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The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction - Volume 12, No. 346, December 13, 1828 by Various
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THE MIRROR OF LITERATURE, AMUSEMENT, AND INSTRUCTION

VOL. 12, No. 346.] SATURDAY, DECEMBER 13, 1828. [PRICE 2d.



OLD COVENT GARDEN.


[Illustration: Old Covent Garden. ]

The notoriety of Covent Garden is of too multifarious a description to
render the above illustration uninteresting to either of our readers. It
is copied from one of Hollar's prints, and represents the Garden about
the time of Charles II., before its area had been polluted with filth
and vegetable odours.

The spot was originally the garden belonging to the abbot of
Westminster, which extended to St. Martin's church, was called the
_Convent Garden_, and may be distinctly traced in Ralph Agar's View of
London, bearing date about 1570. It was granted, after the dissolution,
by Edward VI. first to the protector Somerset, on whose attainder, in
1582, it passed into the Bedford family. About the year 1634, Francis,
Earl of Bedford, began to clear away the old buildings, and to form the
present handsome square. Its execution was confided to Inigo Jones, but
unfortunately, only the north, and part of the east side, was completed;
for, had the piazza been continued on the other this would have been one
of the noblest quadrangles in the metropolis. Previously to the erection
of the present mass of huts and sheds, the area was neatly gravelled,
had a handsome dial in the centre, and was railed in on all sides, at