"Hung in long, sepulchral arches of stone, the black, besmoked bridge seemed a huge scarf of crepe, festooning the river across..." Melville: Israel Potter 1855.
A beautiful image, Imagist in its power and strangeness.
"the remote stars, the high sombre trees, the vast dazzling interiors of clubs, the sinuous flickering lines of traffic ..." Arnold Bennett A Man from the North 1898
"Great masses of smoke from chimneys drift across the sunset and hang heavy in the still air; the west deepens to purple, then to grey shadow; a million fairy lights enkindle in the mazes of the lamp-lit streets.." Masterman: From The Abyss 1902
"The Strand and St Martin's Lane open out like rivers of fire, the fog billows and glows like a solar flare...."
writes Frosterus in London Rhapsody 1903. He goes on to describe the underground:
"A slow rumbling, an indeterminate reddish gleam adds colour to the dark rat-hole, which gapes blackly in the back wall of the station. And the next moment there stops at the platform a strange, coiled steel monster with staring insects eyes, behind which, like the brain, the train driver hides"
"the glint of straws blown from horses' feeds, the shimmer of wheel-marks on the wood pavement, the shine of bits of harness, the blaze of gold lettering along the house fronts, the slight quiver of the nerves after a momentarily dangerous crossing,...." Hueffer: The Soul of London. 1905
Conrad describes his perception of a van and horses thus:
"a square-backed black monster blocking half the street, with sudden iron-shod stampings, fierce jingles, and heavy, blowing sighs." The Secret Agent 1907
(All these come from The Moving Pageant edited by R. Allen).)