Page:Survey of London by John Stow.djvu/180

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152 Stow's Survey of London

that the aforesaid house, wherein the mayor and aldermen do sit at the Spittle, was built for that purpose of the goods and by the executors of Richard Lawson, alderman, and Isabell his wife, in the year 1488. In the year 1594, this pulpit being old was taken down, and a new set up; the preacher's face turned towards the south, which was before toward the west; also a large house, on the east side of the said pulpit, was then built for the governors and children of Christ's hospital to sit in, and this was done of the goods of William Elkens, alderman, late deceased ; but within the first year the same house decaying, and like to have fallen, was again with great cost repaired at the city's charge.

On the east side of this churchyard lieth a large field, of old time called Lolesworth, now Spittle field ; which about the year 1576 was broken up for clay to make brick; in the digging whereof many earthen pots, called urnæ, were found full of ashes, and burnt bones of men, to wit, of the Romans that inhabited here; for it was the custom of the Romans to burn their dead, to put their ashes in an urn, and then bury the same, with certain ceremonies, in some field appointed for that purpose near unto their city. Every of these pots had in them with the ashes of the dead one piece of copper money, with the inscription of the emperor then reigning: some of them were of Claudius, some of Vespasian, some of Nero, of Anthoninus Pius, of Trajanus, and others. Besides those urns, many other pots were there found, made of a white earth with long necks and handles, like to our stone jugs: these were empty, but seemed to be buried full of some liquid matter long since consumed and soked through; for there were found divers phials and other fashioned glasses, some most cunningly wrought, such as I have not seen the like, and some of crystal; all which had water in them, nothing differing in clearness, taste, or savour from common spring water, whatsoever it was at the first: some of these glasses had oil in them very thick, and earthy in savour; some were supposed to have balm in them, but had lost the virtue; many of those pots and glasses were broken in cutting of the clay, so that few were taken up whole. There were also found divers dishes and cups of a fine red-coloured earth, which showed outwardly such a shining smoothness as if they had been of coral; those had in the bottoms Roman letters printed: there were also lamps of white earth and red, artificially wrought with divers antiques about them, some three or four images made of white earth, about a span long each of them: one I remember