Old Vauxhall

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On the opposite bank of the river was Old Vauxhall. This favourite resort had been popular for some years and evidently some time before Pepys's visit, as he mentions that he had not been there for some time. Pepys spells it "Foxhall".

There seem to have been two separate places of entertainment: the Old Spring Garden and the New. Early in the reign of Charles II., the gardens are described as having green or turf walks and gravel walks and squares filled with roses, beans, and asparagus, and the divisions made by gooseberry hedges.

It was on the 29th of May, the King's birthday, that Mr. and Mrs. Pepys, the two maids and the boy, took a boat and went first to the Old Spring garden.

There they walked about, and the maids gathered flowers, but finding the refreshments prices ridiculously high, they left and went to the New Spring garden, which Pepys says far exceeded the other.

The Old Spring garden seems to have been ultimately leased to Sir Samuel Morland, who built a fine house on the site about 1675. During the reign of Charles II., Vauxhall enjoyed a considerable amount of popularity, and there are constant references to it; its subsequent history will he related in the next chapter.

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