On 11 November 1920, as the Cenotaph was unveiled by King George V, two years after the Armistice the bodies of two unknown First World War soldiers were interned, one in Westminster Abbey and one beneath the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. The idea of a Tomb of the Unknown Warrior was first conceived in 1916 by the Rev. David Railton, who had seen a grave which bore the pencil-written legend ‘An Unknown British Soldier’.
On 11 November 1983 Mary Donaldson became the first woman to be the City of London’s Lord Mayor, one of the world’s oldest continuously elected civic offices
It is illegal in London to have sex on a parked motorcycle, beat a carpet in a public park, or impersonate a Chelsea pensioner
The Ritz hotel in Piccadilly was built on a site previously occupied by The Old White Horse Cellar, one of the most famous coaching inns in London
The remains of a Roman teenage girl were unearthed during the construction of The Gherkin, she was reburied near where she was found
On 11 November 1100 (11-11-1100) King Henry I of England married Matilda of Scotland at Westminster Abbey
The Lanesborough Hotel had 3 original Reynolds and boasts the largest collection of 18th century paintings in the world outside any gallery
The Fox and Anchor-Smithfield and Market Porter-Borough are licensed to serve alcohol from 7am to fit in with the hours worked by market porters
Tennis legend Fred Perry is commemorated by to plaques in Ealing. His ashes are buried near his statute at Wimbledon
Just outside Temple Tube station is an original pre-Beck map in a glass case. (In other words its lines are bendy rather than straight.)
The only London-based gin distillery left today is Beefeater Gin, which is based on Kennington in the former Haywards pickle factory
The River Thames is two hundred and fifteen miles long, has 47 locks and carries some 300,000 tonnes of sediment a year
Trivial Matter: London in 140 characters is taken from the daily Twitter feed @cabbieblog.
A guide to the symbols used here and source material can be found on the Trivial Matter page.
4 thoughts on “London Trivia: Known only to God”
Sublime! A Smorgasbord of historical facts and incidents to ponder and explore.
You might wish to read more about WWI on this most poignant of days:
Letters on clock outside St James palace w & not sure other one what do they mean?
We have discussed this on CabbieBlog before. If I remember, King Charles I spent his last night here before being executed. On the clock is a black dot at two o’clock the time he was beheaded.