We go back to Belgrave Square this week to its westernmost corner where there is a bronze statue of 15th century Portuguese aristocrat and explorer, Prince Henry the Navigator.
Prince Henry (1394-1460) was the son of King John I of Portugal and Philippa, the daughter of English nobleman John of Gaunt and sister of King Henry IV.
As well as being appointed the Governor of the Algarve in 1419, Henry became famous for his scientific and exploratory endeavours – he was instrumental in opening the navigational route to India (although his nickname “The Navigator” apparently was applied to him until centuries later5)
The statue, which has the prince wearing robes seated on a rocky outcrop with a rolled map in his hand, is attributed to Simoes de Almeida (who died in 1950) and it’s been claimed it was made as far back as 1915. There is a duplicate of the statue located in the US – at Fall River, Massachusetts – but this is credited to the sculptor, Aristide Berto Cianfarani.
While it’s origins remain somewhat unclear, we do know the statue was unveiled by the President of Portugal in February, 2002, with the Duke of Westminster present.
There are some verses from Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa on the side of the plinth.
No, this pub on Moorgate is not related to William Shakespeare. Its name actually comes from the globe which was used as the emblem of Portugal and advertised the fact that fine Portuguese wines were on sale at the premises.
According the pub’s website, there were eight pubs with the sign of the Globe in London during the reign of King Charles I (when this pub was apparently founded). By the middle of the 19th century, the number had risen to more than 30.
There are still a few other Globe pubs in London – as well as this one, others include the Globe in Marylebone Road and The Globe Bow Street (although we’re not sure whether their names were derived in the same way).
The pub, which is located at 83 Moorgate – close to where Moorgate once punctured London’s city wall and gave access to the fens known as Moorfields. In 2008, the pub merged with the neighbouring pub, the John Keats, now commemorated in the name of the bar (that pub was named for the Romantic poet John Keats, who it has been speculated was born in a pub on the site in 1795).