Далее: Unit IV. Before reading Вверх: Методические рекомендации Назад: Unit II. Before reading

Unit III. Before reading the text concentrate on the following points

  1. What do you know about the City of London?
  2. What sights are there?
  3. Would you like to visit the City of London?


The City is the heart of London, its commercial and business part. Numerous banks, offices, firms and trusts are concentrated there. The area of the City is about a square mile. It is an area with a long and exciting history, and it is proud of independence and traditional role as a centre of trade and commerce. The City does not refer to the whole of central London but rather to a small area east of the centre, which includes the site of the original Roman town.

The City of London is one of the major banking centres of the world and one can find the banks of many nations here. Here, too, you can find the Bank of England, the Stock Exchange and Lloyd’s, the most famous insurance company in the world.

Only five thousand people live in the City. Before and after the business hours the streets of the City are crowded with more than a million people who come there to work.

Vocabulary Notes

The City — Сити

The Stock Exchange – Лондонская фондовая биржа

The Bank of England – Английский банк

Lloyd’s – Ллойд (один из английских банков)


Everybody coming to London for the first time wants to see St. Paul’s Cathedral. This is the third cathedral with this name which London has had. The two others were burnt down, the first in 1086 and the second in 1666. St. Paul’s Cathedral is the work of the famous architect Sir Christopher Wren. It is said to be one of the finest pieces of architecture in Europe. Work on Wren’s masterpiece began in 1675. For 35 years the building of St. Paul’s Cathedral went on, and Wren was an old man before it was finished.

From far away you can see the huge dome with a golden ball and cross on the top. The inside of the cathedral is very beautiful. After looking around, you can climb 263 steps to the Whispering Gallery, above the library, which runs round the dome. It is called this because if someone whispers close to the wall on one side, a person with an ear close to the wall on the other side can hear what is said. Then, if you climb another 118 steps, you will be able to stand outside the dome and look over London.

But not only can you climb up, you can also go down underneath the cathedral, into the crypt. Here are buried many great men, including Christopher Wren himself, Nelson and others.

Vocabulary Notes

St. Paul’s Cathedral – Собор Святого Павла

Sir Christopher Wren – Сэр Кристофер Рэн Whispering Gallery – Галерея Шепота

Crypt — склеп, подземная часовня


St. Paul’s Cathedral


The Mansion House, the official residence of the Lord Mayor, is also in the City. Since the time of Richard Whittington, who was the Mayor of London in 1397, 1398, 1406 and in 1419, the election of a new Lord Mayor of London has been celebrated by a pageant, known as the Lord Mayor’s Show. This is held every year on November 9. On this day the new Lord Mayor rides through the streets of London in his splendid coach, drawn by six horses. In the thirteenth century, after the citizens of London had chosen a new Mayor, they had to go with him to the King’s palace in Westminster and ask the king to approve their choice.

Today the procession starts in the City and goes past St. Paul’s Cathedral as far as the boundary of the City of Westmin­ster. It crosses the boundary and stops at the Law Courts, where the Lord Mayor is presented to the Lord Chief Justice. The Mayor makes a solemn promise to carry out his duties faithfully, and the Lord Chief Justice hands the Mayor his sword of office. Then the procession continues to Westminster, and returns to the Mansion House, which is the Lord Mayor’s official residence.

Vocabulary Notes

The Mansion House – Мэншн-Хаус (официальная резиденция мэра)

Lord Mayor – Лорд мэр

Lord Chief Justice — Лорд главный судья


Fleet Street has been the meeting place for newspaper men since the 18th century, when writers met to talk in its coffeehouses. And up to now Fleet Street is the Street of news. Fleet Street is now the centre of journalists and newspaper men. Offices of most English daily and evening papers are situated in this street.

Fleet Street is the centre of Britain’s national newspapers. The Daily Telegraph and the Daily Express have their offices here, and the Times, the Guardian and many others are nearby.

Publishing houses of many big foreign newspapers are also there. Fleet Street is busy day and night. It is packed with vans, cars, motorcycles, newsboys every day between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. when the latest news is ready to go out all over the world.

Vocabulary Notes

Fleet Street – Флит-Стрит


The City is the oldest part of the capital. Among the first historic buildings is the Tower of London, built in 1087.

The history of London is closely connected with the Tower. They say that London is the key to England and the Tower is the key to London. The Tower on the north bank of the Thames is one of the most ancient buildings of London. It was founded in the 11th century by William the Conqueror. It was begun with the aim of protecting Londoners from invasion by the river. Since then the Tower has served as fortress, palace, state prison, a mint and royal treasury. Now it is a museum attracting thousands of tourists from all over the world. During the reign of Henry VII part of it became a menagerie, and it was one of the citizens’ entertainments to watch a bear being led to the water’s edge to catch salmon.

The Tower comprises several towers and the Jewel House where the Crown Jewels are kept and available on public display. The Bloody Tower is believed to be the scene of the murder of Edward V and his brother, the Duke of York. Some terrible deeds took place in the grim tower.

The White Tower, a massive building inside the walls, was the place where Kings of England held their Court. It was built by William the Conqueror to protect and control the City of London. It is the oldest and the most important building, surrounded by other towers, which all have different names.

Tower Bridge is close by the Tower of London. The Tower is guarded by the Yeomen Warders, popularly called “Beefeaters”.

Vocabulary Notes

The Tower of London – Лондонский Тауэр

The Thames – река Темза William the Conqueror – Вильгельм Завоеватель

Treasury — сокровищница

Mint – монетный двор

Menagerie — зверинец

Salmon — лосось, семга (бродячий)

The Jewel House – Палата драгоценностей

The Crown Jewels – королевские регалии (короны, скипетры, драгоценности)

The Bloody Tower – Кровавая Башня

The Duke of York – Герцог Йоркский

The White Tower – Белая Башня

To hold the Court – вершить королевский суд

Tower Bridge – Тауэрский мост

The Yeomen Warders – лейб-гвардейцы, стражи Тауэра

Beefeater – Бифитер


This bridge built in 1894, is still in daily use even though the traffic in and out of the London wharves has increased to an extraordinary extent during the course of the 20th century.

Even today Tower Bridge regulates a large part of the impressive traffic of the Port of London. Due to a special mechanism, the main traffic-way consisting of two parts fixed to two hinges at the ends can be lifted up. In this way, the entrance and departure of extremely large vessels is possible, and allows them to reach the Pool of London. While the central stay measures 142 feet, each bascule to be raised weighs 1,000 tons. Nowadays the pedestrian path is closed. This footpath crossing which used to be allowed was by the upper bridge which connected the top of each tower, situated at a height of 142 feet above the waters of the famous Thames.

Tower Bridge commands wide and magnificent views of both the city and the river. After Tower Bridge, the wharves of London extend until Tilbury. The gigantic port of this city, which has one of the heaviest movements of ocean-going traffic in the entire world, occupies practically the whole of the Thames from Teddington. It is impossible to get a complete idea of its colossal extension. In fact it is one wharf after another, apparently continuing endlessly.

There is one way to form a closer idea of the grandiosity of this port: to view it from Tower Bridge on a clear day. To get the most accurate idea of its formidable extension and complexity, one can recommend taking one of the boats that during the summer months are organized to ply popular sightseeing trips along the Thames.

Vocabulary Notes

Tower Bridge – Тауэрский мост

Wharves (Pl от wharf) — пристань, причал моста;

Hinge — шарнир

The Pool of London — Пул (название участка р. Темзы ниже Лондонского моста, вверх no реке океанские суда не поднимаются)

Bascule — подъемное крыло или ферма (моста)

To ply — курсировать, совершать рейс (о корабле)

Extension – протяженность


The visitor to London who has a feeling for history, particularly maritime history, should take a boat at Westminster pier and sail down the river Thames to Greenwich.

The trip lasts about forty minutes and takes you through the Port of London. You go past St. Paul’s Cathedral and the Tower of London, under Tower Bridge and into the Pool of London with the bustle of cranes and ships unloading. Farther on, the view is of grim warehouses, grimy wharves and groups barges moored in the centre of the river. Then, suddenly, as you round a bend in the river, the scene changes dramatically. You see a magnificent three-masted sailing ship. It is the Cutty Sark, the last and most famous of the sailing clippers, now permanently berthed and open daily to visitors. Beyond the Cutty Sark you see, set in green lawns, the colonnades and columns, the courts and twin domes of what seems to be a magnificent eighteenth-century palace.

The palace you see from the river was built by Christopher Wren, the architect of St. Paul’s Cathedral. For nearly a hundred years it has been the Royal Naval College for the higher education of naval officers. In the south-west block is the Painted Hall, so called because of the effective paintings on its walls and ceilings. In another part of the building is the National Maritime Museum, where all aspects of naval history can be studied at leisure. Behind the museum is Greenwich Observatory. The Royal Observatory was established at Greenwich nearly three hundred years ago, primarily for the assistance of navigation, and the zero meridian of longitude which passes through it is marked on a path to the north. Owing to the growing pollution of the atmosphere at Greenwich, the observatory was transferred several years ago to the country.

Vocabulary Notes

Pier – пирс

Bustle — суматоха, суета

Warehouse — товарный склад

Moor — причалить, стать на якорь

Three-masted — трехмачтовый

Clipper — клипер (быстроходное па­русное судно)

Berth — ставить (судно) на якорь

Longitude — (геогр.) долгота

Owing to the growing pollution – зд. из-за увеличивающегося загрязнения (воздуха)

Reading Comprehension Exercises

  1. Answer the questions.
    1. What is the City of London? What is its area?
    2. Why is the City one of the major banking centres in the world?
    3. How many people live in the City?
    4. How many of them come to the City to work?
    5. What offices are there in Fleet Street?
    6. When and with what aim was the Tower of London built?
    7. What has the Tower of London served as?
    8. What is the Tower now?
    9. What can you say about the Tower Bridge?
    10. What do you know about St. Paul’s Cathedral?
  2. Ask your fellow-students the questions to find out:
    1. What is the Whispering Gallery?
    2. What can people see when sailing down the river Thames?
    3. Did you learn anything new about St. Paul’s Cathedral in the last text?

Grammar Exercises

  1. Fill in the blanks with prepositions.
    1. London is situated ... the river Thames about forty miles ... its mouth.
    2. It is divided ... two parts ... the river.
    3. The most ... the chief buildings, stands ... the north bank.
    4. In fact there are several Londons. First, there is the City ... London.
    5. There is the Bank ... England, the Stock Exchange, and offices... many ... the Wealthiest corporations ... the world.
    6. It is the financial and business centre ... England.
    7. ... day it is full ... people; about half a million people work there.
    8. But ... the end of the day businessmen and clerks go home and the City becomes silent.
  2. Form adverbs from the following adjectives using the suffix “-ly”. Translate them into Russian.

    Original Full
    Colourful Near
    Fatal Careful
    Comparative Willing

  3. Make the verbs in the following sentences passive.
    1. What are they discussing?
    2. The professor is examining our group.
    3. The Spartans were celebrating a religious festival when a messenger came from Athens.
    4. They are building a new school in our district.
    5. What film are they demonstrating in the lecture room?
    6. He had a feeling that someone was following him.
    7. They were watching and taking pictures of a UFO.
    8. They were interrogating the first witness when I came into the courtroom.
    9. They are counting the prize money.
    10. They are relieving him of his duty because of his age.

Lexical Exercises

  1. Arrange in pairs of antonyms.

    Carefully Commonplace
    Famous Nearer
    Early To neglect
    Impressive Late
    Further Disgusting
    Beautiful Carelessly
    To guard Unknown
    Prosperous Ugly
    Fascinating Modest
    Distinguished Unsuccessful

  2. Choose the right word given below. Reputation, influence, revitalized, amenities, well-known, house, audience, success, poetry, popularity, actors, public

    1. Benjamin Britten’s operas have long enjoyed a high world-wide....
    2. Konstantin Stanislavski teaching method has an important ... both on our central theatres and on the provincial companies.
    3. Besides London other towns in Britain also have artistic and cultural....
    4. Many of capital concert halls and art galleries ... various cultural events and art exhibi­tions.
    5. Many opera singers and ballet dancers use television for their concerts, thus reaching a very large ...
    6. The important aspect in the work of colleges of the theatrical art is the training of....
    7. Many pop groups ... the world of popular music in the 1960-1980s.

  3. Translate into English.
    1. Сити – это не только сердце Лондона, а также коммерческий и деловой центр города.
    2. Королевская Обсерватория была основана в Гринвиче около 300 лет назад.
    3. Сегодня Тауэрский мост регулирует огромное количество транспорта, исходящего из Лондонского порта.
    4. Мэншн-Хаус – официальная резиденция лорда мэра.
    5. Собор святого Петра – это шедевр знаменитого архитектора сэра Кристофера Рэна.
    6. Внутри собора находится знаменитая галерея шепота.
    7. Флит-Стрит является центром журналистской и издательской деятельности Лондона.
    8. История Лондона тесно связана с Тауэром.
    9. Лондонский Тауэр был основан в 11 веке Вильгельмом Завоевателем.
    10. Тауэр служил крепостью, дворцом, государственной тюрьмой, монетным двором и королевской сокровищницей.

Conversation and Discussion

  1. The Tower of London was built in 1087. And nowadays it is still a magnificent building. How did this one of the first London’s buildings happen to be preserved for about a hundred years? What do you think about the knowledge and skills of English people of that time? And what сan you say about the attitude of British people to their historic past?
  2. St. Paul’s Cathedral is another historic magnificent building. Who was its architect? What other works by Christopher Wren did you happen to read about? Do you know any names of architects in Britain (your country)?

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ЯГПУ, Отдел образовательных информационных технологий