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London, United Kingdom, March 2018

+ The place


+ My feelings and historical part

I really liked this surprising city. Old buildings mix with moderns. I could not go to the City but I saw it from afar, huge towers point towards the sky like pencils wanting to write in the often cloudy sky. I was lucky with the weather. I understand better, moreover, why Londoners go for a walk, even on a sunny day with an umbrella. A magnificent sun can quickly give way to a squall of a few minutes. I had to buy an umbrella which never left me during my walks. Imagine: 60km (37,28mi) in 3 days with 35km (21,74mi) already on the 1st day.
I plan to come back because I did not have the chance to see Big-Ben, surrounded by its wooden strapping during the 4 years of renovation work, which began in August 2017. With a few rare exceptions, the bell does not should no longer ring before the end of the work. This decision nevertheless divides the population and the British deputies; According to Prime Minister Theresa May, “it is unreasonable for Big-Ben to be silenced for four years”. It still makes a lot of noise on the other side of the Channel. Will it ring to officially announce the “Brexit” in 2019.
On the next trip, I would go see the swimming pool in a cathedral and take a cruise on the Thames.
Historical part
London was founded almost 2,000 years ago … by the Romans under the name Londinium, in the 19th century London was the most populous city in the world. Even Asterix and Obelix came there. “These Bretons are crazy …” Obelix kept saying. According to René Goscinny, it is thanks to Panoramix that the “Bretons” have since been putting tea in their hot water … But let’s get serious again, the rest is coming …
The areas around London (now located within the borders of Greater London) appear to have been inhabited by island Bretons since prehistoric times, but no archaeological evidence has been unearthed north of the Bridge of London, the place where the city was truly born and from where it developed.
The oldest and certain traces of sustainable installations date back to the year 43 and are due to the Romans who, following their conquest of Brittany, built a first town there. This first camp is called Londinium. The London Bridge was at the center of the whole new network of roads created by the Romans and was a popular crossing point for crossing the Thames, which attracted many traders and thus contributed to the growth of the city. London quickly became a major center of trade and commerce, with the Thames making it easy to transport goods to the heart of the city.
Around the 2nd century, the city surrounded itself with walls: the London Wall. For more than a millennium, the borders of the city were marked by this wall which delimits an area largely encompassed today by that of the City. After the Romans left Great Britain in 410, and around the year 600, the Anglo-Saxons founded a new town, Lundenwic, about 1km (0.62mi) upstream from the Roman town, where today is Covent Garden. The city was razed to the ground by the Vikings. After this Viking occupation, Alfred the Great reestablished peace and moved the city within the walls of the old Roman city (then called Lundenburgh) in 886. The original city became Ealdwic (“old town”), the name of which has survived until today to give Aldwych.
It was then French with William the Conqueror and his son, Guillaume le Roux who began, in 1097, the construction of the Westminster Hall, near the abbey of the same name. This hall is the origin of the Palace of Westminster.
After the defeat of the Spanish Invincible Armada in 1588, a certain political stability in England allowed London to develop further.
Several black plague epidemics hit London at the start of the 17th century, culminating in the Great Plague of London of 1665, which killed around 20% of the population. The following year, the great fire of 1666 destroyed a large part of the town’s wooden houses. The reconstruction of London took up the entire following decade.
In 1603, James VI of Scotland ascended the throne of England and strove to unify the two countries. From 1825 to 1925, London was the most populous city in the world.
London plays a big role during the 2nd world war and regularly undergoes the German bombardments.


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