What's On



Reading Circle

Past Exhibitions


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Tales of Dr Johnson and Love

Valentines Day - 6pm and 7pm

A rare opportunity to experience the evening in Dr Johnson's beautiful Queen Anne townhouse as the giant of literature himself would have, by candlelight, in these special curator-led twilight tours. Treat yourself or someone special this Valentine’s Day and join the Curator to explore Johnson’s complex views on love, bringing to light his relations with ‘the fairer sex’. Hear more about Johnson’s love-life, his views on marriage and the ladies who made an impression on him, from the respectable to the scandalous, and the women whom he in turn influenced.
House at Twilight

dividerFlowers, Flagellation and the Gentleman's Erotic Garden

Thursday 16 March 7pm (doors open at 6.30pm)

If you think you knew all about the eighteenth-century landscape gardening, you may need to think again.

Did you know there was a link between the nosegay and flagellation in the eighteenth-century? Did you know that erotic satires were formed in response to Carl Linnaeus’s serious work on taxonomy of flowers?

Julie Peakman, Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and Birkbeck College, University of London, examines the influences of classical finds on the creation of a gentleman’s garden. She reveals the secret work on the estate of Sir Francis Dashwood, and the creation of William Hamilton’s English Garden at Caserta Palace, home to the King and Queen of Naples.

Among her books are Amatory Pleasures. Explorations in Eighteenth-Century Sexual Culture (2016), Peg Plunkett, Memoirs of A Whore (2015), The Pleasure’s All Mine (2014), Mighty Lewd Books (2012) and Lascivious Bodies. A Sexual History of the Eighteenth-Century (2004)

Tickets: £10 (includes a glass of wine)

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stature of dr johnson outside st clements

dividerElizabeth Carter `A Woman of Wit and Wisdom’

Thursday 6 April 7.30pm (doors open at 7pm)

`My old friend, Mrs Carter, could make a pudding as well as translate from the Greek and work a handkerchief as well as write a poem.` Samuel Johnson.

Join us for a celebration of the tercentenary of Elizabeth Carter, Georgian scholar, linguist, translator, `blue stocking` and feminist. Born in Deal, Kent, in 1717, she moved to London where, upon publication of her poems, she became a personal friend of Dr Johnson. Her translation of Epictetus, a 1st century B.C. Greek philosopher, brought her worldwide fame and instant fortune.

Actor/author, Gregory Holyoake, will explore her life and work through a presentation that includes short readings from her letters by costumed actors and recorded piano music by Neil Wright.

Tickets: £15 (includes a glass of wine)

Elizabeth Carter

dividerMania and Melancholy - mental health in the eighteenth century

Wednesday 19 April 7pm (doors open at 6.30pm)

Join author Catherine Curzon to explore attitudes to mental health in the eighteenth century through her discussion of the philosophies that started to develop, Dr Johnson’s own struggles, including his self-diagnosed ‘hypochondria’, and the infamous ‘madness of King George III.’

Catherine Curzon has written extensively on the eighteenth century including her first book, Life in Georgian Court. Her latest publication Kings of Georgian Britain will be available from 30 March 2017.

Tickets: £10 (includes a glass of wine)

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Dr Johnson 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:

5 April

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.