The publisher and writer Charles Knight (1791-1873) was apprenticed to his printer father, but later became a journalist and then proprietor of various periodicals and magazines, many of which were driven by his concern for the education of the poor. As an author, he published a variety of works, including The Old Printer and the Modern Press (also reissued in this series). He claimed that this six-volume work on the architecture and history of London, published between 1841 and 1844, was neither a history nor a survey of London, but looked 'at the Present through the Past, and at the Past through the Present'. It relies on the skills of eminent artists to bring both the present and the past of London to life, and is arranged thematically rather than chronologically or geographically. This is a fascinating account of what was then the greatest city in the world.
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