London A Biography

ISBN-10: 0385497717

ISBN-13: 9780385497718

Edition: Reprint 

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Here are two thousand years of London’s history and folklore, its chroniclers and criminals and plain citizens, its food and drink and countless pleasures. Blackfriar’s and Charing Cross, Paddington and Bedlam. Westminster Abbey and St. Martin in the Fields. Cockneys and vagrants. Immigrants, peasants, and punks. The Plague, the Great Fire, the Blitz. London at all times of day and night, and in all kinds of weather. In well-chosen anecdotes, keen observations, and the words of hundreds of its citizens and visitors, Ackroyd reveals the ingenuity and grit and vitality of London. Through a unique thematic tour of the physical city and its inimitable soul, the city comes alive.
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Book details

List price: $22.00
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 4/8/2003
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 848
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.24" long x 1.75" tall
Weight: 2.750
Language: English

Peter Ackroyd was born in London in 1949. He graduated from Cambridge University and was a Fellow at Yale (1971-1973). A critically acclaimed and versatile writer, Ackroyd began his career while at Yale, publishing two volumes of poetry. He continued writing poetry until he began delving into historical fiction with The Great Fire of London (1982). A constant theme in Ackroyd's work is the blending of past, present, and future, often paralleling the two in his biographies and novels. Much of Ackroyd's work explores the lives of celebrated authors such as Dickens, Milton, Eliot, Blake, and More. Ackroyd's approach is unusual, injecting imagined material into traditional biographies. In The Last Testament of Oscar Wilde (1983), his work takes on an autobiographical form in his account of Wilde's final years. He was widely praised for his believable imitation of Wilde's style. He was awarded the British Whitbread Award for biography in 1984 of T.S. Eliot, and the Whitbread Award for fiction in 1985 for his novel Hawksmoor. Ackroyd currently lives in London and publishes one or two books a year. He still considers poetry to be his first love, seeing his novels as an extension of earlier poetic work.

List of Illustrations
The City as Body
From Prehistory to 1066
The Sea!
The Stones
Holy! Holy! Holy!
The Early Middle Ages
You Be All Law Worthy
London Contrasts
Loud and Everlasting
Silence Is Golden
The Late Medieval City
This Companye
Onward and Upward
Rather Dark and Narrow
Packed to Blackness
Maps and Antiquarians
Trading Streets and Trading Parishes
Where Is the Cheese of Thames Street?
A London Neighbourhood
The Crossroads
London as Theatre
Show! Show! Show! Show! Show!
He Shuld Neuer Trobell the Parish No More
Theatrical City
Violent Delights
Music, Please
Signs of the Times
All of Them Citizens
Pestilence and Flame
A Plague Upon You
Painting the Town Red
After the Fire
A London Address
To Build Anew
Crime and Punishment
A Newgate Ballad
A Note on Suicide
A Penitential History
A Rogues Gallery
Horrible Murder
London's Opera
Raw Lobsters and Others
Thereby Hangs a Tale
Voracious London
Into the Vortex
A Cookery Lesson
Eat In or Take Away
Market Time
Waste Matter
A Little Drink or Two
A Note on Tobacco
A Bad Odour
You Sexy Thing
A Turn of the Dice
London as Crowd
What's New?
The Natural History of London
Give the Lydy a Flower
Weather Reports
A Foggy Day
Night and Day
Let There Be Light
Night in the City
A City Morning
London's Radicals
Where Is the Well of Clerkenwell?
Violent London
A Ring! A Ring!
Black Magic, White Magic
I Met a Man Who Wasn't There
Knowledge Is Power
A Fever of Building
London Will Soon Be Next Door to Us
Nothing Quite Like It
London's Rivers
You Cannot Take the Thames with You
Dark Thames
They Are Lost
Under the Ground
What Lies Beneath
Victorian Megalopolis
How Many Miles to Babylon?
Wild Things
If It Wasn't for the 'ouses in Between
London's Outcasts
They Are Always with Us
Can You Spare a Little Something?
They Outvoted Me
Women and Children
The Feminine Principle
Boys and Girls Come Out to Play
Have You Got the Time?
The Tree on the Corner
East and South
The Stinking Pile
The South Work
The Centre of Empire
Maybe It's Because I'm a Londoner
Empire Day
After the Great War
Suburban Dreams
War News
Refashioning the City
Fortune not Design
Cockney Visionaries
Unreal City
An Essay on Sources
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