Page images
PDF
EPUB

qualified for admission here, who may have been discharged ucured from any other lunatic hospital. When the friends of a lunatic are satisfied that he is a proper object of the charity, and the petition and certificates of the patient's legal parish settlement are prepared, the forms of which are readily obtained by an application at Bethlem, or at the clerk's office in Bridewell hospital ; and a governor's reconimendation is never refused to the friends of any proper object; it then becomes necessary to procure a governor's recommendation.' The hospital also requires, that, upon admission, two housekeepers residing in or near London, shall enter into a bond to take the patient away when discharged by the committee, and pay the expence of clothes, and of burial in case of death. ' If the lunatic is sent by a parish, or any other public body, the sum of 31. 4s. is paid for bedding, but if he is placed there by friends, the hospital, anxious to lighten their burthen, reduces the sum to 21. 5s. 6d. and when an incurable patient is finally settled in the house, the sum of half a crown per week is paid to the hospital by bis friends, or the parish to which he belongs.

It is expected that the patient should be supplied with clothing; in failure of such supply, the hospital provides proper garments at the lowest rate, and the bondsmen repay the expence.*

#BETHLEM HOSPITAL. Ordered, That the apparel wanting for the patients, may be provided by their friends ; but if not done, the steward shall furnish what the weekly committee shall order, at the following prices : FOR MEN.

FOR WOMEN.
A coat

£.0 16 6
A blanket gown

6.0 10 6 A waistcoat

0 6 4 A gown and petticoat 0 19 0 A pair of breeches 0 9 4 An under petticoat

0 3 3 A shirt 0 3 11 A shift

0 3 4 A pair of shoes 04 6 A pair of shoes

0 31 A pair of stockings 0 2 3 A pair of stockings 0 1 10 0 1 0

[ocr errors]

0 1 0 A blanket gown 0 10 6 A handkerchief

0 1 3 A strait waistcoat

0 13 6
An apron

0 2 2 Buckles 0 0 8 Buckles

008 There

A cap

A cap

.

There is no particular time limited for the continuance of a patient in the hospital, who is under cure. It is generally seen in a twelvemonth, whether the case will admit relief; and sometimes in a few months health and reason are restored. Nor does the care of the governors cease when the recovered lunatic is dismissed from the hospital. At the time of discharge, he is interrogated as to the treatment which he has received, and, if he has had cause of complaint, required to declare it. He is encouraged to apply occasionally to the medical officer, who gives him such advice and medicines as are proper to prevent à rclapse, and, if it should appear that his circumstances are particularly distressing, the treasurer and physician possess a diseretionary power to relieve him with a small sum of money at his departure.

The government of the royal hospitals, as lately established by parliament, affords ample security to the charitable benefactor, that bis good intentions will receive their accomplishment.* The wealthy and munificent city of London, associated with the guardians of each charity, cherishes in her bosom, and fosters with her care those endowments, which the liberality of Henry, and the piety of Edward committed to ber administration. That this happy union will operate to the relief of the distressed poor, there can be little doubt.-The friends of the hospital of Bethlem forin the niost sanguine expectations, that their ability to alleviate the greatest of all human calamities will be enlarged and extended; they hope to effect the purposes they have in view, and entertain full confidence, that the generous assistance of the opulent and the good, will enable them, in an eminent degree, to lessen the evils of humanity.t

* A contest had long subsisted between the common-council of the city of London and the acting governors of all the royal hospitals; the former claiming a right to be admitted governors in virtue of the several royal charters. This dispute has been happily settled by a compromise, which allows the admission of twelve of the commion-council to cach hospital. Application was made to parliament in 1782, and a bill passed, which fully establishes this agreement, and the friends of these noble charities have now the satisfaction to be assured that the government of them is Settled in a mode best calculated to promote their prosperity.

+ Bowen's Hist. of Bethlem. VOL. III. No. 52.

F.

Distracted

Distracted men and women remaining in this hospital on the 31st of December, 1804

Admitted during the year 1805

186 44

230

Cured and discharged ,
Buried, after much charge during their lunacy
Patients in the hospital 31st December, 1805

97

6 127

230

[blocks in formation]

127 At the committee, which meet every Saturday, it has been always customary to admit and discharge distracted men and women from any part of Great Britain or Ireland, without expence to their relations or friends. By the report, however, of eminent surveyors, the building of the present hospital has been proved to be in so decayed and dangerous a state, as to render it necessary to pull down a considerable part of it, and to discontinue the reception of patients, till a more commodious place could be fixed upon; and the comforts of relief extended in a more ample manner.

For the furtherance of so benevolent a purpose, on the. 14th of May, 1806, in a committee of supply in the House of Commons, Sir John W. Anderson, an alderman and one of the members for the city, observed, “ that the petitioners who applied for a grant for the erecting new buildings for the accommodation of the unfortunate patients of Bethlem hospital had proved their allegations before the committee, and it would appear from the report, that there were only accommodations for one hundred and twenty lunatics, though there were applications to the amount of three hundred, and these applications were likely to increase. They were better taken care of, he observed, in the hospital, and at one third of the expence attending other receptacles. He therefore moved, that the report of the committee should be referred to the committee of supply.

fore

Mr. Vansittart, one of the secretaries of state, concurred with the honourable member, and the house resolved itself into a committee, Mr. Alexander in the chair.

Mr. Vansittart moved, That it was the opinion of the com. mittee that a sum not exceeding 10,0001. be granted for the erection of new buildings for the use of the lunatics of Bethlem hospital, without any deduction; which was agreed to.

In consequence of the grant of parliament, and the contributions already obtained, it is intended immediately to erect a new hospital for lunatics, which will have the advantages of an airy situation, and may be rendered far more suitable to the purposes of its erection than the old hospital, even in its best state, which was constructed in haste, and the plan of which is very capable of improvement. To effect this desirable purpose, however, it must be obvious, that nothing short of a liberal subscription on the part of the public at large can suffice, and, no doubt, will be obtained in a country whose greatest characteristic is its noble and generous solicitude to alleviate the miseries, administer to the necessities, and heal the diseases of its people.

The west end of Bethlem Hospital faces FORE STREET, in which, at the entrance of Coleman Street, stood

MOORGATE. THIS postern, having been built by Thomas Falconer, mayor, 1415, was re-edified by William Hampton, mayor, 1472. In 1511, during the mayoralty of Roger Achely, that munificent magistrate caused dikes and bridges to be constructed over the moor or marsh, and theground to be levelled, which was afterwards so much heightened as to cover the bridges, &c. but, says Stow, “ it seemeth to me that, if it be made level with the battlements of the city wall, yet will it be little the drier, such is the moorish nature of that ground.” Modern improvements have sufficiently shewn that ingenuity and perseverance can accomplish what was formerly deemed highly improbable. F?

Moorgate

Moorgate being very much decayed in 1672, was rebuilt with stone, having a lofty arch and two posterns, the city having had it in contemplation to convert Moorfields into a haymarket; but that circumstance not taking place, the gate was converted into adwelling for one of the city officers, who rented it out as a coffee house. It shared the fate of the other entrances into the city, at the commencement of the present reign; but the coffee-house still exists. Opposite is

THE SCOTS CHURCH. THIS is a handsome though plain building, for the meeting of the Scots Presbyterians in the city of London. The pastors of this congregation have been eminent men. Of these Mr. LAWSON was for many years much resorted to, on account of his elocution. Dr. HENRY HUNTER, an eminent ļiterary character was also pastor of this church.

On the left hand entrance of Coleman Street, stands

ARMOURERS AND BRAZIERS HALL.

THIS structure is more distinguishable for neatness than elegance; but in consequence of late repairs, has every convenience adapted to the business of the respectable corporation to which it belongs. The principal ornament of the building, however, is the fine picture by Northcote, of The Entrance of Richard II. and Henry Bolingbroke into London. This pictụre was purchased by the Company at the sale of the Shakespere Gallery, May 20, 1805, foș 1131. 8s.

This company was incorporated by king Henry VI. about the year 1423, by the style of “ The Master and Wardens, Brothers and Sisters, of the Fraternity or Guild of St. George, of the men of the mystery of the Armourers of the city of London.” Their particular business was to make coats of maił. King Henry VI. accepted their freedom, and became one of their members. To this company is united that of the Braziers, and they are jointly governed by a master, twa wardens, and a court of assistants.

Mrs. Joan Doxie gave for the relief of poor widows of this company 5l. per year, and desired it to be denominated ke widow's mite.

On

« PreviousContinue »