Lead: Of the many passions in a passionate life few exceeded the city of London for Samuel Johnson. He told his biographer, James Boswell, β€œWhen a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.”

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: When Samuel Johnson began working in London in the middle of the 18th century, the City was the largest port in the world, one of the first modern industrial hubs. Johnson watched his beloved metropolis boom and boom again, offering the best and worst of life for visitors and residents alike. And Johnson loved it. The City's streets and roads and lanes were packed with pedestrians, wagons, elegant carriages and humble carts. Live animals, ignorant of their fate to come, were herded toward reeking abattoirs. London government was utterly corrupt. The streets were filled with beggars and thieves, and thanks to the Gin Craze, alcohol consumption was on the rise and it spilled out into the streets. Disease and many other social problems were evident to even the casual observer.

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