'Father Thames introducing his offspring to the fair city of London.', 1858
'Father Thames introducing his offspring to the fair city of London.', 1858. '(A design for a Fresco in the New Houses of Parliament.)' Father Thames introduces his children, Diptheria, Scrofula and Cholera to the lady on the left who represents the City of London. In the background, to the left, can be seen the murky outline of St. Paul's. The architect, George Godwin, in his work Town Swamps and Social Bridges had described how a man living by the Thames had been able to tell the time by the constant reappearance with the sluggish tide of a swollen, dead dog. The summer of 1858 had been very dry and this had heightened the everyday problems caused by the usual filthy state of the Thames. A poem in Punch, Bake, bake, bake, includes the lines, 'And the swoln dead dogs go down Through the bridges, past Tow'r Hill'. This is a play on the title of Tennyson's famous poem, Break, Break, Break. 'From Punch, or the London Charivari, July 3, 1858.
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