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Life Magazine
Dec 7, 1936

page 2 of 2-page set


Lloyd's of London


When Jonathan Blake has grown to manhood as an agent of Lloyd's, he falls in love. The girl is Lady Elizabeth (Madeline Carroll) Jonathan finds her a prisoner in France, smuggles her home. There Lady Elizabeth leaves him, and Jonathan learns that she is married to the boorish Lord Stacy. Jonathan gets drunk with a snuff-counter girl named Polly, whom he wagers to introduce to the Prince of Wales. This is accomplished, in the picture's most amusing sequence, with the help of the Marques of Queensberry (above). Years pass and the day comes when Jonathan is fighting to keep the British fleet intact. Then Lady Elizabeth comes to him, begs him to use her money. For Nelson's sake he does, and Lord Stacy shoots him. With Elizabeth at his bedside, Jonathan hovers on death's edge, rallies only as Nelson's funeral passes below his window.


In 1928 Lloyd's moved into an imposing new building on Leadenhall Street. In its big colonnaded room, underwriters sit scribbling at tables which look exactly as they did when Lloyd's was a coffee house. The attendants are still called "waiters". Over the center rostrum hangs the bell of the frigate Lutine, which sank in 1799, ruining many underwriters. The Lutine bell still rings, as it did in the period of the movie, to announce news of an overdue ship.

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