Aldgate General Facts:
- One of the 7 historic London City Gates through the London defensive wall from Roman times.
- Was called Eastgate in the Saxon period.
- Aldgate was the easternmost gateway through London Wall.
- It lead from the City of London to Whitechapel & the east end of London.
- The name is derived from Ale-gate, which literally means open to all.
- Unlike at all other city entrances, no tolls were ever demanded at this gate.
- The current form of the word, Aldgate, does not occur until 1486 - 1487.
- Reconstruction of Roman Gateway at Aldgate (image opposite) - showing the double arch and an old cemetery (upper right).
- Believed that a gate at Aldgate was already spanning the road to Colchester in the Roman period, when the London City Wall itself was constructed.
- Like many other Roman city gates, Aldgate had a double arch.
- The gateway stood at the corner of the modern Duke's Place.
- Rebuilt between 1108-47, & rebuilt again in 1215.
- Jews settled to the north of the gate, beginning in 1181, until their expulsion in 1290 by King Edward I.
- The area from this time became known as Old Jewry.
- The Jews were later welcomed back by Oliver Cromwell, and again settled in the Aldgate area.
- Whitechapel Bell Foundry was founded in Aldgate in about 1420, but was later moved to nearby Whitechapel.
- Aldgate Pump was at the junction of Aldgate, Leadenhall Street, & Fenchurch Street.
- The gate was reconstructed completely between 1607 & 1609.
- Aldgate was finally demolished in the 1761 & briefly re-erected in Bethnal Green.
- In 1374 Geoffrey Chaucer (when he was appointed Controller of Customs for hides, skins & wools) was granted a lease on a dwelling above Aldgate.
Image from Dick Schmitt (cc) with thanks.
Posted by ALCHEssMIST.
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