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St. Lawrence Jewry, London

4.5
#1570 of 3,736 in Things to do in London
St Lawrence Jewry next Guildhall is a Church of England guild church in the City of London on Gresham Street, next to Guildhall. It was destroyed in the Great Fire of London in 1666, and rebuilt to the designs of Sir Christopher Wren. It is the official church of the Lord Mayor of London.
Medieval eraThe church was originally built in the twelfth century and dedicated to St Lawrence; the weather vane of the present church is in the form of his instrument of martyrdom, the gridiron. The church is near the former medieval Jewish ghetto, which was centred on the street named Old Jewry. From 1280 it was within the advowson of Balliol College, Oxford.
Sir Thomas More preached in the older church on this site.
17th centuryIn 1618 the church was repaired, and all the windows filled with stained glass paid for by individual donors.
The medieval church was destroyed in the Great Fire of London and rebuilt by Christopher Wren between 1670 and 1687. The parish was united with that of St. Mary Magdalen, Milk Street, which was not rebuilt. The church is entirely faced in stone, with a grand east front, on which four attached Corinthian columns, raised on a basement, support a pediment placed against a high attic.George Godwin, writing in 1839, described the details of this facade as displaying " a purity of feeling almost Grecian", while pointing out that Wren's pediment acts only as a superficial adornment to the wall, rather than, as in Classical architecture, forming an extension of the roof.
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
30 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Beautiful and relatively peaceful place right outside Guildhall . Generally well kept church in central London. Beautiful windows art. Worth a look.  more »
  • A church that was beautifully restored in 1957. Very welcoming, even coffee available. Lovely wooden furnishings including altar and pulpit. Lovely decorative ceiling.  more »
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