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The Great Fire of London

by GENEST Laurianne and GARRABE Emiland

The great fire of 1666 was a fire which ravaged the center of London on the 2nd September. The fire started in the premises of a baker very early in the morning in Pudding Lane. It could have begun because of a candle, an oil lamp or just because of an oven or a domestic fireplace. London was, in 1666, a very large medieval city. It was one of the biggest and major cities in Europe. This city was made of timber building, so the houses were in wood. We can say that it was a great fire hazard.
The main fire stopped after 4 or 5 days but the debris continued to smoulder. London’s mayor, Thomas Bloodworth, hesitated to destroy houses. That was the only way to stop the fire. When he decided to do it, the wind fanned the fire. The extent of the destruction was huge.
About 13 000-14 000 houses, 87 churches and a lot of businesses were burnt in that Great Fire. Even St Paul’s cathedral burnt down. One of the consequences was that there were numerous homeless people. The death of 6 persons were written down, but poor persons probably died and it wasn’t written in the town’s records.
The damage was first estimated to 100.000.000 pounds, but after this price was corrected to 10.000.000 pounds (more than 1.000.000.000 pounds in 2005).

Because there was a war between England and Holland, the French and Dutch were lynched and punched. A catholic French was accused of having started the Great Fire. He confessed the crime, and was hanged on September 28th. After that, he proved to be innocent.

Little by little, the city was rebuilt and now, it is a big city with modern and ancient buildings.

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