I came across this quote in the London magistrate Patrick Colquhoun’s Treatise on the Police of the Metropolis (1797), and liked the attitude expressed for London and its problems:
this Metropolis is unquestionably not only the greatest Manufacturing and Commercial City in the world, but also the general receptacle for the idle and depraved of almost every country…
Where the temptations and resources for criminal pleasures – Gambling, Fraud and Depredation – almost exceed imagination; since besides being the seat of Government it is the centre of fashion, amusements, dissipation and folly.
Unfortunately, Colquhoun’s warning actually sounds, to modern minds, rather attractive – depredation in the city of amusements? Yes, please.