Astley's Amphitheatre, London - D L Moody (1875)


On the afternoons of Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday last week, this popular place of amusement "showed another sight" than that which it usually affords. Instead of being filled with pleasure-seekers ready to applaud the meaningless, if not worse than meaningless, performances and spectacles of the circus, and to laugh at the foolish, mayhap irreverent and profane jests of the clown, the amphitheatre was crammed from pit to ceiling with a motley crowd, which, whatever may have been the impelling motive for the attendance of each, listened with the most eager attention to the gospel preached and sung. Whether it was the personal influence of the speaker was proportionately greater in the smaller building, or whether the congregation was more impressible than those that nightly fill the monster hall in Islington, we cannot say, but it was apparent that there existed a greater readiness to carry out Mr Moody's earnest appeals and invitations to their ultimate results than was the case after the delivery of the same addresses in the evenings at the Agricultural Hall. Mr Moody was evidently agreeably struck with the receptive condition of the people's hearts at Astley's Theatre, as he made special reference to it on a subsequent evening. We are inclined to think that the size of the building has not a little to do with the effect of the truth spoken. In the Agricultural Hall the effect seems somehow to be dissipated to some extent before it reaches the far-off corners of the crowd, and when smaller places are brought into use, we look for greater results in conviction and conversion, at least proportionately, if not actually.

"The Christian," April 1st, 1875.

Additional Information

Built in 1773 it burned down a few times. It was the first circus building.

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