhew, Henry, 1812-1887
London labor and the London poor ..
New York, 1851
q331.8 M45

Mayhew, Henry, 1812-1887
London labour and the London poor
[London : Printed by W. Clowes, 1895?]
331.8 M45lo

Mayhew, Henry, 1812-1887
London labour and the London poor : the condition and earnings of those that will work, cannot work, and will not work
London, n.d
Uncat 1242

Pasquet, D
Londres et les ouvriers de Londres / D. Pasquet
Paris : A. Colin, 1913
HD8400.L7 P3 1913

Pike, Godfrey Holden, 1836-
Children reclaimed for life : the story of Dr. Bernardo's work in London
London : Hodder and Stoughton, 1875
Uncat 9688

Ranyard, Ellen Henrietta White
The Missing link : or, Bible-women in the homes of the London poor / by L. N. R
London : James Nisbet, 1861
Uncat 9693

Stanley, Dorothy, Lady, d. 1926
London Street Arabs / By Mrs. H.M. Stanley (Dorothy Tennant)
London : Cassell & Company, 1890
Uncat 10,386


Education, Health, Media & Scholarly Societies

Chambers, R. W. (Raymond Wilson), 1874-1942
Philologists at University College : being the third of a series of centenary addresses : Professor Sir Israel Gollancz, F.B.A., in the chair : delivered on Monday, May 2, 1927 / by R.W. Chambers
London : University of London Press, 1927
PR4809.H15 Z995442 1927

Chemical Society (Great Britain)
The jubilee of the Chemical Society of London; record of the proceedings together with an account of the history and development of the Society, 1841-1891
London [Harrison] 1896
QD1 .C64 1891

Evelyn, John, 1620-1706
Fumifugium: or, The inconvenience of the aer and smoake of London dissipated, by John Evelyn. First published in 1661 and reprinted with an introduction by Rose Macaulay for the National smoke abatement society
[Manchester, The National smoke abatement society] 1933

Heberden, William, 1710-1801
Commentaries on the history and cure of diseases, by William Heberden; from the last London ed
Boston, Wells and Lilly, 1818
RC50 .H45 1818

James I, King of England, 1566-1625
The essayes of a prentise in the divine art of poesie / Edinburgh. 1585. A counterblaste to tobacco. London, 1604
Edinburgh ; London, 1869
Uncat 8537

Lewis, William, 1708-1781
The new dispensatory: containing I. The theory and practice of pharmacy. II. A distribution of medicinal simples according to their virtues and sensible qualities ... III. A full translation of the London and Edinburgh pharmacopoeias ... IV. Directions for extemporaneous prescription ... V. A collection of cheap remedies for the use of the poor ... Intended as a correction, and improvement of Quincy
London, Printed for J. Nourse, 1753
RS151.2 .L37 1753

Morison, Stanley, 1889-1967
The English newspaper : some account of the physical development of journals printed in London between 1622 & the present day / by Stanley Morison
Cambridge, [Eng.] : The University Press, 1932
fPN5114 .M7 1932

Royal Hospital (Chelsea, London, England)
Papers illustrative of the origin and early history of the Royal Hospital at Chelsea. Comp. in the Secretary's Office at that Institution
London, Printed by G. E. Eyre and W. Spottiswoode, 1872
RA988.L8 R69 1872

Society of Antiquaries of London
Catalogue of a collection of printed broadsides in the possession of the Society of Antiquaries of London, compiled by Robert Lemon
London, The Society of Antiquaries of London, 1866
Z2027.B8 L8 1866

Sprat, Thomas, 1635-1713
History of the Royal society of London for the improving of natural knowledge
London, 1734
506 R81Y

Watney, John, Sir, 1834-1923
Some account of the Hospital of St. Thomas of Acon, in the Cheap, London, and of the plate of the Mercers' Company
London : Blades, East & Blades, 1906
Uncat f1172

Young, Sidney, 1843-
The annals of the barber-surgeons of London, compiled from their records and other sources, by Sidney Young ... with illustrations by Austin T. Young .
London, Blades, East & Blades, 1890



Abbot, George, 1562-1633
Cheap-side crosse censured and condemned by a letter sent from the Vicechancellour and other learned men of the famous Universitie of Oxford, in answer to a question propounded by the citizens of London, concerning the said crosse, in the yeere 1600, in which yeer it was beautified ..
London, Printed by A.N. for I.R. [1641]

Clarke, Samuel, 1599-1682
The fatal Vespers : a true and full narrative of that signal judgement of God upon the papists, by the fall of the house in Black Friers, London, upon their fifth of November, 1623 / collected for the information and benefit of each family by Samuel Clark
London : Reprinted by G. Smeeton, 1817
BV133 .G73 1817

Cobbett, William, 1763-1835
Cobbett's legacy to parsons, or, Have the clergy of the established church an equitable right to the tithes, or to any other thing called church property, greater than the dissenters have to the same? : and ought there, or ought there not, to be a separation of the church from the state? : in six letters, addressed to the church-parsons in general, including the cathedral and college clergy and the bishops with a dedication to Blomfield, Bishop of London / by William Cobbett
New York : D. & J. Sadlier, 1845
BX5157 .C56 1845

Crisp, Stephen, 1628-1692
Scripture truths demonstrated, in thirty-two sermons : or, Declarations of Stephen Crisp ... / Exactly taken in characters, or short-hand, as they were delivered by him at the publick meeting-houses of the people called Quakers, in and about London ... faithfully transcribed and published, together with his prayers after sermon ..
London : J. Sowle, 1707
289.6 C86s

Higgins, Mr
Fourteen quaeries, with a word to the wise / left by Mr. Higgins, for the better instruction of the people of London
London : Printed and sold by H. Hills ..., 1707
PR3757.W8 Q8 1712

Johnson, Lionel Pigot, 1867-1902
The Gordon riots / by Lionel Johnson
London : Catholic Truth Society, [1893]
DA510 .J6 1893

Kempe, Alfred John, 1785?-1846
Historical notices of the Collegiate Church or Royal Free Chapel and Sanctuary of St. Martin-le-Grand, London ..
London : Longman, Hurst, etc., 1825
Uncat 7301

London Yearly Meeting (Society of Friends)
Extracts from the minutes and advices of the Yearly meeting of Friends held in London, from its first institution
[London?] : Printed by J. Phillips, 1783
289.6 F911e

Morison, John, 1791-1859
The fathers and founders of the London Missionary Society : a jubilee memorial, including a sketch of the origin and progress of the institution / by John Morison
London : Fisher, [1844]
BV2361.L8 M6 1844

Morse-Boycott, Desmond Lionel, 1892-
Ten years in a London slum : being the adventures of a clerical Micawber
London : Skeffington, ca.1920
Uncat 7315

Reeve, Thomas, 1594-1672
God's plea for Ninevah : or, London's precedent for mercy, delivered in certain sermons, within the city of London
London : printed by William Wilson for Thomas Reeve, 1657
Uncat f1156

Sherlock, Thomas, 1678-1761
Several discourses preached at the Temple Church / by Tho. Sherlock ; To which is added the life of the author and his Lordship's letter to the clergy and people of London and Westminster
London : Printed for J. Whiston, and W. Owen, and E. Baker, 1772
Uncat 12,147

Weylland, John Matthias
Round the tower : or the story of the London city mission
London : S. W. Partridge & Co., 1874?
Uncat 7319

Woolston, Thomas, 1670-1733
Defence of his discourses on the miracles of our Saviour against the bishops of St. David's & London, & his other adversaries ..
London, 1829-30
239 W88

The revolution no rebellion : or, Serious reflections offered to the Reverend Mr. Hoadly, occasion'd by his considerations on the Bishop of Exeter's sermon, preach'd before Her Majesty, March the 8th, 1708 / By a citizen of London ..
London : Printed and sold by the booksellers of London and Westminster, 1709
261.7 H65


Prisons & Public Safety

Beaufain, Charles Random de Berenger, baron de
Helps and hints how to protect life and property : with instructions in rifle and pistol shooting, &c. / by Lt. Col. baron de Berenger ; the embellishments by Mr. Bonner and others, after designs by Messrs. G. and R. Cruikshank, Alken, Haghe, Fussell, and de Berenger
London : Published for the Proprietor by T. Hurst ... 1835
GV1153 .B48 1835

Mayhew, Henry, 1812-1887
The criminal prisons of London, and scenes of prison life
London : Griffin, Bohn, & Co., 1862
Uncat 7323


General Social Commentary

Hogarth, William, 1697-1764
The complete works of William Hogarth ..
London : The London Printing and Publishing Co. ltd., n.d
Uncat f896

Leigh, Samuel, publisher
Leigh's new picture of London : or, A view of the political, religious, medical, literary, municipal, commercial, and moral state, of the British metropolis
London : Printed for S. Leigh, 1824-25
Uncat d7326


Historical / Physical / Natural
Social / Cultural / Political