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Saturday, 9 February 2013

London Monopoly (17): Leicester Square

Continuing my journey around the London Monopoly board with Leicester Square, the first property of the 'Yellow' set.
Early twentieth century view of Leicester Square
Photo used by permission. See 
These days Leicester Square is famous as the location of the best and biggest cinemas in London. Many Premiers are held there including James Bond and Harry Potter films. It is always packed with tourists and has a 'buzz' about it. However, you can gather from the photo above that it formerly had an elegance which has long gone.
Monet: Leicester Square at night, 1901 
The four corners of the park in the centre of the square have statues of Sir Isaac Newton, Sir Joshua Reynolds, John Hunter and William Hogarth. William Shakespeare stands at the centre surrounded by dolphins! The newest statue is that of Charlie Chaplin.
The square has long been a centre of entertainment and looked quite lively in the painting by Claude Monet, above, completed in 1901. I think it was painted just before an appointment with his Optician.
A useless fact: the distance between Leicester Square and Covent Garden underground stations is the shortest in the whole network at 300 metres.
Leicester Square after recent renovations, 2012


All Consuming said...

I remember going to the Odeon with my mum and dad there when I was little. I've rarely been to London, but I enjoyed it far more when I was child than I have as an adult I must say. I've always liked that painting :) ps - see my reply on my blog re Charlie Brooker!

bazza said...

So. You are casually sweeping aside all that is London with one stroke?
Gadzooks and crikey! You might even meet Charlie in London:)
Click here for Bazza’s Blog ‘To Discover Ice’

Anonymous said...

The rather saucy Sir Tom Eagerly says:
Monopoly Bazza? Kids stuff, old boy. I play baccarat (chemin de fer) myself. It's a gambling game of pure chance requiring no skill whatsoever. Would have thought it suited you down to the ground dear thing. Tally Ho!
Must go, my omelette pan is in fire.

bazza said...

Good lord Sir Tom, doesn't Lady Eagerly, or your chef, prepare your meals?
For the record, Bazza does not gamble:)

John said...

I am sure Monet must have been on something when he painted that, or did it rain before the paint had dried?! Sorry, very ignorant of me!

bazza said...

Hi John. I think maybe he worked too quickly because he only did it for the monet!
Thank you ladies and gentlemen, I'm here all this week.

klahanie said...

Hi bazza,

I sort of have memories of staggering, I mean, walking around Leicester Square. The Monet painting is very much how I remember it that day.

Seriously, another fascinating journey through London via the Monopoly board. And thank you, good sir, for your thoughtful comment and bless Sonny with a belated birthday wish.

In kindness,


bazza said...

Hello Gary. Maybe it was a bad dream and you've never been there?
It's interesting how much attention that painting gets. I thought, after publishing the post, that it was a mistake but now I'm happy about it!

joanne fox said...

I love the Monet, with the bright lights shining like jewels.

bazza said...

Hi Joanne. It's almost the epitome of 'Impressionism' isn't it?
It's quite striking but not my favourite Monet painting.

THE SNEE said...

Hi Bazza,

Thank goodness for your Monopoly board tour! If it weren't for you, I might have gotten lost in my quest for financial dominance as my son and I go head to head. As for the Monet that you so cleverly juxtaposed into this post(good word play by the way, made me laugh), it made quite an 'impression' on me! Thanks as always Bazza.

bazza said...

Hi Rebecca. It's so good to hear from you again. One does not have to quit Blogging because, even if one takes a few months break, it's still there whenever you wish to go back!
Incidentally, you may be interested in my previous post (Anselm Kiefer).

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