Picadilly Circus on the morning of the Derby Day

Picadilly Circus on the morning of the Derby Day. 1866. Source: Illustrated London News. Click on image to enlarge it.

Article on following page: “Illustrations of the Derby Day”

The Derby day is not yet forgotten by our readers, and they will no doubt be still able to take an interest in two or three sketches, which we hare engraved for this week’s publication, representing some of the most familiar scenes and incidents of that most popular festival of the Londoners, the great event of Epsom races. The subject of the larger Engraving is the gay and bustling scene in Regent-street and the Circus on the morning of the Derby Day, when vehicles of every description are passing the same way, from the aristocratic four-in-hand drag, or the elegant barouche, to the heavy omnibus, the nimble hansom, and the plain tradesman's van or cart, all crowded with merry people, who mean to improve the occasion by getting as much enjoyment as they can out of the road, the races, and the road home, to say nothing of the eatables and drinkables with which they are laden, and which are destined to vanish by rapid consumption in the keen air of the Surrey Downs. The two smaller Illustrations represent those well-known incidents at the termination of the great race, the invariable rush of thousands of the spectators from one side of the hill to the other, in the vain hope of catching a sight of the finish; and the customary operation of hoisting the numbers of the three foremost horses on the telegraph pole, by which the result of the contest is visibly declared to all who have eyes to see it—the number at the top being in this case 4, that of Lord Lyon, the winner of the prize.

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“Picadilly Circus on the morning of the Derby Day.” Illustrated London News. 48 (26 May 1866): 520-22. Hathi Trust Digital Library version of a copy in the University of Michigan Library. Web. 23 December 2015.

Last modified 23 December 2015