Tuesday, 31 January 2012
Ok, if you're a veteran London Walker chances are you know about the stuff. Because it plays a cameo role in several London Walks. It's good London fare. Artificial stone, invented in the 18th century. Easy to work in. Weathers very well. Doesn't attract pollution - just give it a wipe with a cloth once a year and it obligingly stays a bone white. Most famous example is the Coaded King of the Beasts - he comes roaring into the Old Westminster walk, for example. (Well, my, David's Old W. walk - can't speak for my colleagues'. LW doesn't do paint-by-numbers, memorise-a-script guiding. If you can call that guiding.)
Flicking the baited hook - as one does in this line of work (if you can call it work) - lo and behold I've caught and reeled in little bit of extra purchase on the stuff. Turns out that its inventor called it Lithodipyra. Didn't know that. Means, yup, artificial stone. Gives it some good solid Latin gravitas.
And this has a certain appeal, too. Mr. Stone Coade thundered, "Several wild adventurers have set up opposition; but, if worthy of remark, how speedy a failure has invariably been attendant on their rude indigested performances."
Ah, yes, the usual "Beware of imitations."
And on that note...