Pardon Street, EC1V

Place Name

From when this road was laid out, sometime around 1819 until 1936, it was known as Clark Street. The current name comes from Pardon churchyard and chapel which stood near here in the Middle Ages. It was bought and consecrated by the Bishop of London in 1348 or 1349 to be used as a plague pit for victims of the Black Death and a place for the pardons of their souls. At the height of the pestilence it was said to have had to deal with 200 bodies a day, most of whom had not had the last rites. In 1361 the land was given to the monks of Charterhouse and, following the dissolution of the monastaries, was passed to Charterhouse School. John Stow writing in his Survey of London in the 16thCentury noted that the ground later served, “for burying of such as desperately ended their lives, or were executed for felonies”. For a while it served as a garden but was eventually built over.

 

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