Buckingham Street

37, Strand (WC2) So called from the Duke of Buckingham, who lived here at York House. York Stairs, or Water Gate, at the bottom of this street, will give some idea of the beauty of the building, of which this is now the sole remnant. This gate has been universally admired, and pronounced to be the most perfect piece of building that does honour to the name of Inigo Jones. (Reference: Smith's Streets of London, p. 138) Samuel Pepys lived here in 1684. In a house opposite, Peter the Great resided when in England. Here, after rowing about the Thames, watching the boat-building, this brave half-savage used to return and spend his rough evenings with Lord Caermarthen, drinking a pint of hot brandy and pepper, after endless flasks of wine. Lord Caermarthen was at this time Lord President of the Council, and had been appointed Peter's cicerone by King William. (Reference: Thornbury's Haunted London, p. 135) A tablet marks the house No. 15, where Dickens had rooms at the top of the house. Later William Black lived in the same rooms. Lord Bacon was born at York House. Fielding lived in this street in 1735, and Coleridge completed his translation of Wallenstein here. Other noted residents are Dr. Wollaston, Stansfield, Clarkson, William Etty, etc.