Great Fire of London

Great Fire of London

(September 2–5, 1666) Worst fire in London's history. It destroyed a large part of the city, including most of the civic buildings, St. Paul's Cathedral, 87 parish churches, and about 13,000 houses. It began accidentally at the house of the king's baker in Pudding Lane near London Bridge, and a violent east wind encouraged the flames. On the fourth day houses were blown up by gunpowder to master the fire. The Thames River swarmed with vessels filled with people trying to save their goods, and some fled to the hills of Hampstead and Highgate, but most of the houseless Londoners settled in Moorfields.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
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