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Wonderful World 9, London

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When I think of London it is never without hearing Sinatra's voice in the back ground singing "A Foggy Day in London Town". That is probably my very favorite all time tune. And I love London dearly. I love England dearly. I love the sense of history and long ago lives around every corner, in every nook and cranny. It speaks to my soul. I recall the first time I saw Stonehenge, a strange and eerie kind of place out on a moor, with rock groupings that obviously were placed there according to a plan-- but what kind of plan? For what reasons? There have been dozens of theories expounded but no one knows for sure how Stonehenge even got there much less what the reasons for it were. And in a strange way London is like that. We know considerable about the history of London and the English people but what gnaws at me always is what were the common people thinking when Henry the VIII was marrying and killing off his wives one after the other for no reason other than they could not produce him an heir to the throne. What could they have thought when he gave them little choice but to discard the only religion they had known just because the Pope would not sanction his divorce. What did people think about such a ruler? A man who had so little regard for human life that he deprived people of theirs by whim. Did they live in fear?And what was it like when Jack the Ripper was abroad on the streets of London? And was there ever such a man as Sherlock Holmes? Someone who inspired Conan Doyle to write the things he wrote? Those are the kind of thoughts I have when I am in London. It is filled with places that make me wonder about long ago lives.

QQ.  The Union Jack Box.  The flag of the United Kingdom.  It combines three crosses, that of St. George, England;  St Patrick, Ireland;  St. Andrew, Scotland;.superimposed one on the other on a field of blue. Inside, God Save the Queen!  Long may it wave.  Retail: $123.00.  Our price: $110.90.

RR. The Trafalger Square Easel Box. Trafalger Square is dominated by Nelson's Column, a 185 foot high monument to Admiral Lord Nelson, one of Britain's great naval heroes. The monument includes a statue of Lord Nelson as well, and the four corners of the plinth are secured by four bronze lions. When England was the greatest naval power in the world the British Lion was known and feared the world over. Trafalger Square was constructed between 1820-1840. Some of the important buildings that can be seen in this painting of it are The National Gallery and the Church of St. Martin -in -the -Fields. Charing Cross another very familiar street name in London is adjacent to Trafalger as is the Strand, another very famous street from long ago. The easel comes with a painters box and 2 tubes of oils, removable, with a palette on the lid. Retail:Upwards of $315.00. Our price: $283.90.

RR 2. The Nelson’s Column Box.
The world famous landmark monument at Trafalgar Square that commemorates Admiral Lord Nelson, Great Britain’s most famous seafarer.  Nelson won major sea battles during the French Revolution and died during the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805 killed by a sharpshooter’s bullet. The box depicts, figurally, the monument itself and then, just to make it unmistakably London, a double decker Red London Bus is seen passing the monument.  Inside, London, painted and the clasp is a roya crown.  Retail:  About $179.00. Our price: $161.90.  Two things you will find only in London!

SS. The Houses of Parliament and Big Ben Easel Box. Standing on the embankment looking across The Thames at Westminster Palace, or Parliament, this is what you see. The Houses of Parliament were originally built as the palace for Edward the Confessor in the 11th Century and then enlarged by William the Conqueror, but in 1512 much of it burned and it was never used as a residence again. Another fire in 1834 destroyed almost all of what was left and then the present Houses of Parliament were designed by Sir Charles Barry and constructed from 1840 to 1860. Excepting for the damage that was done to the House of Commons during World War II and repaired just after the war ended, the buildings have been in continuous use by the English Parliament ever since. St.Stephens Tower is the name of the section that holds Big Ben, the famous tower clock, from which daily are heard the chimes on the BBC. Great Britain's timepiece! At the foot of the easel the artist's paints. Inside the box "Big Ben and The Houses of Parliament". Retail: Upwards of $255.00. Our price: $229.90.

SS2. The Big Ben Box. World famous, this London landmark is one of the most exciting sights in London. For someone visiting London for the first time, it is a must, this renowned timepiece. It is located in St. Stephen's Tower which is part of the Houses of Parliament on the left bank of the Thames River. The architecture is Gothic as are all of the buildings in the complex and for lovers of architecture it is a breathtaking sight to behold. Looking at the entire complex one can easily imagine knights and their ladies in the days when the first portion of this complex was constructed. Originally it was built in the time of William the Conqueror as a palace and then enlarged. It burned down and then was rebuilt in the mid 1800's reaching completion in 1860 and from then until now it has remained the center of government for the United Kingdom. Big Ben has a bell that weighs 13 tons and can be heard all over London when it rings out the hour. Inside a bit of the Thames. If you sit on a bench on the embankment this is what you will see. Retail: About $231.00. Our price: $208.90. A little bit of history.

TT.  The London Post Box.  Quite different than USPS utilitarian and ugly post boxes.  This one can be seen from a distance, recognized instantly and is so handsome!  It has distinction -- like all of London.  Have you ever noticed that London presents itself with royal bearing.  It is a city that has been there for hundreds of years and knows it will be there for hundreds to come.  In World War II, when London was being bombed nightly by the Germans, the people of London continued to work and go about their business just as if this nightly nightmare wasn't happening.  They took it all in stride.  If you read about that period of history you will soon find out that the English never doubted for a moment that they would ultimately win the war.  A remarkable people and a wonderful country!. On the outside of the box, the Royal Crown insignia and ER for Elizabeth Rex..  Nothing inside the box and the key to the box for the clasp.  Retail: About $123.00.  Our price: $110.90.

UU. The Buckingham Palace Easel Box. Looking from St James across the park past the Queen Victoria Memorial Monument at Buckingham Palace, the royal residence in London. A Household Guard stands in the forefront of the painting and the detail is so specific that even passers by can be seen in front of the gates of the palace. The Palace was originally built in 1703 for the Duke of Buckingham. It was purchased by George III in 1762 and has been home for the monarchy ever since. The easel is actually a paint box, the legs fold for carrying, and inside, paint storage and 2 dimensional and removable tubes of paint. Retail: Upwards of $309.00. Our price: $279.90.  

VV. The Tower Bridge Box. A box that I have looked for, for years, and it was never there to be found. Now a really wonderful figural of one of London's most famous landmarks! You can see the water swirling around the base of the pilings and if you run your finger across it, you can feel the choppiness of the water. The traffic on the Thames is enormous and constant. It is probably the busiest thoroughfare in London and it has always been so. That's why the Tower Bridge was built in the first place, to alleviate traffic jams in 1876. It was the single biggest problem in building the bridge, how not to disrupt traffic on the Thames. If you look at the box closely you can see the stones with which it was built, except, it wasn't built with stone. That is all cosmetic to make it look just like the Tower of London. The Bridge was meant to look old the day it was completed. Inside, painted, the House of Parliament and Big Ben. You can see the shoreline buildings a short distance away. The clasp. a crown, of course. Retail: $267.00. Our price: $239.90. Marvelous!

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