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Chatterton in Brooke Street

1st June 1770 - 25 August 1770

Age 17 and he won't reach 18.

Lodging with Mrs Angel


Mr's Angel's House ?

Brooke Street (1825/30)

house chatterton holbor 2.jpg

Illustrated London News


Brooke St Holborn EHWM 1.JPG

Meyerstein's, A Life of Chatterton

Image dated 1825

Chatterton has moved from the restrictions and lack of privacy of Shoreditch, to his own attic room at Holborn. He can now control what his family in Bristol might be told about his situation - nobody can belie him now, but he has just 12 weeks and 1 day to live.

Brooke Street, it is said, was a somewhat sleazy and run-down area but now, at last, Chatterton had the privacy he craved. The privacy he needed to put pen to paper and bring to light the works filling his head - that's how I see it - for what it's worth!

It is not known on what date Chatterton moved to Holborn, but I have selected June 1st as  his first day, based on the following: his letter to his mother dated the 14th May, states 'Direct for me, at Mr. Walmsley's, at Shoreditch - only, so at that point in time he had no plans to be anywhere else; The Death of Nicou, was dated Brooke-Street, 12th June - so a date in-between the two dates seems reasonable enough.


So, Chatterton is now in Brooke Street, but which house did he actually live in?

It has been claimed to be number 4, however, in a magazine dated 1858, named 'The Train,' a writer demolishes Masson's 1856 essay, 'Chatterton: A story of the Year 1770,' and states that the house was actually number 39.  It took Masson until 1874 to publish the Chatterton essay as a stand alone book where he corrects his errors, 'Chatterton: A Story of the Year 1770.' 


The British Museum has Wykeham's drawing, which dates to around 1825/30. Wykeham (1808-1864) states the house to be No.4, and that Chatterton died in the garret (attic room) top left of the image. The curator at the BM corrects this, stating that No. 39, on the opposite side of the road, is where Chatterton lived and died

Nothing remains of the house in Brooke Street, so it hardly matters which house it was, apart from helping to determine the depth of research a particular editor has put into the production of his work but, it must be said, it is so much easier these days.

Hunter of Oddities.jpg

One of Chatterton's earliest works produced in Brooke Street. Part of Letter VI from A Hunter of Oddities, which appeared in the Town & Country Magazine June 1770.

It reminds me of an anecdote/story in the Town and Country magazine for 1769, about Samuel Derrek challenging someone to a duel.

(.QE!.) is currently working on this page

Chatterton's Works

Brooke Street, Holborn

1 June 1770 - 24 August 1770

 Around 75 Works to Consider.

 39 Authentic Works;

28 Of Doubtful Authenticity;

8 Wrongly Attributed.

 Authentic Works (39)

Letter 6, A Hunter of Oddities

Written 1770. Pub. 1770

Maria Friendless Letter

Written 1770. Pub. 1770

Exhibition of Sign Paintings at the West End of Town

Written 1770. Pub. 1770

Letters to Mary Chatterton 19 & 29 June 1770

Written 1770. Pub. 1803

Speech of Sir John de Beauchamp

Written 1770. Pub. 1770

The False Step, a Real History

Written 1770. Pub. 1770

To Miss B-sh, of Bristol

Written 1770. Pub. 1770

The Revenge, A Burletta

Written 1770. Pub. 1795

A Bacchanalian sung by Mr Reinhold

Written 1770. Pub. 1795?/1803

The Invitation to be sung by Mrs Barthelemoon....

Written 1770. Pub. 1795?/1803

A Bacchanalian

Written 1770. Pub. 1795?/1803

The Virgin's Choice

Written 1770. Pub. 1795?/1803

The Happy Pair

Written 1770. Pub. 1795?/1803

Betsy of the Hill

Written 1770. Pub. 1784/1795

A Burlesque Cantata

Written 1770. Pub. 1784

Burletta. The Woman of Spirit

Written 1770. Pub. 1784

To Thomas Cary, 1st July 1770

Written 1770. Pub. 1837/1842

Genuine Copy of a Letter from the Earl of C--d to the...

Written 1770. Pub. 1771

An Excelente Balade of Charitie

Written 1770. Pub. 1777/1803

Letter to Sarah Chatterton, 8 July 1770

Published 1780.

Letter to Mary Chatterton, 11 July 1770

Published 1780

Letter to Mary Chatterton 20 July 1770

Published 1780

The Art of Puffing by a Bookseller's Journeyman

Written 1770. Pub. 1783

Memoirs of a Sad Dog

Written 1770. Pub. 1770

An African Song

Written 1770. Pub. 1770

Menenius. To William Lord M--d

Written 1770. Pub. 1770

From George Catcott, 8 August 1770

Pub. 1930

To George Catcott, 12 August 1770

Published 1792/1803

The Happy Pair. A Tale

Written 1770. Pub. 1771


Written 1770. Pub. 1770

Colin Instructed

Written 1770. Pub. 1784

To John Rudhall and Baster, n.d

Written 1770. Pub. 1803

Impromtu on the Immortality of the Soul

Written 1770. Pub. ????

To a Friend on his Intended Marriage

Written 1770. Pub. 1803

The Resignation

Written 1770. Pub. 1780

From an Unknown Girl, n.d. The Letter Paraphras'd

Written 1770. Pub. 1856 (letter) / 1933 (paraphrase).

To William Smith n.d.

Written 1770. Pub. 1803

Works of Doubtful Authenticity

Holborn, London

Ist June 1770 - 24th August 1770

28 works (checked 2/1/2021)

All correct as per Taylor

Anecdote of Lord Ch---d

Writ1770 - Published 1770  TP1150A

An Elegy on the Much Lamented Death

of William Beckford, Esq.

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1150

Anecdote on Judge Jeffries

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1151

The Polite Advertiser

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1152

Old Bailey Intelligence Extraordinary, for 1770

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1153

Letter 7 from a Hunter of Oddities

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1154A

A Letter from Ninion L'Enclos in the Shades

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1154B

Verax. To the L. B. of B.

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1155

Ambulator's Exhibition

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1156

Atticus. To the Right Reverend the Lord Bishop of Bristol

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1157A

Catalogue of Pictures Every Day Exhibited

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1157B

Naked and Friendless to the World Expos'd

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1158

The Last Verses Written by Chatterton

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1160

T. C. to Lord N---h

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1161

Letter 8 from a Hunter of Oddities

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1154A

Tony Selwood Letter

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1164

On the Origin, Nature, and Design of Sculpture

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1165

Letter 9 from a Hunter of Oddities

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1166

Letter 10 from a Hunter of Oddities

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1167

Adventures of a Star

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1168

Letter 11 from a Hunter of Oddities

Writ1770? - Published 1770  TP1171A

Letter 12 from a Hunter of Oddities

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1171B

One Hour after Marriage. A Tale

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1172

1771 The Happy Pair

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1173

1792 When that day of Death shall come

Writ 1770? - Published 1792 TP1174A

1938 What boots it for the Sacred Nine

Writ 1770 - Published 1770  TP1174B

On a very Calm Sea

Writ Unknown date - Published 1971  TP1175A

Lines on Mrs. Haywood

Writ unknown date - Published 1815  TP175B

 Lost Works (?)