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MINUTE PARTICULARS

“Fields from Islington to Marybone”

Blake’s conviction that “The fields from Islington to Marybone, / To Primrose Hill and Saint John’s Wood” were once “builded over” with Jerusalem’s pillars may have something to do with the fact that the Order of St. John of Jerusalem (whose Priory Gate still stands in Clerkenwell, adorned with a lamb) once owned much of this area. St. John’s Wood itself is named after them (there was also a Little St. John’s Wood in Islington) and Pieter Zwart, in his Islington (London 1973), p. 118, notes that “the fields to the west” belonged to them.

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