A friend recently alerted me to the quaintly excellent Seven Stars pub, a survivor of the Great Fire of London, and its resident cat, Tom Paine. I blogged about him here. Tonight I ventured over there to meet a friend for a pint or three and to catch a glimpse of this famous feline. I am sad to report that he is no more. He has passed over, as all Tom Paines must, to join our great namesake.
He is fondly remembered by the charming and friendly "belles of Carey Street" (I was married for more than thirty years and never called 'darling' so much) and is commemorated in this poem (click to enlarge) on the pub wall. I am afraid the flash obscured the first two lines, but they read "I'm Roxy's cat, I'm called Tom Paine | The Seven Stars is where I reign". The real Tom was no fan of the verb 'to reign', but then he never wore a ruff neither. It's touching that he was commemorated in feline form for a while, but for as long as liberty is revered, his name will last forever.