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Historical references to London's sounds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
10th
11th to
15th
16th to
17th
18th Early
19th
Late
19th
Early
20th
Late
20th
 Beggars, hustlers and scavengers   1 1 1   2 3 1
 Street entertainers             2  
 Costermongers and street traders   1   2 1 5 2  
 Transport for hire   1 1          
 Quack doctors       1        
 Recruitment of workers     1     1    
 Work songs and music             1  
 Workplace cries and audible signals       1 1 2 3  
 Shops and shop staff         1   3  

Period referred to: 1880s

Sound category: Economic > Recruitment of workers

Title of work: The Diary 1873–92

Type of publication: Diary

Author: Beatrice Webb

Year of publication: 1889

Page/volume number: August 1889

Beatrice Webb describes dockers seeking work

Then begins the scuffling and crambling forth of countless hands high in the air, to catch the eye of him whose voice may give them work . . . All are shouting. Some cry aloud his surname, some his christian name, others call out their own names, to remind him that they are there . . For weeks they may have gone there, and gone through the same struggle – the same cries; and have gone away, after all, without the work they had screamed for.

Period referred to: 1660s

Sound category: Economic > Recruitment of workers

Title of work: The Diary of Samuel Pepys

Type of publication: Diary

Author: Samuel Pepys

Year of publication: 1662

Page/volume number: 30 October 1662

“Who will go and be a devil, and he shall see the play for nothing?”

The other, Thos. Killigrew's way of getting to see plays when he was a boy. He would go to the Red Bull, and when the man cried to the boys, "Who will go and be a devil, and he shall see the play for nothing?" then would he go in, and be a devil upon the stage, and so get to see plays.