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Historical references to London's sounds

A database of several hundred historical descriptions and references to London's sounds. They're drawn mainly from primary sources such as autobiographies, diaries and statutes, as well as novels written around the times they depict.

 SUB-CATEGORY 1st to
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17th
18th Early
19th
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19th
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20th
 Coronations 1 1 3   1   1  
 Ritual openings of public events     1   1      
 Victory parades and celebrations   1            
 Regular rituals of court and state     1 1   1    

Period referred to: Early 1900s

Sound category: Ceremonial > Coronations

Title of work: The People of the Abyss

Type of publication: Social investigation

Author: Jack London

Year of publication: 1903

Page/volume number: Chapter 12

The coronation of Edward VII described by Jack London

But hark! There is cheering down Whitehall; the crowd sways, the double walls of soldiers come to attention, and into view swing the King’s watermen, in fantastic mediaeval garbs of red, for all the world like the van of a circus parade. [. . .] And now the Horse Guards, a glimpse of beautiful cream ponies, and a golden panoply, a hurricane of cheers, the crashing of bands—“The King! the King! God save the King!” Everybody has gone mad. The contagion is sweeping me off my feet—I, too, want to shout, “The King! God save the King!” Ragged men about me, tears in their eyes, are tossing up their hats and crying ecstatically, “Bless ’em! Bless ’em! Bless ’em!” See, there he is, in that wondrous golden coach, the great crown flashing on his head, the woman in white beside him likewise crowned.

[. . .]

Princes and princelings, dukes, duchesses, and all manner of coroneted folk of the royal train are flashing past; more warriors, and lackeys, and conquered peoples, and the pagent is over. I drift with the crowd out of the square into a tangle of narrow streets, where the public-houses are a-roar with drunkenness, men, women, and children mixed together in colossal debauch. And on every side is rising the favourite song of the Coronation:-

“Oh! on Coronation Day, on Coronation Day,
We’ll have a spree, a jubilee, and shout, Hip, hip, hooray,
For we’ll all be marry, drinking whisky, wine, and sherry,
We’ll all be merry on Coronation Day.”

The rain is pouring down. Up the street come troops of the auxiliaries, black Africans and yellow Asiatics, beturbaned and befezed, and coolies swinging along with machine guns and mountain batteries on their heads, and the bare feet of all, in quick rhythm, going slish, slish, slish through the pavement mud. The public-houses empty by magic, and the swarthy allegiants are cheered by their British brothers, who return at once to the carouse.