- Abdus Salam (1926-1996) became Professor of Theoretical Physics at Imperial College in 1957. FRS, 1959. Hughes, Royal and Copley Medals of the Royal Society. Nobel Prize in Physics, 1979, for his unification of electromagnetic and weak nuclear forces. He was also a scientific adviser to the Presidents of Pakistan in 1961-1974, the founder and director of the International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste in 1964-1995 and a prominent participant in numerous international scientific, educational and peace groups. [Anthony Tucker, 'Abdus Salam: Reconciling two worlds', The Guardian (22 Nov 1996) 18.]
- Thomas Simpson (1710-1761) came to London in 1736 and settled in Spitalfields where he worked as a weaver. He began writing popular mathematical textbooks in 1740. In this period he developed Simpson's Rules for estimating areas and volumes, though these were known to Newton and Cotes. He also seems to have been the first to apply the Newton-Raphson method to non-polynomial equations. He became a Professor at Woolwich in 1743 and FRS in 1745. [Anon, 'Thomas Simpson']
- Thomas Smith, of Gracechurch Street, founded the first English lectureship in mathematics in 1582. The first lecturer was Thomas Hood, with lectures in Staples Inn Chapel and in Smith's house. [Ball (5), p.24] I have a note saying the lectures started in 1588.
- Mary Somerville (1780-1872), translator of Laplace's Mécanique Celeste and populariser of science lived at 12 Hanover Square (on the north side). There was once a Blue Plaque here, but the building has gone.
- Charles Edward Spearman (1863-1945) was born in London and moved to Leamington, served in the army in India and studied at Camberley, then Leipzig. Reader and head of the psychological laboratory at UCL in 1907. Grote Professor of the Philosophy of Mind and Logic in 1911. FRS, 1924. President of British Psychological Society, 1923-1926. Professor of Psychology from 1928 when the Department of Psychology was created. Emeritus in 1931. In 1945, he was in UCH with pneumonia and failing health - he died from a fall from his hospital window, generally considered deliberate and consistent with his beliefs. Introduced factor analysis in 1904 and attempted to use it to extract a coefficient of general intelligence, but there is no general consensus as to whether such a coefficient exists. Inventor of the Spearman rank correlation measure - Pearson violently disagreed with this idea, but it has endured. [Lovie & Lovie]
- William Spottiswoode (1825-1883) was a mathematical physicist, but had to run the family printing firm - Printer to the Crown. FRS; Treasurer of RS, 1876; PBAAS, 1878; PRS, 1878-1883. Buried in Poets' Corner, Westminster Abbey.
- Charles Stanhope, (3rd Earl) (1753-1816) was the most notable of the distinguished Stanhope family - see under Chevening. He had a house at 20 Mansfield Street, N. of Cavendish Square, W1 (Blue Plaque) [Dakers, p.253]
- James Stirling (1692-1770) was in London 1725 1735 and ran an Academy in Little Tower Street (c1727), during which time he published the Stirling numbers [Parker]. Thomas Wright lists the Academy as a purchaser of one of his orreries, c1730.
- William Sturgeon (1783-1850), after service in the Artillery, set up as a shoemaker at 8 Artillery Place, Woolwich, in 1820. By 1825, he had invented the electromagnet and received an RSA Silver Medal for it. He later built the first practical generator and motor in 1832, and the commutator in 1833. In 1840, he removed to Manchester, studying mathematics with Dalton and teaching Joule. [Yarwood, p.35; Ackermann, pp.346-347]
- Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772) is best known for his later mystical views, but was a notable scientist for much of his life. In 1716-1718, he produced six issues of the first scientific journal in Swedish; in 1716-1747, he served on Sweden's Board of Mines, working as a mining engineer, civil engineer, geologist and a promoter of new techniques, also writing on these topics and cosmology (showing that the earth had slowed down and advancing a nebular hypothesis which influenced Buffon, Kant and Laplace, etc.), chemistry (suggesting that crystals were like lattices of spheres), mineralogy, metallurgy, anatomy and physiology, etc.; in 1718, he wrote a booklet on the octal number system; his Regel-Konsten of 1718 was the first Swedish algebra book; in 1718, he published a method of finding longitude from the moon which was revised and extended several times, then submitted to the Board of Longitude in 1766, when Maskelyne rejected it; in 1719, he advocated the use of decimal measures and coinage and proposed a water tank for testing stability of model ships. Member of the Royal Academy of Sciences, Stockholm, in 1740, being sponsored by Linnaeus.
He visited London several times. In 1744 he lodged at 26 Warner Street, Islington, one of his few extant homes. He lived at 26 Great Bath Street (near Rosebery Avenue, but long gone) for seven months in 1769 and during his last year, dying there. Buried in the Swedish church in what is now Swedenborg Gardens, Shadwell. Robert Hindmarsh of Clerkenwell established the Swedenborgian sect or church. In 1908, the Swedish government removed Swedenborg's remains to the National Cathedral in Uppsala and the London Swedish Church was demolished in 1921. [Crosland, vol. 1, p.108; Eastman, p.276; Charles White, The Metropolitan Borough of Stepney Official Guide, 9th ed., Ed. J. Burrow & Co., Cheltenham, nd (c1956), p.61.] [Dave Dutton, Horrors, Futura, London, 1989, p.38] relates that his skull was auctioned at Sotheby's in 1977 and was purchased by a Swedish professor who sent it to join the rest of his remains in Uppsala. (Uppsala is sometimes spelled Upsala.)
[J. G. Dufty, Swedenborg the Scientist, Swedenborg Society, London, 1938]
- James Joseph Sylvester (1814-1897) was born in London, attended University College School/College briefly in Nov 1828-Feb 1829, then being Professor of Natural Philosophy at UCL in 1838-1840. He studied at Inner Temple in 1846-1850 and was called to the Bar there in 1850. He was at the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich, in 1855-1870. A prolific namer of mathematical concepts, he introduced the terms: matrix, invariant, covariant, contravariant, graph (in the combinatorial sense), latent roots. After retiring from Oxford in 1892, he returned to London and stayed until his death at 5 Hartford Street, Mayfair. He is buried in the Jewish Cemetery, Kingsbury Road, Dalston, just behind the Lodge. (The Cemetery is not always open - ring 020-7254 5716 to check. At present, one may need permission from the owners, the West London Synagogue of British Jews.) In early 1995, there was a proposal to redevelop the site but a number of protests were received and the proposal was finally rejected. [Letter from M. Smithers. Personal visits in 1995 and 1996 - see BSHM Newsletter 30 (Autumn 1995) 29-31 & 32 (Autumn 1996) 28. Articles in De Morgan Association Newsletter 5 (Summer 1997).] The Royal Society's mathematical medal is named for him.
- Leo Szilard (1898-1964) fled Germany and arrived in London in 1933. He initially stayed in two rooms at the RS, arranged by Rutherford, then PRS. On 12 Sep 1933, while attending a BAAS meeting and staying at the Imperial Hotel in London, he started across Southampton Row at Russell Square and had the idea of a chain reaction. He actually patented the idea. [Eric Bailey, 'The making of CP-1', Telegraph Magazine (28 Nov 1992) 18-28] In his reminiscences [D. Fleming & B. Bailyn, The Intellectual Migration, Harvard Univ. Press, 1969, pp.99-102 and reproduced in many places], he says the following.
... I found myself in London about the time of the British Association meeting in September 1933. I read in the newspapers a speech by Lord Rutherford, who was quoted as saying that he who talks about the liberation of atomic energy on an industrial basis is talking moonshine. This set me pondering as I was walking the streets of London, and I remember that I stopped for a red light at the intersection of Southampton Row. As the light changed to green and I crossed the street, it suddenly occurred to me that if we could find an element which is split by neutrons and emit two neutrons when it absorbed one neutron, such an element, if assembled in sufficiently large mass, could sustain a nuclear chain reaction. I didn't see at the moment just how one would go about finding such an element, or what experiments would be needed, but the idea never left me. Soon thereafter, when the discovery of artificial radioactivity by Joliot and Mme. Joliot was announced, I suddenly saw that tools were at hand to explore the possibility of such a chain reaction. I talked to a number of people about this ....[The Wells book mentioned is The World Set Free of 1914, which Szilard read in 1932.] (Another source says he stayed at the Strand Palace Hotel at this time.) He worked for the Academic Assistance Council, set up in 1933 to assist German academics to relocate. He recruited Tess Simpson as secretary and she oversaw the rescue of some 2600 scientists. In 1938 Szilard went to the US and soon drafted the letter that Einstein sent to Roosevelt and which initiated the Manhattan Project. After WW2, Szilard campaigned against the Bomb.
... in the spring of 1934 I had applied for a patent which described the laws governing such a chain reaction. It was the first time, I think, that the concept of critical mass was developed and that a chain reaction was seriously discussed. Knowing what this would mean - and I knew it because I had read H.G. Wells - I did not want this patent to become public. The only way to keep it from becoming public was to assign it to the government. So I assigned this patent to the British Admiralty ....
- Brook Taylor (1685-1731), of Taylor's theorem, was born in Edmonton, north London. He lived his life in London except for his time at Cambridge. FRS, 1711. Secretary of the Royal Society in 1714-1718. He published his theorem in 1715. [Ball (5), p.88] He wrote the first original works in English on perspective. He was buried in the churchyard of St. Anne's, Soho. This church perished in the last war and only its tower remains. Some of the monuments have been placed on the side of the small open space on the site, but I have not seen Taylor's.
- Frederick Temple (1821-1902), Bishop of London in 1885-1896, previously mathematical lecturer at Balliol, later Archbishop of Canterbury, published a 'proof' of the Four Colour Theorem in 1889 [Biggs, Lloyd & Wilson, pp. 105, 108]. In the early 1850s, he was head of a school for training teachers in Kneller Hall, Twickenham. He is commemorated by a relief portrait plaque in St. Paul's Cathedral in the first alcove in the north aisle. See also under Lambeth Palace.
- William Thomson (Lord Kelvin) 1824-1907) had a house at 15 Eaton Place, Belgravia. He generally lived at Glasgow or Largs (qv), but he had many duties which brought him regularly to London. Knighted in 1866 upon completion of the Atlantic Cable. Made Baron Kelvin in 1892 - the first scientist to be made a peer. PBAAS, 1871. Copley Medal of Royal Society, 1883. PRS, 1890-1895. Privy Councillor, 1902. Founder member Order of Merit, 1902. Buried in Westminster Abbey, near Newton. Commemorated in a stained glass window with Henry V & Dick Whittington. This is confirmed by [Greenwood, p.182], but [Jimmy Black, The Glasgow Graveyard Guide, Saint Andrew Press, Edinburgh, 1992, p.48] says he is buried in the Necropolis, east of Glasgow Cathedral.
- Cuthbert Tunstall (or Tonstall) (1474-1559), Bishop of London in 1522, later of Durham in 1529/30, was the author of the first arithmetic book by an Englishman: De Arte Supputandi, of 1522. As a bishop during the English Reformation, he had a somewhat more exciting life than the average mathematician. Presumably he lived at Durham House on his London visits, in the Adelphi site, from 1529/30 until the house was exchanged with the Crown in 1535. His London seat was then Cold Harbour, located just east of where Cannon St. Station is now, until 1553, when the house was seized. He had been confined to the house from 20 May to 20 Dec 1551 until he was taken to the Tower and later to the King's Bench prison. He was deprived of his see in 1552/53. After Queen Mary's accession, he was released from prison on 6 Aug 1553 and restored to his position in Apr 1554. On Elizabeth's accession in 1558, he was again in trouble, being summoned to London in 1559 and ordered to consecrate Parker as Archbishop of Canterbury. He refused, and was again deprived of his post and confined to Lambeth Palace under Parker's custody, where he died on 18 Nov. Buried in St. Mary, Lambeth (plaque in the chancel).
- Alan Turing (1912-1954) was born at a nursing home, Warrington Lodge, now the Colonnade Hotel, 2 Warrington Crescent, Paddington, W9, and he was baptised at St. Saviour's Church, across the road [Hodges, p.5]. [Hodges had Warrington Avenue, but it is no longer extant.] This is just north of Warwick Ave. Underground station and I would describe the area as Maida Vale rather than Paddington. A Blue Plaque on the site was unveiled on 23 Jun 1998 and Hodges gave an address. The Plaque describes him as "Code-breaker and Pioneer of Computer Science". He was at the National Physical laboratory in 1945-1948 and produced the proposal for the ACE (Automatic Computing Engine) but no action was taken until after Turing had left for Manchester. The Pilot ACE was then built and it ran in 1950. [P.T. Saunders; Alan Turing; London Mathematical Society Newsletter 264 (Oct 1998) 4.]
- John Venn (1834-1923), of Venn diagrams, is indirectly commemorated in Clapham, south London. His grandfather John (1759-1813) and great-grandfather Henry (1725-1797) were rectors of Holy Trinity Church, Clapham Common. The grandfather was Rector in 1792-1813 and was the spiritual head of the Clapham Sect, whose good works included the abolition of slavery in the British Empire in 1833. He lived in the Rectory which was at the south end of Rectory Grove, where the Friesian and Firkin now stands. There are several monuments to the Venns and/or the Sect on and in the Church and a nearby Venn Street. Both Venns are shown in the new window in the east end of the church. There are further Venn memorials in the church of Yelling (Huntingdonshire) and in St. Peter, Huddersfield. [E. E. F. Smith, p.8.] Our John was born in Hull, but moved to London that year, probably first to Islington where his father was minister of St. John's Holloway, then moving to Highgate about 1841. He attended Sir Roger Cholmely's School (now Highgate School) and Islington proprietary school. In 1859-1862, he was curate at Cheshunt and at Mortlake. [DNB]
- Voltaire [= Franois-Marie Arouet] (1694-1778) was exiled to England in 1726-1729. In 1727-1728, he lodged at the sign of the White Perruke, near 10 Maiden Lane, Covent Garden (plaque). [Dakers, p.281; Timbs II-374.] Presumably this was when he attended Newton's funeral, commenting "I have seen a professor of mathematics, only because he was great in his vocation, buried like a king who had done good to his subjects." He also stayed with Lord Bolingbroke and met Swift, Gay, Congreve and Pope. See also under Wallace Collection.
- Jane Helen Arnott Wadsworth (1942-1997) was brought up in Sevenoaks. She did mathematics at St. Andrews. After time as a programmer and researcher in London and as a wife and mother, she did an MSc in Medical Statistics at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Worked in the Department of Medical Physics, St. Bartholomew's Hospital, 1976-1979. FRSS, 1976. Joined St. Mary's Hospital Medical School as Lecturer in Medical Statistics, 1983, becoming Senior Lecturer in 1989-1997. After working on several projects, she became involved in studying the Aids epidemic which led her and colleagues to undertake the first detailed study of sexual behaviour using a random sample of the population. Though notoriously banned from funding by Mrs Thatcher, the study was sponsored by the Wellcome Foundation.18,876 people were surveyed and the National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles appeared in 1994. The tabloid press tended to ignore it as too dull and predictable, but it established the standard for future work and helped to make sex a legitimate field of scientific inquiry. [Mary Boulton, 'Jane Wadsworth', The Independent (19 Jul 1997) 118]
- William Wales (1734-1798) came from Yorkshire. In 1768, he was sent to observe the Transit of Venus at Fort Prince of Wales, Manitoba, on Hudson Bay on 3 Jun 1769. He then sailed on Cook's second and third voyages and then became mathematical master at Christ's Hospital Mathematical School. [Peter Ransom, 'Sundial corner - no 10: Wales and Fort Prince of Wales', BSHM Newsletter 32 (Autumn 1996) 43-47]
- John Wallis has a descendent: Taverner Wallis (1712-1779), is buried at St. John, Hampstead [Wade, p. 82].
- Sir Robert Alexander Watson-Watt (or Watson Watt) (1892-1973) was superintendent of the Radio Department at NPL in 1934 when H. E. Wimperis asked his opinion whether a 'death-ray' was feasible. He said there was no way enough energy could be projected, but that a plane ought to reflect enough energy that it could be detected and, using more than one station, even located. The idea had already been used by Appleton and others to measure the height of atmospheric layers. Wimperis reported this to the first meeting of the Committee for the Scientific Survey of Air Defence on 28 Jan 1935. The Committee was immediately interested in the idea. Watson-Watt produced a full description on 12 Feb. On 26 Feb 1935, a plane flew at 6000 ft through the BBC World Service(?) 50 metre beam at Daventry and its reflections were picked up eight miles away. [A. P. Rowe, One Story of Radar, CUP, 1948 - excerpted in Weber, pp. 62-63; Storer, pp.118-119] But Baird (qv above) had detected a plane in 1927 and Richardson had the basic idea in 1912 and [Storer, p.118] says Hertz had observed that radio signals were reflected by the pillars in his laboratory. See also under National Physical Laboratory, Seaview. Watson-Watt later coined the term 'operational research'.
- James Watt (1736-1819) served a year under a mathematical instrument maker, John Morgan, in Finch Lane, Cornhill, 1755. Morgan was a maker of Hadley quadrants. [Hackmann, Plate III & p.33; Law, p.7] There was a large monument to him in Westminster Abbey, but it was moved to the Transport Museum, when it was in Clapham, and thence to the crypt of St. Paul's [Crowther, pp.14 & 17]. Some of his models are in the Science Museum.
- Sir Andrew Waugh (1810-1878), astronomer and surveyor who named Mount Everest for his colleague Sir George Everest, is buried in Brompton Cemetery [Culbertson & Randall, p.176].
- Charles Wheatstone (1802-1875) came to London c1818 and lived with his uncle, a musical instrument-maker in the Strand. In 1823, he and his brother took over the business after his uncle's death. In 1829, he invented the concertina and harmonica. Discovered principle of binocular vision and invented (or developed) the stereoscope in 1833 (or 1838). He and Brewster are considered the joint inventors of the stereoscope, though Huygens had described such a device in 1659. Professor of Experimental Physics at Kings College London from 1834. At this time, he set up seven miles of wire in the basement of KCL in order to measure the speed of signal transmission and later laid some of it across the Thames [Jerrold, pp.52-53 & 71-72]. He initially found the speed of transmission was about 50% greater than the speed of light but later work improved on this. FRS, 1836. Developed telegraphy with Cooke, including automatic and submarine versions - in 1840 he suggested a telegraphic cable to France. In 1840, he devised the telegraphic remote clock, i.e. a clock whose time could be controlled by telegraph signals - the prerequisite to standard time throughout the country. Wheatstone invented the electric bell. He didn't devise the Wheatstone Bridge - this was invented by Christie and was utilised by Wheatstone [Ackermann, p.389]. Invented a cipher machine - the Wheatstone Cipher Device. Studied Chladni figures. Resigned from KCL in 1848 because the Bishop of London forbade the attendance of women at his public lectures [Stein, p.88]. Lived at 19 Park Crescent, Regent's Park, W1 (Blue Plaque) from 1866 until his death. Kt, 1868 (or 1869). He founded the British Telegraph Manufacturing Company to produce his inventions. [Dakers, p.290; GLC; Hackmann, pp.53; Low, pp.99-102]
- Alfred North Whitehead (1861-1947) taught at UCL, 1911-1914, then was Professor of Applied Mathematics at Imperial College, 1914-1924. Active in education, serving on the London School Board, etc.
- Ludwig Wittgenstein found the war prevented him from thinking and became a porter at Guy's Hospital, near London Bridge, in 1939. He was transferred to a Medical Research Council unit studying shock, as a lab technician. This unit later moved to Newcastle, qv, in Apr 1943. [Lenihan, p. 192]
- Joseph Wolstenholme (1829-1891) was Professor at the Royal Indian Engineering College. He was a friend of Leslie Stephen and figures as Augustus Carmichael in Virginia Woolf's To the Lighthouse.
- Christopher Wren has monuments of (1632-1723) all about you in London (and also in Cambridge and Oxford). He attended Westminster School in the 1640s. He came to London as Gresham Professor of Astronomy in 1657 at the age of 25 and lived at Gresham College until 1661. In 1658, he determined the arc length of the cycloid. He was a founder FRS. At one time he devised a recording thermometer, a device for recording the direction of the wind and a recording rain gauge. He also discovered the true motion of the pendulum. In 1662, he devised an apparatus of suspended balls to study impact - Newton's Cradle?? - which Newton explicitly acknowledges as the demonstration of the laws of collision [Summerson, pp. 54-55]. Wren, Wallis and Huygens explicated the laws of collision in three papers to the Royal Society in 1668-1669.
Even before the Great Fire of 1666, he had been consulted about St. Paul's. After the Great Fire, he began architecture in earnest, becoming Surveyor of the King's Works in 1669. Besides St. Paul's, he built 51 (or 52 or 53) other churches in London after the Great Fire of 1666, mostly completed by 1685. The foundation of St. Paul's was laid in 1675 and Wren's son placed the last stone in 1708. He also did the following.
Designed the Alcove for Queen Anne. This was in Dial Walk, facing Kensington Palace, but is now at the north end of the Serpentine. [Barbara Denny & Carolyn Starren, Kensington and Chelsea in Old Photographs, The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea and Alan Sutton Publishing, Stroud, 1995, p.20; Felix Barker & Jason Hawkes (photos), London from the Air, Barnes & Noble, 1992, p.126-127]
Designed Bromley College - [Bromley Official Guide, c1975, p.41] says this is recognised by the Society.
Supposedly designed The Cedars, at Cedars Road and Clapham Common Northside, demolished in 1864 [John R. Battley, Clapham Old Yet Ever New, Westminster City Publishing, 1937, p.43; J. H. Michael Burgess, The Chronicles of Clapham (Clapham Common), A. V. Huckle & Son, The Ramsden Press, London, nd [Foreword dated Oct 1929], pp.15-16, 70-71].
Made suggestions for the Writing School of Christ's Hospital (cf under schools above).
Said to have designed Church Buildings, opposite Holy Trinity Church, 13-21 Clapham Common North Side, but these are now known to be designed by John Hutt Sr. in 1714-1720 [Battley, op.cit. p.45;Burgess, op.cit. p.15; Alyson Wilson, ed., The Buildings of Clapham, The Clapham Society, 2000, pp.24-25].
Was responsible for the Custom House.
The 1677 gateway to Devereux Court, S of the Strand, is attributed to Wren [Peter Jackson, London Explorer, Associated Newspapers, nd , p. 33].
[Besant & Mitton, p.98] say he designed the second Drury Lane Theatre, which stood from 1674(?) to 1791.
Supposedly restored the north-west corner of the north transept of Ely Cathedral in 1699 [M. S. Carey, Ely Cathedral, Pitkin, 1973, p.16].
Supposedly designed the Upper School at Eton, but there is no evidence for this (see under schools above).
(Allegedly) rebuilt Fawley Court, near Henley-on-Thames, in 1684.
Designed much of Greenwich Hospital (= Royal Naval College).
Rebuilt part of Hampton Court Palace, in particular the Fountain Court, the present east and south wings and the Banqueting House. A part of the construction collapsed, killing several workmen, and Wren was charged with incompetence, but cleared. He laid out the famous chestnut avenue in Bushy Park as an approach to Hampton Court Palace, but the death of William III ended the rebuilding and the avenue doesn't really go anywhere [C. Turner, p. 16].
Wren made some conversions to St. Stephen's Chapel in the Houses of Parliament, the seat of the Commons, in the early 18C, after the Commons became overcrowded with the advent of 47 Scottish MPs in 1707.
Made improvements at Kensington Palace, particularly the Clock Court and the Orangery and probably the adjacent gate piers.
Designed Kneller Hall, 1709, now the Royal Military School of Music, Kneller Road, Twickenham [Open House booklet 1999].
The design of the Great Hall of Lambeth Palace is sometimes attributed to him [Gordon Huelin, Lambeth Palace A Short History, Church Information Office, London, 1974, p.5].
Designed Marlborough House, 1709-1711, supposedly just to vex his rival Vanbrugh [John Timbs, The Romance of London, Warne, nd [c1890], vol. II, p.360; Besant & Mitton, p.7].
[Timbs, op.cit. vol. I, p.137] says he rebuilt the gate-house of Middle Temple.
He may also have designed Mordern College, Blackheath [Edward Jones & Christopher Woodward, A Guide to the Architecture of London, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, (1983); 2nd ed., 1992, p.416].
Remodelled part of the west facade of Richmond Palace, c1708.This is rarely viewable.[C. Turner, p.24.]
Made suggestions for the Royal Exchange.
Designed the Royal Hospital, Chelsea, begun in 1682.
Designed the (Old) Royal Observatory, Greenwich.
St. Anne's, Soho, was also attributed to him [Roger Hudson, Bloomsbury, Fitzrovia & Soho, The London Guides; Haggerston Press, 1996, p.103].
Surveyed and straightened the spire of Salisbury Cathedral [Child, p.94].
He may have designed Temple Bar [Summerson, p.97; Besant & Mitton, pp.92-93] to replace the one removed in 1670. The successor was removed in 1878 and re-erected SW Cheshunt, Waltham Cross, Broxborne, Hertfordshire, a bit over a mile NW of Junction 25 of the M25 with the A10. There have been proposals to return it to somewhere near St. Paul's.
Designed the pedestal for the statue of Charles I in Trafalgar Square [Peter Jackson, London Explorer, Associated Newspapers, nd , p.30].
He is also traditionally associated with the Trinity Almshouses at Mile End [Geoffrey S. Fletcher, Pearly Kingdom; Hutchinson, London, 1965, p.92].
It has been claimed that he worked on Trumpeter's House, Richmond Green, but there is no evidence for this [C. Turner, p.24].
Designed a doorway for Longleat House, now at Warminster Grammar School [Child, p.42].
Designed the west towers of Westminster Abbey, to which he was Surveyor for a period, but the towers were built by his students Hawksmoor and James.
Made alterations to Whitehall Palace - burned down in 1698.
Assisted in the design of the Long Walk, Windsor Great Park.
Surveyed St. George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in 1681 and was Controller of Works at Windsor Castle from 1684, but none of his plans were implemented there.
Completed Windsor Guildhall in 1689-1690.
Said to have designed 'Wren's Buildings' 39, 41, 43 Clapham Old Town, but these are now known to be designed by Daniel Clarke in 1706 [Burgess, op.cit. p.15;Wilson, op.cit. p.56].
Wren and Hooke designed a Fleet Canal in the early 1670s. It was completed in 1673, making the Fleet navigable up to Holborn, but it was not a great success and was covered over in 1733 (or 1737). [Summerson, pp. 81-82.]
Wren made a relief model of the moon for Charles II [Summerson, p.41]. As Surveyor of the King's Works from 1669, Wren had offices and a house in Whitehall. Kt in 1673. In 1698, Wren preserved the Banqueting House from the fire that destroyed most of Whitehall Palace by gathering some masons and bricking up the south window. PRS in 1680-1682. One persistent legend has some basis in some work he did at Windsor (qv). He was the first person buried in St. Paul's Cathedral, in the southeast corner of the Crypt. The stone with the famous epitaph 'Lector, si monumentum requiris, circumspice' (Reader, if you require a monument, look around) was in the North transept but was moved here during restoration after World War 2. A similar inscription is on the main floor under the centre of the dome. His Great Model is in the Trophy Room at the back of the Crypt. While in St. Paul's, you should also visit the Whispering Gallery. There is a Christopher Wren pub in the new precinct northwest of the Cathedral.
An 18th century house called Cardinal's Wharf, 49 Bankside, across the river from St. Paul's, has a 1951 plaque making the extremely dubious assertion that Wren lived in it while St. Paul's was being built. It is possible that he lived about 100 yards to the west, where a 1907 plaque on the London Hydraulic Power Company says Wren lived in a house on the site during the building of St. Paul's, and there is a 1789 drawing of the house with this information on it. The house was demolished in 1906, and indeed the Hydraulic Power Company closed down in 1977 and the area has been redeveloped so I don't know if this plaque is extant - I couldn't find in 1995. [Kent, pp.202-203.] [Dakers, p.299] describes the plaque at Cardinal's Wharf, but says that Wren's residence here is not proven. [Stephen Humphrey, Southwark, Bermondsey & Rotherhithe A Second Selection, Sutton Publishing, Stroud, Glos., 1997, p.9] says the Wren and Catherine stories were started by Malcolm Munthe, who lived in Cardinal's Wharf just after WW2. Humphrey has a photograph of it in c1935 showing no sign of the several coats of arms now over the doorway. Another source notes that the area would have been hardly suitable for a man of Wren's position. As Surveyor of Works, Wren's official residence was in part of Old Scotland Yard, Whitehall Place. Inigo Jones also had lived here. There is a general Blue Plaque on the site, commemorating the first 'Scotland Yard' of the Metropolitan Police. [Dakers, p.238] [Eastman, p.283] says he is also supposed to have lived at 5 Walbrook Street, in Carter Lane and in Great Russell Street.
Wren retired to the Old Court House at Hampton Court Green in 1718 (or 1706) - his only definite extant residence (Blue Plaque erected in 1996). [Maev Kennedy, 'Wren's true blue honour', Guardian (17 Jun 1996) 9] states that Wren first came here in 1689 when working on Hampton Court Palace. Although there is a tablet in a ground floor room recording that he died there [Eastman, p.283; B. Bailey, p.150], all early biographers record that he also had a house in St. James's Street, Piccadilly, and that he took cold when coming into town and died at his Piccadilly house. The exact house has not been identified.[Kent, pp.208-209.Summerson, pp.145-146]
Wren proposed decimal coinage in the late 17C. He is commemorated on the current £50 note.
A bust, supposed to be Wren, is at St. Ann and St. Agnes, on the south side near the main door [Stephen Wheatley, The Real Wren Churches, the author, 1992, p.9]. There is a statue on the facade of the Royal Academy, Burlington House, Piccadilly. There is a statue of Wren in the middle of the Weymouth Street facade of the Royal Institute of British Architects building at 66 Portland Place [Margaret Richardson, 66 Portland Place: The London Headquarters of the Royal Institute of British Architects, RIBA Publications, 1984, pp. 18-19].
There is a stained glass window in the vestibule of St. Lawrence Jewry depicting Wren with his workmen and his City steeples [Wheatley, op.cit. p.17].
Wren worshipped at St. Margaret Pattens, where tradition says he occupied the pew marked CW 1686 [Wheatley, op.cit. p.22].
There is a watch, supposedly given to Wren by Queen Anne, in Sir John Soane's Museum [Kenneth Powell, 'Sir John's mission to inform', Weekend Telegraph (9 May 1992) XXI]. There is also a bust of Wren and a book of his architectural drawings, presented to Soane by George Dance.
- Edward Wright (1558?-1615) came to London about 1600 as lecturer and/or hydrographer to the East India Company and became mathematical tutor to Prince Henry. He built a kind of orrery which was displayed in the Tower until 1675. He translated Napier's Canon into English. [Ball (5), p.26-27; Gridgeman] He may have proposed the New River or been surveyor to it.
- Thomas Young (1773-1829) had a house at 48 Welbeck Street which has a Blue Plaque.
- George Udny Yule (1871-1951) was in the Department of Technology of the City and Guilds College from 1899 until 1912 - this became part of Imperial College.
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An extract from The Mathematical Gazetteer of the British Isles created by David Singmaster
The original site is at THIS LINK