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Shopping in London

In the Middle Ages, the English bought goods at fairs, from peddlers, or from pushcarts. By the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, shops were often in craftsmen's houses. London was the major center for shopping, the focus of consumers all over the country who shopped themselves or through an agent. Houses on London Bridge contained small shops, while other markets boasted shops for goldsmiths, mercers, and sellers of leather goods. Both the Royal Exchange and, later, the New Exchange brought new shopping practices, creating boutiques where the well-to-do could shop in private and parade publicly. Shopping had become a new form of entertainment.

London's Markets
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The Latest Fashions
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The London Exchange
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