History

With over 2,000 years of history, London is bursting at the seams with stories of how we used to live in this wonderful city.

From the Romans to the medieval period; Georgians, Victorians, world wars and modern Elizabethan times, London has been the centre of global events, innovation and everyday tales of peoples lives.

Browse through our articles below and join us on a journey through the capital's fascinating past.

This Is What Happens When You Get A Singing Lesson From A Pearly King

This Is What Happens When You Get A Singing Lesson From A Pearly King

A quick ding-dong before Uncle Ned. | By Ross Miklaszewicz
13 Of London's Oddest Buildings

13 Of London's Oddest Buildings

What's that doing there? | By Jane Murphy
The National Portrait Gallery's Hidden Secrets

The National Portrait Gallery's Hidden Secrets

Do you know about the secret tunnel? | By M@
14 Things To See In Windsor That Don't Involve The Castle Or Lego

14 Things To See In Windsor That Don't Involve The Castle Or Lego

Pavement clocks and copper corgis. | By M@
A Piece Of The Old Wembley Stadium... Hidden In A North London Park

A Piece Of The Old Wembley Stadium... Hidden In A North London Park

An iconic hunk. | By Londonist
Mapped: Britain's Worst Disasters

Mapped: Britain's Worst Disasters

Shipwrecks, explosions and crashes. | By M@
Ever Noticed The Ancient Pump On Cornhill?

Ever Noticed The Ancient Pump On Cornhill?

13th century survivor. | By M@
London's Worst Tube Disaster Marked By Touching New Memorial

London's Worst Tube Disaster Marked By Touching New Memorial

Previously a plaque was in its place. | By M@
Know These 9 Things About Kensington Palace And Gardens?

Know These 9 Things About Kensington Palace And Gardens?

Includes filthy language from yesteryear. | By Jamie Shore
London's Great Tooth Heist

London's Great Tooth Heist

The tooth, the whole tooth and nothing but the tooth. | By M@
London's Forgotten Disasters: Gigantic Wave Kills 35

London's Forgotten Disasters: Gigantic Wave Kills 35

Swept into the Thames at Blackwall. | By M@
The Curious Incident Of The Dog On The Northern Line

The Curious Incident Of The Dog On The Northern Line

In the 1940s, the tube had a problem with strays. | By M@
Islington's Surprising Whisky History

Islington's Surprising Whisky History

Council took on whisky fraudsters. | By Londonist
What Are These Strange Cross Symbols On London's Bridges?

What Are These Strange Cross Symbols On London's Bridges?

Mark of the Bridge House Estates. | By M@
These Two London Buildings Spawned A Classic Idiom

These Two London Buildings Spawned A Classic Idiom

Things got pretty heated. | By Harry Rosehill
Inside The World's Oldest Hat Shop

Inside The World's Oldest Hat Shop

It has the royal seal of approval. | By Robert Greene
These 9 Bits Of London Aren't Where They Used To Be

These 9 Bits Of London Aren't Where They Used To Be

Arches, bridges and museums that have been relocated in the capital. | By Laura Reynolds
Behind The Scenes At The Royal Albert Hall: Part 2

Behind The Scenes At The Royal Albert Hall: Part 2

Far above, hides another universe. | By Sandra Lawrence
When Christmas Went Very, Very Wrong

When Christmas Went Very, Very Wrong

Shocking around the Christmas tree. | By M@
In Pictures: A Sexist Victorian Christmas

In Pictures: A Sexist Victorian Christmas

Festive frisky activities. | By Will Noble
A Sneak Peek At The New Westminster Abbey Experience

A Sneak Peek At The New Westminster Abbey Experience

Welcome to the triforium. | By Will Noble
Meet The Sassy Women Of Yesteryear's Tabloids

Meet The Sassy Women Of Yesteryear's Tabloids

Gasp! Shock! Horror! | By Will Noble
A Historic Fatal Air Crash Near Croydon

A Historic Fatal Air Crash Near Croydon

It could have been even worse. | By Will Noble
The Street Where Londoners Ditched Their Dogs

The Street Where Londoners Ditched Their Dogs

People weren't always so attached to their pets. | By Harry Rosehill
How Tower Bridge Almost Looked

How Tower Bridge Almost Looked

Prefer any of these to the real thing? | By Harry Rosehill
Hounslow Prison 'For Thieves And Drunks' 'Repoens'

Hounslow Prison 'For Thieves And Drunks' 'Repoens'

This is 'The Highwaymen's Cage'. | By Will Noble
Christmas Shopping In London Has Always Been A Total Crush

Christmas Shopping In London Has Always Been A Total Crush

Historic photos show festive crowds. | By M@
The Village That Wriggled Free From London

The Village That Wriggled Free From London

Enough was enough. | By Will Noble
Londonist's Back Passage: #53 Crane Court

Londonist's Back Passage: #53 Crane Court

The forgotten court with a mighty history. | By M@
Christmas 1916: A Poignant Image Of A Returning Soldier

Christmas 1916: A Poignant Image Of A Returning Soldier

Happiness and sorrow beautifully captured. | By M@
Six World Leaders Who Lived In London

Six World Leaders Who Lived In London

JFK was a Londoner. | By M@
The District Line Once Went To Windsor

The District Line Once Went To Windsor

Handy for royal weddings. | By M@
Did You Know These 9 Things About The London Docklands?

Did You Know These 9 Things About The London Docklands?

A vibrant, violent place. | By Jamie Shore
This Curry Restaurant Hasn't Changed In 60 Years, And Is All The Better For It

This Curry Restaurant Hasn't Changed In 60 Years, And Is All The Better For It

The prices also hark back to another era. | By Heather Taylor
The Crazy Christmas When 70 Polar Bears Descended On Leicester Square

The Crazy Christmas When 70 Polar Bears Descended On Leicester Square

Wretched entertainment. | By M@
Amazing Photo Above The Houses Of Parliament

Amazing Photo Above The Houses Of Parliament

Holy crap. | By M@
The Forgotten Man Who Invented TV, Drones, Rocket Bikes And Strictly Come Dancing

The Forgotten Man Who Invented TV, Drones, Rocket Bikes And Strictly Come Dancing

The remarkable mind of Archibald Montgomery Low. | By M@
Penge? Osidge? Where Do London's Odd Suburb Names Come From?

Penge? Osidge? Where Do London's Odd Suburb Names Come From?

An incomplete but intriguing list. | By M@
Ever Spotted One Of Harrods' Vintage Vehicles Nipping Around London?

Ever Spotted One Of Harrods' Vintage Vehicles Nipping Around London?

Elegant and eco-friendly. | By Londonist Staff
London’s Record-Breaking Centenarians

London’s Record-Breaking Centenarians

Golden oldies. | By Londonist Staff
The Secret Street Signs Of Whitechapel

The Secret Street Signs Of Whitechapel

Centuries-old signage. | By Londonist Staff
Would You Have Driven One Of These 1960s Electric Bikes?

Would You Have Driven One Of These 1960s Electric Bikes?

A short-lived solution to London's transport woes. | By M@
Wonderful Illustrations From Smithfield Market's Opening

Wonderful Illustrations From Smithfield Market's Opening

And a poem lamenting the loss of the old market. | By Harry Rosehill
Edwardian Postcards Of London

Edwardian Postcards Of London

Wish you were there? | By Will Noble
Mapped: 1862 East London Versus Modern East London

Mapped: 1862 East London Versus Modern East London

This is addictive stuff. | By Laura Reynolds
London's First Novelty Pop-Up: The Automatic Buffet

London's First Novelty Pop-Up: The Automatic Buffet

Edwardian concept cafe. | By M@
Take A Look At Waterloo Station Back In 1961

Take A Look At Waterloo Station Back In 1961

It wasn't exactly quiet then, either. | By Will Noble
Inside The Vanishing Pubs Of The Isle Of Dogs

Inside The Vanishing Pubs Of The Isle Of Dogs

The boozers that are the last bastion of working class culture. | By James Drury
Behind The Scenes At Beefeater With London's Own Gin King

Behind The Scenes At Beefeater With London's Own Gin King

15 million gallons per year later ... | By Ross Miklaszewicz
London Was Once The World's Biggest Port: Here's Its Story

London Was Once The World's Biggest Port: Here's Its Story

Docklands history. | By M@
London Underground Has Been Telling Passengers To 'Move Down Inside The Car' For 100 Years

London Underground Has Been Telling Passengers To 'Move Down Inside The Car' For 100 Years

When will we learn? | By Will Noble
The Thames Shifted To Peckham? Mad Plans From The 1930s

The Thames Shifted To Peckham? Mad Plans From The 1930s

It seems unthinkable. | By M@
Priss Fotheringham: The 'Second Best Whore In The City'

Priss Fotheringham: The 'Second Best Whore In The City'

She died rich. | By Londonist
A Roman Temple Has Reappeared In The Heart Of The City

A Roman Temple Has Reappeared In The Heart Of The City

London Mithraeum. | By Will Noble
London's Victoria Cross Medal Recipients, Mapped

London's Victoria Cross Medal Recipients, Mapped

Our city's heroes. | By M@
Ever Heard Of The London Monster, The Precursor To Jack The Ripper?

Ever Heard Of The London Monster, The Precursor To Jack The Ripper?

A rather terrifying podcast. | By Londonist
Lost London: Buildings Destroyed In The 21st Century

Lost London: Buildings Destroyed In The 21st Century

13 landmarks swept away. | By M@
Here's What The World's First Traffic Lights, In Westminster, Looked Like

Here's What The World's First Traffic Lights, In Westminster, Looked Like

Very HG Wells. | By M@
Behind The Scenes At The New Museum Of London

Behind The Scenes At The New Museum Of London

One of London's oldest markets, transformed. | By Ross Miklaszewicz
Did You Know That Alexandra Palace Was Once An Internment Camp?

Did You Know That Alexandra Palace Was Once An Internment Camp?

A difficult part of Britain's past. | By Harry Rosehill
Victorian Time Capsules Uncovered In Euston

Victorian Time Capsules Uncovered In Euston

Message in a bottle... | By M@
This London Community Centre Used To Be A Mortuary

This London Community Centre Used To Be A Mortuary

From coffins to cake sales. | By Laura Reynolds
Where Exactly Are The Hamlets Of Tower Hamlets?

Where Exactly Are The Hamlets Of Tower Hamlets?

And how old is the name? | By M@
What's So Special About These St Pancras Street Names?

What's So Special About These St Pancras Street Names?

And what's a former Lord Mayor of London got to do with it? | By Laura Reynolds
5 Chilling City Churchyards That'll Freak You Out

5 Chilling City Churchyards That'll Freak You Out

Enter at your own risk. | By Patrick Ross
In Pictures: London City Airport, Then And Now

In Pictures: London City Airport, Then And Now

Fewer propellers these days. | By Will Noble
Statue Of Eros: Does Anyone Know Who It Really Is?

Statue Of Eros: Does Anyone Know Who It Really Is?

Anteros? Angel of Christian Charity? | By M@
Who Was The Real Fagin?

Who Was The Real Fagin?

Was Charles Dickens guilty of anti-semitism? | By Londonist
Drag Acts Were Dancing On The Bar Of This Pub In The 1960s

Drag Acts Were Dancing On The Bar Of This Pub In The 1960s

How more pints didn't get knocked over, we don't know. | By Danny Lavelle
The 7 Worst Jobs In Victorian London

The 7 Worst Jobs In Victorian London

A filthy business. | By Danny Lavelle
26 Things To Look Out For On Fleet Street

26 Things To Look Out For On Fleet Street

Ever noticed the Space Invaders etched into the pavement? | By Laura Reynolds
The Secret Tunnel Beneath Eros

The Secret Tunnel Beneath Eros

Photo shows a service shaft through the base. | By M@
The Soviet Union Secretly Mapped London... Here Are Those Maps

The Soviet Union Secretly Mapped London... Here Are Those Maps

Know Cyrillic? Then you might spot the mistakes. | By Will Noble
Acid Attacks In London Are Nothing New... They Were Happening In Sherlock Holmes Books

Acid Attacks In London Are Nothing New... They Were Happening In Sherlock Holmes Books

A centuries-old problem. | By Danny Lavelle
Did Sweeney Todd Actually Exist?

Did Sweeney Todd Actually Exist?

Pie in the sky? | By Londonist
A Very Important Statue You Probably Never Noticed

A Very Important Statue You Probably Never Noticed

Hidden Bloomsbury. | By M@
Spot The Difference With London Telephone Boxes

Spot The Difference With London Telephone Boxes

Not all the same. | By Robert Greene
Churchill's Spare Cabinet War Rooms

Churchill's Spare Cabinet War Rooms

The whole cabinet was ready to move if Westminster was destroyed. | By Laura Reynolds
Where Exactly In Parliament Was The British Prime Minister Killed?

Where Exactly In Parliament Was The British Prime Minister Killed?

"I am murdered!" | By Will Noble
What Is Prince Henry's Room?

What Is Prince Henry's Room?

Ever been intrigued by this sign on Fleet Street? | By Laura Reynolds
Do You Remember The Beast Of Barnet?

Do You Remember The Beast Of Barnet?

And the motley crew it took to capture her. | By Harry Rosehill
Where Is The Source Of The Thames?

Where Is The Source Of The Thames?

A trip to Gloucestershire. | By M@
Were American Tourists Really Gullible Enough To Think They'd Bought Big Ben?

Were American Tourists Really Gullible Enough To Think They'd Bought Big Ben?

How embarrassing. | By Eleana Overett
6 Secrets Of Billingsgate Market

6 Secrets Of Billingsgate Market

Did you know that the Kray Twins worked here? | By Danny Lavelle
Ever Noticed These Special Huts Near Victoria Station?

Ever Noticed These Special Huts Near Victoria Station?

A taste of the seaside in west London. | By Laura Reynolds
The Days When You Could Catch A Roundhouse Show For 40p

The Days When You Could Catch A Roundhouse Show For 40p

"If you are likely to be disturbed, please do not attend". | By Laura Reynolds
This Building Helped End The Second World War

This Building Helped End The Second World War

Linking Hitler, the Speaking Clock, and Premium Bonds. | By Laura Reynolds
Someone's Created A History Of London In Lego... It's Something Quite Special

Someone's Created A History Of London In Lego... It's Something Quite Special

Never before has a toy oozed such death and destruction. | By Will Noble
A Britpop Tour Of Camden

A Britpop Tour Of Camden

Created by a super fan. | By Londonist
Remembering London's Memory Man

Remembering London's Memory Man

The coolest nickname ever? | By London Historians