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Mr Myres on Saxon London: a reply

  • R. E. M. Wheeler
Extract

This is where Mr Myres and I don our cardboard armour, rattle our wooden sabres, and join battle to the death or tea-time.

Let me parry blow by blow, and, first, that one about the street-plan. I give that precedence because Mr Myres is (relatively) so serious about it. He regards the ‘chaos of curvilinear lanes’ which is the medieval street-plan of London as, above all, a ‘piece of positive evidence’ which makes any survival of Roman London through the Dark Ages ’extremely improbable’. As Mr Myres well knows, this argument goes back through William Page to Noah, and the only surprising thing about it is that Mr Myres should still find himself using it in this year of grace. The reply, in part at least, is almost equally ancient, but has never perhaps been developed as fully as the argument appears to deserve.

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1 The curious may find a convenient diagrammatic exposition of this point in Gordon Home, Roman London (1926), p. 151.

2 MrHerbert, Morrison as reported in The Observer, 4 February 1934.

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Antiquity
  • ISSN: 0003-598X
  • EISSN: 1745-1744
  • URL: /core/journals/antiquity
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