On this day in 1586, Sir Francis Drake was feted in the Middle Temple on his return from the New World – where he had been busy “privateering” (plundering Spanish possessions).
Drake is also famous as the first person to circumnavigate the globe, between 1577-80, aboard the “Golden Hind(e)” (*). On April 4th, 1581, Elizabeth I visited his ship, which had been “drawn into a creek … at Deptford as a perpetual memorial for having circuited round about the whole earth”, and “consecrated it with great ceremonie, pompe and magnificence eternally to be remembered”; and knighted him. The ship remained at Deptford for about 100 years, until it started to disintegrate and had to be broken up. A plaque on the water-front there marks the site and commemorates the event.
Middle Temple Hall is visited on our “Tower to Temple” and “St Paul’s to Westminster Abbey” standard walks, and on our “Tudor and Stuart London”, “Legal London” and “Rebellious London” themed specials. The modern reconstruction of the “Golden Hind(e)” in St Mary Overie Dock is visited on our “Historic Southwark” standard walk, and on our “Tudor and Stuart London” themed special.
Further details of all our walks are available in the “Our Guided Walks” section of this web-site.
Bookings may be made through the “Contact/Booking” section of the web-site, by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org), or by phone (020-8998-3051).
(*) Originally named the “Pelican”, the ship was re-named the “Golden Hind(e)” in honour of one of Drake’s patrons, Sir Christopher Hatton, whose coat-of-arms featured the device of a golden hind.