This Mercers’ Maiden in Corbet Court was reinstated in 2004. As with all her sisters she marks property held by the Mercers Company.
She is dated 1669 and so this inscription is seven years older than the one beneath the bust of Lord Essex in Devereux Court.
The Devereux Court inscription of 1676, was commonly held to be the oldest one in London but clearly the Maid of Corbet Court now has a stronger claim to that title. Does anyone know of an even older inscription anywhere in London? If so, please drop me a line.
Update 10.15! Sharp eyed Pepys from the excellent London Peculiar just tweeted me an image of grafitti from the Tower of London that takes the “earliest inscription” title back nearly 200 years! Thank you!
Can anyone beat this?