Sweete Themmes ! runne softly, till I end my Song. At length they all to mery London came, There taken they came, whereas those brickly towers The which on Themmes brode aged backe doe ryde Where now the studious Lawyers have their bowers, There whylome wont the Templer Knights to byde, Till they decayed through pride: Sweete Themmes ! runne softly, till I end my Song.
SPENSER: "Prothalamion, or a Spousall Verse."
THERE are no more peaceful gardens in all London than those among the venerable buildings devoted to the study of the law. There is a sense of dignity and repose, the moment one has entered from the noisy thoroughfares which surround these quiet courts. They may be dark, dull, and dingy, as seen by a Dickens, and sombre and serious, to those whose business lies there; but to the ordinary Londoner, who loves the old world of the City, and the links that bind the present with the past, there are no more reposeful places than these gardens. The courts and buildings seem peopled with those who have worked and lived there. If stones could speak, what tales some of these could tell!