- Fenchurch Street
- West from Aldgate at No. 1 to No. 65 Gracechurch Street (P.O. Directory). In Aldgate, Langbourne, and Bridge Wards.Earliest mention found in records : "Street of Fanchurche," 1337 (Ct. H.W. I. 424).Other forms : "Fancherch Street," 1348-9 (ib. 520). "Fancherchstrete," 1369 (ib. II. 131). "Fanchirchestrate," 1372-3 (ib. 152). "Vanchyrche Strett," 1547 (Hist. Carp. Co. 386). "Fenne Church streete" (S. 201).In 1408 it seems to be referred to as "Colmanstrete," as mention is made in a Will of that date of "St. Katherine Colman near Colmanstrete otherwise called Fanchirchestrete" (Ct. H.W. II. 378).Stow says it took the name of "Fennie" or moorish ground through which the stream of "Langbourn" ran, but he adds that some people thought the name came from "faenum" of the hay sold at Gracechurch Market (S. 201).This second derivation certainly seems the more probable of the two, as there are no records to prove the existence of the mythical "Langbourne" stream, nor to support the theory that the locality was low-lying or marsh land, while the present levels certainly indicate the contrary. It must be remembered that the street actually took its name from the church of "Fenchurch," viz. St. Gabriel Fenchurch, which stood in the middle of the street until destroyed by the Great Fire of 1666 and not rebuilt. The site of the church was on the higher ground of the City.Roman remains found at a depth of 16 ft. The Roman level was at a depth of 12-14 ft. (Arch. XIX. 153). At No. 37, opposite to Cullum Street, a tessellated pavement found at a depth of 11 ft. 6 in. (R. Smith, 58). Walls found from Lime Street to Cullum Street.Burial ground found under the western end of the street, but no traces of the "bourne" (Arch. LX. 230). The ground rises 3 ft. from Mincing Lane to Gracechurch Street and the ancient surface at a depth of 17 ft. has the same inclination (Tite, Xviii.).
A Dictionary of London. Henry A Harben. 1918.