The Garden Guide

Book: London Parks and Gardens, 1907
Chapter: Chapter 11 Inns of Court

Charles Lamb, Pump Court and Temple Garden

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Among the spirits that haunt the Temple Garden, there is none that seems to cling to it more than that of Charles Lamb. It should be a pride of these peaceful gardens that they helped to mould that lovable and unselfish character. A schoolfellow, who describes his ways as a boy at Christ's Hospital, recalls how all his young days were spent in the solemn surrounding of the Temple, and how, while at school, "On every half holiday (and there were two in the week), in ten minutes he was in the gardens, on the terrace, or at the fountain of the Temple. Here was his home, here his recreation; and the influence they had on his infant mind is vividly shown in his description of the old Benchers." Shadows we are and like shadows depart, suggests the sun-dial on the wall of Pump Court, but shadows of such gentle spirits as Charles Lamb leave something behind, and those "footprints on the sands of time" are nowhere more traceable than in these solemn precincts of law with their quiet, restful gardens.