[London is] like the sight of a heavy sea from a rowing boat in the middle of the Atlantic . . . One lives in it, afloat but half submerged in a heavy flood of brick, stone, asphalt, slate, steel, glass, concrete, and tarmac, seeing nothing fixable beyond a few score white spires that splash up like spits of foam above the next glum wave of dirty buildings.
V. S. Pritchett (1900-1997), London Perceived
London’s like a black-browed brute that gets an unholy influence over you.
Robert Smythe Hichens (1864-1950), The Woman with the Fan
You know what London’s like on Sunday? About as lively as a wet night at Stonehenge.
Richard Gordon (1921-2017), Nuts in May
London is the largest of the bloated modern cities; London is the smokiest; London is the dirtiest; London is, if you will, the most miserable. But London is certainly the most amusing and the most amused.
G. K. Chesterton (1874-1936)
If the parks be “the lungs of London” we wonder what Greenwich Fair is – a periodical breaking out, we suppose — a sort of spring rash.
Charles Dickens (1812-1870), Greenwich Fair