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  • Writer's pictureHaydn Wheeler

1666 Great Fire of London "Madame we are all undone, the Clubs are up".

James Shirley

With the #GreatFire350 commemoration in London in 2016, a mention to James Shirley the English dramatist. In October 1666 aged seventy, with his second wife, died of fright and exposure after the Great Fire.

His last antebellum play <pre civil war> The Sisters pays mention to Paulina the so called heiress, with a warning " Madame we are all undone, the Clubs are up, your tenants have turned rebels." Club Law as such. Shirley served under William Cavendish in the Civil War.

Preacher Robert Frampton who was with the Clubmen at the battle of Hambledon Hill in 1645, was now in London in 1666. Two weeks after the Great Fire of London Frampton was giving sermons in London. On one occasion, "reducing the King and his courtiers to tears through his sermon and moving the congregation at St Margaret's also."

Frampton and Stillingfeet through donations raised £135 1s 3d for the victims of the fire through their sermons.

Frampton was a favorite of diarist Samuel Pepys, who on Sunday 20 January 1666/67 said of Frampton.

"I to church, and there, beyond expectation, find our seat, and all the church crammed, by twice as many people as used to be: and to my great joy find Mr. Frampton in the pulpit; so to my great joy I hear him preach, and I think the best sermon, for goodness and oratory, without affectation or study, that ever I heard in my life. The truth is, he preaches the most like an apostle that ever I heard man;"

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