The Food-Themed Fire Was Started in Pudding Lane by the King’s Baker and Ended at Pie Corner
After a hard day’s work, the King’s baker, Thomas Farriner, raked up the coals in the bakery hearth and went up to bed above his Pudding Lane bakery shortly before midnight on the evening of Saturday, September 1, 1666. The coals reignited a short time later, and the Great Fire had started. Farriner, his daughter Hanna, and a manservant all luckily managed to escape into a neighbor’s home from an upstairs window. The maid, whose name is still unknown was sadly unable to escape from the burning building and perished in the flames, becoming the Great Fire’s first victim.
The fire was finally brought to a halt four days later on Wednesday, September 6, at the corner of Cock Lane and Giltspur Street, known as Pye (or Pie) Corner. A small gilded statue of a child, known as The Golden Boy of Pye Corner still stands at the site as a memorial to The Great Fire of London, and bears the following inscription, “This Boy is in Memory put up for the late Fire of London Occasion’d by the Sin of Gluttony.”
The Lord Mayor of London Refused to Take the Fire Seriously
In the early hours of September 2, just as the fire was beginning to take hold, London’s Lord Mayor, Thomas Bloodworth, arrived at the scene of the bakery in Pudding Lane. On the grounds of costs, he defiantly refused to allow the demolition of the adjoining buildings, which would have almost certainly kept the fire contained.
Lord Mayor Bloodworth, in his view of the fire’s insignificance, impatiently, and now infamously, declared that “A woman might piss it out!” He turned on his heels, returned home to the comfort and safety of his bed and left the city to its fate. In view of his behavior and attitude, he has been wholeheartedly criticized and widely blamed for the extent of the damage caused to the city.