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Oxford Street, 1887

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  • Oxford Street, 1887


  • #2
    Does that Richard Attenborough sign say 'pawnbroking business'? There was such a man, retired pawnbroker and silversmith with premises in Oxford St, who shot himself just before this photo was taken.

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    • #3
      Whereabouts in Oxford Street is/was this taken? There's a "163" in the foreground, and the modern 163 Oxford St is between Oxford Circus and Tottenham Court Road, but the numbers may have changed.

      Anyone got a (near-) contemporary Goad map of the street in question?
      Kind regards, Sam Flynn

      "Suche Nullen"
      (F. Nietzsche)

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      • #4
        There's a "163" in the foreground
        Click image for larger version

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        161 is corner with Poland Street

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        W A Gilbey Wine & Spirits established their headquarters in the former Pantheon Theatre building in 1867. The photo was maybe shot from atop the stone portico out front.

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        • #5
          #161 was the Wheatsheaf Tavern, which had been #365 until the renumbering of 1882 (an attempt to make sure that if the Prussians invaded, they wouldn't be able to find a drink).

          Thanks Roy.

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          • #6
            Thanks, Roy. Our vantage-point would therefore seem to be where a Marks & Spencer store (not the main one) now stands, between Oxford Circus and Tottenham Court Rd.
            Kind regards, Sam Flynn

            "Suche Nullen"
            (F. Nietzsche)

            Comment


            • #7
              Yes it is, Sam.

              Originally posted by Robert Linford View Post
              Does that Richard Attenborough sign say 'pawnbroking business'? There was such a man, retired pawnbroker and silversmith with premises in Oxford St, who shot himself just before this photo was taken.
              Trivia question - who did his inquest?

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              • #8
                Thomas Bramah Diplock.

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                • #9
                  in 1882 it would have been the Germans - but actually any invasion scare would have involved the French.

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                  • #10
                    Strictly speaking the Germans yes, but the power behind the Germans was still thought of as Prussia. Ironically 'Prussia' seems to now be a merely historical word.

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                    • #11
                      I'm a stickler for correct usage even when matters are discussed in a weakly jocular fashion.
                      Facts, dear boy, facts.

                      It isn't ironic that Prussia is now merely an historic word. The name - for various areas in present day Poland, Lithuania and Russia was deliberately erased from the map as a matter of post war policy.

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                      • #12
                        It is correct usage, because I was discussing the intention behind the renumbering. 'Germany' as a political unit had only existed for just over a decade. Most people would have thought of Prussia, which had fought three wars to establish herself as the leading power in 'Germany' and to unify 'Germany.'

                        If someone asks me if Paul Begg is the author of "Jack The Ripper, The Facts" that doesn't mean that he's asking me whether Paul Begg is Paul Begg.

                        It's ironic because the country that tried so hard to wrest the leadership of 'Germany' from Austria, and succeeded, is now a footnote in history while Austria still exists, albeit shorn of her empire.

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                        • #13
                          Ah - but you didn't say that perhaps an Oxford Street publican in 1882 might colloquially refer to the Germans as Prussians. But would the officers at the Westminster Metropolitan Board of Works play fast and loose with the correct term? Surely not.

                          Strictly speaking the Prussian Hohenzollern monarchy wished to wrest political control over Germany from the Hapsburg monarchy. Neither royal families exist any more.

                          But as I said, if the officers at the Metropolitan Board of Works were mindful of confusing a potential invader in or around 1882, the France would have been seen as the potential enemy.

                          The Paul Begg example doesn't really work.

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                          • #14
                            I see, so they would have been worried about France - the France that had released snails to try and get a message out from the siege of Paris.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Robert Linford View Post
                              #161 was the Wheatsheaf Tavern, which had been #365 until the renumbering of 1882 (an attempt to make sure that if the Prussians invaded, they wouldn't be able to find a drink).
                              I get the joke

                              Trivia question - where is this pub?

                              Click image for larger version

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