cheapside 16th century street road Cheapside is a street in Cheap ward of the City of London that links Newgate Street with the

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19th era / Alamy Stock Photo
Image ID: B7P4M8
Cheapside is a street in Cheap ward of the City of London that links Newgate Street with the junction of Queen Victoria Street, Cornhill, Threadneedle Street, Princes Street, Lombard Street and King William Street (via a small section called 'Poultry'). In mediæval times it was known as 'Westcheap', as the opposite to Eastcheap. Cheapside is the former site of one of the principal produce markets in London, cheap broadly meaning "market" in mediæval English (see below Etymology and usage). Many of the streets feeding into the main thoroughfare are named after the produce that was originally sold in those areas of the market, for example, Honey Lane, Milk Street, Bread Street and Poultry. During the reign of King Edward III (in the 1300s) tournaments were held in adjacent fields. The dangers were however not limited to the participants since a wooden stand, built to accommodate Queen Philippa and her companions, collapsed during a tournament to celebrate the birth of the Black Prince in 1330. No one died but the King was greatly displeased and were it not for the Queen's intercession, the stand's builders would have been put to death. On the day preceding her coronation during January 1559, Queen Elizabeth I passed through a number of London streets in a pre-coronation procession and was entertained by a number of pageants, including one in Cheapside. Meat was brought in to Cheapside from Smithfield, just outside Newgate. After the great Church of St Michael le Querne, the top end of the street broadened into a dual carriageway known as the Shambles (referring to an open-air slaughterhouse and meat market), with butchers shops on both sides and a dividing central area also composed of butchers shops. Further down, on the right, was Goldsmiths Row, an area of commodity dealers. From the 14th Century until the Great Fire, the eastern end of Cheapside was the location of the Great Conduit.