Simpson, Lucas

Project title: Gates in the London Wall and their Spatial, Cultural, and Regulatory Significance

Department: English

Faculty supervisor: Dr. Janelle Jenstad

"There were eight gates through the London Wall that allowed access to the early modern City (1550-1666) and regulated community boundaries. Protecting those within and excluding those without, they accrued rich cultural significance and served symbolic functions in literary texts. The Map of Early Modern London has not yet mapped the locations or described the significance of these gates, nor has it offered an overview of the significance of London’s gates in general. Using information from early maps and ground plans, the metadata from the London Archaeological Archive and Research Centre, and documentary sources, I will determine GIS and Agas map coordinates of all the gates in the London wall. I will research and produce encyclopedia articles for the individual gates and a general article on the gates that will identify their practical and symbolic significance in early modern London. Sources will include: early modern texts by Dekker, Rowley, Heywood, Middleton, and others; John Stow’s Survey of London; secondary historical material; and recent geohumanities criticism. The coordinates and articles will be published on MoEML's open-access platform. This research will contribute to a better understanding of how Londoners of the early modern period identified with their locality and will provide a more concrete understanding of the spatial boundaries of London as perceived in the early modern cultural imagination."