A Dictionary of London. Originally published by H Jenkins LTD, London, 1918.
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A company, society, or corporation of merchants belonging to certain cities in Germany, who had formed amongst themselves, c. 1140, the Hanseatic League for purposes of trade. The towns to which they belonged were known as the "Hanse towns" (Skeat).
The Almaines in London belonging to the Hanse were charged with the repair and safe-keeping of the upper part of Bishopsgate, 1282 (Cal. L. Bk. C. p. 41), and were freed from toll going in and out of the gate in consequence, 1305 (ib. p. 111).
Other names : "Erberlane," 1439 (Ct. H.W. II. 487) and 1448 (ib. 516). "Herber lane," or "brikels lane" (S. 241), 1440 (End. Ch. All Hallows the Gt. p. 2). "Harbour Lane" to temp. Eliz. (Proc. in Chancery, I. 5).
In the will of John Brykles, dated 1440, a cellar in the lane is described as adjoining the tavern called the Emperor's Head, so that it would seem that Harbour Lane must be identical either with Brickhill Lane or Emperor's Head Lane, now Bell Wharf Lane. In spite of Stow's remark, it seems more likely to be identical with Emperor's Head Lane, because in John Brykel's Will it is referred to quite separately from Brickhill Lane, and no attempt is made in the will to identify the two lanes as would probably have been the case if they were one and the same.
The lane late of John Hardell is mentioned in a grant of lands by Edmund de Sutton to John de Stodeye in 1352, as forming the eastern boundary of the tenements included in the grant, the lane of John Cressyngham forming the western boundary (Grant in L. and M. Arch. Soc. Trans. III. p. 441). This would seem to identify Hardeleslane with the lane also known as Stodyeslane and Spitellane (q.v.).
There was a Ralph Hardel, Mayor in 1258, and the family held property in this parish in the reigns of Edward I. and Edward III. (MSS. D. and C. St. Paul's, Press A. Box 15). The lane was probably named after this family.
Hare Court Buildings
Former names: "Ram Alley or Court" (Elmes, 1831). "Ram Court" (1565-6, Inner Temple Records, II. 8-Horwood, 1799). "Ram Alley" (Rocque, 1746, and Strype). "Ramme Alley", (13 Eliz. (Lond. I. p.m. II. 142). "Ram Alley", 1629 (H. MSS. Com, 7th Rep. 677).
Ram Alley was a place of sanctuary, and having become in consequence a resort of bad characters, was in the 17th century a constant source of annoyance to the inhabitants of the Temple precints. The privileges of the place were not entirely done away with until 9 George I., Although they had been formally abolished in 1624 (Inner Temple Records, xxv., etc.).
Harflete, Harflu Inn
On the west side of Mincing Lane, used in 1656 as almshouses. The tenements so called, together with Lilly Alley and other messuages, seem to have formed part of William Sevenoak's property, known as Sevenoak's lands. William Sevenoak by his will 1426 gave an annuity of 10 marks charged on three tenements in Mincing Lane and one in Tower Street to St. Dunstan in the East Church, and afterwards the whole of the premises came into possession of the parish. Harp Alley and Lilly Alley no longer exist, but the site is now occupied by Nos. 12-16 Mincing Lane and 87 and 88 Great Tower Street, held by Trustees for the parish (Endowed Charities, St. Dunstan in the East parish, 1902, p. 2).