What's On



Reading Circle

Past Exhibitions

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Curious Crafts at Dr Johnson's House

Saturday 20th October 2 - 4pm

A children's drop in workshop to accompany our current exhibition - join us for an afternoon of 18th century fun, with activities for all ages! Artist Louise Whittles, whose work 'Dr Johnson's Greatcoat' is exhibited at the House, will lead a variety of arts and crafts including map making, Dr Johnson jumping jacks and much more. There’s no need to book, but you can register your interest here.

Free with standard admission charge

Quill and scroll

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An Evening at Dr Johnson's House

Thursday 25th October 6 - 8.30pm

A rare opportunity to explore the historic interior of Dr Johnson’s eighteenth-century townhouse, at twilight, whilst enjoying a complimentary drink. 

All four floors of the House will remain open for visitors to view our permanent collection, alongside our current exhibition - Curious Travellers: Dr Johnson and Thomas Pennant on Tour.

Free with standard admission charge

Dr Johnson's House at Twilight

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Johnson and Pennant in Scotland

Thursday 15th November 7pm (doors open at 6.30pm)

Prof Nigel Leask, Regius Professor of English Language and Literature, School of Critical Studies, University of Glasgow.

'Dr Johnson after Pennant: Exploring the Relationship Between their Scottish Tours'.

Although Dr Johnson barely mentioned the Thomas Pennant in his best-selling Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland (1775), both the tour the he made with Boswell in 1773, and his published narrative, were indebted to Pennant's two Tours in Scotland in 1769 and 1772. This lecture explores the complex relationship between the two great travel writers, contesting a common image of Pennant as a 'friend to Scotland' and Johnson as a Scotophobe.

Professor Murray Pittock, Bradley Professor of English Literature, School of Critical Studies, and Vice-Principal, University of Glasgow.

‘Tourist on Trial? Boswell’s Johnson and Johnson’s Scotland in Journey and A Tour’

Boswell’s version of the Scottish tour interrogates that of Johnson and is arguably as much a point of contestation of their relationship as the Life is one of-albeit hardly innocent-filial piety

Choose ticket (includes a complimentary glass of wine)

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Children's Weaving Workshop

Saturday 24th November 2pm

Join artist Louise Whittles, whose work 'Dr Johnson's Greatcoat' is exhibited at the House, for a weaving workshop where you will learn how to make your very own woven tapestry letter. Peek into Dr Johnson's Dictionary, pick a word and then Louise will guide you through how to weave your chosen letter! Suitable for age 8 and above.

Please note that places are very limited in this workshop

Tickets - £20

Woven letter

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‘I smell you in the dark’: Johnson and Boswell in Edinburgh

Wednesday 5th December 7pm (Doors open at 6.30pm)

The Edinburgh visited by Dr. Samuel Johnson and Boswell during their famous trek across Scotland differed dramatically from the one captivating tourists today. 
While its status as an important metropolis was about to increase exponentially, the city lacked many of the amenities desired by those then accustomed to prominent locations such as Paris and London.  While Edinburgh residents might prefer to be known for their cultural accomplishments, the squalor that drew attention through much of their city’s past cannot be avoided even today when their history is shared with visitors, just as it could not be hidden when Boswell finally succeeded in bringing Dr. Johnson north.
This talk by Sheila Cavanagh, Professor of English, Emory University, will describe Boswell’s introduction of his home to Dr. Johnson, including this city’s transition into the home of the Scottish enlightenment.

Tickets £10 (Includes a complimentary glass of wine)

Johnson and Boswell print

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Follow in Johnson's footsteps and explore the courts and alleys off Fleet Street with an experienced City Guide.

1st Wednesday of each month (except Jan.), 3pm

Next walk:

7 November

Groups may also book walks at alternative times. For any enquiries please contact us.

Dr Johnson's Fleet Street - Discover Johnson's life and work in and around Fleet Street and his acquaintances in the area.
Dr Johnson's City - Explore the Fleet Valley, Ludgate Hill and St Paul's Churchyard areas as Johnson knew them.

£5/£4 concessions. No booking required. Meet outside Dr Johnson's House.

This is a joint venture between Dr Johnson's House and the City Guides.

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Johnson and Boswell 'Walking down the High Street' by Rowlandon

Events information

Most events sell out and tickets must be bought in advance. Card payments are processed by PayPal. We regret that we are unable to take card payments over the phone.

Customers wishing to pay by cheque should send a cheque payable to 'Dr Johnson's House Trust Ltd' to Dr Johnson's House, 17 Gough Square, London, EC4A 3DE. Please include your contact details. We will let you know when your cheque arrives.

Please note the House contains unavoidable steps. For more information about access, please visit our Facilities page.

LondonShh. Small Historic Houses Link to London Shh website Accredited Museum