Oxford Place - Oystershell Court

A Dictionary of London. Originally published by H Jenkins LTD, London, 1918.

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Oxford Place

By London Stone. In Waibrook Ward, on the north side of St. Swithin's Church and Churchyard (S. 225).

Sir Robert Aguylun gave to the Priory of Tortinton his mansion in the parish of St. Swythun together with the courtyard, garden, etc., in 1285-6, and the patronage of the church (Ct. H.W. I. 75).

Sharpe says this was afterwards known as the prior of Tortington's Inn, and having subsequently passed into the hands of the Earls of Oxford as " Oxford Place by London Stone" (ib.). After the dissolution of the monasteries, Henry VIII. granted it to John de Vere, earl of Oxford, 1539 (L. and P. H. VIII. XIV. 1192 (8).

In Stow's time it was still one house and garden occupied by Sir John Hart, Alderman, Mayor 1589-90.

Anne daughter of Sir John Hart married Humphrey Smith, Alderman, who was living at Oxford Place in 1633 (S. Ed. 1633, p.243).

In 1641 the Salters' Company purchased the great house called "London Stone" or "Oxford House" of Captain George Smith (Herbert, II. 561). (Stow, ed. Kingsford. II. p.316).

This places Oxford House on the site of the dwelling house of Henry filius Eylwini de Londene-stane, first mayor of London, 1188 (Lib. de Antiq. Leg. 1 and 3). He died about 1212-13. His granddaughter Joan (ib. ix.-xi. and lxxiv.-lxxvi. ) married William Aguylun, and it was by this means that Henry Fitz Aylwin's house passed into the hands of that family.

The site is now occupied by Oxford Court, Salters' Hall, etc. (q.v.).

Oxford's Almshouses

In Gunpowder Alley, Crutched Friars (q.v.).


A list of the oynters (unctuani) who held selds in Chepe in 1283 set out in Cal. Letter Book A. p.221, upon the occasion of their exclusion from these selds.

Were they connected with the Candlemakers?

Oyster Gate

A water gate on the Thames, near London Bridge, opposite the church of St. Magnus (1312, Riley's Mem. 95). The name seems afterwards to have been given to the lane leading down to the gate from Thames Street, I 7 Ed. III. (Lib. Cust. II. 447-8).

Earliest mention : " Oystregate," 1259 (Ct. H.W. I. 4).

Other forms : " Ostregate," 1261 (H. MSS. Com. 9th Rep. 21a). " Oystergate," 1291 (Ct H.W. I. 96).

In 17 Ed. III. complaint was made of the lane called "Oystergate" being shut up and of the profits made out of sellers of rushes there, which ought to have gone to the city, being appropriated by private citizens (Lib. Cust. 11.447-8).

The site was afterwards occupied by the forcier for supplying the City with water erected by Peter Morice in 1582 (S. 42) and subsequently by the waterworks.

In Cal. L. Bk. I. p.138, under the date 1415, there is a reference to " Ebgate alias Oystergate." But the two cannot have been identical as they are mentioned separately in earlier records (See Riley's Mem. p.95, and Lib. Cust. II. 447-8).

Stow says it was so called of oysters found there.

Oyster Hulle

In the parish of St. Magnus, adjoining Bridge Street, now New Fish Street. Probably the lane leading up from the river from Oystergate and Old London Bridge and sometimes itself called " Oystergate" (q.v.).

Earliest mention : Shop at the corner of " Bruggestrete" upon " Oystrehull " in parish of St. Magnus, 1305-6 (Ct. H.W. I. 174). Other forms : " Oysterhell," 1334-5 (ib. 399). " Oysterhulle," 1368 (ib. II. i18). Oysterhill," 1458 (ib. 537).

The lane is indicated in Leake, 1666, but not named.

Seems afterwards to have been called Water Lane and Gully Hole (q.v.), east of Churchyard Alley and next London Bridge (Trans. L. and M. Arch. Soc. N.S. II. (2), p.198).

Oystershell Court

South out of Butler's Alley, Little Moorfields, in Cripplegate Ward Without (Strype, Ed. 1720 and 1755).

The site is now occupied by the Metropolitan Railway.