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KNIGHTSBRIDGE, a suburban district of London, partly in the parish of Westminster St. Margaret, Westminster, but chiefly in the parishes of Kensington and Chelsea, Kensington division of the hundred of Ossulstone, county Middlesex, near Hyde Park Corner, and 3 miles W. of St. Paul's, London.

This place, anciently called Kingesbridge and Knyghtbrigg, was, until a recent date, considered dangerous for travellers approaching the metropolis by the great western road. It is now one of the most fashionable parts of the West End, containing Lowndes and Trevor squares, Wilton-crescent, Belgrave-square, and several large mansions overlooking Hyde Park. Great improvements have been effected by the removal of a large portion of the wall which formerly separated the park from the road, now protected by iron palisades, and by the erection of Rutland Gate, on the site of Rutland House. On the N. side, adjoining the park, are extensive cavalry barracks, and at the entrance from London, on the S. side of the road, is St. George's Hospital, founded in 1773, and once the seat of Lord Lanesborough. It contains also Kingston House, the Chinese Exhibition House, Archæological Association, and extensive ale brewery, &c. There are three churches-St. Paul's, a perpetual curacy in the diocese of London, value £1,000, in the patronage of the Rector of St. Margaret's. The church, which stands in Wilton Place, was erected in 1840, at an expense of about £15,000. It is of brick and stone, with a lofty tower, in two stories, each having a window on its sides and front, and the whole terminating in a rich embattled parapet of open work, with eight crocketted pinnacles, four of which rise from the angles. Holy Trinity is also a perpetual curacy in the patronage of the Dean and Chapter of Westminster. The church, which was rebuilt in 1789, originally belonged to an ancient hospital, or lazar-house, under the jurisdiction of the Abbot of Westminster. All Saints is a modern structure, erected in 1849. The Baptists have a place of worship, and there are National and charity schools.

[Description(s) from "The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland" (1868)
Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003]
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