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4637.  Fri Jan 16, 2004 9:12 am Reply with quote

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hardie
4648.  Fri Jan 16, 2004 5:42 pm Reply with quote

Quote:
Bankers are the sort of people who will loan you money if you can prove you donít need it..
n Mark Twain

 
Jenny
4657.  Fri Jan 16, 2004 11:12 pm Reply with quote

The above quote from Mark Twain no longer holds true. Despite a shockingly good credit record in Britain, I cannot get an American credit card - because I have no debt. Of course, if I took out a bank loan for something I don't need and made payments on it regularly for a year or so, they'd be throwing cards at me, but at the moment I can't even get a store card. Fortunately, my British credit card works fine, and my British bank account has enough money in it to cover any usage I make, but it annoys the hell out of me to have to pay currency conversion charges every time I use it.

 
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4994.  Wed Jan 21, 2004 1:56 pm Reply with quote

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hardie
5006.  Wed Jan 21, 2004 3:55 pm Reply with quote

OK, then try:
Quote:
I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies
n Thomas Jefferson

 
Jenny
5010.  Wed Jan 21, 2004 5:25 pm Reply with quote

The Bank of England has some interesting stuff on its website, http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/threehundred.htm . I looked it up because I've been reading Neal Stephenson's Quicksilver (a superb book and highly recommended) which deals, among other things, with the background to the establishment of the Bank of England after the chaos that reigned during the Interregnum and the Restoration and the Glorious Revolution.

I've also been reading the Pepys' Diary weblog, and it is clear from that - written only thirty years or so before the establishment of the Bank of England - how difficult it was for people who had responsibilities for large amounts of money to physically cope with it. Pepys writes about carrying bags of gold around to pay off various naval expenses, and also to pay expenses belonging to the Earl of Sandwich, his patron, and about having to convert some to gold and silver plate because that was easier than gold coin. We haven't got to the Fire yet, of course (that's five years in the future, in 1666 whereas we are only in 1661 at the moment) but I remember from accounts of that I've read that many people lost huge amounts of gold, and that some gold stores were simply melted down by the heat of the fire.

The Bank of England website points out that the stability brought by the accession of William and Mary to the throne after the Glorious Revolution of 1688, brought a measure of stability which hadn't been experienced since the days of Queen Elizabeth. However, although commerce flourished, public finances were weak and the system of money and credit was in disarray.

Quote:
The goldsmith bankers had been damaged by the lax financial management of the Stuart kings. There were calls for a national or public bank to mobilise the nation's resources. Many schemes were proposed. The successful one, from William Paterson, envisaged a loan of £1,200,000 to the Government, in return for which the subscribers would be incorporated as the "Governor and Company of the Bank of England". Although the new bank would have risked its entire capital by lending it to the Government, the subscription proved popular and the money was raised in a few weeks. The Royal Charter was sealed on 27 July 1694, and the Bank started its role as the Government's banker and debt-manager, which it continues today.



The Bank's early premises were in the Mercers' Hall in Cheapside, but it later moved to Princes Street, and in 1734 to Threadneedle Street, gradually acquiring neighbouring premises until the present site was secured and Sir John Soane's wall built around it.

The Bank's first Governor was Sir John Houblon, grandson of a French Huguenot refugee and a prominent city merchant. The Bank's early years were dominated by the Government's pressing demands for finance and the issue of a new coinage. The Bank also embarked upon a conventional banking business, accepting deposits and discounting bills. As evidence of deposits placed with it the Bank issued banknotes, initially in odd sums, with pounds, shilling and pence, but later in round amounts. The 'promise to pay' on the Bank's notes literally referred to gold coins held in the Bank's vaults. Thus the notes became widely accepted as currency.

The growth of the London financial markets through the Stock Exchange and through Lloyds insurance company went alongside the growth of the bank, and each supported the other.

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In 1780 the Bank was threatened by a mob during the Gordon Riots, and the Government agreed to provide an overnight military guard or "picquet" for the Bank. This was not discontinued until 1973.

 
Frederick The Monk
5020.  Wed Jan 21, 2004 6:51 pm Reply with quote

The Bank of England stands in what in the 13th and 14th centuries was a redlight district (although frankly it would be hard to find a part of London that wasn't then). At the time Threadneedle Street was known as 'Gropec*nt Lane'. This was thankfully changed before the Bank moved in.

s: Morton, Mark. The Lover's Tongue

 
Jenny
5023.  Wed Jan 21, 2004 7:03 pm Reply with quote

For some reason that brings the Bishop of Southwark's geese to mind. Time for a thread about brothels?

 
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5063.  Thu Jan 22, 2004 8:06 am Reply with quote

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5068.  Thu Jan 22, 2004 8:48 am Reply with quote

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5070.  Thu Jan 22, 2004 9:10 am Reply with quote

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5071.  Thu Jan 22, 2004 9:33 am Reply with quote

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5072.  Thu Jan 22, 2004 9:54 am Reply with quote

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Flash
5073.  Thu Jan 22, 2004 10:08 am Reply with quote

Garrick - see post 3481.

 
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5074.  Thu Jan 22, 2004 10:10 am Reply with quote

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