On the margins

Authored by: Robert Leach

An Illustrated History of British Theatre and Performance

Print publication date:  December  2018
Online publication date:  December  2018

Print ISBN: 9780415725163
eBook ISBN: 9780429463679
Adobe ISBN:


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The London theatres of the mid-century were concentrated on the Strand and its immediate environs: the Strand Theatre, the Olympic, the Gaiety (the Strand Music Hall in the 1850s), the Lyceum, the Savoy, the Adelphi, with Drury Lane close by, as well as the Coal Hole and Gatti’s Music Hall at Charing Cross. But not all the crowds in the Strand were theatregoers: there were also pickpockets, cadgers, beggars, gulls of all sorts, pimps, drunkards and ‘Jolly Dogs’ (upper class hooligans, named after Edmund Kean’s old drinking club), for the Strand was the focus of the London world of pleasures and temptations. There were brothels, taverns and seemingly innocuous shops under whose counters was stashed pornography to suit all tastes.

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