Memorials to Robert Hooke 1635 - 1703


The Lord Mayor of London, John Stuttard, opened the re-created Monument Yard development at the base of the Monument on January 31st 2007. The development includes a memorial paving stone to Robert Hooke, carved in Caithness stone.

The Monument to the Great Fire of London of 1666 was jointly the work of Sir Christopher Wren and Robert Hooke, both of whom had been pupils at Westminster School. As one of the Surveyors of the City of London after the Great Fire, Hooke was heavily involved in the planning and rebuilding of the City; the Monument, 206 feet high, is situated at that distance from the source of the fire in a baker's shop in Pudding lane. It is the tallest isolated stone column in the world.

The development of Monument Street into the present yard, which reflects Hooke's and Wren's original construction, is part of the City of London's Street Scene Challenge Initiative.

 

A Memorial Tablet in Westminster Abbey in honour of Dr Robert Hooke was dedicated by the Dean of Westminster, The Very Reverend Dr Wesley Carr, on March 3rd 2005, this being the 302nd anniversary of Robert Hooke's death.

Many other Natural Philosophers and Scientists are honoured in Westminster Abbey, and the addition of Hooke to that distinguished company is a welcome event. Hooke was a pupil at Westminster School under the legendary Head Master Dr Richard Busby, and Hooke's Memorial Tablet is a few feet to the left of Busby's at the foot of the steps to the Sacrarium.

At the Service of Dedication of the Memorial, the Dean gave a Welcome; then Reflections on Dr Robert Hooke in the context of Westminster were given by Mr Edward Smith, Under Master and Archivist at Westminster School. Professor Robin Wilson, Gresham Professor of Geometry, read from 'Micrographia'. The Very Reverend Christopher Lewis, Dean of Christ Church, Oxford, read from Thomas Sprat's 'History of The Royal Society'; The Lord May of Oxford, President of The Royal Society, gave the address. Professor Michael Cooper, Chairman of the 'Hooke 2003' Committee, invited the Dean to unveil the Memorial plaque; Sir Duncan Michael, Senior Vice-President of The Royal Academy of Engineering, laid a spray of pink roses on the steps to the Sacrarium.

Westminster School String ensemble (Sarah Jackman, Neil Amin-Smith, violins; Cyrus Lyons, viola; William Blake, 'cello) played Fantasia for Viols nos 8 and 9 by Henry Purcell OW.

Photograph courtesy of Dr Robert Woodward.


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