Frith Street was laid out in the late 1670s and early 1680s and evidently named after Richard Frith, a wealthy builder. In the 18th and early 19th centuries many artistic and literary people came to live in Soho, and several of them settled in this street. The painter John Alexander Gresse was here in 1784, the year of his death. John Horne Tooke, philologist and politician, lived here in about 1804; John Constable lived here in 1810–11; John Bell, the sculptor, in 1832–33; and William Hazlitt wrote his last essays while he was lodging at no. 6 Frith Street prior to his death there in 1830. The lithographic artist Alfred Concanen had a studio at no. 12 for many years.
Samuel Romilly, the legal reformer, was born at no. 18 in 1757, and the young Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart lodged at no. 20 with his father and sister in 1764–65. In 1816 the actor William Charles Macready was living at no. 64, and over a hundred years later, from 1924 to 1926 John Logie Baird lived at no. 22 where on 26 January 1926 he demonstrated television to members of the Royal Institution.
In 1989 Frith Street Gallery was founded here, originally occupying two adjacent townhouses. Initially it was a forum for contemporary drawing, then it expanded into a wide range of artistic media. In 2007 the gallery moved to Golden Square, just a short distance from Frith Street.
In popular culture
- Weinreb, Ben; Hibbert, Christopher (1993). The London Encyclopaedia (revised ed.). London: Papermac. pp. 303–304. ISBN 0-333-57688-8.
- Irons, Neville - 'Alfred Concanen, Master Lithographer' Irish Arts Review Vol. 4, No. 3 (Autumn 1987) pgs 37-41
- "Frith Street Gallery - GOLDEN SQUARE". Frith Street Gallery.
- "NATALIE IMBRUGLIA - GLORIOUS". Ultratop.
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- Restaurants in Frith Street
- East side and west side of Frith Street
- Frith Street Gallery, 59–60 Frith Street