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Norwich: Barclay's Description of Norwich, 1842

From Barclay's Complete and Universal English Dictionary, 1842

It is an ancient, large, and populous city, seated on the river Wensum, which runs through it, and is navigable to Yarmouth, without locks. It has a stately ancient castle, on a hill, which commands a fine view of the city and surrounding country, and is used as the county gaol; and a fine cathedral, with a very lofty spire: here are also 2 good public libraries, a city and county hospital, a shire-hall, a handsome guild-hall, and a corn-hall.

The ancient bridewell, now a private house, is built of flints, remarkable for being beautifully cut into regular little squares, without any visible cement. It had formerly 60 churches, &c., and has now 36 churches, beside the cathedral, chapels, and dissenting meeting-houses.

It was formerly a great manufacturing city; but it has much declined of late. Norwich has 10 bridges over the Wensum, and is the centre of several important lines of railways. The provision market is a fine square, and is well supplied. It is 108 miles from London. Markets, Wednesday and Saturday. Population, 62,344.

See also the Norwich page, for other information about the city.

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Copyright Pat Newby.
April 2000.