The Great Fire of London.



This fire broke out in 1666. It started in a bakery and spread very fast. There was a warm Wind which caused it to spread. Fire needs three things. fuel; oxygen and heat. London had all three in abundance at the time.

When the fire was reported to King Charles II he said that a woman could put it out with her spit. The fire turned out to be far more serious than he first realised.*

Thousands of houses were burnt down. St Paul’s Cathedral was burnt down. An effort was made to put out the fire. People passed buckets of water to throw on the fire. The song “London’s burning ” dates from this time. Carts full of water came and watr was pumped from the River Thames. Technology was very primitive then and the effort to douse the flames was ineffectual.

Some people believed that God had sent the fire to punish the country for immorality. King Charles II had many girlfriends besides his wife. Some people said that Catholics started the fire. The Catholics were an unpopular religious minority at the time.

After a few days rain came and put out the fire. Londonhad to be rebuilt and it took many years. An architect named Sir Christopher Wren rebuilt the city. St Paul’s Cathedral is his most famous achievement.


  1. In which year was the Great Fire of London?


2. Where did the fire start?


3. What did the king say when he heard there was a fire?


4. Why did the fire spread so rapidly?


5. How did people try to put it out?


6. What really stopped the fire?


7. Which architect rebuilt London?


8. wHAT Are your feelings about this fire.?





About Calers

Born Belfast 1971. I read history at Edinburgh. I did a Master's at UCL. I have semi-libertarian right wing opinions. I am married with a daughter and a son. I am allergic to cats. I am the falling hope of the not so stern and somewhat bending Tories. I am a legal beagle rather than and eagle. Big up the Commonwealth of Nations.

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