Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Inns of Court

Princess Parvati seems to be telling me to get on back home and start up stitching on my "Rabbit Sampler" once again. 

The weather at home has been very hot - over 90F.  What's a long-haired cat to do?  Padma says to stretch out as long as you can and turn your belly upward.

Today we took a walking tour and visited the four Inns of Court which are responsible for the training of Britain's barristers.

Our walk began along the along the Victoria Embankment
where this dragon marks the boundary between Westminster and the City of London.

We then crossed through the arch and came to the Middle Temple.

The Middle Temple (circa 1290) uses the heraldic symbol of the Knights Templar- the Agnus Dei symbol.  It is a sacrificial lamb holding the banner of innocence set in a red cross on a saintly white background. The doors and borders of the Middle Temple are generally marked by this symbol.  As you can see by the collage above, there were lambs everywhere!

What a lovely place.  So many interesting buildings and churches and statues.

These Cloisters were rebuilt after sustaining damage in WWII. 

The doors and borders of the Inner Temple are generally marked with the flying horse - Pegasus.

Historic buildings abound in this area. The Devereux pub was built in 1676 on the site of Essex House, home to Robert Devereux, Earl of Essex.

We also stopped in the original Twinings tea store and admired the bespoke clothing stores that outfit judges complete with white wigs (upper left).

What a skyline!

One thing I did not expect, were all the gardens.

The Inns of Court area is full of wonderful, charming, delightful, secluded gardens. There was even a little green house and cold frames too. We spoke with a couple of gardeners.  They said this location in inner London, close to the river rarely freezes and they are able to grow tender plants with ease.  I noticed huge fuchsias, salvia guaranitica and yuccas.

If I worked here, this is where I'd spend my lunch hour.

Our walk ended with the Victorian Gothic monstrosity that is the Royal Courts of Justice.  Impressive to be sure!

I must show off a postbox I saw while walking.
While this is not an Edward VIII box, it is a rare bird.  Note the oval post office directional sign atop the box.  Very, very few of these signs remain attached to the pillar boxes - most have been stolen or vandalized.

I have to give a shout out to Giovanna who suggested that this was a most interesting area of London to explore.


Vickie said...

Well thanks Giovanna, because we all enjoyed it today. =)

Ann at Beadlework. said...

Another lovely day out with you Beth - I'm still smarting at the fact that we're going to miss each other in Edinburgh though. I'm seeing places in London and the surrounding area that I didn't know of till now.

Barb said...

I just can't get over all the beautiful and interesting buildings. I would just love all the gardens!! The climate information is very interesting. We have a lot of micro-climates here but none that are that mild.

Margaret said...

Wow, that's so cool!!! Another area I've read about in novels, but never seen. Thanks for that, and thanks to Gio too!

Maggee said...

I am just amazed at the years of construction of these buildings! Can't get my genealogy that far back! And a French name for an English Earl? how's that work?? Lovely as always! Hugs!

Giovanna said...

Glad I could be useful - I get to see your lovely pictures as a reward :-)

Annette-California said...

LOL Thank you Giovanna and Beth! Wonderful and amazing tour. I love the history you share with us as well as the photos. Darling photos of your cats:) love Annette

cucki said...

Wow thank you dear for sharing..I love it x

Susan said...

I am behind on my blog reading, but yours is the first one I go to so I can catch up on "my" tour. 8-) Another wonderful and interesting last few days.

hazel said...

I am putting this tour on my list to do this year. Although I visit London often I have never been to this area.

Thank you Beth for another really interesting post.

Hazel c uk

Melanie said...

I've got my husband peeking in your journal now on his own because I've been talking about your adventures 'over there' so much. He likes the mailboxes. :)

Mouse said...

oooo I missed this one ... glad I was scrolling back .... love the cloisters and the gardens and that post box is FAB ..... love mouse xxxxxx