When moving through the exhibit, visitors were introduced to items like the Nuremberg iron chest, a locked chest filled with the college’s treasures that was robbed in 1665 leaving the college bankrupt. An Antimony cup and case on display provided insight to life at the time, where many people would rely on the assistance of unlicensed healers, apothecaries, surgeons or self-care and family remedies for the relief of symptoms. Antimony cups were used in the home for self-care treatments. They probably inspired the expression ‘to kill or cure’. If used correctly, they caused purging by vomiting or stools, a treatment for a wide range of ailments. If not, the toxic draught was fatal.
An oil on canvas painting loaned from the Society of Antiquaries, showed the moment that the fire spread to St Paul’s Cathedral. Miraculously, only 6 people officially died during the fire, as shown by a collection of the yearly bills of mortality. More deaths are almost certain, but people were not required to notify them, and some people may have been cremated and never found
After the fire, the streets of London were filled with suspicion and accusations. People wanted someone to blame for the fire, and they turned on practically everyone. A royal proclamation by Charles II on display declared that Wednesday 10 October was a ‘Day of Solemn fasting and humiliation, to implore the mercies of God’.