A True and Exact [...]ELATION OF THE Most Dreadful and Remarkable Fires, [...]e happened since the Reign of King WILLIAM the Conqueror, to this present Year 1666. In the Cities of London and Westminster and other Parts of ENGLAND.

IN the Year 1086. being the XX Year of the Reign of K. William the Conqueror, so great and lamentable a Fire happ [...]ned in London, that begining at Aldgate, it burnt down Houses and Churches all the way to Ludgate; together with the stately Fa­brick of S. Pauls, and the strong Castle called the Palatine Tower, which stood on the West part of the City towards the little River of Fleet, the Stones of which Castle were afterwards employed for the reedifying of S. Pauls; in the place where that Old Fabrick stood, Robert Kilwarby af­terwards Bishop of Canterbury, erected that House of Domini­cans called by the name of Black-Friers.

In the Reign of K. Henry the First, in several places of Eng­land, happened many grievous Fires: For first, the City of Chichester, with the principal Monastery (a stately Building) was wholly burnt down to the ground. Next, in London, from Westcheap to Aldgate a long tract of Buildings was consu­med with Fire. Also Worcester and Rochester were wholly con­sumed even in the Kings presence. Then Winchester, Bath, Glo­cester, Lincoln, Peterborough, and other places did also partake of this calamity; that there could be no charging the Fire with any partiality.

In the Year 1135. the First Year of the Reign of King Ste­phen, a Fire began in the house of one Ailward, near unto Lon­don-Stone, which consumed all Eastward to Aldgate; in which Fire the Priory of the Holy Trinity was burnt; and Westward to S. Erkenwalds Shrine in S. Pauls. Now it plainly appears by the three foregoing Relations, that the greatest part of the City of London in the space of Fifty Years was three times consumed by Fire: the greatest destruction that ever happened to the said City before or since.

In the Year 1171. the whole City of Canterbury was almost burnt. Also about the Year 1250. there happened another great Fire in the same place, which laid level with the ground the Church of S. Mildred, with the greatest part of the City.

In the Year 1189, the whole City of Carlile, and the Abby, with all the Houses belonging to the Friers Minors was consu­med by Fire.

In the Year 1293. a great part of the Town of Cambridg, with the Church of our Lady was burnt.

In the Year 1299. by a sudden and lamentable Fire the Kings Palace at Westminster, with all the rich Furniture and Monastery adjoyning, was wholly consumed with Fire. In the same Year the Monastery in Glocester was likewise burnt.

In the Year 1406. the Town of Royston in Hartfordshire, (a fair large Market-town) was wholly burnt.

In the Year 1463. the Minster of York, one of the fairest and stateliest Fabricks in Europe, was burnt; also Christ-Church in Norwich.

The 20. of August 1485. a great Fire happened in Breadstreet London, which burnt down several whole Streets, and diverse Churches.

In the Year 1561. the Spire of the Cathedral Church of S. Pauls, being 520 Foot from the ground, and 260 from the square Steeple where it was placed, and was made of wooden mate­rials, but covered with Lead, was with Lightning burnt down, together with the Roofs of that large Church, and that within the space of five hours: the Roofs were afterward reedified, but not the Spire.

On Monday the 13 of February 1633. a Fire began in the house of one Mr. Briggs (at the hither end of London-Bridg) a Needlemaker, between the hours of 11 and 12, towards mid­night, which burnt down in both sides the way from S. Magnus to the first open place: where 42 houses with the greatest part of the Wares, Goods, and rich furniture on them, were devour­ed by that Raging Element before 8 a clock next morning.

On Sunday the Second of September this present Year 1666. about one a clock in the morning, there happened a sad and de­plorable Fire in Pudding-Lane near New Fish-street, which fall­ing out in a part of the City so close built with wooden houses, propagated it self so far before day with such violence, that it bred such distraction and astonishment in the Inhabitants and Neighbours, that care was not taken to stop the further diffu­sion of it by pulling down houses as ought to have been, so that this grievous Fire in a short time became too big to be mastered by any Engins or working near it; and being fomented by the hand of God in a violent Easterly wind, which kept it burning in such a raging manner all Sunday and Sunday-night, spread­ing it self by Monday morning up Grace-Church-street to Lom­bard-street, and to S. Swithins Church in Canon-street, and down­wards from Canon-street to the Water-side as far as the Three Cranes in the Vintry, and Eastward beyond Billinsgate. The greatness and vastness of the Fire was such, that made the ama­zed and distracted people take care onely to preserve their own goods, and secure every man his particular concerns, making but slender attempts to extinguish the Flame. In fine, it conti­nued all Monday and Tuesday with such impetuosity, that it had, at 10 of the clock on Tuesday-night, Westward consu­med Houses and Churches all the way to S. Dunstans Church in Fleetstreet; at which time by the favor of God the wind slack­ed, and that night by the vigilancy, industry, and indefatigable pains of His Majesty and his Royal Highness, calling upon all people, and encouraging them by their personal assistances, a stop was put to the Fire in Fleetstreet, the Inner Temple and Fet­ter-Lane, at Holborn-Bridg, Pie-Corner, Aldersgate, Cripplegate, near the lower end of Coleman-street, at the end of Basinghall-street, by the Postern, at the upper end of Bishopsgate-street, and Leadenhall-street, at the Standard in Cornhill, at the Church in Fanchurch-street, near Cloathworkers-Hall in Mincing-Lane, at the middle of Mark-Lane, and at the Tower-Dock. But on Wednesday-night it suddenly brake out afresh in the Inner Temple, which happened (as is supposed) by flakes of fire falling into the gutters of the Buildings: His Royal Highness in per­son fortunately watching there that night, by his care, dili­gence, great labour, and seasonable commands for the blowing up with Gun-powder some of the said Buildings, it was most happily before day extinguished, after it had laid level with the ground, Tanfield-Court, Parsons-Court, and the Buildings in the Church-yard, and done some little damage to the Church and Hall.


R. L'Estrange.

London, Printed by B.W. in Little S. Bartholomews Court in West-Smithfield. 1666.

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