Londonist’s Back Passage

By M@ Last edited 147 months ago
Londonist’s Back Passage

A tribute to the capital’s alleys, ginnels and snickleways.

5. Johnson’s Court, EC4

Where? Part of that baffling network of passages just north of Fleet Street. Well maintained and currently undergoing a refurb of street furniture (check out the inky-black water feature - not pictured).

What? A twisting, partly covered alley with some character left, despite one too many modern developments.

Why use? The route is trodden by many a lexiphile, for it leads to Gough Square and the house-museum of Dr Johnson (creator of the first decent English dictionary).

Also good for? Dashing your faith in seemingly reasonable assumptions. Dr Johnson not only lived in nearby Gough Square, but also resided in Johnson’s Court for nearly 11 years. Yet the name of the passage has nothing to do with him. It is called for Thomas Johnson, a tailor who lived here some 200 years before Samuel.

Last Updated 17 August 2006