Transport for Early Modern London: London's Transportation Environment and the Experience of Movement, 1500-1800
Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
This dissertation investigates two closely related topics regarding London's transportation environment. The first was to determine the shape of early modern London's transportation infrastructure and determine who was responsible for its design, construction and maintenance. The second goal was to investigate the experiences of those moving about the city. In some cases, it was possible to find substantive information on London's transport milieu; for example, the number of gates and the size of the wall surrounding the city from Stow's 1598 Survey of London or the rules regarding street cleaning in London's Letter Books. In most cases, however, it was necessary to tease bits of information from the comments left in many other sources. Thus, we "figuratively" listen to Samuel Pepys remark on walking in some of London's muddy streets; Donald Lupton on the experience of being splashed by a coach, or John Gay on the dangers of walking at night. This dissertation then combined these comments with the information in the city's official records to weave a narrative of using the transport assets of London in the seventeenth century. The result: this dissertation found that London's transportation environment was remarkably sophisticated with rules surrounding both the construction and the use of transportation assets, along with those regarding oversight. All of which had to continue to evolve to deal with London's phenomenal growth in population and wealth in the seventeenth through the eighteenth century.
Phelps, Noah Paul, "Transport for Early Modern London: London's Transportation Environment and the Experience of Movement, 1500-1800" (2017). Dissertations. 2838.
Copyright © 2017 Noah Paul Phelps