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Ask any Londoner, and they’ll happily tell you that the statue at the centre of Piccadilly Circus represents the Greek god of Love – Eros – but they are wrong! It actually represents the Angel of Christian Charity.
It was erected in 1892 to commemorate Anthony Cooper, the 7th Earl of Shaftesbury, whose tireless work for the poor and mentally ill led to calls for a memorial.
Eros was originally placed in the centre of the junction with his bow pointing up Shaftesbury Avenue – but was moved to the south-western side after work was carried out on the square. He now aims his arrow down Regent Street.
- Guest – “I'm pretty sure that it's not Eros. Everyone knows it as Eros, but that's only because he's holding a bow, so everyone assumes that it's Eros. But it's actually the Angel of Christian Charity. I am willing to bet my life on that…”
- Guest – “FYI Marble Arch Is not at Hyde Park Corner, it is at the top of Park Lane at the junction with Oxford Street and Edgware Road W2…”
- Admin – “You're right, of course! What a silly mistake -- you are the first person to notice that and it's probably been there for ages. We will get that changed over.…”
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