• Short Summary

    A murderous attack on the poet Dryden is reconstructed outside the pub where it actually happened.

  • Description

    Covent Garden, London.

    "The time is the 17th century, the place: London". M/S of a cobbled street at night, man in period costume loiters outside the Lamb and Flag Inn. High angle shot of the man looking at his pocket watch, he is joined by another man. The second man shows the first a blunt heavy object which he places in his pocket, they then part. C/U of one of the men looking around a corner. C/U of feet, belonging to the poet William Dryden, walking on cobbles. The man hiding around the corner shouts Dryden's name. M/S of Dryden turning, the men attack him, hitting him repeatedly with the blunt object. C/U of their feet during the scuffle. A barmaid comes out of the inn and the attackers run away leaving Dryden on the ground. The barmaid and the inn's landlord help Dryden up and take him into the pub - "Dryden is believed to have been attacked because of a satirical essay on the behaviour of the Royal cycle, and in particular the Earl of Rochester, and the Duchess of Portsmouth (a mistress of the king)". M/S of the landlord helping Dryden to a seat, the barmaid enters and mops his forehead. According to the narrator, ironically Dryden did not write the offending article. C/U of the landlord. The landlord and Dryden chat while the barmaid brings them flagons of ale - "this of course is only a reconstruction of the events on that famous night".

    High angle shot of the bar filled with people in modern dress and period costumes - "the commemoration of Dryden Night at the inn has become a very special occasion". M/S of the barmaid bringing three men a tray of drinks - "something called a Sack Posset, a mixture of sherry, eggs, sugar and milk". The men dip the ends of their long clay into the drinks, before placing them in their mouths. C/U of the pipes being lit. C/U of two men puffing pipes. M/S of a woman making Sack Posset in a mixing bowl. Top shot of eggs being cracked and sherry being poured into the mixing bowl. M/S of the pub, all the drinkers raise their flagons to toast a portrait of Dryden. C/U of the portrait. It is thought that the Earl of Rochester was behind the attack, although nobody was ever charged (despite the offer of a £50 reward for information).

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    Media URN:
    Colour pictorials
    British Pathé
    Issue Date:
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Time in/Out:
    01:42:15:00 / 01:44:45:00
    CP 369

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