St Mary Axe

Infobox Historic building

name= St Mary Axe
client=Roman Catholic Church
style=Medieval architecture

St Mary Axe was a medieval parish in London whose name survives on the street it formerly occupied, St Mary Axe. The church was demolished in 1561 and its parish united with St Andrew Undershaft, which is on the corner of St Mary Axe and Leadenhall Street. The name derives from the combination of the church dedicated to the Virgin Mary and a neighbouring tavern, which prominently displayed a sign with an axe image.

The street of St Mary Axe is famous for fronting the Baltic Exchange. Nearby parishes include the medieval Great St Helen's (1210) and the St Ethelburga (14th Century).

'Number 70 St Mary Axe' appears in several novels by the British author Tom Holt as the address of a firm of sorcerers headed by J W Wells ("The Portable Door" (2003), "In your dreams" (2004), "Earth, Air, Fire and Custard" (2005), You "Don't Have To Be Evil To Work Here, But It Helps" (2006) ). This is itself a reference to Gilbert and Sullivan's "The Sorcerer". In the song "My Name Is John Wellington Wells", the lyric renders his address as "Number Seventy Simmery Axe": this reflects the fact that some Londoners have pronounced the street's name as "S'M'ry Axe" rather than enunciating it clearly.

30 St Mary Axe ("The Gherkin") is a noted London landmark, built on the site of the bombed Baltic Exchange.


*Ann Saunders," The Art and Architecture of London: An Illustrated Guide" (Oxford: Phaidon, 1984), 80.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • (St.) Mary Axe —    On the west side of the street of St. Mary Axe. In Lime Street Ward.    First mention found in records : St. Mary del Axe, 15 H. III. (Anc. Deeds, A. 2664).    The later forms are : St. Mary apud Ax (Rot. Hund. I. p. 409). St. Mary de Ax (Lib …   Dictionary of London

  • 30 St Mary Axe — 30 St Mary Axe, with St Andrew Undershaft in the foreground from Leadenhall Street General information Type Office …   Wikipedia

  • 30 St Mary Axe — Edificio Nombre inicial Swiss Re …   Wikipedia Español

  • 30 St Mary Axe — Localisation Coordonnées …   Wikipédia en Français

  • 30 St Mary Axe — (Swiss Re Tower) …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • 30 St. Mary Axe — 30 St Mary Axe (Swiss Re Tower) …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • St Mary Axe, London — Infobox church name = St Mary Axe fullname = color = imagesize = caption = Current photo of site landscape = denomination = Roman Catholic Anglican diocese = parish = division = subdivision = founded date = 1170 founder = architect = style =… …   Wikipedia

  • Cock's Court, St. Mary Axe —    East out of St. Mary Axe. In Aldgate Ward (Strype, ed 1720).    Near Fletchers Hall.    Site now occupied by offices and warehouses, etc …   Dictionary of London

  • (St.) Mary Axe, Street —    North out of Leadenhall Street, at No. 116, to Houndsditch (P.O. Directory). Eastern side in Aldgate Ward, western in Lime Street Ward (O.S.).    Earliest mention: Vicum Sancte Marie Attenaxe, 3 Ed. I. (Rot. Hund. I. 431).     St. Marie at Axe …   Dictionary of London

  • 30 St Mary Axe — …   Википедия

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