I suppose this might be a bit of a spoiler for the new book…
August 1, 2012
This is a statue of Edward Alleyn, the Elizabethan actor. I got to visit it on my London research trip in 2010. It’s new, unveiled in 2008, and stands in Dulwich, just south of London. I love it for lots of reasons. Mostly because this is a guy who had such an impact on his community that people are still thinking of him and commemorating him almost four hundred years after his death. He had no children of his own, so he used his considerable fortune to found a boys’ school and charity hospital. The school is still there, which is why he’s shown playing with a child.
He was a respected actor and businessman in his day, but he wasn’t the kind of guy anyone was going to be erecting statues of, you know? I mean, an actor? Someone who actually made his money on his own without inheriting it? Sheesh. And yet here he is. I think he’d be pleased. Amused, but pleased.
It’s a kind of immortality, isn’t it? Metaphorically, of course. I keep telling people, as long as characters like this are lurking in history, I’ll never run out of things to write about.