King's Gallery

King's Gallery.

[Formerly Old King's School Shop]

c. 1647

Canterbury

Another view

Photograph 1995 copyright George P. Landow may be freely used without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose.

How this picturesque Canterbury shop managed to stay upright is anyone's guess, but its continued presence in the twenty-first century — think of how many more such buildings the Victorians confronted in their daily lives — should remind us how the past and present always intertwine. One can guess what Dickens would have made of it for something like The Old Curiosity Shop. Describing such structures in a novel written during an age of industrial expansion and modernity does not so much become a matter of realism (or lack of it) but of theme or ideology; that is, how representative of contemporary reality does the author take it to be?

Compare this building to the supposed source in London of Dickens's novel.

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Last modified 21 December 2005