Originally posted on Spitalfields Life.
In anticipation of the forthcoming exhibition Samuel Pepys: Plague, Fire, Revolution opening at National Maritime Museum in Greenwich on 20th November, I visited Pepys’ parish church in the City.
Do you see Elizabeth Pepys, leaning out from her monument and directing her gaze across the church to where Samuel sat in the gallery opposite? These days the gallery has long gone but, since her late husband became celebrated for his journal, a memorial to him was installed in 1884 where the gallery once was, which contains a portrait bust that peers back eternally at Elizabeth. They will always see eye-to-eye even if they are forever separated by the nave.
St Olave’s on the corner of Seething Lane has long been one of my favourite City churches. Dating from the eleventh century, it is a rare…