Bedford coffee-house

From The Library at Hurtfew
Jump to: navigation, search
The Bedford coffee-house is a fashionable establishment in London, and scene of a meeting between Jonathan Strange and the Nottinghamshire brewers Mr Gatcombe and Mr Tantony. The encounter leads to the exposure of Christopher Drawlight and to Strange's first venture onto the King's Roads[35].

The Bedford is a regular haunt of Strange and his friends. It is also there that he and Sir Walter Pole meet for their first interview after the loss of Mrs Strange[48]. It has been described (by a not entirely serious author) as “the emporium of wit, the seat of criticism and the standard of taste” - in short, a place where gentlemen are pleased to meet and talk over matters of the day. It is a fine, porticoed building, first put up as a gentleman's residence but later turned into a tavern and a coffee-house. It stands on the Piazza, hard by Russell-street. (The association of names will at once suggest to my readers that much in this part of London belongs to the noble Russell family, whose head is the Duke of Bedford. It was no doubt in compliment to his grace that the Bedford was given its name. )

More information can be found here.