This is a very special day for me, as it marks the 265th anniversary of the infamous St Valentine’s Day Massacre in London, which I committed on this date in 1749. In case you’re not familiar with it, here’s the original newspaper clipping from the London Evening Post:
On the night of Tuesday, the Fourteenth of February, there took place in a Publick-House near-by to Ludgate a most frightful Murder, in which nine Persons were brutally massacred and dismembered. Due to the horrific Nature of this Crime, the Magistrate of Westminster, the Honourable Henry Fielding, has stated his intention to conduct an Investigation personally.
Attention was called to the Incident by a Customer of the aforesaid Establishment, who upon waking from his Drunkenness, discover’d the Head of the Tavern-Keeper upon the floor. Following a Trail of Blood to the rear of the House and into the Cellar, he came upon the Corpses of his Fellowes, rent entirely asunder. Additionally, he reported that the Private Parts of these unfortunate Men had been piled in the centre of the Cellar-floor ‘like so many Sausages in a Butcher’s shop’.
The Magistrate’s office have declined to comment on Details of the Incident, saying only that most of the Victims were indeed found in the Cellar, and that their Injuries appear to have been inflicted by an Animal, the Nature and Whereabouts of which can not be ascertained at present.
Readers interested in further particulars on this matter – especially regarding the subsequent investigation by the famous Henry Fielding – may refer to Chapter 14 (numbering entirely coincidental) of Night Music.