Jennifer Rummel—please contact Regina Scott at firstname.lastname@example.org. We have a book for you! If we haven’t heard from you by July 1, we’ll sadly have to draw another winner.
London has some of the most amazing architecture on earth. 17th century buildings stand side-by-side with ultra modern wonders like the Great Gherkin. Some of the most beautiful designs can be seen in London’s churches. So, where would a nineteenth century young lady go to church on Sunday mornings with her family?
If you were one of the fashionable, you’d likely attend St. George’s Hanover Square (1725), one of the closet churches to Mayfair, the “in” location for London’s aristocracy. When it was founded, it counted among its parishioners seven dukes, fourteen earls, seven barons, and twenty-six “other persons of title.”
If you wanted to cozy up to King George IV, you could have attended All Souls Langham Place. While Prinny wouldn’t have been in attendance, it was designed by his favorite architect, John Nash. Nash built it as a fitting place to worship for those wealthy elite he planned to live near Regent’s Park.
If you were hopelessly romantic, you might attend St. Martin’s-in-the-Fields. Though a church has been recorded on the grounds as early as 1222, the current building dates from 1726. St. George’s Hanover Square was actually carved from the St. Martin’s parish. My critique partner Kristin swears that there’s no more romantic place on earth for a nineteenth century miss to wed than in St. Martin’s.
Of course, the poet Robert Browning might have argued with her. He married Elizabeth Barrett in St. Marylebone Parish Church in 1846. The interior of the church was also featured in Hogarth’s The Rake’s Progress, a series of satirical paintings from the eighteenth century.
And speaking of marriages, come back next week for a post on brides and weddings. It is June, after all. :-)