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The exotic down and outs of Victorian London

These fascinating black and white pictures taken by photographer John Thompson show the reality of existence in the 1800s when photography was in its infancy. In 1876 he set out with writer Adolphe Smith and together the pair spoke to people and the shots were later published in magazine, Street Life in London. The pictures, now stored at the Bishopsgate Institute, capture the lives of street beggars, chimney sweeps, street doctors and market sellers among many others.

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