Sir Thomas Bludworth
The Lord Mayor of London at the time of the Great Fire was Sir Thomas Bludworth. He was summoned to look at the fire soon after it started at around 3am on Sunday 2 September (even though it was his birthday!). He dismissed it saying 'a woman could piss it out' and went back to bed. As the fire grew worse he refused to pull down houses, worried that the owners would demand compensation. He changed his mind later but by then it was too late. Samuel Pepys encountered him at Cannon Street on Sunday afternoon:
'At last met my Lord Mayor in Canning Street, like a man spent, with a handkercher about his neck. To the King's message he cried, like a fainting woman, "Lord! what can I do? I am spent: people will not obey me. I have been pulling down houses; but the fire overtakes us faster than we can do it."'
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