Victorian London was the largest city in the world for much of that time. London’s population grew from about 1 million people in 1800, to about 6.7 million in 1900. Many of the city’s residents lived in poverty.
Middle class England grew rapidly and the upper class, which was formerly purely hereditary, came to include the nouveau riche, who made fortunes from successful commercial enterprises.
However, a large proportion of Victorian society was still working class, and they remained disgruntled at the social inequality and eventually sought reform.
London in Victorian Literature
Victorian London was often featured in the novels of Charles Dickens, such as Oliver Twist. London’s prisons, such as Newgate Prison and Fleet Prison, were described, as was the Angel Inn and the infamous Victorian Fog.
Victorian London was well known for its fog, which was often extremely thick. Because it had a slight green colour to it, the fog was often known as a pea-souper. Apparently, people regularly accidentally walked into the River Thames because they couldn’t see where they were going.
We have three tours exploring Victorian London:
Victorian Covent Garden and Soho – we delve into the world of Music Halls, the introduction of ice cream to the masses and the fortitude of Victorian engineering. See more
Follow the Footsteps of Oliver Twist – join Oliver as he follows the Artful Dodger through London to reach Fagin’s lair as described in Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist. See more
A Victorian Christmas – Geese were popular for Christmas dinner with Victorian London families. They were taken to the market with tar on their feet to protect them when they walked. See more