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The great fire

If you go to London,you can see in the City,near the bank of England,"the Monument".It is 65 m. high and was erected in 1677 as a memorial of the Great Fire that broke out 65 m. to the east of it in Pudding lane, in a baker's shop.It was September 2nd 1666.The fire lasted for five days destroying most of the medieval city,including the City and St.Paul's Cathedral.Fortunately only 4 people died in the fire,but the desctruction to buildings was enormous because the houses,made of wood,were very close together and because the streets were too narrow.Samuel Pepys,a famous diarist of that time,gave a vivid account of the disaster.He wrote that he and his wife were woken up at three in the morning on a Srptember Sunday in 1666 by a maid who told them about a great blaze in the City.The fire spread so fast that some people threw their belongings into the river and jumped in after them or stayed stupefied on their doorsteps until it was too late.The scene was striking:there were 89 churces,460 streets and 13,000 houses burnt down in the fire.When the fire died out,the architect Sir Christopher Wren,a member of the Commission for the reconstruction of London,designed fifty churches for the city.His masterpiece,St.Paul's Cathedral,replaced the earlier cathedral destroyed by the Great Fire.

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