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The following pages have been written with the single 
object of being useful to students of archaeology at the 
outset of their inquiries. They will, accordingly, be 
found to range over as wide a space as possible, without 
ever attempting to be profound ; and in both matter 
and manner they have purposely assumed the simplest 

Had not conciseness been my object, the limits of my 
volume would have rendered it necessary. As it is, these 
limits have compelled me to leave some subjects of the 
utmost archaeological interest without any farther notice, 
than a glance at the fact of their existence. 

a 2 



It will be observed that this volume professes to be 
only a “ Manual of British Archaeology.” There, con- 
sequently, are many subjects upon which it will not be 
expected to treat. I have, however, considered it de- 
sirable to introduce brief notices of many of the art- 
processes and productions of past times, which only so 
far fall within the scope of British archaeology, that they 
are sure, in a greater or a lesser degree, to attract the 
attention of British archaeologists. 

As far as possible I have selected examples for illus- 


tration and reference from such early remains as I am 
myself familiar with ; and I have, in most instances, 
preferred those that are generally well known. At the 
same time, I have not hesitated to make a free use of 
the various elaborate and able treatises which the archaeo- 
logical tastes of the last few years have called forth. 

The illustrations of this volume, selected by myself, 
have been drawn and engraved by the skilful and ex- 
perienced hand of Mr. Orlando Jewitt. 



The reader will permit me to remind him that he is 
not to expect this manual to prove, on a small scale, a 
royal road to archaeology : far from this, my aim here has 
been but to provide a guide sufficiently humble to en- 
gage the attention and to facilitate the advance of those, 
who might pass unnoticed productions of a higher order. 
My desire is to attract persons who may be disposed to 
become students of archaeology to take up the subject in 
earnest, and to enter upon a course of careful inquiry 
and diligent research. They will find an abundance of 
materials awaiting them— materials which will prove 
equally attractive and valuable. There is a goodly array 
of archaeological books already in existence, and the sub- 
ject yet remains very far from being exhausted. Every 
year also adds largely to the long list of relics which 
the student will soon learn to regard as the best expo- 
nents of archaeology. 

April 20 thy 1858 . 

C. B. 





Architecture * 

Sect. 1. Introductory 

„ 2. Roman Remains .... 

„ 3. Anglo-Saxon Remains 

„ 4. The Anglo-Norman Style 

„ 5. Anglo-Norman Details 

„ 6. Anglo-Norman Castles 

„ 7. Transition to the English Gothic Style 

„ 8. The English Gothic Style 

„ 9. English Gothic Houses 

„ 10. English Gothic Castles 

, 3 11. The Gothic Style in Scotland and Ireland 


Architectural Accessories .... 
Sect. 1. Sculpture 

„ 2. Wood-Carving 

„ 3. Fresco, Wall-Painting, and Polychrome 

„ 4. Mosaic ...... 
























Sect. 5. Coloured Glass .... 


„ 6. Inlaid Tiles .... 


„ 7. Iron-work .... 


„ 8. Bronze-work .... 


„ 9. Lead-work 


3 , 10. The Precious Metals . 


„ 11. Bells 


j 3 12. Nomenclature .... 



Sepulchral Monuments .... 

* • . 


Sect. 1. British Sepulchral Monuments before the Homan 

Period ..... 


33 2. Anglo-Roman and Anglo-Saxon Monuments 


33 3. Anglo-Norman Monuments— The Stone-Coffin 


33 1. Monumental Slabs 

. . . 


33 5. Monumental Effigies 

. . 


33 6. Incised Monumental Effigies 

. . . 


„ 7. Monumental Brasses 


3 , 8. Semi-Effigial Slabs 



33 9. Tombs, Canopies, and Chantries 



„ 10. Late Monuments 


„ 11. Churchyard Monuments 





Sect. 1. Introductory .... 



,3 2. The Shield, and its Divisions 

• . 


3 , 3. Tinctures, Eurs, and Diapers 






Sect. 4. Heraldic Devices and Accessories 

. 158 

„ 5. Blazonry ..... 

. 162 

„ 6. Marshalling .... 

. 164 

„ 7. Differencing .... 

. 168 

„ 8. Badges 

. 170 

„ 9. Blags 

. 171 

„ 10. Knightly Insignia 

. 174 



. 179 

Sect. 1. Introductory .... 

. 179 

„ 2. Classification of Seals 

. 185 

„ 8. The Great Seals of England 

. 186 

„ 4. Examples of Various Seals . 

. 189 



. 194 

Sect. 1. Introductory .... 

. 194 

„ 2. Ancient British Coins 

. 197 

„ 3. Anglo-Saxon Coins 

. 199 

„ 4. Anglo-Norman Coins 

. 200 

„ 5. English Coins .... 

. 201 

„ 6. English Medals .... 

. 208 

„ 7. Homan Coins .... 

. 209 

„ 8. Homan Medallions 

i — i 


Paleography, Illuminations, and Inscriptions 


. 215 

Sect. 1. Introductory .... 



. 215 

„ 2. Early Byzantine and Homan Illuminations 


. 217 



Sect. 3. Early Irish Illuminations 

„ 4. Anglo-Saxon Illuminations of the Eighth and 

Ninth Centuries 

35 5. Anglo-Saxon Illuminations of the Tenth and 

Eleventh Centuries 

,3 6. Illuminations of the Twelfth Century 

„ 7. Illuminations of the Thirteenth Century 

33 8. Illuminations of the Fourteenth Century 

3, 9. Illuminations of the Fifteenth Century 

,3 10. Illuminations of the Sixteenth Century 

33 11. General Remarks 

3, 12. Inscriptions ....... 


Arms and Armour 

Sect. 1. Introductory 

,3 2. The Stone, or Primaeval Period . 

„ 3. The Bronze, or Roman Period .... 

„ 4* The Iron, or Anglo-Saxon Period 

„ 5. The Anglo-Norman Period, extending to the close 

of the Twelfth Century 

„ 6. The Thirteenth Century — Period of Mail Armour 

,j 7. The Fourteenth Century — Period of Mixed Armour 
33 8. The Fifteenth Century — Period of Plate Armour . 

„ 9. The Sixteenth Century — Period of the Decline of 


3, 10. The Seventeenth Century — Period of the Disuse of 


„ 11. General Remarks 




























Costumes and Personal Ornaments .... 

. 270 


1. Ecclesiastical Yestments and Habits 

. 270 


2. Lay Official Costumes 

. 281 


3. Costumes of Ladies 

. 283 


4. Costumes of Civilians 

. 295 


5. Personal Ornaments 

. 299 


Pottery, Porcelain, and Glass 

. 304 


1. Introductory 

. 304 


2. Ancient British Pottery .... 

. 306 


3. Roman-British Pottery .... 

. 308 


4. Anglo-Saxon Pottery 

. 310 


5. Italian and Erench Keramic Manufactures . 

. 312 


6. Elemish and German St one- ware . 

. 318 


7. Porcelain 

. 319 


8. English Pottery and Porcelain 

. 321 


9. Glass 

. 322 


Miscellaneous Subjects ...... 

. 328 


1. Decorative Processes applied to Metals 

. 328 


2. Clocks and Watches 

. 336 


3. Locks, Keys, and Decorative Iron-work 

. 337 


4. Ivory Carvings, Cameos, and Intaglios . 

. 338 


5. Mosaics 

. 341 


6. Painting in Oil ...... 

. 342 


7* Embroidery ...... 

. 342 




Sect. 8. Furniture 345 

„ 9. Wood-Engraving and Typography . . . 346 

„ 10. Chess and Playing-Cards 348 

„ 11. English Shipping in the Middle Ages . . . 349 

„ 12. Monastic Orders 351 

„ 13. The Nimbus and Emblems of Saints . . .356 

„ 14. British, Roman, and Saxon Earthworks and En- 
campments 359 

Glossary oe Architectural Terms 363 

Index oe Buildings and Places 368 

Index oe Names and Titles 373 

General Index 3 77 



Eig. 1. Chancel Arch, St. Peter’s, Northampton, (Anglo-Norman). 

— 2. North Transept, York Cathedral, (Early English Gothic). 

— 3. West Eront, York Cathedral, (Decorated Gothic). 

— 4. Cloisters, Christchurch Cathedral, Oxford, (Perpendicular 



Eig. 1. Lancet Window, Stanton Harcourt, Oxon, about 1220, 

— 2. Interior of the same. 

— 3. Two-light Window, Woodstock Church, Oxon, about 1240. 

■ — 4. Three-light Window, Slapton Church, Northants, about 


Eig. 1. Eromthe Tomb of William de Yalence, Westminster Abbey, 
a.d. 1296. 

— 2, 3, 4, 5. Erom Queen Eleanor’s Cross, Geddingt on, Northants, 

about 1300. 

— 6. Shield of Robert de Yere, Hatfield Broadoak Church, Essex, 

a.d. 1298. 

— 7. Shield of William de Yalence. 




Pig. 1. Prom Chetwode Church, Bucks, about 1300. 

— 2, 3. Borders from the Choir of Bristol Cathedral, fourteenth 



Pig. 1. Prom the site of Chert sey Abbey, Surrey. 

— 2. Prom Wheathamstead Church, Herts. 

— - 3. Prom St. Alban’s Abbey Church. 

— 4. Prom Great Malvern Abbey Church. 


Pig. 1. At Haltwhistle Church, Northumberland, about 1300. 

— 2. At Gilling Church, Yorkshire, about 1350. 


Part of a Brass to an Ecclesiastic, Merton College Chapel, Oxford, 
about 1375. 

Pig. 1. Tomb and Effigy of Sir John de Sutton, Hull, a.d. 1339. 

— 2. Stone Coffin, Lincoln Cathedral, (Anglo-Norman). 


Pig. 1. Shield of Raymond, Count of Provence, Westminster 
Abbey, about 1250. 

— 2. Shield of Edward the Confessor, Westminster Abbey, about 


— 3. Shield of Percy, from the Percy Shrine, Beverley Minster, 

about 1350. 

— 4. Shield of Prince John of Eltham, Westminster Abbey, 


— 5. Crest and Cap of Maintenance of the Black Prince, Canter- 

bury Cathedral, 1376. 




Pig. 1. Badge of Spencer. 

— 2. — — Dacre. 

— 3. — De Bohun. 


Pig. L. Pennon of Sir John D’Aubernoun, Stoke Dabernon, Surrey, 

— 2, 5. Standards of Henry VIII. 

— 3. Royal Banner of Richard II., Pelbrigg, Norfolk. 

— 4. Banner of St. Edmund. 


Pig. 1. Great Seal of Edward I. 

— 2. Personal Seal. 

— 3. Device Seal. 


Pig. 1. Prom Tomb of King Henry III., 1273. 

— — — Queen Eleanor, 1291. 

— 3. * - King Edward III., 1377. 

— — — Alianore, widow of Thomas of Woodstock, 


— 5, 6. — — * King Richard II., 1399. 

All in Westminster Abbey. 


Pigs. 1, 2, 3. Bronze Celts from Buxton, Alderney, and Banbury. 

— 4. Stone Celt, from Stanton Pitz-Warren. 


Pig. 1. Bronze British Shield. 

— 2, 3. Bronze Swords. 

— 4. Bronze Spear-head. 



Eig. 6. Iron Battle-axe. 

— 7. Iron Dagger. 

— 8. Bronze Dagger. 

— 9, 10. Iron Arrow-heads. 


Eig. 1. Erom the Brass to Sir John D’Aubernoun, a.d. 1277 ; and 

— 2. Erom the Brass to Sir John D’Aubernoun the younger, a.d. 

1327. Both at Stoke Dabernon, Surrey. 

— 3. Erom the Brass to Sir Hugh Hastings, Elsyng, Norfolk, a.d. 


— 4. Erom the Effigy of Lord Montacute, in Salisbury Cathedral, 

a.d. 1389. 

— 5, Erom the Brass to Sir IvoEitz-Waryn, in Wantage Church, 

Berks, a.d. 1111. 

— 6. Erom the Brass to Sir Bobert Staunton, Castle Donington 

Church, Leicestershire, a.d. 1158. 


Eigs. 1 to 18. Various British and Anglo-Saxon Beads. 


Eig. 1. British Armilla Torque of gold. 

— 2, 3, 1, 7. Anglo-Saxon Pendant Ornaments. 

- — 5, 6. Anglo-Saxon Bronze Eibulse. 


Eigs. 1, 5, 6. British Urn ahd Vases, found in Guernsey. 

— 2. Roman Amphora, found at Chesterford, Cambridgeshire. 

— 3. Small Roman Vase, found at Shefford, Beds. 

— 1. Roman Samian Vase, found at Chesterford. 


Eig. 1. Reliquary of Limoges Enamel on copper, gilt. 

— 2, 3, 1. Roman Enamelled Eibulse. 


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The history of tlie human race is, for the most part, 
unconsciously written by the successive generations of 
men in the works of their own hands. These works- 
in the first instance generally produced for present use 
- — remain long after their authors have passed away 
from the busy scene of life. From year to year and 
from century to century the vast series, of human pro- 
ductions continually accumulates, and the past is for 
ever adding fresh stores of visible and tangible relics to 
its all-comprehensive historical museum. 

During the last few years public attention has been 
attracted in a very remarkable manner to the inves- 
tigation and study of early remains, of whatsoever kind 
and in every region. An antiquarian taste has thus 




been formed, and antiquarian pursuits have become both 
prevalent and popular. The term Archaeology (which 
strictly signifies the knowledge of things ancient) has 
been adopted and recognised to denote the antiquarian 
researches and studies of the present day, with their 
results. Archaeological Societies have been formed with 
the twofold object of exciting a still more widely ex- 
tended interest in these researches and studies, and also 
of conducting them more systematically and with a 
greater concentration of energy. In both respects the 
Societies have already accomplished much : more par- 
ticularly they have been successful in awakening intel- 
ligent inquiries, in engaging sympathy, and in securing 
co-operation. Archaeological meetings — now as regu- 
larly looked for as they are regularly held in all parts of 
the kingdom — are invariably attended with gratifying 
results. People find that there is an object in archaeology, 
and so they become archaeologists. They learn, perhaps 
to their surprise, that archaeology has a much higher aim 
than to determine to what remote ages certain ancient 
relics may, with probable accuracy, be assigned. In- 
stead of this, their attention is invited to the historical 
teaching of everything with which archaeology deals : 



they are led to regard ancient relics as expressions of 
the human intellect and as illustrations of human sen- 
timents^ and habits, and requirements, under conditions 
differing very widely from those of our own day : they 
are taught to examine, to collect, to classify, to analyse 
early remains, with the view either to elicit from them 
fresh facts as new elements of knowledge, or to adduce, 
through their instrumentality, fresh evidence which may 
corroborate and elucidate facts already known and ac- 
cepted : they discover, in a word, that archaeology is in 
rea lity a system of monumental history, of which the 
peculiar interest is greatly enhanced from the circum- 
stance that it always closely associates the producers 
themselves with every object that has been left by them 
for us to discover, perhaps, as well as to examine. 
History which thus assumes a biographical aspect, while 
if is built up at every stage upon a series of contempo- 
raneous monuments, can scarcely fail to command atten- 
tion. There is also their own attraction inseparable 
from the early works themselves. Either curious, or 
singular, or strange, or beautiful, or noble, and some- 
times combining many varied qualities, these relics 
would very generally be found to repay the care of the 

b 2' 



archaeologist even without his extending his inquiries to 
their historical teaching. Accordingly, when the true 
character of archaeology is for the first time appreciated 
through being for the first time understood, it is easy 
to conceive that the ranks of archaeologists, on these 
occasions, rarely fail to have their numbers increased. 
Such, indeed, is the sure result of a well-conducted 
archaeological meeting : volunteer recruits are gained, and 
they enter upon their new study in earnest, with zeal 
and with the determination to persevere; and their first 
inquiry is, very naturally, for some simple manual which 
will guide them in the early stages of their researches, 
and upon which they may rely for general information 
respecting archaeology, conveyed in a concise and popular 
form. Hitherto it has been impossible to return to such 
inquiries any other reply than that such an elementary 
hook would be very desirable and that it really is much 
needed, but, unfortunately, nothing of the kind has been 

It is the object of this little volume to supply this 
deficiency at the outset of our archaeological literature, 
and to provide for students such a Grammar or 
Archeology as may consistently introduce them to 



works of a higher order and a more comprehensive 

In the preparation of its pages the utmost brevity 
and simplicity have been carefully observed. The 
aim of the writer has been to classify and arrauge 
such elementary facts as will be found most useful by 
persons who are entering upon a course of archaeological 
inquiry, and to set them forth in a plain and popular 
manner. All more detailed descriptions, with the varied 
results which have crowned the labours of our most dis- 
tinguished archaeologists, he leaves the student to seek 
from other sources. The more advanced student will 
find an abundant supply of valuable works, which treat 
of almost every possible subject that is embraced within 
the comprehensive scope of archaeology; and should he 
seek for information upon some one special topic, or 
upon one particular class of works of early art, he will 
be able readily to lay his hand either upon a monograph, 
or a series of essays and papers, which will prove to be 
precisely what he requires. 

It is not, however, merely to what has been written 
upon archaeology that this elementary volume would 
introduce the student and inquirer. Copious, indeed, 



learned, interesting, and eminently valuable, are the 
books and periodicals which have attended the recent pro- 
gress of the career of archaeology ; and yet there exists 
a field for inquiry and study which possesses a still 
stronger claim upon the archaeologist, and also promises 
him a more abundant recompence. This field is thickly 
strewn with the actual relics of the past. All that archi- 
tecture has accomplished in bygone ages is here. Here 
are what time has spared to us of the creations of early 
sculpture and painting. Caligraphers, money ers, gold- 
smiths, heralds, armorers, engravers, here have brought 
together, in long succession, their multifarious produc- 
tions. Here, also, are assembled the works of keramic 
artists and glassmakers, with all the other varied objects 
that former races and generations of men have devised, 
and made, and used, and bequeathed as their contri- 
butions to the history of their species. 

The young archaeologist will do well to enter upon a 
course of practical investigation from the very first. 
Gladly availing himself of such aids as have been pro- 
vided for him by those who have preceded him in the 
same course, he will never neglect an opportunity for 
acquiring information by means of his own personal 



observation. While he reads, and takes extracts from 

■MMi J 

what others have written, and collects good engravings, 
he will write his own descriptions of what falls under 
his notice, and he will illustrate these descriptions care- 
fully and fully with his own pencil. Such habits need 
but to be formed to ensure their permanence ; for the 
knowledge thus acquired is by far too delightful to be 
neglected, or for the pursuit of it to be forsaken. It is 
the same with archaeology as it is with natural science. 
New qualities thus are imparted to objects through the 
power of association. In the one case natural produc- 
tions assume a dignity, and are clothed with a beauty, 
which cannot be appreciated 'without at least some 
acquaintance with the grand laws and sublime harmonies 
of nature. Archaeology, in her turn, discloses the monu- 
mental and historical character of the early works of 
man ; and hence these works become invested with 
claims upon our regard and attention, which before we 
could have neither understood nor recognised. Thus 
the archaeologist sees in the lonely tumulus much more 
than a picturesque upheaving of the turf ; and he dis- 
covers hidden treasures of thought and reflection even 
in the old church, which from his childhood he had re- 

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garded with mingled sentiments ot reverence and admi- 


His researches amongst the various remains of early 
art cannot fail to impress the student of archaeology with 
a high admiration for the taste and the true art-feeling, 
and also for the exquisite mechanical skill, displayed by 
men who lived in ages which he may heretofore have re- 
garded as altogether immersed in intellectual darkness. 
Let him seek to form a just estimate of those ages and 
of the generations of his race who then flourished. 
Neither yielding to an extravagant enthusiasm, nor 
being influenced by an unworthy indifference, let him 
soberly weigh the real merits of the workers and the 
works of the olden time. He will thus be led to feel 
that no intrinsic value is attached to any object merely 
because of the fact of its being ancient ; but that ster- 
ling excellence, and felicitous adaptability, and genuine 
beauty, and the faculty of historical illustration, alone 
constitute the worth of early works and relics. And, as 
he pursues his researches in this spirit, he will find him- 
self surrounded by an ever-enlarging circle of that prac- 
tical knowledge, which may be continually applied both 
to his own improvement and to advance the well-being 




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The history of British architecture may be said to com- 
mence in the eleventh century; and it is not until after 
the accession of the Norman dynasty that it can be con- 
sidered to have assumed any definite form. Fragments 
of architectural works of various earlier periods are, 
indeed, in existence in our country; but these remains, 
however valuable as illustrations of general history, can 
scarcely claim for themselves a distinct recognition in 
the history of the art of architecture as it flourished 
during past ages in Britain. 

British architecture comprises Two Styles , the Anglo- 
Norman and the English Gothic. Of these two styles,, 
the former prevailed until the third quarter of the 
twelfth, and the latter until the middle of the sixteenth 
century. A brief period of transition intervened between 





the final disuse of the earlier style and the complete 
establishment of its successor; and the Gothic, while 
maintaining throughout its career the distinctive cha- 
racteristics of a single style, is found to have passed 
through three distinct artistic periods, and to have 
assumed as many definite forms of expression. 

It will be of the utmost importance for the student, 
while carefully discriminating between the three phases 
of the Gothic of Britain, to keep in remembrance the 
fact that these are not three different styles, but that the 
three make up the one style. It must also be borne in 
mind that, in the middle ages, the same style of archi- 
tecture was invariably applied, at each period, to every 
variety of edifice. Buildings of one class may now 
remain in considerable numbers, and of other classes but 
occasional relics may have passed through the ordeal of 
the lapse of ages; yet, when these different works were 
planned and constructed, they were all equally true to 
the architecture of their own era. Whether Anglo- 
Norman or English Gothic, the style was equally appli- 
cable, and it was applied alike to the cathedral or the 
village church— to the feudal castle or the civic guildhall 
— to the monastery or to the private dwelling-house. 



The architecture was the architecture of the time : what- 
ever buildings were required, those it was ready to 
produce, and it did produce ; and it was always able to 
adapt itself to varying circumstances and different con- 
ditions, without even the slightest infringement of its 
own principles, or any departure from its own practice 
and traditions. 


The flourishing condition of Britain as a Roman 
prqvince is clearly proved by the existing remains of 
edifices which were constructed, during their occupancy 
of this island, by the Romans themselves. These same 
remains also bear no less conclusive witness to the strife 
and violence which succeeded, after the departure of the 
Romans from these shores. Thus, while foundations, 
pavements, and the lower portions of Roman buildings 
are continually brought to light by means of various 
excavations, it is rare indeed to find above the surface of 
the ground any works which were constructed by Roman 

We may without hesitation adopt the opinion that 
the temples, villas, and other public and private buildings 


1 o 


erected in this country by the Romans were both nume- 
rous and important ; and we know that the Roman style 
of building was in itself well calculated for endurance. 
Roman architecture, also, and the building materials in 
use by the Romans, must have been understood, and 
their value appreciated by the native islanders; and con- 
sequently, the disappearance of genuine Roman edifices, 
followed by the complete disuse of Roman architecture, 
would seem of necessity to have resulted from a pro- 
tracted condition of civil convulsion and foreign inva- 

Roman foundations are found to have been formed 
with much care and skill, and to this day they often 
retain unimpaired their original firmness and security. 
With the foundations, and the hard concrete on which 
they rest, pavements of tesserae, or small cubes of different 
materials and various colours, arranged in patterns, are 
frequently discovered, and they generally are in excellent 
preservation ; also, flues for heating, and the structural 
arrangements for the bath— that important department 
in a Roman (and, indeed, in every) house — constantly 
occur. The mortar used in these works is remarkably 
hard and tenacious, and almost always contains pounded 



brick, the building materials themselves being generally 
very hard, thin bricks, varying in size from about eight 
inches square to one foot six inches by one foot, and 
always less than two inches in thickness. In addition to 
these, flue-tiles have been discovered, and other varieties 
of bricks or tiles, which were specially adapted to par- 
ticular purposes. In the construction of walls the 
Romans used their large flat bricks in bands or layers, 
consisting of either a single course, or of two or more 
courses, at intervals varying from about one foot to four 
feet apart, for the purpose of binding together the rubble 
(or rough flint masonry) of which the mass of the struc- 
ture was formed. Where stone was to be obtained, it 
was freely used by the Romans in their buildings : large 
stones were set without mortar, but mortar was used 
when the stones were of small size. The binding courses 
of bricks were sometimes introduced into regular stone- 
masonry. It was also a common practice with the 
Romans to face a wall, on both sides, with cut stone, 
and to fill in the central mass with rubble. 

Roman bricks, and possibly bricks made subsequently 
after the Roman fashion, were extensively used by the 
early Norman builders, and sometimes also by their 



Saxon predecessors, as at St. Albans, Brix worth, Darenth, 
Guildford Castle, &c. 


The intercourse established between England and 
Normandy during the first half of the eleventh century 
led to the adoption by the Anglo-Saxons of many usages 
then already prevalent amongst the Normans. The more 
general use of stone instead of timber for building pur- 
poses was not the least important of the improvements 
thus obtained. The great impulse at that period given 
to the erection of churches also led to the introduction 
of Norman architects and masons ; and thus the way 
was cleared for the establishment of Norman archi- 
tecture in England after the Conquest. Much difference 
of opinion still exists with reference to the early edifices, 
parts of which may (it would seem) be certainly attri- 
buted to Saxon times. It will be sufficient here to de- 
scribe those peculiarities, which by general consent have 
been considered to indicate a condition of architecture 
anterior to the accession of the Norman dynasty in 
England. It will be observed that these peculiarities 
distinguish parts of buildings, of which other parts have 



evidently been erected at later periods. These Saxon 
remains are very rudely constructed of rough masonry, 
the mortar being of very inferior quality, and the walls 
having (apparently in all cases) been plastered over on 
their exterior surface. The quoins, or angle-masonry, 
are of hewn stones, set alternately on end and hori- 
zontally , and hence denominated “long and short work.” 
The walls are very thick, without buttresses, and some- 
times built of herring -hone work, or stones set diagonally, 
the inclination of the courses being alternately to the 
right and the left. Narrow flat strips of masonry, of 
“ long and short ” construction and slight projection, 
ornament the surfaces of the walls, sometimes in tiers, 
and with the addition of small semicircular arches or 
triangles formed of similar stones. This ornamentation 
may have been derived from the ancient timber-framing. 

The arches of doorways and windows are rounded, or 
sometimes the openings have triangular heads ; the 
jambs (or perpendicular sides) are formed of “long and 
short” work, and they carry either rudely-carved im- 
posts (blocks of stone laid horizontally) or capitals with 
square abaci. Sometimes rude and heavy mouldings 
run round the arches ; and where two or more arches 



are conjoined as an arcade, these arches are carried on 
heavy, low shafts, formed like balusters, and encircled 


with rude bands. When these baluster-shafts carry 
arches pierced in thick external walls, they are set in 
the midst of the thickness of the wall, and support long 
stones reaching through the wall. Arched openings in 
walls splay from both the exterior and interior, and the 
actual piercings are in the mid-thickness of the walls. 
These peculiar features will not all be found in any one 
building ; but in the tower of Earl’s Barton, in Nor- 
thamptonshire, more of them occur than in any other 
known example. The triforium in the transept at St. 
Albans may also be specified as containing some highly 
characteristic specimens of Anglo-Saxon baluster-shafts. 
It is certain that before the Norman Conquest several 
churches, of very considerable size, were completed in 
this country : thus the Confessor erected his abbey church 
at Westminster, and Edmer of Canterbury has left us 
a description of the metropolitan cathedral before it was 
rebuilt by Lanfranc in 1070. Anglo-Saxon remains 
are generally found in close association with genuine 
Norman work ; and it may be considered that the archi- 
tecture of the Saxons, however rude, exercised a certain 



amount of influence upon the Norman style after it had 
become naturalized in England. 


Having secured their position as the dominant race in 
Britain, with surprising energy the Normans applied 
themselves to the task of erecting cathedrals, churches, 
abbeys, castles, and other important edifices, throughout 
the length and breadth of the land. The magnitude of 
many of these buildings is no less remarkable than their 
numbers; and they are characterized by that bold, 
simple, and massive grandeur, which, notwithstanding 
their comparative rudeness as works of art, always com- 
mands respect, and rarely fails to win admiration. 

In this style the walls are massive, self-sustaining, 
and without buttresses. The masonry, whether of 
rubble or ashlar, at the first very rude and with wide 
joints, becomes gradually better executed ; but the stones 
continue to be of a small size, and in every course the 
stones are invariably of the same height, so that the 
lines of mortar are continued throughout the work, each 
of them in the same straight line. The buildings are 
often both very spacious and very lofty. The more im- 




portant churches are of a cruciform plan, and conse- 
quently they have a transept ; towards the east they ter- 
minate in an apse, which closes-in a short choir ; the 
aisles are narrow, and sometimes they are carried round 
the apse ; apsidal chapels project from various parts of 
the main building towards the east; and towers rise 
both at the intersection of the transept and at the west 
end. In their general proportions these churches are 
longer, and their transepts have a bolder projection than 
in similar buildings on the continent ; and, unlike their 
continental brethren, they were not designed to be vaulted 
with stone, except in their aisles and chapels. It was a 
common practice to build the choir, with its apse and 
aisles, upon a vaulted crypt, supported by rows of low 
shafts and piers. The smaller churches were generally 
built without aisles ; and the earlier examples have often 
a tower between the nave and chancel, the latter of 
which originally terminated eastward in an apse. The 
apse, so characteristic of the Anglo-Norman style, is 
now rarely to be seen, in consequence of the prevailing 
usage of lengthening the earlier churches towards the 
east at subsequent periods ; and the apse ceased to be in 
use in England after the complete establishment of Gothic 



Decorative carving does not appear to have been much 
used in this style until after the first quarter of the 
twelfth century, when it is found in great abundance, and 
always is highly characteristic in both design and exe- 

Derived in the first instance, in common with the 


other early forms of mediaeval architecture, from the 
ruins of the architecture of ancient Rome, the Anglo- 
Norman style is included with the early styles of Byzan- 
tium, Lombardy, France, and Germany, under the 
general title of /Romanesque, The archaeological 
observer will not fail to trace out in this style the lin- 
gering influence of ancient art, and to distinguish 
between its results and the first free expressions of the 
hardy spirit of the middle ages. 


The more important architectural members of buildings 
in the Anglo-Norman style may be briefly described as 
follows : — 

The piers vary considerably in both plan and compa- 
rative height. Some are cylindrical, others are simple 
masses of wall, and others are formed from groups of 

c 2 



shafts of various sizes clustered about a mass of masonry 
to which they are attached. Zigzag and other carved 
work is sometimes found wrought about the largest 

The shaets or pillars, which are of different dia- 
meters, when grouped together and attached to piers 
form parts of the solid mass, and are constructed in 
courses which are uniform with the rest of the structure. 
These attached shafts stand in the nook or re-entering 
angle, formed by two flat surfaces of masonry, built at 
right angles to each other. In arcades intended simply 
to decorate wall-surfaces, the shafts are also generally 
attached to the wall itself; and in these cases they 
sometimes, late in the style, are formed from a single 
block, or from two or three stones, differing in height 
from the courses of the wall- masonry. The shafts which 
carry the vaulting of crypts or the arches of a triforium, 
and consequently stand clear, are also formed either 
from single blocks or from a few large stones. Late in 
the style, the shafts sometimes have a band encircling 
them, and they very commonly are completely covered 
with elaborate carvings. In Fig. 1 of Plate I. one of 
the shafts is thus enriched. 


Tlate I. 


Eg. 3. West front, dark Catuedral (’Decorated. Gothic.) 

4. Cloisters, CLrifotcErirdi. Cathedral; Chsfordj (Pea^peadicolar Gothic^ 

TW1. Chancel Arch, Peter’s EorOoarnpton , (Jho^o Warrr, 

2 . Earth Transept . Xark Cathedral, (Early Dullish Gothic ) 

0. Jewett dal. et lilt . 

Lucent ZBxodfca imp. 



The arches are semicircular, or occasionally stilted — 
that is, the perpendicular lines of their jambs rise above 
the capitals. The earliest and most simple arches are 
pierced at right angles to the walls in which they occur, 
and have their edges chamfered off ; but the more 
general arrangement is to have the arch formed from a 
series of concentric arches, recessed one within the other, 
each order being carried by its own corresponding jamb- 
shafts, or by some members of the jambs which are 
recessed like the sweep of the arch itself. The inner- 
most order, or sub-order, is not shafted. The different 
orders are generally either moulded or covered with 
carvings. Parts of two orders of a very rich recessed 
arch with shafted jambs are represented in Fig. 1 of 
Plate I. 

Anglo-Norman doorways are often to be seen in 

cj f ir1l - 

churches in which no other member of the original 
Norman edifice remains. The arches for these doorways 
are almost always deeply recessed and much ornamented. 
On the exterior they are covered by a dripstone. Many 
of the richest of these doorway-arches are without shafts, 
and have the arches themselves continuous with their 
jambs, the whole being elaborately carved. Fine ex- 



amples occur at Malmesbury Abbey and Iffley, near 
Oxford. The actual opening for the door is very com- 
monly square-headed, and formed by a horizontal lintel 
which cuts off the half-circle enclosed within the sweep 
of the arch-head. The space above this lintel; called the 
tympanum, is generally filled with sculpture or decorative 

The windows in this style are; in early examples, 
placed high up in the wall for the sake of security. 
Some are very narrow, others are low and broad, while 
in other examples the openings are large. The splay in 
the window-arches, in almost all cases, commences from 
the outer surface of the wall, and spreads widely inwards. 
In the early examples, the splay of the sweep of the 
inner arch is uniform with the splay of the jambs ; but 
at a more advanced period, the inner arch is much de- 
pressed. The arches are often both shafted and -enriched 
with carving and mouldings on both their outer and 
inner faces. These windows in most cases stand singly, 
or each window forms a single and complete member of 
a series ; occasionally, however, two windows are so 
placed as to form a group, and above them appears a 
circular window, as at Kirkstall Abbey. Large circular 



windows, divided by small arches with shafts radiating 
from the centre, are sometimes to be seen ; and, as the 
style advanced, the more important windows assumed 
lofty and dignified proportions. 

Arcades for the decoration of wall-surfaces are very 
common. They often are formed of very narrow arches 
set on very tall shafts, as in Norwich Cathedral; and as 
commonly the arches are made to intersect by rising 
from the alternate shafts. This intersection is some- 
times made compound, as in the Chapter-house at Wor- 
cester. In the triforium - arcade of the larger churches 
sometimes the arches are almost as important as the 
main pier-arches themselves, above which they rise. 
The inner arches of the clerestory - arcade are commonly 
formed in groups of three arches, of which the central 
arch is much more lofty than those on either side of it. 
In these groups it is not uncommon to see a cluster of 
small shafts rising from the capital of a single one of 
considerably larger size than themselves. 

Anglo-Norman capitals are convex in their general 
contour, massive, and commonly covered with carved 
decoration. The earlier examples are short, but the later 
ones are more lofty, and approach towards the graceful- 



ness of the succeeding style. The abacus (or uppermost 
member) is square and heavy, and the neclc-moulding 
( astragal ) is frequently cabled, as in the characteristic 
examples from St. Peters, Northampton, figured in 
Plate I. In these examples the abaci are covered with 
carving; one of the capitals also shows the spiral orna- 
ment often to be seen in this member, and which not 
uncommonly approaches closely in form and treatment 
to the ancient Ionic volute . The Anglo-Norman capital, 
from its peculiar form, has been denominated a cushion- 
capital . 

The base sometimes resembj,e£ an inverted capital, but 
it more frequently is moulded with a few bold mouldings 
which rest upon a massive square plinth. In some in- 
stances there is a second plinth, of which the angles are 
chamfered off; and it was also an Anglo-Norman usage 
to carve a projecting leaf or other ornament, which issues 
from the mouldings and rests upon the angle of the plinth. 

The mouldings, at first very shallow and sparingly 
used, are almost exclusively rounds and hollows, with 
chamfers, and occasionally a fillet. Throughout the 
Anglo-Norman era plain mouldings are comparatively 
rare, the prevailing usage having been to cover them 



with carving or to break them up into some of the many 
zigzag and other lines which were in such high favour 
with Norman artists. These zigzags are almost infi- 
nitely modified and variously grouped. Other figures — - 
such as cabled-work, beads of various sizes, and inter- 
lacing bands — are associated with the zigzags, the beads 
(as in Fig. 1, Plate I.) being often worked upon them. 
A moulding called billet , and which appears under 
various modifications of form, and a series of grotesque 
heads of birds or animals, placed in a hollow and having 
their beaks or tongues lapping over a large roll, are 
favourite and characteristic decorations. The billet is 
formed by cutting a roll or other projecting moulding 
into small pieces, and removing every other piece. This 
billet- work is generally set in two or more contiguous 
rows, the billets and the void spaces alternating in the 
alternate rows. A moulding called nail-lleacL which 
consists of a series of very small low pyramids, is also 
common ; so also is another which is serrated like the 
teeth of a saw. Strings, or continuous ranges of mould- 
ings traversing the faces of walls, are either plain with 
a chamfer below, or formed of bold rolls or zigzag- work, 
with billet and sometimes other carving introduced. 



There are fine examples on the exterior, of the nave at 
Ely. The surface of walls was often ornamented with 
diaper ; and a common pattern was a series of shallow 
indents, apparently produced by pressing upon mortar 
while wet the end of a sharp or rounded trowel. 

The corbel-tables, which carry the plain and massive 
parapets of the style, are in most cases characteristically 
moulded, and sometimes the corbels themselves carry a 
series of small arches. 

It will be observed that all Anglo-Norman decorative 
carving is shallow, and does not give to the figures and 
lines any genuine projection. It is in reality produced 
by cutting away parts of the stone, and thus the .desired 
devices are left m sunk relief . In the few attempts at 
sculpture which occur, the workmanship is generally 
such as produces no more than a very low relief. 

The towers and turrets are either square or cylin- 
drical in form, and they appear to have been originally 
surmounted either by a conical coping or by a pyra- 
midal roof. It was customary to decorate their surfaces 
with tiers of arcades and various mouldings. The towers 
and turrets of this style, which are yet in existence, are 
comparatively but few in number. 



Buttress-strips, or broad vertical bands of masonry, 
commonly divide the bays, and they also form the angles 
of buildings when there are no angle-turrets. They 
have but a slight projection, which is uniform through- 
out ; at their angles they commonly have a shaft recessed 
in a nook of the masonry, or sometimes the angles are 
cut into zigzags; strings band over them, and they 
either rise to the parapet which projects to receive 
them, or die into the wall lower down. They must be 
regarded as designed simply to break the uniform 
continuity of the surfaces of walls, for the purpose of 

Vaulting, when used, is very simple, and in two 
forms- — either arched or groined: of these, the former 
consists of a semi -cylindrical covering, and is generally 
quite plain as in the White Tower, or it has plain and 
massive sub-arches at intervals ; the groined vaulting, 
formed by the intersection of four arched vaults, is with- 
out any ribs in the early examples, except transverse 
ribs between the bays ; but subsequently the groins (or 
edges) themselves have ribs, and both these and the 
transverse ribs are either heavily moulded or enriched 
with zigzag, billet, or other carving. The losses at the 



intersection of these ribs, when any appear, are usually 
small and unimportant. 

Very noble examples of Anglo-Norman architecture 
remain in the Cathedrals of Norwich, Ely, Winchester, 
Rochester, Canterbury, Durham, Hereford, and Gloucester; 
and with these may be classed the abbeys of St. Allans, 
Tewkesbury, and Hornsey, of Malmesbury, and Pershore, 
with the ruins of Fountains, the grand collegiate church 
of Southwell, the churches of Stowe, Wymondham, St. 
Peter’s at Northampton, Iffley, and very many others, 
and the chapel of the White Tower in London. 

In Scotland the examples of Norman architecture 
that are occasionally to be observed, exhibit the style in 
its highest perfection, and they assimilate more closely 
to the Norman of Normandy than of England. There 
are but few works of importance that were erected before 
the twelfth century, though the style itself was known 
and in use in the eleventh, and it was retained, in its most 
perfect form, until a much later period than it prevailed 
to the south of the Tweed. The abbey-churches of 
Kelso and Jedburgh are amongst the finest examples; 
and in connexion with them may be specified the chapel 
of Leuchars and the ruins of Dunfermline. The remark- 



able Cathedral of St. Magnus, at Kirkwall in the Orkneys, 
was also commenced in 1137, and the works for some 
time were carried on with vigour. 

The architecture of Ireland, though distinguished by 
a peculiar nationality of character, exhibits in its earlier 
examples the influence of the Norman style, and many 
details essentially Norman in their treatment may often 
be observed; still, Norman architecture can scarcely be 
considered to have fairly established itself in the sister 


In our own country, as well as in Scotland and Ireland, 
the lapse of time has done less to destroy early castellated 
and domestic buildings than war and wilful violence. 
Wherever any remains of castles yet exist in England, 
if they were originally the work of Anglo-Norman archi- 
tects, they illustrate the characteristic peculiarities of 
the style in all particulars. The same principle is com- 
mon to these buildings with the contemporary ecclesi- 
astical edifices, and the same treatment and the same 
details are alike apparent in all. At the same time, the 
early castle shows both that its own special requirements 
were well understood, and that the style was wielded by 



men who knew well how to adapt it as well to one pur- 
pose as to another. 

The Anglo-Norman castle generally consisted of the 
keep, the watts, the base-court, often enclosed within a 
second range of walls, the mound, also called the donjon, 
and the ditch . Of these the keep, which constituted the 
actual fortress, is generally a square or oblong building 
(though sometimes multangular and occasionally circular), 
of the most massive strength and solidity, and of great 
height. This keep contains a series of large apartments, 
one above the other, and sometimes it is divided by a wall, 
so that there are two apartments on each floor. The 
ground story is generally vaulted, but the upper floors are 
of timber. The approach is from an external flight of 
steps, leading to an entrance -tower which abuts upon the 
main structure. The angles are usually flanked with tur- 
rets of great strength, though of but slight projection. 
The parapets, of which but a few fragments remain, may 
have been embattled, but they were more probably plain 
or pierced at long intervals with narrow slits. Staircases, 
galleries, small sleeping apartments, with the well and its 
appliances, are in the mass of the walls ; fireplaces, as well 
as flues, are also sometimes similarly placed ; the mural 



chambers are often vaulted, and the galleries are arched 
over. A chapel always forms a part of a keep, and this 
is in some examples mural. The masonry is generally 
rubble dressed with ashlar, but sometimes the entire 
work is constructed with wrought stone of admirable 
quality. The walls enclose a considerable space, and 
form with the ditch the outer defences ; they contain the 
base-court, which comprise lodgings for the garrison, with 
offices for the establishment. The entire area within 
the walls was called the bailey , and where the walls are 
double, there accordingly are inner and outer baileys 0 
The hall is the principal apartment within the keep, and 
it is often enriched with the architectural sculpture and 
other decorative accessories of the period : the hall at 
Oakham Castle is a fine example. Many noble speci- 
mens of Norman keeps yet exist, as at London, Ro- 
chester, Prudhoe, Coningsburgh, &c. : in the castle last 
named the masonry is very perfect and of the very best 
construction. The mound , which usually contains a well 

q^vvv.w: # # 

and some chambers, is an artificial tumulus, from about 
30 to about 60 feet in height, and varying from 60 to 
100 feet in diameter at the summit, upon which some 
works for defensive purposes appear to have been erected. 



Before the death of Stephen, 1115 castles are said to 
have been erected in England since the Conquest ; many, 
however, were shortly after razed by royal command ; 
and succeeding sovereigns exercised the exclusive power, 
as a part of the prerogative of the crown, to grant licences 
for the embattling or making loopholes for defensive 
purposes in the walls of dwelling-houses. 

The houses of the Anglo-Normans, as we now under- 
stand that term, were, from the necessity of the times, 
in some respect at least, defensive in their construction ; 
or they were buildings not calculated for any prolonged 
existence. It is probable that the type of these houses 
corresponded with that which was certainly prevalent in 
the twelfth century, and which is described at page 62. 
Near the summit of the hill at Lincoln are some domestic 
remains of the middle of the twelfth century, which are 
amongst the most curious relics of that period. 

Scotland contains scarcely any example of secular 
architecture of the Anglo-Norman era, which claims the 
attention of the archaeologist ; and the few early remains 
of this class which may be seen in Ireland , are chiefly 
distinguished by the circumstance of their having almost 
as much in common with the architecture of the South 



of Europe as with the style of the Normans/ as that 
style was developed by them either in Normandy itself 
or in England. 



One style of architecture does not succeed to another 
by any sudden or definite change, effected at one time, 
and under circumstances that admit of a distinct and 
precise description. A period of Transition , on the con- 
trary, intervenes, during which, while the old style 
gradually declines, and its youthful successor as gradually 
assumes a determinate character, in many instances cer- 
tain distinctive peculiarities of the two styles are seen to 
have been blended together in the same works. In these 
examples it will be noticed that, in the first instance, 
the innovations only affect elementary forms, the details 
and treatment remaining unchanged, or, at the most, 
being but slightly influenced. By degrees, novel modes 
of treatment make their appearance, details undergo a 
decided change, and the new style thus becomes estab- 
lished. Accordingly, as the twelfth century draws 
towards its close, arcades of pointed arches appear in 




association with others of the old form, the different 
members of buildings assume a lighter appearance, and 
some of the principal arches are pointed, but the orna- 
ments continue to be zigzags and the like. After a 
while, fresh ornaments, some of them modifications of 
the old ones, are introduced; then a change is felt to 
have gradually pervaded the entire architecture, and so 
the reign of the Gothic style commences. 


Unlike the various forms of the Romanesque, Gothic 
architecture retains no traces of a classic origin. It is 
an independent style — the style of the middle ages, as 
the classic was the style of antiquity. The characteristic 
distinctions of this grand style are pointed arches, but- 
tresses, large windows and window-tracery, clustered 
shafts, ornaments studied from natural forms, traceried 
vaults and lofty roofs of richly-framed timber, a general 
lightness, the free use of sculpture, heraldry, and other 
decorative accessories, and an inexhaustible richness of 
resources, combined with an ever-ready versatility of 
adaptation. The style, which prevailed throughout 
Western, Southern, and Central Europe, exhibits various 



marked characteristics in different countries : it also is 
found to have passed through a series of highly import- 
ant changes during its career, from the close of the 
twelfth century to the middle of the sixteenth. The 
Gothic of England appears under three principal forms, 
which are generally known as Early English Gothic , 
Decorated , and Perpendicular. The first of these periods 
terminates with the thirteenth century, the second closes 
about a.d. 1375, and the third — including the era of the 
Gothic decline — extends until the Reformation. These 
are necessarily but approximate dates, since a condition 
of Transition existed between the several periods or 
distinct phases of the art. 

In now describing English Gothic details, the three 
periods or phases of the style will be considered together, 
for the purposes of comparison and contrast. 

Piers or Pillars. First Period. Either plain cir- 
cular or octagonal; or shafts, clustered about a large 
central pillar, which is generally circular. These shafts 
very commonly stand clear of the central pillar, and are 
banded at mid-height, the bands being worked round 
the entire group. In some instances, foliage sprouting 
out from the central pillar appears with the finest effect 



between the surrounding shafts. Second Period . The 
same plain forms are retained, but in the richer examples 
the shafts are always attached to the mass, the bands no 
longer appear, and the entire pier generally has an out- 
line that approaches the form of a lozenge, or a square 
set diagonally. Third Period . The forms resemble those 
of the last period, but the mouldings or the shafting of 
the pier have fresh sections, and are much more shallow, 
and the pier itself is less effective in appearance than 
before. The pier-mouldings in this period are frequently 
continuous with those of the arches, there being no 
capitals interposed. Three examples of clustered piers, 
with shafts, are represented in Figs. 2, 3, and 4, of 
Plate I. 

Shafts. First Period . Very slender shafts are used 
in great abundance ; they stand clear, are banded if of 
any considerable height, and are commonly formed of 
Purbeck marble, and they sometimes are fluted. Where 
a pier is formed from a cluster of shafts, the shafts are 
often alternately stone and Purbeck marble. A narrow 
fillet, or raised flat band, often traverses these shafts 
from base to capital. Sometimes the fillet is so narrow 
as to be almost sharp. Second Period . Slender shafts 



are not in use alone, or in small groups, except in wall- 
arcades. Purbeck marble ceases to appear, and the 
bands are discontinued. All shafts now form parts of 
solid piers, or they are attached to walls, &c. Fillets, 
which are frequently used, are broader than before. 
Third Period . Shafts now are cut on the same stones 
with the work of which they form parts. The fillets are 
very broad, and the true character of the shaft itself 
gradually becomes almost lost. 

Walls and Masonry, throughout the style, are care- 
fully constructed, with stones varying in size, and set 
with fine joints. The walls are not very thick, and they 
depend for support upon the buttresses. Cut flints are 
often used in the masonry with good effect. 

Arches. First Period . The simple pointed arches in 
common use are the equilateral , the acute-angled, or 
lancet-arch , and the obtuse-angled ; also, for the interior 
arches of windows, the segmental . Foil-arches are also 
frequently to be observed, particularly in wall-arcades. 
Second Period. The equilateral arch prevails, and the 
ogee-arch (with curves of double curvature) is introduced. 
Third Period . The lancet-arch ceases to be used, and four - 
centred arches , many of them much depressed, are prevalent. 



The sides? of an arch are called its haunches ; the 


wedge-shaped stones of which an arch is formed are 
voussoirs , of which the lowermost on either side are the 
springers, while the uppermost form the crown of an arch. 
The springers rest upon imposts , which form the termina- 
tions of the perpendicular sides ox jambs which support an 
arch; the capital of a pillar or shaft commonly forms the 
impost. In Gothic arches, which are constructed with 
many voussoirs, there is no keystone or uppermost central 

The orders , or concentric series of voussoirs, in Gothic 
arches are not so clearly expressed as in the Norman 
style ; in many instances, indeed, and particularly in the 
Early English period, the arch-mouldings are so adjusted 
that the orders can scarcely he distinguished. In this 
period the plain arches have the angles of their masonry 
simply chamfered, but the mouldings of the greater 
arches are very rich and noble, and trails of the dog- 
tooth ornament are frequently introduced in hollows be- 
tween bold roll-mouldings ; arches also are now always 
set upon their imposts in such a manner, that each order 
projects slightly beyond the plane of its own shaft or 
member of the pier. This arrangement, with the dog- 



tooth ornament amidst the plain mouldings, is shown in 
Plate I., Pig. 2. In the Decorated period the orders of 
the arch mouldings become more clearly shown, and 
various carved-work is introduced amidst the conti- 
nuous mouldings, as in Fig. 3 of Plate I. The orders 
of the arches continue to overhang those of the jambs ; 
but late in the period some mouldings are sometimes 
continued uninterruptedly from the jambs through the 
curves of the arch. The arch-mouldings of the Perpen- 
dicular period are broad and shallow, frequently conti- 
nuous with the jamb:?, and rarely set forward upon the 
capitals, when capitals are used. Fig. 4 of Plate I. is a 
characteristic example. When the jambs are panelled, 
the panels are often carried on through the arches. 

Doorways. First Period. The arches are characteristic 
of the period in form, shafting, and enrichments ; they 
are deeply recessed, and in the larger examples often 
divided into two sub-arches, which are generally cusped. 
In a few examples the arches are rounded instead of 
pointed, and some are square -headed. Besides the dog- 
tooth, trails of foliage are found in the hollows of the 
mouldings. The arches are almost invariably covered by 
dripstones. Second Period . Not so deeply recessed, these 



arches are now divided only early in the period; the mould- 
ings have no special characteristics distinct from those in 
use in other arches at the same era; ornamental carving 
is often introduced amongst the plain mouldings ; jamb- 
shafts are generally smaller than before, and many ex- 
amples are not shafted, but have their mouldings conti- 
nuous throughout, and resting on slopes at the plinths ; 
the arches are almost always pointed, and ogee-arches 
are in use ; dripstones are almost universal ; and in the 
larger examples lofty canopies, generally triangular in 
form, but sometimes ogee-arched* rise above the door- 
way-arches, the intervening spaces being filled-in with 
sculpture or tracery. Third Period. The arches now very 
generally have a square moulded heading worked about 
them, which is surmounted by a bold label-dripstone of 
the same form ; the spandrels are filled with tracery, and 
often contain shields of arms. The jambs have large 
hollows, and their shafts, when they are shafted, are 
small and insignificant. 

In all the three periods the form of the inner doorway 
arches varies from that of the outer arches ; the inner 
arches, or rear-vaults , are higher also, and so arranged 
that they leave a free passage for the pointed heads of 



Tlaitce II 

IFigl. COraxLcd-^xLi^Tr, SicaDAtmIIarcauz^,Cbeon. Tig. ii. interior of the same, 

stboitt 32*20 ^exterior). 

0. Jewdtt dai.otli.tla . 

'Vincent IBxoaks Imp. 



the doors to move. The doorways of the English Gothic 
are not to be compared to the spacious and deeply- 
recessed portals of the style as it was developed on the 
Continent ; they also very rarely exhibit a form of deco- 
ration prevalent in the Continental examples, and which 
consists of a series of niches with statues, carried up the 
jambs and round the curves of the arch. Eine examples 
of doorways thus decorated, of the second period, are in 
the Cathedrals of Lincoln and Rochester. 

Windows. First Period . At first always single open- 
ings, these windows gradually became grouped in a 
manner that led to the development of genuine tracery. 
The single windows are sometimes low and wide ; but 
their general form is exactly the contrary to this, and 
the lancet-window of the Early English Gothic is well 
known and universally admired. In some examples the 
lancets are of considerable height, and not more than a 
few inches in width. The dripstones of a series of these 
windows are generally connected by a horizontal string ; 
this is the case at Stanton Harconrt in Oxfordshire, 
from which Eigs. 1 and 2 of Plate II. have been drawn; 
Eig. 2 shows the interior of the window, with the wide 
splays of the inner or escoinson-arch , which here is 



shafted. It is a common arrangement to find three 
lancets grouped into a triplet; sometimes the group 
consists of two lancets only ; and late in the period the 
number is extended beyond three ; the lancets then are 
foiled in the head, and a four-foil or other figure is 
pierced above a pair of lancets, a single dripstone being 
thrown over the group thus formed, as at Woodstock, 
about a.d. 1240, Plate II., Fig. 3. Triplets, and also 
single lancets, are sometimes elaborately enriched with 
shafted and moulded arches, both externally and inter- 
nally. The most remarkable, and also the most beautiful, 
grouping of lancet-windows is in Worcester Cathedral, 
where a group is formed from six windows, in two tiers, 
the central window of the upper tier being the loftiest, 
and the whole being bound together with admirable 
skill by means of shafts, strings, and mouldings. Cir- 
cular windows are often to be observed, and many 
peculiar forms of window appear in towers, spires, 
gables, &c., as at York and Beverley. 

After true tracery has succeeded to strips of masonry, 
which at once divide and connect the several windows of 
a group, the mouldings, foliage, and other details of the 
Early English period for a while prevail, and mark the 



transition to the Decorated period ; and there are many 
windows upon which it is, consequently, difficult to 
pronounce to which of the two periods they may be 
assigned. The earliest tracery was sometimes actually 
pierced in a single large slab ; and for a time the tracery 
formed from several slabs retained the same general cha- 
racter ; it is not built up of tracery -bars, but pierced in 
the stone. This has been entitled “ plate -tracery” but 
“slab-tracery” appears a more appropriate designation. 
The forms first assumed by tracery, when constructed by 
tracery-bars rising from mullions, are geometrical figures 
in various combinations ; and hence the earlier years of 
the Decorated Period have been distinguished as the Geo- 
metrical Era. In the larger examples the tracery-bars 
and the mullions are carefully subordinated — that is, the 
more important members are distinguished by greater 
boldness and by richer decoration. This subordination 
is always a fine and most effective arrangement. With 
the advance of the fourteenth century the character of 
the tracery becomes determined rather by the direction 
of the tracery-bars than by the forms of the pierced open- 
ings ; the stone framework of the windows thus is found 
to have been led in flowing lines, and accordingly, in 



place of the geometrical, the era of Flowing Tracery suc- 
ceeds. Fig. 4 in Plate II. is an excellent example of 
this tracery; it is a three-light window, of about a.d. 
1350. These windows are often both rich and beautiful; 
but, on the whole, they yield to the geometrical. The 
Cathedrals of Lincoln and Carlisle have the finest speci- 
mens of the two forms of traceried windows. In this 
second period the mullions become much attenuated, and 
windows of rich tracery often are destitute of mouldings, 
having both jambs and mullions simply chamfered. 
Fine circular windows are now frequently to be seen ; 
squares, triangles, and other exceptional forms are also 
to be met with, and in clerestories small trefoils or 
similar forms often occur. In the Perpendicular Period 
the chief characteristics are the prevalence of vertical 
lines in the actual tracery, and the introduction of tran- 
soms, or horizontal divisions of the lights. Early in the 
period the combination of curves with the vertical lines 
saved the tracery from degenerating into mere pierced 
panel-work, and some very fine windows were thus pro- 
duced ; but the panel sentiment was too strong to be 
long resisted ; and window- tracery, the glory of Gothic 
architecture and its peculiar characteristic, ceased to 



exist, except under a hopeless degradation. In both 
this period and its predecessor, single-light traceried 
windows are to be often seen ; and the inner arches 
retain the peculiarities of their construction. 

Tracery appears to be always essential as a component 
of every large window. While of small size, the Early 
English lancets are always most admirable; but when 
they assume large dimensions, as in the grand churches 
of Westminster, Lincoln, Salisbury, Ely, York, and 
Worcester, they afford the most convincing proofs that 
tracery cannot be spared from an y perfect Gothic win- 
dows which are on a grand scale. It may be observed 
that the prevailing deficiency in our traceried windows is 
their want of height in the main lights, and the conse- 
quent depression of the entire composition. 

In secular architecture the windows retain the general 
characteristics of those designed for ecclesiastical pur- 
poses. Square-headed windows, however, are more fre- 
quently to be found in secular buildings than in churches, 
and the mullions and traceries are, in these examples, 
adapted for the reception of such window-frames as 
would be required for domestic uses. Projecting windows 
named Bays , when they rise from the ground, and Oriels 



when they commence above the ground-story, are also 
common, and they add no less to the external appearance 
of the buildings to which they belong, than to their 
convenience within. 

Arcades, in the Early English period, were evidently 
the delight of the architects who at that time were en- 
gaged with the grand work of establishing the Gothic 
style. Wall-arcades, in this period, are very noble, the 
shafts standing clear, and the spandrels between the arch- 
heads being generally filled with sculpture. Sometimes 
one arcade is set in front of another, and the smaller 
arches of one arcade are also commonly surmounted by 
the larger ones of another, as at Lincoln. Second Period . 
Arcading now is but sparingly used, in comparison with 
the previous period. The principal arches, such as those 
of windows, stand independently, and are rarely con- 
nected so as to form an arcade by strings or intervening 
wall-arches. In the Third Period , decorative arcades are 
superseded by panel-work. The Triforium , or second 
tier of arches, in the greater churches, attains its finest 
proportions and greatest beauty in the First Period, when 
clerestories (the uppermost row of windows) often form 
continuous arcades ; in the Second Period, the Triforium 



declines greatly in importance ; and in the following 
period, as a distinctive feature, it altogether disappears. 

Capitals. First Period. The form is concave, and 
somewhat resembles an inverted bell. This form is 
clearly shown when the capitals are ornamented only with 
mouldings. It is also preserved in the case of the en- 
richment of this member with the foliage of the period, 
which rises in rich clusters from the neck-moulding, and 
curls over gracefully beneath the overhanging abacus. 
The abacus itself is always round, and with a deep under- 
cut hollow beneath it ; and sometimes a second similar 
moulding makes almost a double abacus. Purbeck marble 
is commonly used in the construction of this member, 
the capital itself being of stone. Plate I. Pig. 2, exhibits 
a cluster of three foliaged Early English capitals from 
the north transept of York. Very many fine examples 
of these capitals yet remain. Some of the noblest are 
in St. Alban's Abbey, and some of the richest and most 
perfect in Worcester Cathedral. Second Period. The bell 
form is less apparent than before. The abacus, formed 
of the scroll-moulding, or of a group of small mouldings, 
without any deep hollow or any undercutting, is often 
polygonal. Capitals without foliage are more common, 



and the foliage, when it is used, is wreathed round the 
body of the capital, the whole of which is formed of 
stone. The west front of York Cathedral, from which 
Fig. 3 in Plate I. has been drawn, furnishes many fine 
and characteristic examples. Third Period. The round 
abacus altogether disappears, and an octagonal form is 
used, even when the shaft is cylindrical. The concavity 
of the outline is very slight, and the general contour of 
the capital flat and deficient in effectiveness. It is gene- 
rally plainly moulded. When foliage is used the leaves 
are commonly large, and they often issue, alternately 
above and below, from a wavy stalk which surrounds the 
capital. Pig. 4 in Plate I., from Oxford Cathedral, is a 
characteristic example. 

Bases. First Period. The form is circular, and Pur- 
beck marble is often the material. The mouldings are 
few in number, and they commonly are carried away from 
the shaft in such a manner as to leave an upper surface 
that would hold water. The outermost member of the 
group is a bold roll, and it is separated from the plinth 
(which it rarely overhangs) by a quarter round hollow, 
deeply cut, which gives a strongly-marked shadow. The 
plinth is often much stilted, and it sometimes has a 



second series of mouldings, distinct from those of the 
base itself. In groups of clustered shafts, and in the 
more important piers, the bases of the different members 
are often formed at different levels, and grouped with 
very fine effect, the whole being set upon a common 
basement. Second Period. The mouldings slope off from 
the shafts, and have no water-holding hollows. They 
almost always overhang the plinths, which are often 
octagonal, and very commonly formed of upper and 
lower stages. Third Period. The entire member now is 
generally octagonal. The mouldings, which have a bell- 
like contour (not an inverted bell), are shallow, and fre- 
quently ogees, and overhang the plinth, which is generally 
a compound of two stages, often much stilted. The 
lower and outermost ogee of these base-mouldings that 
overhang the upper plinth has generally a wavy appear- 
ance, produced by rounding off its upper angle. In both 
the Second and Third Periods groups of bases constantly 
occur, each of which has a basement common to the 
entire group. 

Walls have basements throughout the style, which are 
conformed to the general character of each period, and 
often richly moulded, and otherwise ornamented. This 




most important member of a wall is now often lost to 
the sight, being but too commonly covered externally 
by the accumulated soil, and internally by the pavement 
having been raised above the original level. 

Mouldings. First Period . The rounds and hollows 
alternate, the rounds varying in size, having often 
narrow fillets, and being sometimes cut to an edge. The 
hollows are generally so deeply sunk as to undercut the 
rounds, and where many mouldings are grouped together 
the several orders or sub-groups will generally have the 
prominent parts of their contour bounded by lines that 
would lie at right angles to each other — that is, the 
mouldings themselves lie in the planes of the rectangular 
recesses. The characteristic decoration is the Dogtooth , 
shown in Tig. 2 of Plate I. It appears variously modi- 
fied, and with it are associated trails of single leaves or 
flowers, or of the foliage of the period. Second Period . 
The mouldings now generally lie in the chamfer-plane, 
and they are worked in small groups, the hollows sepa- 
rating these small groups, and not intervening between 
each pair of rounds. Fillets are common, and they 
become broader than before. Several new forms appear, 
of which the most characteristic is one which has a 



wavy contour, and a second of which the lower half is 
formed from a smaller round than the upper, and in 
which, consequently, the upper half overhangs the lower, 
and is finished in a sharp edge throwing a shadow. 
These are severally known as wave and scroll mouldings. 
The characteristic ornament is the ball-flower , a round 
hollow flower of three petals, enclosing a bally and some- 
times having the petals crumpled. A square flower of 
four open leaves is also common, with various other 
flowers and leaves. Heads, animals, and heraldic devices 
are also introduced, and they are almost always executed 
with great skill. Third* Period. Broad shallow hollows, 
with the ogee both single and double and flat in its 
contour, abound. Very small rounds, in clusters, are 
also common ; but fillets are comparatively rare. Various 
flowers and other figures appear amongst the decorative 
carving, the distinctive peculiarity of which is the square 
or lozenge-formed contour which is imparted to the in- 
dividual objects. 

Diapers, or surface decorations produced by a small 
device or pattern continually reproduced, are executed 
either in low relief or in colour and gilding on flat sur- 
faces. This mode of ornamentation prevails throughout 

e 2 



the Gothic style. In the two earlier periods it is gene- 
rally executed by carving, the carved patterns being 
sometimes coloured. In the third period diapers are 
found in colour only, without the carving. This process 
was also in use in the previous periods. The wall- 
diapers (Figs. 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5, Plate III.) are specimens 
executed at the close of the thirteenth century. 

Foliage. First Period. Conventional. Rising from 
stalks and curbing over, the foliage is a species of trefoil, 
with occasional small bunches of berries. It is variously 
treated, but always true to the type. Second Period 
Natural. The ivy, oak, vine, and other leaves, with 
acorns, &c., and the natural branches of the several 
trees and plants, are now found in abundance and great 
variety, the whole being evidently studied, from nature, 
and the grouping forming wreaths or flowing patterns. 
Third Period . Conventional. Various natural objects 
are conventionally treated, the prevailing contours being 
square. It is also a favourite usage to keep the several 
eaves, &c., separate. 4 , 

Corbel-tables, Cornices, and Parapets. First 
Period. Solid parapets, either plain or arcaded, sur- 
mounted by moulded copings, rest on corbel-tables 


Plate ID. 

'iig.l. from the Toihb to William cl e Valence, Westminster Abbey, ■ A.D. 1Z96. 

„ Z. 3.4.5. from Queen. ELeanor’s Gross, GredcLtu^tnrL, IVnAhanhs , about 13 00 
.. 6. Shield, of Robert 3eA^.re | Hat£.eld.Bro3Ldoak Church. Esses AD. 1298. 
7 Cb felcL (£ "William cl e Valence, . 



formed generally of a continuous series of small trefoil 
(or sometimes fivefoil) arches, each of which is supported 
by a carved corbel. Second Period. The cornice now 
succeeds to the corbel-table : it is formed by a group of 
mouldings, which commonly surmount some characteristic 
carving. The parapets which rise above are frequently 
enriched with carving, and sometimes pierced. Third 
Period. Parapets are now commonly embattled, and en- 
riched with panelling. 

Buttresses. First Period. The projection, which 
sometimes is very bold, varies but little throughout the 
entire height. The mouldings at the stages are sloped 
at very acute angles, and carried round the entire but- 
tress. The edges of the buttress are generally chamfered 
off, moulded, or shafted. The buttress itself either dies 
into the wall, or rises into or sometimes above the 
parapet, and is surmounted by a gabled head. At the 
angles of buildings the buttresses stand in pairs, at right 
angles to each other ; or a single massive buttress 
occupies the whole angle. A small low buttress is not 
uncommon in this period in the centre of both the east 
and west ends of churches, below the windows. Second 
Period. Worked in stages, the buttresses are often en- 



riclied with niches and other carved work. They com- 
monly rise into pinnacles, and are set diagonally at the 
angles of a building. Third Period . Panelling is now 
the ornamental process when buttresses are ornamented. 

Arch-buttresses (also called flying-buttresses) , which 
were introduced in the First Period, continued to be in 
use by the Gothic architects throughout the style. They 
sometimes appear in tiers, and late in the style they are 
much enriched, and sometimes pierced in quatrefoil and 
other devices. 

Crockets and Finials. First Period. Not in use 
until rather late in the period, crockets first appear in 
very simple forms, as single leaves on long stalks, or as 
bunches of the foliage of the period curling back. Second 
Period. Crockets become very rich, and are almost infi- 
nitely varied in form. Single leaves, studied from nature, 
are in frequent use. Third Period. The crockets assume 
the square form so characteristic of the ornamentation of 
the period, and animal forms are occasionally used either 
alone or with leaf- work. Finials correspond with the 
crockets, and indeed they may be regarded as being 
formed from a bunch of crockets tied together. 

Niches and Canopies are in use throughout the style, 



of which they are characteristic and most beautiful 
features. They vary in their form, accessories, and deco- 
rations in the different periods, but they are always true 
to the prevailing feeling of the time. It will be observed 
that, whether used singly, or in suits of several members, 
or in continuous ranges, the Gothic niche is invariably 
designed to contain a statue. 

Panelling, the special ornamentation of the Perpen- 
dicular Period , is also found in the two previous periods 
in use for decorative purposes, but it is more freely 
used in Decorated than in Early work. The earlier 
enrichments which fill each square panel are quatre- 
foils, foliage, diapers, and other carvings, with heraldic 
devices, and sometimes sculptured figures. In the Per- 
pendicular Period the panels exhibit the utmost variety 
of enrichment, their central ornament being either a 
boss or a shield of arms, and the entire work being 
impressed with the angular character of the Gothic of 
the period. 

Vaulting, or covering over a building with an arched 
ceiling "formed generally of stone, was in general use 
with the Gothic architects of this country, and by them 
was carried to the highest excellence. Each principal 



division of a vault, corresponding with the space sup- 
ported by one pier-arch and included within two but- 
tresses, is termed a bay . The several bays of a vaulted 
roof are divided by transverse ribs , or arches which cross 
the building. A longitudinal rib runs along the upper- 
most central ridge from end to end, binding the whole 
together, and giving it at once strength and unity. 
Diagonal ribs cross each bay from angle to angle. Wall- 
ribs form the arches of each bay at its sides, and between 
them and the diagonals intermediate ribs are interposed. 
In addition to these there are surface-ribs, which are 
added for the purpose of increasing the richness of the 
vaulting ; and bosses , varying in size and in the character 
of their ornamentation, mark the intersections of the 
ribs. The diagonal and intermediate ribs also spring 
and radiate from vaulting- shafts, which either rise from 
the ground in front of the main piers, or are corbelled 
below the triforium-string. In the earlier vaulting, the 
plan is simple and almost always grand in its simplicity. 
The ribs are few in number, and the bosses sparingly 
used. In the Decorated Period the vaults increase in 
richness, and in the Perpendicular Period they become 
elaborate and intricate to a degree. There is one class 



of the vaults of the last period which claims particular 
attention from its peculiar richness, and also its singular 
beauty : this is known as fan-tracery vaulting , from the 
fan-like form of its clusters of ribs, which spread tliem- 
selyes from the vaulting-shafts and from the tracery or 
panel-work which covers the surface of the vault. In 
addition to the bosses, which during this period are used 
in profusion', hanging masses of carved masonry, named 
pendants, are introduced into the vaulting. 

Roofs. Where stone is used to form the ceiling, an 
outer roof of timber covered with lead, tiles, shingles, 
&c., is raised above the vaulting. Similar roofs, also, 
are commonly so framed and decorated on their inner 
surfaces as to render any other ceiling unnecessary. 
Roofs thus constructed are known as “ open-timber 
roofs; ” The main timbers of their framing, which in 
most examples are found to have been placed at regular 
intervals, are termed trusses or principals ; and amongst 
the other timbers are the following : the ridge-piece , 
which runs along the crest of the roof ; the tie-beam , 
which crosses the building, one end of it resting on each 
wall, and the beam itself forming the base of the triangle 
of which the slopes of the roof are the two sides ; the 



wall-plate , which rests on the masonry of the wall and 
receives the roof-framing ; the rafters, which are placed 
between the trusses, and form with them the sloping 
sides of the roof ; the purlins, which traverse the roof 
along its length, between the wall-plate and the ridge ; 
the king-post, which rises perpendicularly from the centre, 
and the queen-posts, which rise in pairs in the same 
manner from either side of the centre of the tie-beam ; 
the hammer -beams, that resemble the ends of a tie-beam, 
of which the centre has been cutaway ; the colla r, which 
is a small tie-beam set high up in the framing of a 
roof; the braces or struts, inclined or curved pieces used 
as supports, — as beneath hammer-beams, collars, &c. 
Any other timbers which may be placed vertically are 
termed posts. JEarly English roofs have a high but not a 
uniform pitch : they generally are secured by tie-beams 
with braces, which are moulded. These roofs, of which 
but few examples remain, are distinguished by their 
simplicity. In the Decorated Period , the timber-roofs 
attain to a very rich and dignified character, and they 
also exhibit many varieties of treatment. King-posts 
appear, and moulded braces are placed both below and 
above the tie-beams. Many roofs are formed by having 



their inner faces arranged into a series of flat spaces or 
cants, of which the usual number in the earlier examples 
is six, and in the later seven. As the period advances 
the principals are formed into arches by curved braces, 
and the tie-beams in high-pitched examples are omitted. 
The open-roofs of halls in public and domestic buildings 
appear to have been more enriched than those in 
churches. Arched braces here are introduced, placed 
upon the rafters, rising from the purlins, and rich 
cusping appears. Spandrels also are filled with pierced 
tracery, as is sometimes the case in church-roofs. One 
of the finest timber-roofs of the period covers the sadly 
disfigured Guesten Hall at Worcester. The Hall at the 
Mote, Igtham in Kent, has also a noble roof, the 
timber-framing of which is in part supported by arches 
of stone that span the apartment. Hammer-beam roofs 
were introduced in the Perpendicular Period: of these 
the finest example covers Westminster Hall. Two tiers 
of hammer-beams are often used, and the entire roofs 
are elaborately enriched. In this period roofs very 
nearly flat, or quite flat, are common. They are some- 
times formed simply of the constructive timbers which 
are moulded on their inner faces, but more frequently 



these roofs are ceiled and arranged in panels that are 
elaborately enriched. 

Roofs constructed both within and without entirely 
of stone sometimes occur over porches,, towers, &c. 

In the second and third Gothic periods heraldry is 
intimately associated with the architecture, and through- 
out the era sepulchral monuments are accessories of the 
utmost importance. 

Amongst the finest and most instructive examples of 
the Ecclesiastical Gothic of England are the Cathedrals of 
Lincoln and Salisbury, parts of Canterbury, Worcester, 
and Ely, and of Westminster and St. Albans Abbeys, 
with the west front of Wells, as works of the Early 
English period; and with these must be associated Be- 
verley Minster, and many of the Yorkshire monastic 
ruins. York and Wells stand forward amongst the 
many fine examples of the j Decorated era , with parts of 
Ely, St. Albans, and Carlisle ; and in the Perpendicular 
period, Winchester and a part of Gloucester Cathedrals, 
with King^s College Chapel at Cambridge, and Henry 
VII/s Chapel at Westminster, claim particular distinc- 
tion. It will also be observed that almost every im- 
portant edifice contains work executed in each period. 



and thus the student may generally find, in a single 
cathedral, a complete practical illustration of Gothic 


In all the Gothic periods, the more important and 
specially characteristic features of the style* are found as 
well in the remains which exist of civil, domestic, and 
castellated buildings, as in those which were designed 
for ecclesiastical purposes. And yet there is nothing 
church-like about the edifices that were not built for 
church purposes; the architecture is indeed the same, 
but in its application it appears adapting itself to widely 
different Conditions. In examining the domestic build- 
ings of the middle ages, the usages and requirements of 
mediaeval society must be kept in remembrance, in order 
to appreciate the applicability of the architecture to 
buildings of that class in those times, precisely as the 
applicability of the same style to domestic and civil uses 
at the present day must be tested by existing habits, 
associations, and requirements — a test that the style 
is able to endure with the certainty of a triumphant 




In consequence of the unsettled condition of society in 
the neighbourhood of the Scottish Border, in the North 
of England during the middle ages it was a literal 
necessity that every man’s house should be his castle ; 
and consequently the early domestic buildings that re- 
main in those districts are, for the most part, small 
fortresses. More towards the south, the distinction 
between domestic and castellated architecture is more 
clearly drawn. The prevailing usage for a long period 
was to build a house in the form of an oblong-square, 
two stories in height, the lower story being vaulted, and 
without any internal communication with the upper, 
which was approached by a flight of stairs on the out- 
side. The upper windows in these buildings are larger 
than those below, and sometimes the only fireplace is on 
the upper floor. The hall forms the principal apart- 
ment in houses thus constructed ; and this is also the 
case in houses of a different plan, in which the hall is on 
the ground-floor, and rises to the whole height of the 
building. Little Wenham Hall, in Suffolk, which was 
built about the middle of the thirteenth century, may be 
regarded as a type of the domestic structures of that 
age : it is constructed principally of brickwork, and 



contains two long and large rooms one over the other, 
the lower one being vaulted, a chapel, and two small 
rooms, one of them rising above the chapel, and having 
externally the form of a small tower; a narrow winding 
stair communicates with the chapel and the two small 
rooms, but the principal access to the large room was 
by an external flight of steps at the south-west angle of 
the building. The small upper chamber here is an 
example of the apartment called the Solar . 

During the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, houses 
increased considerably in size, and many varieties of plan 
are introduced ; the hall, however, continues to be the 
principal feature. In towns, houses are often built about 
courts, to which there is a common entrance. T imbe r- 
fram ing with plaster was the prevailing principle of con- 
struction : bricks also gradually came into general use. 
The more important houses, surrounded in many instances 
by moats, were often built about court-yards ; they com- 
monly have entrance-tower% resembling the gate-houses 
of the monasteries, and various turrets, with outbuild- 
ings, which are grouped about the main edifice. In the 
sixteenth century, houses altogether lose their earlier 
castellated character, and many examples of great mag- 



nificence yet remain to illustrate both the architecture 
and the social condition of the period. Timber-framing 
continues to be prevalent, and brickwork also is em- 
ployed to a great extent and with the most complete 
success. The Elizabethan mansions, so justly celebrated 
in the history of English domestic architecture, are 
edifices eminently calculated to attract attention from 
their effective appearance and their happy harmony with 
English scenery. These houses are in most respects 
true to Gothic feeling in its latest forms ; and indeed, 
in them Gothic architecture seems to have lingered 
after in ecclesiastical buildings it had sunk into absolute 
degradation. The timber-houses of this century are 
often very splendid ; galleries now become general, with 
large open staircases : ceilings are much enriched, and 
pendants often appear amongst the panelling. At the 
close of the century, Italian forms and details begin to 
prevail, and the Gothic gradually yields to the strange 
taste which cherished the Italian Renaissance. It will 
be desirable always to distinguish between the buildings 
of the reigns of Elizabeth and her successor, and to 
entitle the latter, Jacobean . 

The Italian Renaissance* style of architecture, with 



its classic imitations and adaptations, which prevailed 
during the seventeenth century, may excite both the 
surprise and the regret of the archaeologist, but it will 
neither awaken his interest nor engage his sympathy. 


As in the case of the Anglo-Norman style, the pre- 
vailing architectural sentiment of each Gothic period is 
found to have determined the character of the work in 
whatever castellated edifices were erected, rebuilt, or 
enlarged during the prevalence of the Gothic style ; but 
few buildings of this class were, however, erected after 
the fourteenth century. In the preceding century, 
under Edward I., the typo of the English Gothic castle 
became determined. The solid keep of the Anglo-Nor- 
mans, in these Edwardian castles, expands into a range 
of buildings of irregular outline and plan, arranged 
about a court-yard, and flanked with strong towers : 
this is the inner bailey , and it contains the chapel, the 
spacious flail, and the principal apartments. Beyond 
this are two or three concentric series of walls o.r 
curtains, also flanked with towers, and between which 
are the middle and outer baileys with their various 



barracks and other buildings. The entrance is by 
gate-houses, which are distinct works, provided with 
massive doors, portcullises, loops to command the pas- 
sage, and means for pouring down hot matter from 
above upon assailants. A draivbridge , lowered from the 
outer gate-house, crosses the moat; and beyond the 
moat itself is placed the barbican, or outwork to cover 
the approach to the bridge. The space enclosed within 
the walls is often very considerable; the walls them- 
selves are crested with embattled parapets, which are 
commonly placed upon corbel-tables sufficiently ad- 
vanced beyond the face of the walls to admit of holes 
being pierced between the corbels ; these openings, 
called machicolations, command the face of the wall 
beneath them. The alternate notches and raised mem- 
bers of the battlements are entitled embrasures and 
merlons ; the merlons are often pierced by a cruciform 
loop (or slit in the masonry) for archery, the arms of 
which terminate in round holes or oilets; and it was 
sometimes the custom to place on the coping of these 
merlons sculptured figures. 

In castles erected after the Decorated Gothic period, 
the convenience of the buildings contained within the 


walls was generally more considered than the defensive 
capabilities of the entire structure : many fine portions 
of castellated works were, however, erected in the fifteenth 
and sixteenth centuries, particularly gate-houses. In 
process of time, buildings more in accordance than 
castles with the altered circumstances of peaceful ages 
succeeded to the stern fortress-dwellings of earlier times ; 
and thus many of the old castles were pulled down, others 
very considerably altered, while many were permitted to 
fall into that condition of picturesque ruin which still 
distinguishes their remains. During the troubled reign 
of Charles I., many of the old castles were once more 
used for military purposes and strengthened with earth- 
works. When taken, these castles were generally reduced 
to their present ruined condition by the agency of gun- 
powder. Among the noble Edwardian castles that yet re- 
main, in the first rank are Caernarvon, Conway, Dover, and 
Warwick, with which many others might be associated. 



The Gothic architecture of Scotland is no less worthy 
of admiration than the Norman which preceded it in the 



same beautiful country. Like the Norman also, the 
Scottish Gothic can point to but a/Cmall series of ex- 
amples. These all show that the several periods of the 
style lingered longer in Scotland than was the case more 
towards the south : they indicate the tenacious manner 
with which old forms were retained, and in the last 
period they clearly proclaim that the architectural sym- 
pathy of Scotland was then far stronger with France 
than with England. 

The cathedral of St. Magnus at Kirkwalf is said not 
to have been completed until late in the last Gothic 
period, and yet in its general character it assimilates 
throughout with the Norman portions. Glasgow Cathe- 
dral is a grand and most characteristic edifice of the 
first period ; and its crypt, of the same era, is surpassed 
in beauty and architectural excellence by none in exist- 
ence. The lancet-windows of Glasgow are singularly 
beautiful. The ruins o f Elgin Cathedral rank with .the 
finest remains of the Yorkshire abbeys ; here round 
arches are grouped with others that are pointed, and 
lancets are used in the fourteenth century after the Early 
English fashion, but with the details and decorations of 
their own age. Melrose, rebuilt early in the fifteenth 


century, is a splendid specimen of its period, and its 
famed east window is almost the only instance in which 
genuine perpendicular tracery was used in Scotland ; its 
contemporaries and successors are more or less decidedly 
flamboyant. The chapel at Holyrood, and the ruins of 
St. Andrew’s Cathedral and Pluscardine Abbey, with 
many others, are most interesting examples. Xtoslin 
Chapel and Iona are both exceptional works ; the former 
was probably erected by a Spanish architect, after the 
style of his own country. The remains of early domestic 
and castellated buildings in Scotland are not distin- 
guished by any architectural peculiarities or excellences, 
except those erected late in the sixteenth century, and 
these are perhaps without rivals, in their own period, for 
appropriate originality of design and picturesqueness of 

The presence of Gothic architecture in Ireland is 
attested by many most interesting ruins ; but there are 
very few examples of early edifices which now are more 
than shattered relics of their former magnificence and 
beauty. The Cathedral of St. Patrick at Dublin, however 
interesting as an actual specimen of Early Gothic, is an 
edifice of second-rate importance ; nor can the finest of 



the mined buildings have ever been equal to the great 
churches of England. They all are remarkable for their 
affinity to the Gothic of the Continent ; in most cases 
also they possess at least some features peculiar to them- 
selves. The ruined Cathedrals of Kildare and Kilkenny, 
with the remains at Cashel, are amongst the most cele- 
brated examples ; and with these must be connected, as 
forming a single group, the ruins of the Abbeys of 

Jerpoint (founded a.d. 1180), Clare, Sligo, Adare, 
Youghall, Holy Cross near Cashel, and those of Grey 

Abbey, County Down, founded a.d. 1193. Amongst 
the castellated remains, those of Limerick, Carrickfergus, 
and Dunluce, are specially interesting. The lofty, 
slender, tapering structures, with conical caps, known as 
round towers , have a chapter to themselves in the History 
of Architecture : Mr. Petrie has shown that these appa- 
rently unique structures were erected in the Christian 
era of Ireland; but from whence their remarkable type 
may have been derived yet remains to be discovered.* 

# Note. — A Glossary of Architectural Terms will be found at 
the end of the volume. 



Architecture, the greatest because the most compre- 
hensive of the arts, has always employed the services of 
many auxiliaries. The works thus produced may be 
designated architectural accessories. To a description of 
the more important of these accessories, as they were in 
use in this country in past times, this chapter is devoted. 


With the development of Gothic architecture the 
sculptor's art attained to a high standard of excellence ; 
but before this, during the Romanesque period, sculp- 
ture on a large scale can scarcely be said to have existed, 
except in a very rude condition. Derived, as it would 
seem, from the East, and certainly in the first instance 
powerfully affected by Byzantine traditions, if not pro- 
duced directly under Byzantine influence, the mediaeval 
sculpture of Western Europe claims attention as well 



from its vigorous and truly sculpturesque character, as 
because it is so essentially original. As in antique sculp- 
ture fhe undraped human form was the grand object of 
the artistes study, so with the mediaeval sculptor the 
figure itself was subordinated to the costume with which 
it might be attired. Arms, armour, and various articles of 
dress, were carefully studied, and represented with minute 
accuracy; and upon his aggroupment of the whole, as the 
costume of a human figure, the sculptor relied for the 
success of his work. The association of mediaeval sculp- 
ture with architecture will be observed to extend to the 
character of the sculpture itself. It has a direct refe- 
rence to architecture; without the architecture it is 
incomplete, and its expression is imperfect. Without a 
doubt, the sculpture of the middle ages is indebted for 
much of its effectiveness to this association. The sculp- 
ture itself thus became nobler and more worthy of admi- 
ration ; and, at the same time, it had its own noblest 
and most worthy qualities enhanced by the architecture 
with which it was associated. 

The figures of life-size, or sometimes of a size approach- 
ing the heroic, which the mediaeval sculptors produced, 
were designed to occupy niches or to be placed within 



canopies; their attitude, accordingly, is for the most 
part erect, and the figures themselves are represented as 
being in a condition of quiet or repose. The attitude 
of the figures in monumental sculpture is elsewhere 
(Chapter III.) described as being recumbent. The same 
general feeling is found to pervade this sculpture, whether 
the figures stand beneath niche-canopies or rest upon 
altar-tombs ; they are characterized by a deep tranquillity 
and an earnest thoughtfulness ; their draperies are 
heavy, insensible to any disturbing influences either 
from energetic action or from the wind, and they are 
rather dignified than graceful. Unhappily, the finest 
works of the mediaeval sculptors have suffered greatly 
from the injurious effects of time and the still more 
sweeping destruction of wilful mutilators ; and hence 
the high merit of these works has been very generally 
overlooked. By the careful student, however, even the 
mutilated and weather-worn relics of many of these once 
noble statues will be duly appreciated ; and, if the 
statues themselves evidently declare that they were 
designed with a view to their forming architectural ac- 
cessories, on the other hand it will be no less clear that 
such co-operation on the part of the sculptor must always 



be absolutely necessary to the architect. The west 
fronts of the Cathedrals of Wells and Salisbury still re- 
tain many noble examples of sculpture ; and the four 
headless statues (popularly called the “ four bishops/* 
though two of the figures are females and the other two 
are not ecclesiastics) in the south porch of Lincoln, with 
the statues on the face of the adjoining buttresses, will 
also rank with the finest works of their class. 

Besides their larger statues, the mediaeval sculptors 
executed many small groups or single figures, for the 
decoration of the spandrels of arcades, or to occupy the 
niches which abound in the tabernacle-work of tomb- 
canopies and screens, and which also so commonly appear 
in various other parts of Gothic buildings. It was a 
common practice to introduce sculpture into the spandrels 
of the triforia and amidst the foliage of bosses, in the more 
important churches. Many of the heads, with occasional 
figures, which form corbels, may be added, as fine and 
expressive productions of the mediaeval chisel. The 
grand figures of angels which encircle the presbytery of 
Lincoln, and have given it the title of the “ angel-choir/* 
are well known : they are admirably adapted both for 
the positions which they occupy and to the height at 



which they are to be seen, and are amongst the most 
valuable works of the close of the thirteenth century. 
The triforium sculptures, and also those of the wall- 
arcade and of the bosses of the choir and lady-chapel at 
Worcester, were executed early in that century, and 
they are not to be surpassed in interest. The triforium- 
sculptures here have been most seriously injured. Ely 
contains an immense collection of statuettes and fine 
sculptured details of the fourteenth century; and, indeed, 
there is scarcely one of our greater churches which will 
not both illustrate and attest the skill of our mediaeval 

The passion for the grotesque, which is one amongst 
several distinctive characteristics of Gothic art, con- 
tinually gives evidence of its influence in our early 
sculpture, and no less commonly does it adduce fresh 
testimony to the varied powers of the artists of those 
times. Like ancient Greek sculpture in this respect, 
that it rose rapidly from a rude and harsh condition to 
its most perfect forms of expression, mediaeval sculpture 
shows signs of degeneracy with the close of the four- 
teenth century; still, it often retained much that is 
worthy of respect until the very close of the Gothic era. 



With the nobler works of the sculptor may be grouped 
the kindred productions in decorative stone-carving , which 
effected so much for Gothic architecture, and particularly 
in its first and second periods. The men who executed 
these carvings were genuine artists; possessing never- 
failing resources in design and in the appropriate adap- 
tion of their designs, they always were masters of their 
work; and in freedom, vigour, and sharpness of execu- 
tion, their productions are not to be surpassed. 


For the decoration of screens, stalls, benches, canopies, 
and open timber roofs, the art of the wood-carver found 
abundant occupation in the middle ages ; and here, as in 
the works sculptured in stone which have come down to 
us from the same periods, we find conclusive evidence of 
the wonderful ability of the mediaeval artists. 

Of Norman wood-carving but a few examples remain ; 
nor do we now find very manj^ works still in existence, 
which were executed before the second half of the four- 
teenth century. Whatever the special object of each 
work, the general character of the design is found to 
harmonize with the Gothic sentiment of the time ; and 



the workmanship is invariably such as to command 
admiration. Mediaeval screen- work has very generally 
been subjected to serious injury; and the finest speci- 
mens are constantly to be seen occupying positions very 
different from those for which they were originally 
designed. The stalls in our cathedrals and collegiate 
churches will also but too commonly show traces of other 
injuries than those which have been wrought by the 
lapse of time. Perhaps the most remarkable of the early 
wood-carvings are those which decorate the under sur- 
faces of the moveable stall-seats known as misereres . 
Figures and devices of infinite variety, and often of the 
most singular and grotesque character, may here be 
observed, and much unexpected illustration of the feel- 
ings and usages of past ages may be hence derived. 
Popp y - heads, or the carved terminations to the standards 
of open benches, with dosses placed in panels and in 
various other situations, are also always worthy of atten- 
tive study; but few works of this class exist, that may 
be assigned to a period earlier than the concluding 
quarter of the fourteenth century. A few fine examples 
of early monumental effigies, carved in wood, with won- 
derful boldness and shill, are yet in existence ; and cano- 



pies, elaborately enriched with carving in wood, yet 
remain in Westminster Abbey and elsewhere, covering 
some of the noblest of the early monuments. In carved 
panels, figures and heraldic devices, executed with great 
spirit, are common; and a particular kind of panelling 
in oak, known as linen -panelling , from the pattern some- 
what resembling a folded napkin, continued in general 
use until late in the sixteenth century. 


Fresco is a process by means of which pictures are 
produced upon walls or other flat surfaces covered with 
plaster, while the plaster is wet. Wa ll-pain tin g is a 
term by which any pictorial representation executed 
upon a dry wall is implied. And Polychrome signifies 
^surface-colouring in which various colours are employed. 

Whatever may have been the ancient practice, of the 
free use of colour during the middle ages, for the purpose 
of architectural decoration, we have the clearest proofs. 
Diapers, executed in polychrome, are found to have 
covered alike the vaulted ceilings, the timber roofs, the 
screens and canopies, the monuments with their effigies, 


and the surfaces of walls. The richest carvings, whether 
in wood or stone, were not considered complete without 
colour and gilding ; and the same means were used to 
produce either the details of designs of which the prin- 
cipal features were sculptured, or complete designs. 
Thus, in sculptured effigies, the mail, or armour, or the 
various ornamental accessories of costume are constantly 
shown only by means of colour ; and the inner surfaces 
of walls are found to have been thus adorned, as well ill 
domestic and civil buildings as in the churches. In an 
Early English bay of the crypt and in the noble Deco- 
rated Guesten Hall at Worcester, are remains of painted 
representations of sainted personages, with shields of 
arms : other fine examples occur in the Chapter-house at 
Westminster, and in the Abbey itself. It was, indeed, 
a custom universally prevalent, to display pictorial repre- 
sentations of Scriptural events, with figures of sacred 
and saintly personages, upon the walls of churches, and 
probably of all other important buildings. Many exam- 
ples are continually discovered; and it has become 
apparent that these paintings were in many instances 
repeated, at different periods, upon the same wall-spaces. 
Thus a rude colossal St. Christopher, of the commence- 



ment of the sixteenth century, may be found to have 
been painted over some well-drawn smaller figures of two 
centuries earlier. This system of surface decoration by 
colour appears to have been prevalent in Norman times, 
and during the later Gothic ages it was carried to excess. 
Among the subjects most commonly represented in 
churches is the Last J udgment, which it was the custom 
to place over the chancel-arch. In the eastern counties, 
and particularly in Norfolk, there are very many exam- 
ples of chancel-screens (and sometimes of pulpits, as at 
Castleacre) elaborately painted, and having their panels 
adorned with figures of saints, many of which are worthy 
of special attention as early specimens of the art of figure- 


This process consists of inlaying small cubes and 
other fragments of coloured marblds, glass pastes, and 
other materials, in such a manner as to form figures and 
ornamental devices. It was applied to the enrichment 
of pavements, monuments, and to such other parts and 
accessories of both churches and secular buildings as it 
might be desired to enrich with colour in a manner at 
once the most effective and enduring. But few examples 



remain in our own country of tlie application of mosaic 
for the purpose of producing architectural enrichment in 
colour during the middle ages. Where it was employed, 
it appears to have produced a rich and impressive effect. 
In the monumental tombs of Edward the Confessor and 
Henry III., in the two pavements of the choir and pres- 
bytery, and in the remains of the slab of the younger 
William de Valence, Westminster Abbey contains a 
series of works in mosaic which show both the great 
value of this process and also its varied application. 

Tesselated pavements , produced in a bold style of 
mosaic, of which the component fragments are called 
tesseree, were constantly used by the Romans, and many 
fine examples have been found amongst Roman remains 
in this country. It is remarkable that a rich Roman 
pavement of this description should have been discovered 
in the midst of the space enclosed within the cloister at 
Lincoln, at a considerable depth below the present level 
of the soil. 

Encrustations by means of thin slabs of precious mar- 
bles, attached to walls of inferior materials^ are common 
in some foreign architecture : in England inlaid tiles 
were sometimes used for this purpose. 





Of the arts which flourished in past ages and with 
which the student of archaeology becomes familiar, there 
is none that conveys more valuable, and at the same 
time more attractive teaching, than the art of the early 
glass-painter. Known, and its value appreciated from 
an early period (probably in the ninth century), coloured 
glass was in constant use as an architectural accessory 
throughout the middle ages. In the fifteenth century it 
ceased to be exclusively used for churches, and was intro- 
duced as an appropriate decoration into public buildings 
of a secular character, and into private houses. Coloured 
glass may be divided into two classes, produced by two 
distinct processes 1. Stained glass , made by mixing 
metallic oxides with the glass when in a state of fusion, 
and thus the colours are caused to pervade the entire 
mass; 2. Tainted glass , in which the outlines and colour- 
ing of a design are obtained by laying upon either white 
or tinted glass enamel colours combined with vitreous 
fluxes, which Colours are fixed upon the glass, and indeed 
incorporated with it, by the action of the furnace. The 
lead-work, by means of which the different portions of 



glass are formed into glazing-panels, was made to take an 
important part in the composition of the design. Ruby, 
blue, and yellow are the colours principally employed. 

„ In the first Gothic period the yellow is often of a prim- 
rose hue, and green, lilac, and a dull pale red to represent 
the flesh of figures, are used — the flesh-tint is also pro- 
duced by pale blue, shaded with bistre; in the second 
period the green and lilac but seldom appear, and the 
yellow is more common ; and in the third period green 
and lilac are rarely used, except in draperies. This most 
beautiful material once existed in vast quantities in our 
country; but the unhappy violence of some ages, com- 
bined with the ignorant indifference of others, has per- 
mitted but a comparatively few examples to remain to 
our own day. Enough, however, does remain to illus- 
trate the various modes, both of composition, colouring, 
and treatment practised by the mediaeval artists. 

The earliest glass known to be now in existence in 
England is in the choir-aisles at Canterbury, where it 
probably was fixed when the Cathedral was rebuilt after 
the fire of 1174. The colours of this glass are rich and 
lustrous, the general designs being medallions containing 
subjects from the Scriptures, upon grounds of ruby and 

g 2 



blue, the medallions themselves resting on a ground- 
work of mosaic patterns, and the whole being enclosed 
within borders of scrolls and foliage. This system of 
treatment prevails throughout the First Gothic Period . 
The medallions are in form circles, pointed ovals, and 
other figures, and the subjects contained by them are 
taken as frequently from saintly legends as from Holy 
Writ. The principal outlines are formed by the lead. 
The pieces of glass are small in size, and generally 
coloured. The mosaic grounds are arranged in square or 
lozenge-shaped panels, within which fourfoils, trefoils, 
and other devices are formed, and the borders exhibit 
various leafage and scroll-work. 

In the Decorated Gothic Period the pieces of glass are 
larger, and the strips of lead are consequently placed at 
wider intervals. Figures, sometimes single figures of 
large size, appear in the place of the old medallions ; 
canopies and architectural accessories are introduced ; 
the backgrounds to the figures, instead of mosaic 
patterns, are in whole colours diapered ; foliage, studied 
from nature, is prevalent ; and lights and shadows appear 
in draperies and in architectural and other ornaments, and 
the entire compositions approach somewhat to natural 




effects. Quarries, or lozenge-shaped panes, are used, with 
leaves, flowers, or running foliage painted upon them ; 
the compositions of this class being enriched with pieces 
of brilliantly-coloured glass, and with rich borders. The 
choir of Bristol Cathedral contains some excellent speci- 
mens of borders, of which two are represented in Plate 
IV., Figs. £ and 3. Heraldic devices now begin to assume 
prominence. It will be remarked that, in all the best 
examples, the panels of glass are surrounded by a border 
of white glass, that intervenes between themselves and 
the mull ions or jambs of the windows which contain 
them. Very noble examples are at York and Tewkes- 
bury. Early in the period a very beautiful glass, of a 
transitional character, is found, in which large medallions 
with figures appear on grounds formed partly of mosaic 
patterns enclosed within smaller medallions, and partly 
of running leaves of the vine, the oak with its acorns, 
&c., the whole being between borders. Fine examples 
of this class are in Merton College Chapel, Oxford, and a 
characteristic specimen, from Chetwode Church, in Buck- 
inghamshire, is represented in Fig. 1, Plate IY. The 
apostle St. Peter is here introduced, holding in his right 
hand two very large keys, and in his left hand a book. 



In the Perpendicular Period a succession of changes 
appeared, all of them tending towards the production of 
complete and independent pictures, in which the glass 
itself was treated by the artists as simply a transparent 
material on which they were to exercise their art. Ac- 
cordingly, stained glass was comparatively but little 
used, and enamel colours, laid on with the brush, were 
proportionately in favour. Architectural canopies of 
great size, rising above large single figures behind which 
are rich curtains or other hangings, appear in the fifteenth 
century. Borders, when used, are painted on long strips 
of glass ; and landscapes, with buildings and figures, are 
rendered in perspective. Inscriptions, or legends, are 
also commonly associated with figures and groups. In 
the sixteenth century the same system prevailed, and was 
carried out more fully, and large compositions appear, 
which occupy entire windows, and altogether ignore the 
existence of the mullions which divide the lights. 
Heraldry is in constant use, and entire heraldic windows 
are common. Long scrolls, with legends, also con- 
tinually appear. Quarries, with a device in the centre 
of each, in a yellow colour, often form plain windows ; 
and compositions are commonly found executed in various 



tints of a single colour, which generally is brown. The 
glass at King’s College Chapel, Cambridge, may be re- 
garded as the type of this period in its most advanced 

Pictures on glass continued to be executed until the 
middle of the seventeenth century, when the art ceased 
to be practised. 

In private houses, panels of heraldic glass are often 
introduced in the midst of glazing in plain colourless 
glass, and with a good effect. 

It is much to be desired that archaeological students 
should seek out and study the best examples of old glass 
which yet remain. Many fine specimens thus may be 
discovered, and also saved from the dangers to which 
they are exposed through not being known. The true 
character of the old glass will by this means become 
generally understood, and the art, in its revived condition 
at the present day, cannot fail to derive important ad- 
vantages from this experimental knowledge of the con- 
ditions under which it flourished in past ages. The 
felicitous adaption of the glass to the architecture in the 
earlier periods, and, at later periods, the grave mistakes 
of disregarding the architecture, and of painting pictures 



on glass., as pictures would be painted on panel or canvas, 
will be appreciated. It will also be seen both that bad 
drawing is not necessary to produce glass that shall 
harmonize with architecture, and that the glass may be 
dealt with after a truly artistic manner, and yet be most 
strictly and consistently an architectural accessory. 


Instead of the small cubes, or tesserse, employed in 
Homan mosaic pavements, in the middle ages tiles were 
used, upon which various patterns and designs were im- 
pressed by means of a stamp while the clay was moist ; 
and the indented lines and spaces thus obtained having 
been filled up with a white or pale substance, the entire 
surface was covered with a metallic glaze, which gave a 
yellow tinge to the light-coloured or white figures, and 
also a more pleasing tint to the red ground of the tiles 
themselves. Accidental, or, perhaps, intentional varieties 
of colour were obtained by excessive burning, or by some 
metallic admixture in the glazing. 

The step of transition from pavements of true mosaic 
to those of tile was effected by the use of tiles, each of 
which was of one colour only. These tiles were formed in 



various shapes, and they all were adjusted together in 
such a manner as would produce variously-coloured pave- 
ments of geometrical designs. The special peculiarity 
of these pavements consists in their employment of a 
species of quasi-incrustation ; thus, a cube or quatrefoil 
of one colour appears inserted in a cavity pierced for its 
reception through another tile of a different colour and 
larger dimensions. Fine examples of this class of pave- 
ments exist at Ely. 

The process of impression was found to admit the 
production of a great variety of designs, and to be 
equally applicable to simple devices and to more com- 
plicated combinations. The tiles themselves are gene- 
rally square quarries, and the devices impressed upon 
them are, for the most part, so arranged that each tile 
should form a part of a twofold design. Thus a set 
of four tiles would produce two distinct patterns, if 
arranged after two different methods ; and these same 
tiles, when the sets of four are repeated, will exhibit the 
two patterns in alternation. In some cases, each com- 
plete design requires nine or sixteen tiles, or even a 
larger number; but here also, from the mere circum- 
stance of the repetition of the primary and more impor- 



tant device, a secondary device is obtained with equal 
simplicity and effectiveness. In other cases, each tile 
bears a complete device : such tiles, when their devices 
are set on them in the same parallel with the sides of 
the tiles themselves, appear to have been designed to 
form borders ; but when their devices are set on them 
diagonally (as is the prevalent usage with the ever- 
beautiful fleur-de-lys and with shields of arms), they 
produce compound devices of great interest. Fig. 4, in 
Plate V., is an example of a tile of this description ; it 
is charged with the arms of the De Clares, Earls of 
Gloucester. Fig. 2 is from Wheathampstead in Hert- 
fordshire, and is a characteristic example of the tiles 
in the Early English Gothic period : sets of this tile 
would produce only repetitions of the same pattern, the 
quarter-patterns at the angles being all of them the 
same. Besides squares, triangular and hexagonal tiles, 
with some other modifications of form, are sometimes 
used : at St. Albans are a few curious specimens of an 
elongated lozenge-shape, of which three tiles form a 
regular hexagon ; Fig. 3, of Plate V., represents one of 
these tiles. Narrow oblong tiles form borders, as at 
Salisbury and Malmesbury. Circular tiles, with such 


Plate Y. 

TSacent IBxoaks Iurp. 

G. Jewitt Sel.etEfctli. 

TigXliomtke site c£ CTertseyiOobey, Surrey. Tig 3 Tram. StifltaaiT’s itHbey CTnircku 
... 2.TromT^e^th.arciipstead Ckrir ch ; Herts „ 4*. Trom Great Malvern Abbey Cimrah.. 



others of segmental forms as are necessary to be used in 
combinations with them, are of rare occurrence ; by far 
the finest examples of such tiles, both of unusually large 
dimensions and also very small, have lately been dis- 
covered in a sadly mutilated condition on the site of the 
destroyed Abbey of Chertsey. Here also have been 
found a numerous series of tiles of every variety of both 
form, size, and device, including many small wedge- 
shaped ones, each of which is impressed with a single 
Lombardic capital-letter. The delicacy, beauty, and 
spirit of these Chertsey relics claim for them the dis- 
tinction of being the most remarkable examples that 
have been discovered. Other admirable specimens are 
in the Chapter-house, Westminster, at Great Malvern, 
and in Worcester and Gloucester Cathedrals. One of 
the larger circular tiles from Chertsey is figured in 
Plate Y. ; two knights of the reign of Henry III. are 
represented in combat, and the details of their arms and 
equipments are as curious as the figures of both men 
and horses are animated and full of action. Inlaid tiles 
for pavements were made in great numbers in the Early 
English period ; and the examples that exist of the 
fourteenth and fifteenth centuries are also very nume- 



rous; and scarcely less numerous than the tiles them- 
selves are the varieties of their designs. A profusion of 
tiles of the succeeding century are in existence ; during 
this century, however, the English inlaid tiles fell into 
disuse, and they were superseded by glazed Flemish tiles 
of various colours. These polychromatic tiles appear to 
have been first introduced by Sir Nicholas Bacon in his 
mansion at Gorhambury, near St. Albans, a.d. 1577. 
Green and yellow tiles of this description were also im- 
ported from Flanders by Cardinal Wolsey for Hampton 
Court Palace, and Christchurch College, Oxford. 

The devices impressed upon inlaid tiles may generally 
be classified as follows 

1. Sacred and religious symbols, with texts from 
Holy Scripture, and pious phrases. 

2. Armorial bearings, monograms, badges, and other 
heraldic devices, with mottos and commemorative in- 

3. Figures, whether single or in groups, and heads. 

4. Monumental devices, as a cross or an effigy formed 
of a series of tiles. 

5. Designs of an architectural character. 

6. Miscellaneous devices and patterns, conformable to 



the architecture or character of decoration prevalent at 
the period, but devoid of any special import. 

The period to which any tiles may belong is, for the 
most part, readily determined by their devices and the 
manner in which they are rendered. 

Various mediaeval kilns have been discovered in which 
these tiles were manufactured. Tiles of plain black, 
deep red, blue, and buff were also made, to be used in 
forming patterns with the tiles inlaid with devices. In 
a few instances tiles have been found which have devices 
impressed upon them, but there is no inlaying, and the 
devices either appear incised or in a species of low relief. 
A remarkable variety of inlaid tiles has also been noticed 
(examples occur at Great Malvern and Chertsey), which 
was intended to cover and decorate the surfaces of walls; 
these have been denominated w all-tiles, and in their use 
they assimilate very closely to the ancient practice of 
mosaic incrustation which clothed the surfaces of rough 
walls of brick or rubble with flakes of precious marbles. 

The greater number of the early pavement-tiles have 
been removed from their original positions; wdierever 
any still remain in situ , they claim particular attention, 
because many most valuable suggestions are always to 



be derived from the original modes of combination and 


It is the glory as it is the characteristic of the archi- 
tecture of the middle ages, that it watched with the 
same jealous carefulness as well over its minor details 
and subordinate accessories as it did over the most im- 
portant of its productions. Hence the smith who 
wrought the necessary iron- work for architectural pur- 
poses in those days was an artist, and he both felt and 
worked in the spirit of the architecture of his day. We 
find, accordingly, that wherever iron was used, it was 
treated artistically, as well as adapted to the practical 
uses for which it was required. 

Hinges were much ornamented by the Normans. The 
few examples of that period which yet remain are orna- 
mented with curling scroll-work, and a large branch, in 
the form of the letter C, generally issues from the 
straight bar near the joint or head. In the first Gothic 
period the scroll-work becomes much elaborated, leaves 
and animals* heads appear on the scrolls, small patterns 
ornament the main bands, and the nails are much 



enriched. In some examples, as at Lichfield, the scroll- 
work of the hinges forms a system of iron-tracery 
covering the entire doors. In the next period the intro- 
duction of carved panelling on doors caused the hinges 
to be of simpler design ; they continued, however, to be 
wrought with much skill, and they add greatly to the 
effectiveness of the carving of the wood. In the third 
period the hinges are still plainer. 

Lochs , closing -rings, escutcheons , handles , and keys 
are all of them executed with great care, and exhibit 
both the fertile invention and the skilful and delicate 
manipulation of the Gothic smiths. The designs are 
infinitely varied, and yet always in harmony with the 
prevailing art-sentiment of the age. 

Screen-work in iron was introduced as early as the 
thirteenth century. A very rich and beautiful example 
of the close of that era still appears attached to the 
monument of Eleanor, queen of Edward I., in West- 
minster Abbey. Doors as well as screens were formed 
from the same metal, and they are enriched with pierced 
tracery, tabernacle-work, &c. 

The lands , which at once strengthen and ornament 
the large wooden chests which were much used, cor- 



respond with the hinge -scrolls, but they are generally 
less enriched and of inferior workmanship. Knockers , 
when required, assumed various grotesque forms ; some- 
times the massive closing-ring of a door would form the 
knocker also. 

Crosses for spires, of great beauty of design, were 
formed of iron. Sometimes the early cusping of window- 
tracery was of the same metal. 

The iron-work necessary for fixing the panels of glass 
in windows consists of stancheons , which are fixed ver- 
tically between the mullions, and saddle-bars, which 
cross the lights horizontally. The heads of the stan- 
cheons are generally enriched with fleurs-de-lys, oak- 
leaves with acorns, or other leaves. 


Screens , • pierced doorways , with the coverings that in 
the middle ages were placed over monumental effigies 
for protection, and denominated iierses , with many of 
the more important effigies themselves, and their acces- 
sories and canopies, were executed in bronze. Bronze 
and brass (the mediaeval term for either alloy was latten> 
or laton) were used also for lecterns or standard-desks. 



which often were made in the form of an eagle with out- 
spread wings; also for candlesticks , pendent chandeliers, 
or corona, aud many other works of that class. To all 
their productions the early workers in these metals claim 
our careful attention, since they are characterized by 
high qualities as works of art, 


Like the smith, the early plumber was an artist. 
Crockets , shields of arms, fleurs-de-lys, and other devices 
appear, formed in lead, for the enrichment of spires. 
Leaden crestings and other decorative accessories of roofs, 
with the pipes for carrying off water, show at once the 
capabilities of the metal and the skilful hands that dealt 
with it in the middle ages. Leaden coffins, in use in the 
twelfth century, when discovered, are found to have 
been adorned with spiral and other band-work, shells, 
foliage, &c. Fonts are sometimes to be seen formed en- 
tirely of lead, and ornamented with architectural devices. 


Whatsoever vessels might be required for sacred use 
were distinguished by the beauty of their workmanship 




and the richness of their ornamentation. In the earliest 
ages it had been the custom with Christian princes to 
enrich the churches with vast numbers of chalices, dishes , 
statuettes, &c., of gold and silver. Shrines of the most 
costly description were added to these in process of 
time, with adornments for . altars, and all the other gor- 
geous appliances of mediaeval worship. The artists 
who produced these works were the master-spirits of 
their times in the matter of practical art ; and the gold- 
smiths sought and obtained the co-operation of the 
artists who worked in enamel, niello, and all the varied 
processes by which the mind and hand of man add so 
greatly to the intrinsic value of the most valuable of 
natural productions. 


Introduced at a very early period in the Christian era, 
and employed from the first for the same purposes which 
they now fulfil, bells are first mentioned as accessories of 
churches, under their proper title camjoance, by Bede, in 
the eighth century. Church bells were used by the 
Anglo-Saxons; and from their time to our own we 
generally find on them some appropriate or characteristic 



inscription. In the middle ages, brief precatory legends, 
often addressed to the patron saint of the church in 
which they were to be placed, were wrought upon the 
bells. In some instances these legends commemorate 
the donor of the bells, or the founder, or some great 
benefactor of the church. Bell-inscriptions have been 
observed, which were evidently intended to be considered 
as calculated to increase the preservative qualities attri- 
buted to the sound of the bells themselves. These in- 
scriptions, with the heraldic and other devices which 
accompany them, afford curious illustrations of early 
sentiments and usages. It will be observed that the 
inscriptions are often written in the first person ; and 
the sentiment which they convey is thus supposed to be 
uttered by the bells as they sound. Different names 
were given to bells of various sizes, and used on different 
occasions. St. Katherine appears, from many bell- 
inscriptions, to have been the patroness of bells. 

The lelfry-towers , in which the bells are hung, some- 
times are detached from the churches to which they 
belong, and stand at some little distance from them; 
as at West Walton and East Dereham in Norfolk, at 
Evesham and at Chichester Cathedral. 

h 2 




The nomenclature now in use in treating of the archi- 
tecture of the middle ages, is in part derived from various 
documents relating to the construction of buildings, such 
as contracts, also from wills, with some architectural 
treatises by early writers. The titles given to the three 
divisions or periods of the Gothic style in England, were 
introduced by the late Mr. Rickman, and are generally 
adopted ; they have the advantage of being understood 
and recognised, and are sufficiently appropriate for their 



From the earliest ages in the history of man, each suc- 
ceeding generation has been actuated by the desire to 
perpetuate the memory, through some visible and tan- 
gible memorial, of the loved and honoured ones who 
have passed away before themselves. Thus has been 
produced the vast and varied series of historical records 
of the worlds progress, known as sepulchral monuments. 
Our own country still retains many examples of such 
pious care, which are the sole relics of the early races 
who once were the inhabitants of these islands. And 
the succession of these national monuments has been 
transmitted from British times, through the periods of 
Roman and Saxon occupation, and from thence onwards 
after the establishment of the Norman dynasty to our 
own day. These memorials, whatsoever may be their 
special form or character, are invariably found to possess 
the highest interest, as well from their historical asso~ 



ciations as from their connexion with the individuals 
whom they were designed to commemorate. 


These consist of the following five varieties : — 

1» The Cairn, or heap of stones. These rude memo- 
rials, usually found on mountain-sides or on the crests 
of hills, were formed of unhewn stones set about the 
remains of the dead, and also raised in a rugged pile 
above them. They occur chiefly in the western districts 
of England, particularly in Cornwall and Shropshire; 
and many examples may be observed throughout the 
mountainous districts of Wales, Scotland, and Ireland. 

2. The MoNOLiTH/or single block of stone of large 
size, and generally set upright. 

3. The Cromlech, formed of three or more large stones 
set upright, with a flat stone placed over them so as to 
form a kind of sepulchral chamber. A large number of 
these cromlechs have been discovered and explored in all 
parts of the kingdom, the greater number, however, 
being in the Channel Islands and Ireland. In the in- 
terior of these cromlechs the surface of the natural soil 



has been found to have been covered with a rudely- 
formed pavement, upon which several distinct strata 
have rested. The human remains have generally con- 
sisted of burnt bones intermixed with articles of pottery, 
or sometimes the urns have contained the bones. Various 
weapons, ornaments, and implements have also been 
almost always discovered, forming a part of these sepul- 
chral deposits. 

4. The Circle, or enclosure of upright stones, set 
singly, or in small groups, and at intervals varying in 
space. These circles were sometimes, perhaps always, 
erected about the cromlech of some personage of unusual 

5. The Barrow or Tumulus, a heap of earth raised to 
a considerable height, and often covering a large area. 
Barrows would be the most natural species of memorial, 
and such as an untutored race would spontaneously 
erect ; they are also the most enduring of monuments, 
and their massive simplicity is always impressive, if not 
actually dignified and noble. The bodies of the dead 
were placed upon the surface of the ground, not interred 
in graves sunk below the surface, and then the earth was 
heaped up. The barrows sometimes are found to con- 



tain skeletons, and in other cases urns only, while occa- 
sionally both urns and skeletons appear together. The 
urns are very rude, and, when large, are often found to 
have been inverted. These urns contain burnt bones, 
and various relics generally appear either in them or 
near them. In many cases the remains of the dead ap- 
pear to have a species of cromlech constructed over 
them upon which the barrow was raised. It is, indeed, 
certain that many cromlechs which now stand uncovered, 
have had their original barrows removed or worn away 
during the lapse of many ages. In the earliest barrows 
there are found stone hammers and hatchets, Celts of the 
same material, both arrow-heads and spear-heads of flint, 
with beads of various substances, and torques or collars 
and armlets of gold or bronze. Somewhat later, the 
Celts and weapons are of bronze ; and now the sword is 
found to have been broken — a significant token that the 
warrior’s career had closed. The ornaments remain the 
same as before, and coins are found. 



The Tumulus, as the Romans designated the heaped- 



up barrow of the Celtic tribes, continued to be in use as 
a memorial until an advanced period of the Saxon era. 
These tumuli abound in our islands, and the recent 
researches which have been made in so many of them have 
thrown a bright light upon that heretofore dark period 
in our national history — the period between the decline 
of the Roman power and the tenth century. The custom 
of laying out the dead for their burial, or of placing their 
ashes in urns, accompanied with the ornaments, weapons, 
and other objects worn and used during life, has pre- 
served for us abundant evidence of the civilization, arts, 
and usages of our ancestors in those ages. 

The Romans generally burned, but they sometimes 
buried, their dead; and it has been proved to have 
been their custom to bury the bodies of children who 
died in their infancy in the immediate vicinity of their 
former homes. A few examples of Roman Sarcophagi, 
or massive stone coffins, have been occasionally discovered, 
and Roman Tumuli, with their accompanying urns, may 
sometimes be met with. But the Romans can scarcely be 
said to have regularly adopted the tumulus as a form of 
memorial. Their sepulchral urns, with the ashes of the 
dead, were commonly buried, often about two feet below 



the surface ; or these urns were deposited in pits, hol- 
lowed out for their reception to a considerable depth in 
the earth. Vessels of glass were also used to contain the 
remains after their cremation ; and these depositories are 
generally found to have been protected by tiles or stones, 
so arranged as to form a little cromlech about them. 
The finer urns had also, in some cases, a similar protec- 
tion. Roman stones of memorial , having a brief com- 
memorative inscription, are also continually discovered, 
particularly near the more important stations, and these, 
it may be remarked, are the only inscribed memorials of 
a very early period. Of the sculptured sarcophagi of 
Italy, with their recumbent figures, no examples have 
been found in our country. The tumuli of many Britons 
of the Roman era of Britain have been found, and their 
peculiar character has been assigned to them from certain 
conditions which appear to indicate a decided difference 
between themselves and Roman tumuli, properly so 
called. Thus in these examples there are no tokens of 
the rites that appear to have marked the sepulture of the 
Roman ; but a cist, or coffin of stone, and sometimes of 
wood, is found, and the weapons, armour, and ornaments 
differ from those of genuine Roman type. Coffins of 



lead have also been found enriched with varied orna- 
mentation, and enclosed within sarcophagi of stone. 
Saxon tumuli have been observed to exhibit a twofold 
character, which has led these examples to be severally- 
assigned, and, as it would seem, with certain accuracy, 
to Christians and Pagans, of the same race, and also of 
the same periods. In these most interesting memorials, 
the great distinction between the interment of the 
Christian and the Pagan usage of cremation is always to 
be observed. In the former case, the body was either 
stretched out or placed in a sitting posture, sometimes 
with and sometimes without any coffin. The weapons, 
formed of iron, which the warrior had worn, were placed 
beside him ; his large double-edged broad-sword, his 
knife and single-edged cutlass, all of them now without 
hilt or guard, his large spear and his lighter javelin, with 
his shield, of which the iron boss, or umbo, is all that 
remains, his helmet, now reduced to its metal framework ; 
and with them drinking-vessels of glass, and buckets of 
wood set with bronze, brooches, and fibulae, some cruci- 
form and others circular, and clasps and buckles, all of 
them ornamented with either real or fictitious jewels, and 
with inlaid niello work, beads also of glass, and amethysts. 



and sometimes ornaments of silver ; and with the body 
of the master the bones of his charger are not un- 
commonly found beneath the same barrow. But besides 
these relics, the Pagan memorials abound in the remains 
of cremation; the funeral fire attests its action upon the 
entire deposit. Here are urns, rude in form and orna- 
ment and not rounded by the lathe, and bronze articles 
are mingled with those of iron ; combs, also, of ivory 
and horn, not so frequent in the Christian barrows, here 
are commonly found. Barrows were the favourite memo- 
rial of the Teutonic race : they vary in size and height, as 
well as in position ; some are of great size, and cover the 
remains of many persons ; others were raised, each above 
a single individual. Sometimes a tumulus stands alone, 
a solitary memorial ; and in other instances there are 
groups of these mounds, which are scattered in every 
direction. The summits of all barrows are now almost 
invariably somewhat depressed in their centre, where the 
earth has settled, and large trees may commonly be seen 
growing upon them. In the very large barrows several 
sepulchral strata have been discovered, and the evidences 
of both cremation and interment have appeared in bar- 
rows of the same group. In some instances, the orna- 



ments and other relics have indicated the resting-place 
and the memorial of a Dane. 

Besides the tumulus, the Anglo-Saxons used for sepul- 
ture Cists, or coffins formed of several stones; and 
regular cemeteries have been discovered in which these 
cists exist in great numbers. In rocky districts, cists 
were sometimes hewn in the rock itself ; and here also, 
and sometimes where no rock exists, large deposits of 
urns are found to have been placed in caverns and other 
excavations. Throughout the Saxon era, single stones 
of great size, or monoliths, were employed for the pur- 
pose of sepulchral commemoration. Some of these stones 
bear the Christian symbol— the cross ; and several of 
them retain traces of those singular lines cut at their 
angles which are denominated Ogham inscriptions. 

It is probable that the monuments in use during the 
tenth and eleventh centuries were principally upright 
stones, together with cists and coffins constructed of 
slabs, and wrought from blocks of stone. Several small 
slabs, curiously ornamented with interlaced patterns and 
crosses, have been discovered, which may be attributed 
to this period. They appear to have been placed beneath 
the heads of the dead at their burial. Larger stones, 



marked with crosses, and with inscriptions in Saxon and 
Runic letters, were also placed over the interments. 
These covering stones were either flat or coped ; in the 
latter case the ridge was generally considerably raised, 
and the stone was ornamented with zigzag work, scrolls, 
and interlaced patterns, often strangely mixed up with 
the figures of animals and wild grotesques. 



The Stone Coffin came gradually into general use 
about the close of the eleventh century, for the inter- 
ment and also for the memorial of deceased personages 
of eminence and wealth ; and this species of monument 
continued to be the principal form of memorial during 
the two centuries which followed. Upright stones were 
still occasionally erected ; but they appear to have fallen 
into disuse, or if retained in use, scarcely any examples 
have been preserved. Coffins of ornamented lead were 
employed on some occasions; but these were either 
buried below the surface of the ground or placed within 
stone coffins. Wooden coffins were used in a similar 
manner. The stone coffins were generally fixed upon 



the pavement of churches, or they were so placed that 
the solid slabs which covered them formed a portion of 
the pavement of the church. The stone coffins of 
founders, and other very eminent persons, after a time 
were placed within arched recesses, formed for their 
reception in the substance of the church wall. In other 
cases these stone coffins were buried in churchyards, or 
they were set there in such a manner as to show their 
coffin-lids. Stone coffins, formed from solid blocks of 
stone, are also found grouped with cists constructed 
from several stones; as on the site of the ruined Abbey of 
Chertsey, and in the foundations of a part of Worcester 
Cathedral, which was built early in the thirteenth 

The stone coffin, properly so called, was made from a 
single block of stone, hollowed out for the reception of 
the corpse, and having a cavity cut in the solid stone for 
the protection of the head. These stone coffins varied in 
form, but generally tapered from the head to the feet 
(see Plate VIII., Fig. 2) . They are for the most part 
quite plain, examples enriched with sculpture being of 
rare occurrence. One of the earliest known examples 
which yet retains its original position, is the stone coffin 



of William Rufus, a.d. 1100, in the choir of Winchester 
Cathedral. It has a cover, coped, and ornamented with 
mouldings. A century and a half later is the date of 
the richly decorated stone coffin of Llewelyn, Prince of 
Wales, which has been removed from Conway to the 
Church of Llanrwst. 

The coffin-lids, when they follow the shape of the 
coffins themselves, are generally coped ; but their ridge 
is only slightly raised. They have a simple cross almost 
always sculptured upon them in low relief, with some 
other equally simple ornamentation. Patterns of scroll- 
work and interlacing figures in some examples appear as 
the decorations of these stones, and more particularly 
when they are flat ; and a few inscriptions have also been 
noticed, as on the memorial of Gundrada at Lewes, a 
work contemporary with the decease of the Princess, 
a.d. 1085. Inscriptions, however, are very rarely found 
until the thirteenth century. Besides the stone coffin- 
lids, flat rectangular slabs were also in use. These are 
ornamented after the same manner as the coffin-lids 

All these monumental stones had their devices executed 
in low relief during the Norman era, and the designs 



that were executed upon them were in close accordance 
with the architectural forms of the period. This coinci- 
dence in design between the architecture and the monu- 
ments, will be observed to have been maintained in after 
ages; but, after a while, the designs were no less fre- 
quently engraven or incised upon the slabs than produced 
in relief ; and the practice was continued, of producing 
the designs for sepulchral commemoration, both in relief 
and in incised outline. A third mode of representation 
was also introduced, which combined the two processes ; 
here, however, the relief was obtained by cutting down 
or sinking parts of the surface. 


With the rise of Gothic architecture, monumental 
slabs were advanced to a great richness and variety of 
design. The cross was still the prevailing device, and it 
appears to have been considered to be capable of an end- 
less variety of modifications in form, while decorative 
foliage and other accessories were added with liberal 
profusion. Inscriptions then again began to prevail; 
and then there appeared upon the monumental slabs, 
with the cross, and perhaps with the inscription also, 




some device or symbol which might indicate the ranh, pro- 
fession, or calling of the deceased . These symbolical 
slabs exhibit a great variety in their treatment, and are 
always curious and interesting. There are examples, 
both incised and in relief, of the staff of the ecclesiastic 
of episcopal rank, with the customary cross, and alone ; 
sometimes it is grasped by a hand, and in other slabs it 
is accompanied with the chalice. The chalice with the 
wafer, the paten and a book, or alone, and both with 
and without the monumental cross, will always indicate 
the ecclesiastic not of episcopal rank. A hand in the 
attitude of benediction is sometimes seen with the 
chalice ; and a book appears, without any other device 
except the cross. The knight, or man-at-arms, in like 
manner, is aptly symbolized by a sword, which, in a few 
examples, is represented as if it were grasped in the 
hand. In some slabs, with the sword are the helmet 
and shield of the knight, and various heraldic insignia. 
The sword has also other devices associated with it ; 
thus, at Haltwhistle, Northumberland, on one side of 
the shaft of the cross on a slab are a sword and shield, 
and on the opposite side a pilgrim's staff and wallet ; 
this most interesting memorial is figured in Plate YI. 


Plate HI. 

Tig.! At HeQt whistle Charch . ) liar th-XorriL exland ; ah out 1300. 
2. At GsOling Chin? oh. ; l^fkshire, abouE 13 5 0 . 

J • JewJtt del ct iith . 

"Vincent .Brooks ireg. 



A lance and an axe are found elsewhere with swords, 
also pincers and a hagnmer. Again, in some examples, 
the sword, with its cross-hilt guard, appears alone in the 
middle of the slab. In other cases, more than one 
person is shown to be commemorated by there being 
two crosses, each being accompanied by its own distinct 
symbols. At Iona, with the swords there are rich 
foliage and various figures. A large axe, a forester’s 
bow and horn, a mason’s square, a notary’s ink-horn and 
penner, a glover’s scissors and glove-stretcher, with an 
endless series of shears of different forms, and of keys, 
trumpets, a ship, a fish, and many other symbols, are 
found to have been used in a similar maimer. The 
shears have been considered to denote a female ; but 
this hypothesis, though very probably correct, has not 
received any positive confirmation. The shears have 
also been supposed to indicate a wool- merchant, or some 
of his family. The key has also been supposed to be an 
emblem of the female sex. The key and shears are cer- 
tainly very commonly found together; and sometimes 
there is a pair of shears with two keys. But the key, 
though possibly in some instances used where a female 
was commemorated, cannot be considered as purely an 

i 2 



emblem of females. It is rather a symbol of office ; and 
thus it appears with the early effigy of a treasurer of the 
see of Hereford on his monument in that Cathedral. 

Some of the slabs of this class, and others without 
any other symbol than the cross, are of very small 
dimensions, and they may possibly be memorials of 
persons who have died at an early age. 

In Sussex, iron-plates were often used in place of 
slabs of stone, for commemorative purposes; these plates 
bear inscriptions and various devices. 

Besides the devices already specified, the figure of a 
heart, generally accompanied with some scrolls bearing 
legends, has been observed; this has been supposed to 
signify that, in accordance with an early usage, the 
heart only of a deceased person has been buried where 
such a memorial was provided. A heart is also found in 
combination with effigies, in which case it would not be 
supposed to have any such special signification. The 
figure of a rose was also a favourite device, and various 
other figures will be observed by the student ; his chief 
attention, however, will be attracted by the devices which 
have been specified, and more especially by the monu- 
mental crosses from their variety, richness of ornamen- 



tation, and the evident delight with which they were 
executed by the early artists. 


With the close of the twelfth century, the idea 
appears to have become recognised that a portraiture of 
a deceased personage should, in certain cases, constitute 
his monumental memorial. The idea itself probably 
arose from the prevailing custom of burying the dead 
in the habit peculiar to their rank or condition. The 
equipment of the corpse for its interment led to a species 
of lying in state ; and hence it would he sufficiently easy 
to derive the suggestion that the coffin -lid itself should 
represent the deceased, as he had been placed beneath it 
in the coffin. Such a system of representation was, 
indeed, as old as the mummy-cases of Egypt; and the 
Etruscans had for ages commemorated their dead by 
monumental effigies. Still, the effigies of the Western 
nations show but little sign of having been derived from 
these ancient prototypes; on the contrary, their first 
aspect and their gradual development would confirm the 
opinion that these effigies were the result of the practice 
of interment then prevalent. Accordingly, the earliest 


examples present the aspect of a figure rather sunk 
within a . stone coffin than placed upon its covering. 
These early effigies still continued for some length of 
time to be expressed in partial relief only, even after 
they were represented as reclining upon the monumental 
slab. They were wrought upon the surface of the slab 
and were flat, and generally associated with scroll- 
patterns and the earliest forms of foliage. After a while 
the relief became more genuine and complete, until, 
with the advance of the thirteenth century, monumental 
effigies became most noble works of the sculptor’s art. 

The earliest effigies are those of bishops and abbots, 
and next to these are effigies of nobles and others in 
military equipment. There are very early episcopal 
effigies in the Cathedrals at Salisbury, Worcester, Ely, 
Exeter, Peterborough, and others. Of the earliest 
knightly effigies examples are to be found in almost 
every district ; fine and remarkable effigies of this class 
are in the Temple Church, London, in Salisbury Cathe- 
dral, at Malvern and Pershore, at Southacre in Norfolk, 
and in many of the churches in the northern counties. 
The costume and armour represented by these and other 
monumental effigies will be found fully described else- 



where. The attitudes assumed by these figures will not 
escape notice. Bishops and abbots appear in the act 
of benediction, holding up the right hand, with the 
thumb and the first and second fingers elevated ; some- 
times a book is held in the left hand, while on that arm 
usually rests the pastoral staff. In some few examples 
the staff rests on the right arm, and occasionally it is 
grasped in the hand ; sometimes, also, both the hands 
are represented as clasped in prayer, or they are crossed 
and rest upon the person. At the first, the military 
effigies exhibit the warrior as in the act of either draw- 
ing or returning his weapon to its sheath; and in some 
instances the attitude of the figure is expressive of 
vehement action. But the inconsistency of such repre- 
sentations appears to have been soon felt, and thus the 
effigy of the warrior was represented in that striking 
attitude of combined rest, resignation, and hopefulness, 
which imparts such a peculiar impressiveness to these 
memorials ; the body was stretched out as in repose ; 
the drapery was so arranged as to exclude the idea of all 
bodily action ; and the hands were upraised and clasped 
as in supplication. In one circumstance, and that a cir- 
cumstance which has attracted much attention, the early 



military effigies of our own country are distinguished by a 
singular peculiarity in attitude. They are, until about the 
year 1320,very generally represented with the legs crossed. 
These crossed-legged effigies were, for a considerable time 
(and the assertion is even now sometimes made), asserted 
to be Knights Templars , simply because some of the 
effigies in the Temple Church appear in some modifica- 
tion of this attitude. Subsequently they were designated 
Crusaders , and this title they very generally retain. The 
Templar theory was at once dispelled when inquiry was 
made into the facts ; it was found that the knights thus 
represented had no connexion with the Temple order ; 
and in more than one instance the silent effigy, resting 
beside the companion figure of the lady who in life had 
been the knight's wedded wife, plainly declared that the 
crossed-legged attitude could not denote the Templar. 
Neither does there appear any reason for supposing 
that a soldier of the Crusades was particularly comme- 
morated after this manner, since many known Crusaders 
do not appear crossed-legged ; and, again, there are many 
crossed-legged effigies to knights who are equally well 
known not to have taken any part in those wonderful 
expeditions ; and at Cashel, in Ireland, there are effigies 



of ladies in this attitude; and besides, this attitude 
has in no single instance been observed on the Continent 
of Europe ; and had the crossed legs really denoted the 
Crusader, Crusaders of every European country would, 
without doubt, have been represented after the same 
fashion. The attitude would seem to be altogether 
devoid of any symbolical or special signification. It is 
the natural attitude of the limbs when at rest, and cer- 
tainly its adoption has enabled the mediaeval sculptors to 
add very considerably to the effectiveness of their mili- 
tary figures. With the disuse of mail armour the 
crossed-legged attitude ceased to be employed. In some 
few examples the arms of the effigies are crossed as well 
as the lower limbs. 

Effigies of ecclesiastics not of episcopal rank, of civi- 
lians also, and ladies, appear in the thirteenth century ; 
but their numbers, until a later period, are comparatively 
small. Both in the thirteenth century and subsequently, 
these effigies, like those of knights, nobles, and bishops, 
correspond in their art-treatment with the general con- 
dition of art at the time ; and they always are valuable 
as exponents of this condition of art, no less than as 
examples of costume, armour, feeling, and usage. The 



earlier effigies of priests exhibit them in the habit worn 
when ministering at the altar (see Chapter on Costume); 
somewhat later the cope is introduced. The earliest of 
these memorials are of about a.d. 1250. The priest 
commonly is represented having a chalice. Effigies in 
academic habit also occur. Other effigies represent 
princes and nobles in their robes, judges in their official 
costumes, and merchants and civilians of various ranks. 
The effigies of ladies illustrate costume with great effect, 
and they are rarely devoid of some points of special inte- 
rest. Children were not often commemorated by effigies, 
except with their parents. The prevailing position of 
all effigies was recumbent, and the attitude that of devo- 
tional rest. Occasionally an effigy appears resting on 
its side ; and husbands and wives not unfrequently are 
hand in hand, but this attitude would seem generally to 
have been adopted when the wife was the survivor. As 
the fifteenth century advanced towards its close, effigies 
were represented kneeling, the husband and wife facing 
each other, each with a faldstool and a small desk before 
them, and the sons and daughters behind their parents 
in two groups. Sometimes the children, small in size, 
are introduced below the figures of their parents ; and 



the effigies themselves are occasionally recumbent, but 
rarely with the repose and fine feeling of earlier times. 
Children are sometimes represented in the distinctive 
costume of the rank or condition to which they attained 
in mature life ; but they more generally appear attired 
as youthful persons. When one of the children has 
died before the parent or parents, it is, in the later 
monuments, represented in its place in the series, but 
smaller in size than the brother or sister before and 
behind it, and holding a skull. 

When first introduced, the monumental effigy was 
simply substituted for the cross-symbol upon the stone 
coffin-lid. Accordingly, early effigies are found resting 
upon stone coffins, which in their turn stand upon the 
pavement of churches; in other cases, where the coffins 
are sunk below the surface, the effigies, with their coffin- 
shaped slabs, lie upon the actual pavement ; and, again, 
but too many of these figures have been removed from 
their proper site, and subjected to every species of in- 
jury. Many of the effigy-slabs taper very slightly, 
and with the fourteenth century they generally assumed 
a rectangular form. The effigy of King J ohn, a work 
of certain authenticity, at Worcester Cathedral, is sculp- 



tured from the same block which forms the tapering 
coffin-lid ; this effigy, thus forming the coffin-lid, now 
lies upon a raised tomb of the sixteenth century ; but 
the actual stone coffin containing the remains of the 
king stands within this tomb upon the pavement of the 
choir, and it corresponds in its external form with the 
coffin-lid. This is the earliest royal effigy in England, 
and it is in the most excellent preservation. One of the 
finest military effigies of the same period represents 
William Longespee, Earl of Salisbury, the son of Fair 
Rosamond. The earl is not in the crossed-legged atti- 
tude ; but another effigy (like this, in Salisbury Ca- 
thedral) of his son has the legs crossed. The effigy of 
the earl reposes on a tomb constructed of wood. The 
tomb is also of wood which supports the effigy of 
William de Valence, another work of the same period, 
and not crossed-legged, in Westminster Abbey. This 
very curious monument was originally covered with 
enamelled plates, of which many portions still re- 

There are several instances of early effigies having 
been carved in wood instead of stone or marble. The 
wood employed appears to have been generally chestnut. 



These figures are almost all executed in a masterly 
style, and some exceed the size of life. 

Bronze was also used for the production of monu- 
mental effigies of special importance. One of the finest 
works of this class in this material is the noble effigy of 
Eleanor, queen of Edward I. (a.d. 1298), in Westminster 
Abbey. The effigies, cast in bronze, of Henry III. (a.d. 
1272), of Richard II., and Anne, his queen (a.d. 1397), 
in the same grand church, and that of the Black Prince 
(a.d. 1376) in Canterbury Cathedral, are also most admi- 
rable works. And at later periods the bronze effigies of 
the Earl of Warwick (a.d. 1435), at Warwick, and of 
Henry VII. and his queen, Elizabeth of York, with that 
of his mother, the Countess of Derby, all executed about 
1512, and preserved in Westminster Abbey, may be 
specified as very fine examples. The surface of the metal 
in these effigies was richly gilt, and in some of them 
elaborately adorned with engraven work. 

The early artists habitually applied colour to their 
effigies, with gilding and enamel. They farther enriched 
the figures with various decorative processes, such as 
engraved work, and probably niello. In many instances 
they appear to have applied to the marble or stone a 



species of cement which would speedily harden, and 
upon which the mailing of the armour, the patterns of 
female dresses, and other ornamental details were stamped. 

In monumental sculpture it was the prevailing usage 
to execute the figures of life-size ; in some instances, 
however, effigies appear of a much smaller size, as at 
Salisbury Cathedral to a bishop, at Long Wittenham, 
Berks, to a knight, who is crossed-legged, and to the 
family of a civilian at Bredon. Some special signi- 
fication has been assigned to these small sculptured 
effigies, but apparently without any reason. 

It was customary to place at the feet of effigies some 
animal or other figure ; thus the feet of King John rest 
upon a lion of England. The lion, or in its stead a dog, is 
very commonly to be seen at the feet of ecclesiastics as 
well as of princes and knights. Ladies frequently have 
at their feet very small pet dogs (and sometimes large 
ones), with collars of bells about their necks, and in a 
few instances with the dogs* names on their collars. In 
the first instance the animals thus placed appear to have 
had some heraldic connexion with the person comme- 
morated ; and this same heraldic character was gene- 
rally maintained by them. In some cases these animals 



were evidently symbolical, as where a dragon appears 
trodden down beneath the feet of a bishop ; and both 
the lion and the dog at the feet of an ecclesiastic may 
denote fidelity and the power of the faith. Strange and 
fanciful representations sometimes occur, as in the case 
of the effigy of William of Wykeham, in Winchester 
Cathedral, where very small figures of his chaplains 
appear at his feet. The love of allusive representation 
which was so prevalent in the middle ages led some 
artists to represent the feet of a wool-merchant to be 
resting on a pack of wool, and those of a vintner upon a 
cask ; and other similar instances occur. 

The heads of effigies generally rest on cushions ; at 
first a single cushion, then two, the upper one generally 
set diagonally, were used. These cushions were richly 
ornamented ; and they very commonly appear supported 
by two small figures of angels — a felicitous expression of a 
beautiful sentiment. These angelic figures sometimes 
hold censers. King John has on either side of his head 
a bishop with a censer. In place of the cushion and the 
ministering angels, the knightly effigy more frequently 
lies upon the great helm, with its wreath, crest, and 
mantling — a usage which continued until a late period. 



"When inscriptions are added they are set about the 
figure on the coffin-lid or slab of the tomb, or in the 
mouldings of the chamfer or sloping-edge of the stone ; 
more rarely the inscription is on the copper face of the 

Above the heads of effigies Canopies were very often 
placed ; and they add in a most important degree to the 
dignity of the monumental composition. These canopies 
are carried on shafts, which are continued down on 
either side of the figure ; and they rise into a group of 
rich tabernacle-work, with pinnacles and a variety of 
elaborate architectural details. Various figures are often 
introduced into the canopies, and into a series of niches 
in their supporting members. These figures generally 
represent sainted personages, or perhaps some relatives 
and friends of the deceased are thus associated with his 

Portraiture, in the proper sense of the term, would 
seem to have but rarely been aimed at by the artists 
who produced effigies. While they represented every 
article of costume and every variety of armour with the 
most minutely exact fidelity, as they ivere in use when 
they were themselves at work ujoon any effigy, the mediaeval 



artists generally contented themselves with a conven- 
tional treatment of the features. At a late period, when 
art had altogether degenerated, attempts at portraiture 
appear to have been more common; but they are evi- 
dently rare amongst the finer works of the earlier 
artists. A few effigies are, however, too characteristic 
and too peculiar not to be genuine portraits, even at the 
earliest period of effigy-sculpture. This is strikingly the 
case with the royal effigies of which we possess so valu- 
able a series. 


Besides those effigies which were produced by the 
sculptor’s chisel or were cast in metal, precisely similar 
figures were executed for the same purpose of monumen- 
tal commemoration in outline upon flat slabs. With the 
prevalence of monuments, of which an effigy would form 
an essential part, it became necessary to have recourse 
to some means for producing the required representation 
without occupying any portion of the space in the in- 
terior of churches. This was accomplished by placing 
fiat slabs, with designs engraven or incised upon them, 
in the pavement. Thus did incised monumental effigies 




come into use. These figures, with their various acces- 
sories, were incised upon slabs, and the lines were filled 
in with a dark substance which would at once preserve 
the lines themselves and enhance the effect of the work. 

In a few examples of these incised slabs parts of the 
composition have been observed to have been executed 
upon some more precious material, inserted for that par- 
ticular purpose in the face of the slab. Thus, in a very 
fine fragment at Thornton Abbey, Lincolnshire, the 
head and hands of the effigy, with the accompanying 
shields of arms, were produced in this manner; and at 
Brading, in the Isle of Wight, is another well-known 
example, a century later (the middle of the fifteenth 
century), of the same usage. A very remarkable slab 
of large dimensions has been observed at Hereford 
Cathedral, in which the entire composition has been 
inlaid with thin plate-like slabs of alabaster. The 
alabaster still remains in the low hollows sunk for its 
reception in this curious stone, but all traces of the 
engraving have been worn away. It was this attrition, 
to which incised slabs placed in the pavements of 
churches were necessarily exposed, and which would 
surely wear away their designs, that led to the intro- 



duction of the engraven plates of metal once in such 
general use, and now so well known as 


These memorials, the genuine prototypes of the art of 
engraving for the purpose of multiplying copies by the 
process of impression, appear to have soon acquired a 
wide-spread popularity. The cost of the metal, however, 
and the difficulty of obtaining it from the Continent, 
where it was exclusively manufactured, prevented for a 
while their general adoption. The metal employed was 
an alloy rather resembling bronze than brass ; it was 
used at first in plates of considerable thickness, but 
afterwards thinner plates and a softer metal were em- 
ployed. These plates appear under two distinct forms : 
— First, they were made to cover the face of the 
slab to which they were affixed, leaving only a small 
border or margin. Secondly, the various parts of any 
design were cut out in separate pieces of the metal, 
and these separate pieces were let into indents (or 
matrices) of corresponding form sunk to receive them in 
the face of the slab. In the former case, a background 
to the composition was engraven upon the metal-plates, 

k 2 



while in the latter the slab itself constituted that back- 
ground. Brasses of the former of these two classes are 
but few in number in this country, and they appear to 
have been the work of Flemish artists. In these fine 
plates the effigies are produced with wonderful effect. 
They rest on elaborate diapers beneath no less elaborate 
niched canopies, abounding with small figures. The 
letters of the inscriptions, and the border-designs, with 
all the accessories, are beautifully formed and executed 
with singular skill and precision. It will be observed 
as a characteristic of these Flemish brasses, that many 
of the parts are rendered with a peculiar conventionality 
of treatment, and that the broader lines are very broad 
and also very shallow, and of a uniform width and depth, 
and that they have been produced with a flat chisel-like 
instrument instead of a graving-tool having an angular 
edge. Fine examples are at St. Alban’s, Newark, King’s 
Lynn, and Newcastle, with two of later date at Ipswich 
and in London. 

Brasses of the English type may have been first 
introduced at the end of the twelfth century, but the 
earliest known vestiges of their existence date with the 
commencement of the century following. The earliest 



example now known to be in existence is a work of the 
reign of Edward I., a.d. 1277 1 it is the effigy of a 
mail-armed knight, not crossed-legged, Sir John D’Au- 
bernoun by name, and it is preserved in an almost un- 
injured state in the interesting Church of Stoke Da- 
bernon in Surrey. (See Plate XYI. Fig. 1.) When first 
adopted, the metal was cut into single Lombardic letters, 
and each of these letters was fixed to the slab in an 
indent of its own, the whole being arranged to form a 
border to the stone. At first the letters were not 
enclosed within any border-strips of metal ; but after- 
wards narrow fillets of the latten (as the metal was 
denominated) enclosed the letters. Subsequently the 
inscriptions were engraven upon broader fillets, and 
additional legends were attached to the slabs on larger 
plates. Crosses were used at an early era, and they con- 
tinued to be engraven throughout the period in which 
brasses were prevalent. These beautiful symbols exhibit 
great variety in their treatment, and in the mode and 
the character of their ornamentation. Some have the 
head of the design produced by open-work, richly cusped 
and with finials of foliage, and within the cross-head 
thus formed one or more figures are introduced. Plate 



VII. illustrates a good example of this class from the 
Chapel of Merton College, Oxford; the figure is that of 
an ecclesiastic, and the date of the brass about a.d. 1375. 
It will be seen that in the engraving only the upper 
parts of this brass with its slab have been shown. The 
shafts of these cross-brasses are generally very lofty, and 
(as in this instance) ornamented at intervals with foliage 
after the manner of crockets. The bases are sometimes 
trefoiled, and in other examples they rise from steps ; 
or there is beneath them some symbolical or heraldic 

In some brasses, instead of crosses brackets are em- 
ployed; these have tall shafts, and the figures upon the 
brackets are covered with canopies. 

Effigies in brasses exhibit every variety of character, 
and they are equally common in every size, from the full 
life-size to very small figures. The figures themselves 
represent persons in various ranks and conditions of 
life; they exemplify every species of costume and equip- 
ment, and there is scarcely any usage of the middle 
ages which does not derive from themselves or their 
accessories at the least some indirect illustration. It 
will not fail to be observed that the earliest examples 



Part of a Brass to an Pc ciesiastic, Merton College Chap el , Oxford j abcmt. 
1375 . 

VLncent ZErroaks Tin',-. 

0. Jewitt daL ct.lith. . 



are in every respect the most excellent as works of art. 
Some of these it would be difficult to surpass in artistic 
merit. Such is the brass to Sir Robert de Bures, at 
Acton in Suffolk, about a.d. 1300; such also are the 
brasses to Alianore de Bohun, in Westminster Abbey, 
a.d. 1399; to William and Marion Grevel, at Chipping 
Campden, a.d. 1401 ; to Sir Thomas and Sir Robert 
Swynborne, at Little Horkesley, Essex, a.d. 1412 ; to 
Prior Thomas Nelond, at Cowfold, Sussex, a.d. 1433 ; 
and to Judge John Martyn and Anna his wife, at 
Graveney in Kent, a.d. 1436 ; with many others. The 
true power and the legitimate expression of outline are 
shown with masterly ability in the earlier brasses. 
Afterwards attempts at shading were introduced, but 
only to deteriorate the engraven plates. It is highly 
probable that the lines were always filled in with some 
such substance as was used for the same purpose in 
incised slabs; a species of enamel was also employed to 
give their proper tinctures to the heraldic accessories, 
and the plates themselves were polished and sometimes 
gilt. The enamel still remains in many examples, and 
it is remarkably perfect in the earliest known brass at 
Stoke Dabernon. It was the practice to insert some 



white metal, or some metal which would readily receive 
and retain a white colouring, into those heraldic devices 
which were to be tinctured argent . 

Beside full-length effigies, very many hale-eigures, 
and some heads, are found in brasses. These partial 
representations are more common in brasses to eccle- 
siastics than in others. They are generally set upon a 
plate bearing an inscription, though this is not invariably 
the case. These semi-effigies sometimes are either set 
upon brackets or introduced into the open heads of flo- 
riated crosses, and in a few instances the half-figure or 
the head rests upon the cross at the intersection of its 
arms. A very curious example of such a usage may be 
seen in the chapel of Merton College, Oxford. The 
same idea is, in a very few instances, expressed in sculp- 
tured slabs, as at Tewkesbury, where a noble slab of 
Purbeck marble has sculptured upon it a richly floriated 
cross, at the foot of which is an Agnus Dei, while the 
figure of an abbot, mitred, and with his staff, rests upon 
the cross-head. In brasses, two of the earliest existing 
specimens are both military half-figures ; both are in 
mail armour, the one at Croft and the other at Bushing- 
thorpe in Lincolnshire. 



There are but very few brasses, if indeed any, in which 
the countenance of the effigy can be considered to have 
been designed to convey a personal resemblance. In the 
general treatment of the figures, their canopies, and 
other accessories, there prevailed a remarkable uniformity 
at each period ; at the same time, certain special pecu- 
liarities are observable in the brasses of particular dis- 
tricts, indicating different artists, or artists of different 
schools. The brasses in the northern counties are, in 
many particulars of treatment, distinguished from those 
more to the south; and this is specially the case in 
Yorkshire, and also it extends to Lincolnshire. Several 
brasses in this country were evidently produced from 
designs by foreign artists, and perhaps they are the work 
of foreign engravers. It is certain that in more than 
one fine brass, executed after the English method, the 
engraver was a Fleming. A fragment of a slab has 
lately been discovered, which was enriched with coloured 
mosaic : it bore a cross-brass with a border legend. 

Brasses were frequently executed to commemorate 
personages of high rank and great wealth ; and in these 
cases they were generally placed on raised tombs of the 
noblest character. 



The brasses in Wales are few in number, and of a late 
date. A solitary example in Glasgow Cathedral is the 
only memorial of this class known to exist in Scotland. 
At Dublin there are two ; but traces of others have been 
discovered elsewhere in Ireland, and in Scotland also. 
On the Continent, but a few brasses have escaped the 
wilful destroyer. Of these, the majority are in Belgium ; 
and several fine examples have recently been observed in 
various parts of Germany. At Constance ther£ is an 
English brass, the memorial of an English prelate, Robert 
Hallum, Bishop of Salisbury, who died while attending 
the Council of Constance, a.d. 1416. In England, the 
number of known brasses is very great, amounting to not 
less than about four thousand; and it is probable that a 
large addition would be made to this number, were the 
pews to disclose all the brasses which they cover. Still 
greater are the numbers of the brasses which, from what- 
soever cause, have been lost in our own country. It is 
no uncommon thing, in a church where one brass is yet 
preserved, or in which not a single specimen has been 
spared, to trace in the worn (or perhaps the well- 
preserved) stones of the pavement, the indents which 
once were fdled by a complete series of brasses. In many 



instances, these indents are worthy of careful attention, 
since, by means of their outlines, they often either give 
the leading features in designs of which no examples 
remain, or they corroborate usages which otherwise 
might admit of doubt. It is to be hoped that, where 
the brasses have been permitted to remain to our times, 
the original plates will be carefully preserved in their 
proper sites, and that records of them (with fac-simile 
rubbings) will be duly preserved. 

One singular circumstance connected with monumental 
brasses remains to be noticed ; and this is the fact that 
the same plates (when they have become loosened from 
their slabs) are often found to have been engraven on 
both sides. Sometimes two very different figures appear 
on the opposite sides of the metal, as at St. Albans ; or 
one figure is cut out of a plate, which at an earlier 
period bore on its reverse a design of an altogether 
different character, as at St. Peter’s Mancroft Church, 
Norwich; or the same figure, slightly modified, is seen 
on the two sides of the same plate, as at Rochester. 
And again, sometimes a figure has been altered in some 
of its minor details, at a period long subsequent to its 
first execution, and appropriated to another person, as at 



Water Perry, Oxfordshire; or the second appropriation 
of the brass has been effected by simply reversing the 
inscription-plate and engraving it afresh, as at Laughton 
in Lincolnshire. Brasses which have been subjected to 
treatment of this kind have been denominated palimpsests. 
They may be attributed to various causes ; but without 
doubt, in many instances, the second application of the 
plates has been effected by the most unbecoming means. 

Much interesting information relative to these en- 
graven memorials has been derived from the entries in 
early wills, by which provision has been made for the 
execution of commemorative works of this class. Thus, 
in his will dated 1397, Sir John de Saint Quintin 
bequeaths the sum of twenty marks for the purchase of 
a certain slab of marble, which, with brasses (“ tribus 
ymaginibus de laton”) of himself and his two wives, Lora 
and Agnes, he orders to be placed over his remains. Of 
the artists who produced these works but little is known; 
possibly more extended researches may elicit additional 
information. In one or two instances, these artists have 
attested their productions with their marks : it is much 
to be wished that it had been their habit to have signed 
them in full. 



The process of brass-rubbing is too well known to need 
more than a passing remark, to the effect that it cannot 
by any possibility be injurious to the brasses, and that 
it may be effected with the greatest ease, and in the 
most satisfactory manner, with common heel-ball (to be 
obtained from every shoemaker), rubbed on any thin 
paper, spread carefully over the engraven plates. Of 
course the paper must not be permitted to move during 
the process ; and it will be found desirable to rub lightly 
the entire face of the slab, while the brass itself is 
brought out in a darker tint. The lost portions of the 
brass are thus clearly indicated, and the slab has its own 
proper place in the composition, of which a complete and 
faithful representation is thus obtained. It is well not 
to rub with a view to rendering the rubbing too black, 
nor should the fidelity of the rubbing be impaired by 
subsequent improvements ; and certainly in no case 
should rubbings be cut out and remounted, unless white 
lines be left to show with certainty the original outlines. 


When monumental effigies were introduced, they 
necessarily superseded the use of the great Christian 



symbol, the cross, where they were adopted. The desire 
to retain the cross, and to combine it with the effigy, 
would naturally arise, and hence were produced the open 
floriated crosses, enclosing figures, which form so beautiful 
a class of brasses. Designs of this kind were rarely em- 
ployed in incised slabs — slabs upon which, and not upon 
inserted plates of metal, the designs were engraved. In 
monumental sculpture, also, but few instances have been 
observed of memorials in which, with a cross, a complete 
effigy has been associated. There was not room on the 
same stone for the two figures, unless some such combi- 
nation were attempted as would place the effigy either 
actually upon the cross-figure, or within its open head. 
From this difficulty may apparently be traced the origin 
of a singular class of memorials, in which parts only of 
an effigy are apparent, such parts being more or less 
directly associated with the cruciform symbol. These 
semi-effigial monuments were considered to admit three 
varieties of treatment, each distinguished by its own 
peculiar mode of representing the partial effigies. In 
one of these varieties, those parts of the figures which 
were represented were sunk below the surface of the 
stone, and made to appear as if they were disclosed to 



view through apertures formed for that purpose by the 
removal of portions of the coffin-lid, or slab. In the 
second variety the partial development of the effigy was 
produced by entirely cutting away the adjoining parts of 
the stone; and in the third case, the head, bust, or half- 
figure has the appearance of having been placed upon 
the surface of the stone. In the incised specimens these 
varieties of representation are necessarily for the most 
part indicated in outline. It was at first supposed that 
monuments of this class were of earlier date than com- 
plete effigies, and, indeed, that from them the complete 
effigies were derived. This is not the fact, however, 
since the earliest examples of this curious species of 
monument may be assigned to the thirteenth century. 
The greater number of the examples have been observed 
in the churches of Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, Derbyshire, 
Nottinghamshire, Rutland, in some parts of Wales, and 
occasionally in other localities. 

Where the idea obtains of apparently disclosing 
parts of an effigy from within the mass of the stone, a 
quatrefoil, either plain or foliated, is generally cut at the 
head, and a trefoil opening at the base of the slab, from 
within which the upper parts of the figure and the feet 



are severally shown. The openings are joined by a shaft, 
and thus the cruciform figure is produced. Other acces- 
sories, both heraldic and of various kinds, are sometimes 
added. The slab which commemorates the founder of 
Gilling Church, Yorkshire, figured in Plate VI., is a 
most characteristic example. The shield, sword, and 
crest are here introduced. The lower apparent aperture, 
in some examples, is not introduced : here accordingly 
the quatrefoil upper piercing furnishes the cross. Occa- 
sionally two of these quatrefoil openings appear, side by 
side, at the head of the same stone. Inscriptions also, 
in some instances, are introduced. In other examples 
the head, with or without the feet, is exhibited somewhat 
after the same manner, and a complete cross, variously en- 
riched, is carved or incised on the face of the stone, below 
the upper opening. Pine examples occur at Utterby, 
Washingborough, and Kingerby in Lincolnshire, and at 
Kedleston in Derbyshire. When the figure is partially 
shown by the cutting away the stone, the lower portion 
of the stone bears the cross. And this arrangement is 
also prevalent where the whole of the composition is 
represented in real or apparent relief upon the surface of 
the slab. In a very few instances the half-figure appears 



at the foot of the cross, as at Hendon, in Yorkshire. 
At Bredon, Worcestershire, in place of a cross there 
is a crucifix, below two busts, which are surmounted 
by canopies ; and at Penshurst in Kent, a cross 
is carved upon a half-figure, of which the attitude 
and the general expression are equally singular. Many 
other modifications of this arrangement might be spe- 

There is a second and a distinct class of semi-effigial 
monuments in which the cross symbol is altogether 
omitted, and yet the figure is shown in part only. These 
half-figures differ from those already described in Brasses, 
from their generally having the feet shown as well as the 
upper part of the person. Examples occur in which 
this idea of partial representation is curiously varied. 
At Staunton, Notts, the figure is that of a knight in 
mail, and the helm and shield are represented between 
the uplifted arms and the feet. At Norton Brize, Oxon, 
more than a century later (a.d. 1346), there is a similar 
arrangement ; but here the figure is crossed-legged, and 
is, perhaps, the latest example in that attitude. The stone 
coffin-lid of Joanna, wife of Llewelyn, Prince of Wales, 
now at Margam, is covered with very rich interlacing 




foliage of the first half of the thirteenth century, spring- 
ing from a single stem, and disclosing the bust of the 
princess with uplifted hands. Other remarkable examples 
occur at St. John’s Church, Chester, at Great Casterton, 
and Hambledon, Rutland, at Elford in Staffordshire, and 
at Howell in Lincolnshire. In the example last named, 
half-figures of a lady and a child appear in two separate 
trefoiled openings. Sometimes these stones are coped, 
as at Hambleton ; and in other examples the costume of 
the partially shown figure is represented on the flat part 
of the stone, as at Corwen in Merionethshire. At Stoke 
in Lincolnshire, upon a remarkable slab of large dimen- 
sions the effigies of a mail-armed knight and his lady 
are represented as if partially covered with drapery, 
while in part they are sculptured in full relief. A very 
late example of semi-effigial representation, with both 
the upper and the lower parts of the figure shown, exists 
in Worcester Cathedral. In Lichfield Cathedral this 
same idea is exemplified in a manner apparently unique. 
Here are three monuments in a wall-arcade, and they are 
so arranged that the head and the feet of each figure 
are shown through openings cut in the wall under alter- 
nate arches of the series. Thus the figures appear to be 


placed within the wall, along the face of which are 
arranged the arches of the arcade. 


As early as the twelfth century the primitive stone 
coffin was amplified into the loftier rectangular monu- 
ment, entitled the high tomb or altar tomb, the latter 
designation being derived from its resemblance in form 
to the stone altars then in use, as perhaps this form of 
tomb was itself adopted in consequence of the practice 
of burying the relics of the dead in altars. The utmost 
skill of the mediaeval artists was lavished upon these 
tombs ; they were adorned with rich mouldings, niches, 
and panel-work; statuettes, called weepers , encircled them 
in the niches which were set about their sides (these 
weepers represented the children, relatives, or near 
friends of the person commemorated); and heraldry con- 
tributed its fertile resources at once to enrich them and 
to enhance their historical value. Upon these tombs 
rested the sculptured or engraven effigies, and within 
them the actual interment took place. Besides the 
canopy which was so commonly set about the recumbent 
effigy, and was itself designed to be recumbent, a second 

l 2 



canopy often covered the tomb itself, either having a 
flat form and being attached to the two piers of the 
great arch beneath which the tomb was placed, or rising 
to a considerable height in a rich profusion of tabernacle- 
work and of elaborate and delicate architectural details. 
Very fine examples of such splendid monuments are 
preserved in the Cathedrals of York, Gloucester, Hereford, 
Canterbury, Ely, and Winchester; in the Abbey-churches 
of Westminster, Tewkesbury, and St. Albans ; and in 
Beverley Minster and in Winchelsea Church. In many 
instances, the more dignified of these canopies were con- 
structed on a scale of such importance as to form small 
chapels or mortuary chantries for special religious cere- 
monies. A very late, but yet a highly interesting 
example of such chantries, is that which contains the 
tomb of Arthur Prince of Wales, the eldest son of Henry 
VII., in Worcester Cathedral. 

The example of an altar tomb, which is engraved in 
Plate VIII., is at Hull, and it is the memorial of Sir 
John de Sutton, who died a.t>. 1339. The entire monu- 
ment is eminently characteristic of that period ; quatre- 
foil panels surround the body of the tomb, each of which 
encloses a shield of arms, and the effigy, which is well 


Elate Tin. 

Eig.I. Tacob and Effigy cf Sir John da Sntton, Hull ; AH . 1399 . 

Eig 2. Stone Coffin ; Lincoln Cathedral, ^Ariglo-ITor'man .) 


"Vincent Bioaks Imp. 



sculptured, is a valuable example of the very curious 
military equipment in use during the closing years of 
the reign of Edward II., and retained for a while after 
the accession of his renowned son. The armour and 
accoutrements represented in this effigy, together with 
the arms, armour, costume, &c., exhibited in other monu- 
mental works, are described in those chapters of this 
volume which are specially devoted to such matters. 

Besides enamel and colour obtained by the use of 
pigments, mosaic was occasionally employed for the 
enrichment and decoration of early monuments. West- 
minster Abbey, that rich storehouse of treasures of 
monumental art, contains some fine examples. 


The monuments which the sixteenth and seventeenth 
centuries produced are in keeping with the prevailing 
sentiment for art in those periods. When the noble 
memorials of the middle ages gave way to the most in- 
congruous piles of classic design, room for these wretched 
intruders was but too often provided by the wanton 
mutilation or the absolute destruction of earlier works. 
In many cases, even these later monuments may ba 



studied with advantage, so far as they convey historical 
information by their inscriptions and their heraldry, and 
also by means of the costume and armour of their effigies. 
But as works of art and as monuments they are equally 
unworthy of regard, except such regard, indeed, as may 
at once secure us from any repetition of similar produc- 
tions in time to come, and lead to the general adoption 
of really admirable monumental memorials. 


In the middle ages churchyard monuments do not 
appear to have been in common use ; but when used, 
they were always true to their own proper character, 
and, however simple, those of them that remain are 
worthy of our admiration. In more recent times this 
class of monuments has been universally prevalent ; and 
yet amongst the crowd of stones which fill our church- 
yards and cemeteries it would have been difficult, until 
within the last few years, to have discovered a single 
satisfactory example. A better sentiment is beginning 
to prevail, and it is to be hoped that our own monu- 
mental memorials, as we erect them year by year, will 
deserve to rank with the commemorative works of ages 
that have long passed away. 




Long before human events were regularly chronicled in 
history, it was an usage universally prevalent amongst 
mankind for both individuals and communities to 
be distinguished by some sign, device, or cognizance . 
The idea of symbolical expression, indeed, appears to 
form a component element of the human mind. Through 
the agency of such figurative imagery, the mind is able 
both to concentrate a wide range of thought within a 
very narrow compass, and to give to the whole a visible 
form under a single image. While a tendency to sym- 
bolism thus may be regarded as inherent in mankind in 
general, many of the most striking forms of both symbo- 
lical thought and expression were unquestionably derived 
by the nations of Europe from that wonderful people 
who, from so remote a period, were established in the 
valley of the Nile. 



Greece was the'hhannel by which Egypt transmitted 
her symbols and her arts, hand in hand, towards the West. 
The particular class of symbolical devices here to be 
considered, so far as relates to their use by ourselves in 
common with the other nations of Europe, certainly have 
their origin from the East. The description of the 
shields of the seven chiefs who were present at the ancient 
siege of Thebes, as given by the tragedian JEschylus, is 
in itself sufficient evidence to show that the Greeks knew 
and used a system of military heraldry. The same sym- 
bolical language was thoroughly understood by the 
Romans. And of the heraldry of the dark and turbulent 
ages which succeeded the overthrow of Rome, some inte- 
resting relics were displayed when the Norman William 
and Harold the Anglo-Saxon met at Hastings. 

The Crusades brought the chivalry of the West into 
direct contact with a military system strangely different 
from their own ; and hence, together with great changes 
in their weapons and armour, the knights of Europe 
brought home with them from the East fresh varieties 
of armorial devices. The prevalent use of defensive 
armour, indeed, rendered it necessary for each warrior 
to assume and wear some personal cognizance, without 



which he could not have been distinguished : crests , for 
this purpose, were placed upon basinets and helmets ; 
and both the surcoats which the knights wore over their 
armour and the shields which long formed most im- 
portant components of their defensive equipment, were 
emblazoned with some device — whence the heraldic 
phrases, “ coats of arms ” and “ shields of arms” The 
devices which were thus used speedily became associated 
either with individuals, families, or the entire community 
of a particular nation ; and, accordingly, they may be 
considered after a definite method, their varieties readily 
admit of classification, their characteristics may be clearly 
elucidated and fully set forth, and they may be subjected 
to certain general laws and treated as forming a system 
in themselves. 

This classification and description, and these general 
laws, are united with the devices and insignia them- 
selves under the common title of heraldry. 

Heraldry appears to have rapidly attained to a com- 
plete organization amongst the nations of Western 
Europe, and to have been recognised by them as a dis- 
tinct science. It was admirably suited to the peculiar 
requirements of the feudal system and to the prevailing 



sentiments of the feudal ages. By it the distinctions of 
right, usage, and pretension were at once defined and 
maintained, at the very time in which these distinctions 
were held to he matters of primary importance, and 
when the observance of them was rigidly enforced. It 
was able, in chivalrous days, to impart to chivalrous 
deeds a fresh lustre of its own, by at once assigning to 
them a suitable recompense, and rendering the memorial 
of them imperishable. The power also, and conse- 
quently the value, of heraldry, as a handmaid to history , 
was recognised from the first. And it is because of this 
quality — -because it conveys so much history in so concise 
a form- — that mediaeval heraldry possesses such strong 
claims upon us for attentive and sympathizing study. 

The right and the power to bestow heraldic insignia 
speedily became vested in the sovereign ; and special 
officers were appointed to administer this essentially 
royal prerogative. 

At the first of an exclusively military character, 
heraldic insignia after a while extended their applica- 
bility over a wider range ; and at length armorial de- 
vices became associated with the pageantries of peace 
and the usages of ordinary life. 


In many general conditions the heraldry of all Euro- 
pean countries participates; but there are also many 
particular points, connected as well with the use and 
application of heraldic devices as with the forms and 
treatment of the devices themselves, by which the 
heraldry of every country is distinguished. In our own 
country, besides the actual shields of the knights, we 
find representations of knightly shields charged with 
heraldic insignia, and used in rings, seals, monuments, 
and architecture with its accessories ; the heraldic in- 
signia themselves were also blazoned upon flags and the 
sails of ships, on various articles of costume, and on many 
other objects. 


The form of the shield varies considerably at different 
periods. The Norman shields were long and tapering. 
To these succeeded short, almost triangular, heater- 
shaped shields. With the close of the thirteenth cen- 
tury they acquired the elegant form exemplified in 
Plate III. They were shortened in the next century ; 
and still later their form was altogether changed, and 
became somewhat square, the edges being formed by a 



series of concave curves. In these last shields a curved 
notch is cut out, for the lance to pass through, in the 
dexter chief; when thus pierced a shield is said to be 
a bouche . 

The upper part of the shield is the chief, and the 
lower part the base . That side of the shield which wotild 
cover the right side of the knight who holds it is the 
dexter, and the other is the sinister side. The centre of 
the shield is the f ess-point, and above this is the honour - 
point . The surface or field of a shield may be divided by 
lines which are either straight, or curved, or indented, 
or which are otherwise varied in their contour. 


The colours or tinctures in English heraldry are — or, 
gold or yellow ; argent, silver or white (these two are 
distinguished as metals ); azure, blue; gules , red ; sable, 
black ; vert, green ; and purpure, purple (rarely used) ; 
which five are distinguished as colours . And it is a law 
of blazon (or heraldic display) that, in the arrangement 
of any devices upon a shield, metal shall not be upon 
metal, nor colour upon colour ; but colour shall be upon 
metal, and metal upon colour . Thus, a silver star shall 


not be upon a field or other object of gold, but upon blue 
or another colour; and so, in like manner, a cross or 
other device of any colour shall be upon either gold or 
silver. If a shield be so divided that one part of the 
field be gold and the other part blue, and upon the gold 
be a blue r star and upon the blue a gold star, the gold 
and the blue are said to be counter -changed ; and the 
same term applies to any similar arrangement of tinc- 
tures and heraldic devices or charges . 

Besides the tinctures, there are the heraldic furs— 
ermine , with black spots on white, and ermines , with 
white spots on black; also vair } represented by little 
bell-like figures, alternately white and blue, with some 

Diaper was a mode of ornamenting surfaces with deli- 
cate patterns in gold, silver, or colours, irrespective of 
the heraldic tinctures. The same term also denotes a 
pattern carved in low relief upon any flat surface in a 
shield of arms, for the purpose of ornamenting such flat 
surface, without any heraldic signification being asso- 
ciated with the ornamentation thus produced. The 
effect of this diaper is very rich. The fine shields of De 
Yere and De Valence, figured in Plate III., and of 



Percy in Plate IX., are most beautiful examples of such 
diaper. It will be observed that the shields in Plate 
III., together with those of Edward the Confessor and 
of Raymond, Count of Provence, in Westminster Abbey, 
(Figs. 1 and 2, Plate IX.), are represented as being sus- 
pended by the guige or shield-belt, by which the actual 
shield was secured to the person of the wearer. In the 
Westminster examples the guige to each shield appears 
to be either double or very long. 



The simple figures first borne upon shields, and entitled 
ordinaries , are the chief \ or upper third of the field ; the 
pale, which passes perpendicularly over the centre ; the 
bend, which crosses diagonally from the dexter chief to 
the sinister base ; the fess, which cropes the shield hori- 
zontally, and occupies the central tlitrd of the field ; the 
chevron , which has the form of a pair of the rafters of a 
roof joined together; the cross ; and the saltire , a cross 
set diagonally. Modifications of these ordinaries are 
also in use, as the bar , the barrulet , and the cotise , dimi- 
nutives of the fess; the bendlet , the chevronel , and a 
numerous variety of crosses. With these are associated 


Hate IX 

Shieldaf Raymond, Count of "ft'ovenc© , "Westxnirister^ljlow aboijtl250. 

.. 2. Shield of P dwarcL the Canfesacn ^JATestnQTTLshs^ abcrat 12 50. 

. 3- Shield of Percy^frarn the Percy ^ilne ; BeveideyMmstjer,aIboTitl350. 

4. SSbieLd of Prince John cf ELiiiam ; 1 fyfestTnin^ 

5. Crest 8c lap oF Maintenan ce cf the Black Prince' Canterbury Cafhedral ; 1376 . 

\&nr < =T(t- lirooks im-E- 

G. Jewett dd.etli-th.. 



a second series of figures, not so simple as the ordinaries, 
and yet by no means complex, which are styled sub- 
ordinaries. And, in addition to devices which thus 
admit a simple classification, heralds have adopted for 
armorial charges an infinite variety of figures, animate 
and inanimate, natural, actually existing, and purely 
imaginary. These figures are used in various tinctures, 
combinations, groupings, and forms of arrangement; 
and appropriate terms, derived from some circumstance 
connected with the charges themselves, have been in- 
vented, for the purpose of describing these charges under 
their different conditions. Thus a lion is said to be 
either couchant , passant , or rampant; an eagle, volant; 
a stag, tripping ; a fish, naiant. 

In arranging the devices which form a cc coat of arms,” 
the law of blazon before mentioned is observed in every 
particular. Thus, in the arms of Graham, as borne by 
the Duke of Montrose, the field of the shield is or 
(metal), upon which rests a chief, sable (colour), and again 
upon the chief are arranged three escallop -shells, or. 

The Shield always bears a complete heraldic composition , 
and this composition is entitled the “ shield of arms,” or 
“ coat of arms.” 



Above the shield is placed the Crest. This is a dis- 
tinct device, originally actually worn upon the knightly 
helmet. The helmet was encircled by a wreath , formed 
of two rolls, one of cloth of gold or silver, and the other 
of a rich material of some colour, entwined together, 
and upon this wreath the crest rested. Accordingly, 
upon a representation of this wreath, the heraldic crest 
is placed above a shield of arms. 

The Helmet itself is sometimes introduced above a 
shield, bearing its own wreath and crest. The royal 
helmet, and that of a prince, a duke, and a marquis, is 
set facing to the front ; it is open, but guarded by bars, the 
royal helmet having six, the others five bars. Noblemen 
below the rank of marquis have a similar helmet set in 
j profile . Baronets and knights have open helmets with- 
out bars, set to the front, and the helmet of esquires and 
gentlemen is closed and in profile. 

From the helmet, in a complete heraldic composition, 
which includes with the shield its accessories, and is en- 
titled an achievement of arms , the mantling hangs down 
and forms a kind of background to the whole composi- 
tion. It was originally a covering for the helmet, and 
it is now represented as being made of velvet or silk. 



and lined with ermine, and it is generally much jagged, 
or cut into leaves, &c., at its edges. 

In place of the wreath, the crest sometimes stands 
upon a chapeau, or ancient cap of dignity, formed of 
crimson velvet, lined and turned up (or guarded) with 
ermine. The crest of the Black Prince, a lion of Eng- 
land with a label, stands upon a chapeau, as it is repre- 
sented in Plate IX., Fig. 5, from the originals in Canter- 
bury Cathedral. In some cases the crest is placed upon 

The sovereign places the royal crown upon the 
helmet, and above this stands the crest. The crests of 
the nobility, in like manner, are placed above their 
coronets . The usage of encircling the helmet with the 
crown or coronet would give rise to such an arrange- 

Below the shield appears the scroll, charged with the 
motto, or brief sentence, which has often some reference 
to the charges of the shield, or to the name, rank, or 
personal distinctions of the bearer. Thus, the motto of 
the sovereign is dieu et mon droit; that of the 
Duke of Wellington, virtutis eortuna comes ; the 
mottoes of Vernon, Nevill, and Fortescue, are severally 





scutum salus ducum ; and the motto of John Major, 
Baron Henniker (who bears three columns in his shield 
of arms), is deus major columna. Very many of the 
mottoes borne by persons of all ranks are remarkable 
for their point, suggestiveness, and felicity of expres- 

Standing upon the scroll, or upon whatever resting- 
place the position of the shield may afford, in the 
achievements of princes and persons of distinction, are 
the supporters, one on either side of the shield, which 
they appear to hold up and sustain, or over which they 
may be considered to be keeping guard. These acces- 
sories are not of very early date. The shield of Richard 
II., so beautifully sculptured over the entrance to West- 
minster Hall, is supported and guarded by a group of 
angels. Two harts also appear associated with a shield 
of the same prince as supporters. 

section v. — blazonry. 

The language of heraldry is peculiar ; but, at the same 
time, it is in the highest degree appropriate and consis- 
tent with both the principles and the object of heraldry 



itself. Thus heraldic language is as concise as possible, 
and yet it is minutely exact in its descriptions. It 
always avoids repetitions, but it never leaves the most 
trifling matter without careful notice. In blazoning (or 
describing heraldically) a shield of arms, the several 
charges are always specified in their order, as they may 
be supposed to be nearest to the surface of the shield itself \ 
Thus the tincture of the field is first named, then the 
ordinary, and afterwards the other charges. For ex- 
ample the arms of Yilliers, Earl of Jersey, are blazoned 
— Argent , on a cross , gules , five escallops , or. Here five 
escallop shells of gold are placed upon a red cross, which, 
in its turn, rests on the silver field of the shield. The 
shields in Plate IX. are blazoned as follows — Fig. 2. 
Azure , about a cross jleury , five martlets , or — the arms 
assigned to Edward tile Confessor; Fig. 1. Or, four 
pallets , gules — borne by Raymond, Earl of Provence ; 
Fig. 4. Gules, three lions passant guar dant, in pale, or (for 
England), ivithin a bordure, azure, semee de lys, of the 
second, (that is, of gold, the second tincture already 
specified,) borne by Prince John of Eltham; Fig. 3. 
Or, a lion rampant, azure, for Percy; and the blazon of 
the two shields in Plate III. is, Quarterly, gules and or, 

m 2 



in the first quarter a mullet , argent , for De Yere; and 
Barry of twelve, argent and azure, an orle of martlets, 
gules, for De Valence. These shields are all of them 
admirably executed, and the last, which is in enamel of 
great beauty, is attached to the remarkable effigy in 
Westminster Abbey of William de Valence, Earl of 
Pembroke, who was killed a.d. 1296. 


The association of certain “ arms,” or heraldic insignia, 
with the hereditary possessors of certain dignities, would 
require the same individual to bear more than one ar- 
morial ensign, whenever several dignities became con- 
centrated in a single person. Hence arose the practice 
of quartering arms. By this process the field of a single 
shield was divided into four divisions, and one of the 
different coats of arms was placed in each division. The 
coat of the highest dignity would occupy the first 
quarter, and the others would follow in their order. If 
there were but two coats to be quartered, the same coat 
was repeated in the first and fourth quarters, and the 
second coat in the second and third quarters. (See Plate 
XL, Fig. 3.) If three coats were to be quartered, the 



principal one would occupy the first and fourth quarters, 
and the other two coats would appear in the second and 
third quarters respectively. If more than four coats 
were to be quartered, the shield might be divided in 
the required number of quarterings . Shields appear 
divided into quarters at an early period, as in the De 
Yere shield at Hatfield Broadoak, Essex (Plate III., 
Fig. 1), which was certainly executed in the thirteenth 
century, though it cannot be assigned (according to the 
popular tradition) to that Robert de Yere who died a.d. 
1221. It is more probably the shield of his grandson, 
another Robert, who died a.d. 1296. The arms of Cas- 
tile and Leon are also quartered upon the tomb of Queen 
Eleanor, a.d. 1290. There does not, however, appear 
any conclusive authority for determining that distinct 
coats were quartered upon one shield before Edward III. 
placed upon his royal shield the arms of France and 
England after this fashion, a.d. 1341. Approaches to- 
wards quartering are shown in the seals of Humphrey 
and John de Bohun, fourth and fifth Earls of Hereford, 
and also Earls of Essex (a.d. 1321 and 1327), in which 
seals on either side of the shield of Hereford that of 
Essex is placed, the whole being enclosed within the 



legend. The example of the king was speedily followed, 
and quartered shields became common as the fourteenth 
century advanced towards its close. The fine brass to 
Sir Hugh Hastings, a.d. 1347, at Elsyng, Norfolk, con- 
tains a quartered shield of Edward III., and also the 
shield of Lawrence Hastings, Earl of Pembroke, which 
quarters Hastings and De Valence. The shields in this 
brass are all richly diapered. 

Impalement was another method for uniting two dis- 
tinct coats of arms upon one shield. It was effected by 
dividing the shield, by a vertical line passing through 
its centre, into two equal parts, and then placing one 
coat of arms in each half of the shield. The arms of a 
husband and wife were thus impaled ; the arms of the 
husband always occupying the dexter , and those of the 
wife the sinister half of the shield. Bishops also impale 
the arms of their sees with their own, the arms of the see 
being placed on the dexter side. When first introduced, 
impalement was effected by cutting the two coats of 
arms to be impaled into halves, and taking the dexter 
half of the husband’s arms and the sinister half of the 
wife’s, and thus placing these two halves side by side to 
form a single combined armorial ensign. This was 



styled impaling by dimidiation , or dimidiating . Subse- 
quently, the whole of each coat of arms was retained 
upon the impaled shield or banner, as in the banner of 
Richard II. (Plate XI., Pig. 3), which impales the 
quartered arms of Prance and England with those of 
Edward the Confessor. This very interesting banner is 
drawn from the noble brass to Sir Symon de Pelbrigge, 
K.Gr., banner-bearer to the unfortunate Richard, which 
is preserved in the Church at Felbrigg in Norfolk. The 
arrangement of the quarterings and of the impalement 
in a shield of arms, together with the due adjustment 
of the heraldic accessories, is denominated marshalling. 

Upon the jujoons worn by the knights of the four- 
teenth century over their armour, the coat of arms was 
commonly displayed. When the tabard was adopted, 
the heraldic blazon was repeated upon the back, and 
also on each of the short sleeves. Coats of arms were 
also commonly embroidered upon the dresses of ladies in 
the middle ages, or their dresses were ornamented with 
small shields of arms. In these cases, the paternal coat 
of arms of any lady was placed upon her tunic, and 
the arms of her husband upon her mantle or outer 




The hereditary character of heraldry would render it 
necessary to distinguish, by certain definite and reco- 
gnised symbols, the arms of the different members of 
the same family. This was accomplished either by 
introducing some slight modification into the charges of 
the shield, or by adding to them a fresh symbol. The 
earliest symbol, the label, was a narrow ribbon stretched 
across the chief of the shield, from which three or five 
short pieces of the same ribbon hung down. One of 
these labels encircles the throat of the lion, which is the 
crest of the Black Prince (see Plate IX. Pig. 5). Upon 
these points of the label different distinctive devices 
were often placed. It was also an early usage to sur- 
round the shield with a border, or bordure, for 
difference. Upon this border various devices might be 
introduced. At later periods, shields were differenced 
for the first, second, third, fourth, fifth, and sixth sons, 
with a label (of three points only, and not extended 
across the shield), a crescent , a mullet (star of five points), 
martlet (bird), annulet (ring), and fleur-de-lys. These 
differences might be doubled : thus, the second son of a 



second son might place a small crescent upon a larger. 
Royal shields are differenced with a label or bordure, the 
charges upon the points of the label indicating the dif- 
ferent royal personages to whom the shields belong. 
The marks of cadency (as they are termed) in the shields 
of the sons of Edward III., and of the earlier Plantagenet 
princes, are curious in themselves, and highly interest- 
ing as showing from what sources such peculiar insignia 
were derived. Edward I., Edward II., and Edward III., 
before they came to the crown, differenced with a label 
azure . Edmund, Earl of Lancaster, second son of 
Henry III., charged his azure label with golden fleur-de- 
lys ; and the differences borne by his sons and his grand- 
son are very remarkable. Thomas, Earl of Norfolk, and 
Edmund, Earl of Kent, second and third surviving sons 
of Edward I., respectively differenced with a label and a 
bordure y argent . John of Eltham, second son of Edward 
II., bore the lions of England within a bordure of France 
— azure y with fleurs-de-lys, or (Plate IX., Eig. 4; drawn 
from his effigy in Westminster Abbey ; a prototype of 
the quartered shield of Edward III.). The Black Prince 
differenced his father’s quartered shield with a silver 
label ; and his son Richard added, upon the middle 



point of the label, a cross of St. George. Lionel, Duke 
of Clarence, charged each point of the label with a 
canton , gules . John of Gaunt bore a label , ermine ; and 
his son Henry (afterwards Henry IV-.), during his 
father’s lifetime, placed a label of France upon the shield 
of England alone. Edmund, Duke of York (fifth son of 
Edward III.) charged each point of his silver label with 
torteaux (red roun dies) ; and Thomas, Duke of Gloucester, 
youngest son of Edward III., bore the quartered shield 
of his father within a bordure , argent . Edward anti 
Eichard, the two sons of the Duke of York, in their 
father’s lifetime severally bore France and England, 
quarterly, differenced with a label, gules, having each 
point charged with castles , or; and the Duke of York 
differenced his shield with a bordure , argent , charged with 
lions, pur pure. It appears, also, from one of the Burgh ersh 
monuments in Lincoln Cathedral, that, before the year 
1362, Lionel, Duke of Clarence, differenced with a label, 
or, having on each point a cross, gules, and Edmund, 
Duke of York, with a label, chequy . 


Badges were heraldic devices assumed in addition to 


Plate X. 



those which formed the coat of arms, or they were taken 
from it in order to be borne separately. Thus, in 
Plate X. there are figures of the black swan, with its 
ducal coronet and chain, the badge of the De Bohuns ; 
the silver escallop, attached by an intertwined cord to a 
ragged staff, the badge of the D acres ; and the Spencer 
badge, a griffin erect, holding a banner of the Spencer 
arms. The three feathers, each with its label, were the 
well-known badge of the Black Prince. John of Gaunt 
assumed the portcullis, and with it the apposite motto, 
altera securitas. The white hart, lodged , and the sun 
shining from behind a cloud, were badges of Bichard II. 
Henry Y. bore the chained antelope and swan, and the 
fire-beacon ; and the red and white roses, with the sun, 
were the famous badges of the rival houses of York and 


Heraldic devices were, from an early period, embla- 
zoned upon flags of various kinds. The lance of every 
knight was distinguished by some kind of lance-flag , of 
which a characteristic example is given in Plate XI., 
Pig. 6. As soon as heraldry had assumed a definite 
form, flags became subject to established rules. The 



three varieties of flags in use in the middle ages were 
the pennon, the banner, and the standard . The pennon 
was small in size, pointed or swallow-tailed at the ex- 
tremity (or fly), and borne immediately below the lance- 
head : it was charged with a badge or other armorial 
device, and these devices appear to have been set upon 
the pennon in such a manner as to appear in their proper 
positions when the weapon was laid for the charge. The 
brass to Sir John D’Aubernoun affords a good specimen 
of the knightly pennon : it is represented in Fig. 1 of 
Plate XI. 

The Banner was square in form, or nearly so, and was 
charged with the coat of arms of the owner, and not with 
any other device. A pennon with its points torn off 
would make a banner ; and thus banners were made on 
the field of battle when, in reward for his gallantry, a 
knight was advanced to the rank of a banneret by the 
sovereign himself, present in person, with his own royal 
banner displayed. In Plate IX., Figs. 3 and 4, are repre- 
sentations of the banners of Richard II. and of St. Ed- 
mund; the former from the brass to the king’s banner- 
bearer, Sir Symon de Felbrigge, K.G., at Felbrigg, Nor- 
folk, and the latter from an illumination. King Richard 

■ i . xfsmoa of Sir J atm. D ’ Ann emcnm , Stoke JJ ax> erna 
2.5. 'Standards of HerixyVITt . 

3 . Tnyaijiamer of Bidhardll. , Mbngg , Eorfolk . 

4. E aimer of 

1 i- i 

heraldry;... banners, &g. 

Hate .IT. 



II. impaled his own quartered shield with the armorial 
insignia attributed to Edward the Confessor — azure , 
about a cross fleury jive martlets , or, (Plate XL, Fig. 3.) 

The Standard was always of considerable length in 
proportion to its depth, and tapering towards the extre- 
mity. With occasional exceptions, when they bore royal 
devices, English standards always had the cross of St. 
George at the head; then came the device, badge, or 
crest, to which succeeded the motto. But standards 
never bore the coat of arms ; and thus they are specially 
distinguished from banners. They were distributed 
amongst the followers of any baron or knight ; and they 
might be displayed amidst the followers of a knight who 
was not entitled to bear or use a banner. The examples 
in Plate IX., Figs. 2 and 5, are both standards of Henry 
VIII. ; both show the livery colours of that prince, white 
and green, and one has his badge, a portcullis, and the 
other has a cross of St. George only. 

Standards are evidently the prototypes of the ensigns 
of later times. But what we entitle “ the royal standard” 
ought to be called “ the royal banner and in like 
manner the flags of our cavalry are knightly banners , 
and banners they ought to be called, and not standards. 



Amongst remarkable mediaeval banners were those of 
the Crusader Kings of Jerusalem and of the Knights Tem- 
plars. The former bore five golden crosses upon afield of 
silver — an intentional violation of heraldic law, for the 
purpose of distinguishing the ensign of the Christian 
King of the Holy City from the insignia of all other 
potentates. The Temple banner, called beauseant, was 
argent and sable; the black to typify terror to foes, and 
the white to declare amity to friends. The celebrated 
oriflamme of France was a plain banner, composed of a 
very rich scarlet or flame-coloured silk. 

Coats of arms were often emblazoned on the sails of 
early English shipping. 


The insignia of knightly orders necessarily engaged the 
particular attention of the mediaeval heralds. The insignia 
of the Garter may be seen displayed about shields of arms, 
as well as upon many sculptured effigies, and in four 
brasses. In two or three instances effigies of ladies, 
whose husbands were knights of the order, are invested 
with the insignia, worn either about the upper arm or as 
a bracelet. Collars , as badges of personal service to the 



sovereign, or as emblems of party alliance, were also 
worn, and appear in early monuments. The Lancastrian 
collar of SS, said to have been introduced as well as 
adopted by Henry IV., is common amongst the effigies 
of the adherents of the house of Lancaster : it was also 
worn by ladies; and it appears about the throat of 
Joanna of Navarre, queen of Henry IV., on her effigy at 
Canterbury. This collar was fastened by a pendant 
formed of three conjoined rings. The effigies of Yorkists 
are distinguished by the collar of suns and roses , with the 
white lion of the house of March as the pendant. Private 
collars, bearing personal or family badges, were also 
worn, as by Lord Berkeley in his brass at Wooton in 
Gloucestershire. This Berkeley collar is composed of a 
series of mermaids . 

The celebrated knightly orders of the Temple and of 
St. John of Jerusalem were distinguished by the crosses 
which the knights wore upon their surcoats, tunics, 
and mantles. The knights of the most noble Order of 
the Garter wore the insignia of that order, in accordance 
with the present system. Examples of effigies with the 
Garter insignia are often to be observed. 

Canting heraldry is the term applied to the favourite 



system of adopting devices which form a pun upon a 
name or title. Any such device is also called a rebus . 
In St. Alban’s Abbey Church, the arms of Abbot John 
de Wheathamstede appear to have been — gules , a chevron, 
between three ears of wheat, or; and the opposite chantry, 
that of Abbot Ramryge, abounds in heraldic rams, each 
of which has about its neck a collar bearing the letters, 
ryge. Names ending in ton were almost invariably 
rendered with a tun or cask, to denote the last syllable. 
Thus Ashton has for his rebus an ash tree growing out of 
a cask ; Stapleton has a small cask within a staple, &c. 

Many monuments exhibit the royal arms, to denote 
that the person commemorated either bore some office or 
held some lands under the crown. The arms of the 
guilds of merchants may also be often seen, and merchants 
marlcs upon shields : these last being quaint devices, 
usually accompanied with one or more initial letters, 
adopted by wealthy traders who were not permitted to 
assume regular arms. 

In early monuments the heraldic charges were fre- f 
quently carved with great spirit, in relief; the shields 
in the canopy of the Percy shrine in Beverley Minster, 
executed about 1360, are amongst the finest examples 



in existence. The tinctures were commonly indicated 
by a species of enamel, or they were actually painted. 
The blue enamel of the shield of Sir John D’Aubernoun 
yet remains, and retains the freshness of its colour. 

Fine examples of early shields may be studied, with 
equal delight and advantage, in the choir-aisles of West- 
minster Abbey. These admirable works (to two of 
which reference has already been made in Plate IX.), 
notwithstanding the sad injuries which they have expe- 
rienced, show how true was the heraldic feeling as early 
as the time of Henry III. ; they also participate with 
the other examples which the thirteenth and fourteenth 
centuries produced, in proving that heraldry is to be 
regarded no less as an art than as a science . The roll 
of the siege of Caerlaverock, by Edward I., a.d. 1300, 
contains a highly-interesting series of banners of arms ; 
and various other MSS., with stained glass, monuments, 
and early edifices will supply the student with ample 
means for investigating the heraldry of the middle ages. 
He will do well carefully to observe the treatment of 
heraldic devices at different periods, as well as to fami- 
liarize himself with the distinctive insignia of persons 
and houses famous in history ; for, while a general know- 




ledge of heraldry may be acquired without this twofold 
study, by it alone will the student attain to the true 
feeling of a herald. 

It appears desirable here to add a brief description of 
the more important changes which have taken place in 
the royal arms of England. They are as follows 

1. Ttvo lions , William I. till accession of Henry II., 
a.d. 1066-1154. 

2. Three lions , Henry II. till 15th of Edward III., 

3. France and England quarterly , the field of France 
being semee of fleurs-de-lys, 15th Edward III. till 
Henry V., 1342-1413. 

4. As lefore , but with three fleurs-de-lys, Henry Y. till 
James I., 1413-1603. 

5. James I. added the arms of Scotland and Ireland . 

6. William III. (a.d. 1689) added the arms of Nassau, 
which were removed by Anne (a.d. 1702). 

7. George I. (a.d. 1714) added the arms of Hanover . 

8. The arms of France were removed, a.d. 1801. f 

9. The arms of Hanover were removed a.d. 1837. 




One of the first uses of any symbolical device would pro- 
bably be to apply it for the purpose either of marking 
property, or of authenticating the record of important 
transactions. Accordingly, some kind of stamp would 
be formed, for the purpose of affixing the required 
symbol. Hence the origin of seals. 

It is somewhat remarkable that seals should not have 
been introduced into our own country until so late a 
period as the time of Edward the Confessor. The earlier 
Saxon princes were content simply to prefix a figure of a 
cross to the writing of their names, even upon their 
most important documents. But from the time of the 
Confessor the royal seals of England form an uninter- 
rupted series of the highest interest and value. It is sup- 

n 2 



posed that a few Saxon seals, besides the seal of the Con- 
fessor, are in existence. It was not, however, until a few 
years after the Norman conquest that seals came into 
general use in England. When once fairly established, for 
the space of about four centuries seals appear to have been 
in high favour with all classes of our ancestors. They 
were engraved in vast numbers ; and they became, early 
in the twelfth century, the peculiar means in universal 
use for authenticating all written documents. To the 
archaeologist, accordingly, they offer the most prolific 
stores of information, and he finds them to be at once 
the most varied and the most graphic illustrators of 

The art of seal-engraving, in the first instance sin- 
gularly rude, and yet giving promise of future excellence, 
attained to its highest perfection during the reign of 
Edward III., when it was very extensively practised. 
Figures of every kind, architecture, heraldic and other de- 
vices, with every variety both of accessory and of legend, 
were introduced into these early seals ; and hence they 
afford such varied illustrations of the taste, feelings, fancy, 
humour, and also of the superstitions of their times ; his- 
tory, genealogy, and biography, at the same time derive 



from them both evidence and facts of peculiar impor- 

Antique engraved gems appear occasionally in use as 
seals throughout the middle ages. In cases of this kind 
it was the custom to place the gem in such a setting as 
would receive the legend which was destined to explain 
its new application. Gems were also engraved to form 
seals by the mediaeval artists, and they were set as rings ; 
signet-rings were also very frequently made, by simply 
cutting the devices and legends on the metal of which 
the rings themselves were formed. The larger seals 
(and many of the early seals are of considerable size) 
were engraved on suitable pieces of gold, silver, brass 
(latten), or steel; jet is found to have been sometimes 
employed, with some other materials. In form these 
seals are either circular or pointed ovals, the latter shape 
being that generally adopted by ecclesiastics, though 
not by any means restricted to them. The royal seals 
are circular. In rare instances seals are found which 
are lozenge-shaped, triangular, or cut to the form of an 
heraldic shield. 

Impressions were taken in wax of various colours, as 
green, red, and various shades of brown, and a dull 



yellow; white wax was also commonly used. Like 
coins, the more important seals are found to have been 
very commonly impressed on both sides. In taking 
these impressions, consequently, two dies or matrices, 
each having its own device and legend, were employed ; 
these were severally called the seal and counter-seal. 

The prevailing practice was to append the seal to the 
document, of which it became the attesting symbol. 
The early documents themselves were generally written 
on small pieces of parchment, many of them being 
scarcely larger than a modern bank-note. A double strip 
of parchment, or a cord generally of silk, was drawn 
through the lower part of the document to be sealed, 
and upon this parchment-strip, or upon the silken cord, 
the wax was melted and the impression taken ; and thus 
the seal would hang down below the writing, to which 
it had been appended. Where many persons wit- 
nessed an important transaction, the seal of each of 
these witnesses would be appended to the written in- 
strument. It appears to have been considered sufficient 
for the purpose of attestation, that some seal should be 
used ; but it was not held to be necessary that the seal 
in use should be the seal of the person using it. Of 



course, for identification, it would be preferable, and it 
was the general custom, for every person to seal with his 
own seal ; but in many instances the grantor or attestor 
is found to have appended to a document the seal of 
some other person, making it his own seal for the time 
being by the act of his using it. Such an adoption of 
a seal for present use is rarely, if ever, to be observed 
without the signatures (and perhaps the seals also) of 
attesting witnesses. 

In some cases seals, appended after the same manner, 
were struck upon lead : such seals are known as bulla. 
The Papal instruments, of such importance in the 
middle ages, were thus sealed, and from these bullae the 
documents themselves were entitled “ Bulls.” 

Until the close of the fourteenth century the wax 
upon which the seal was impressed was left uncovered ; 
but in the fifteenth century it became customary to cover 
the wax, for the sake of preserving it, with a wrapper 
of paper. The seal would thus be protected, but the 
sharpness of the impression would necessarily be much 
impaired. When the wax was not thus covered, several 
ingenious devices were employed for securing it from 
injury; thus, a rush or a band of plaited paper was 



coiled round a seal and attached to it, or the leaves of 
trees were similarly used. The rush “ fender” for seals 
appears to have been adopted as early as a.d. 1380, 
and it continued in use until the time of Henry 


Another process, by which some of the earliest seals 
were impressed, is termed sealing en placard. This was 
effected by cutting a cross figure (+ or x) through the 
parchment of a document, and lifting up the points of the 
incision so as to allow the wax to form a mass on both 
sides ; the impression was then made, at first, only on 
the upper face of the wax, but afterwards the impression 
of the counter-seal was added. This process was re- 
tained in use by ecclesiastics after it had been aban- 
doned in royal seals ; but after the twelfth century it 
appears to have been no longer practised. All the early 
French kings, until the year 1110, sealed en placard . 
The confessor appended his seals. There are, however, 
three documents granted by Saxon princes to the Abbey 
of St. Denis which, in conformity with the French 
usage, are sealed en placard. 

Sovereigns, and other persons of high rank, in addi- 
tion to their official seal, had a personal or private seal, 



designated a secretum . The same individual also occa- 
sionally possessed more than one secretum ; and where 
several offices were held by one person, he would use a 
separate seal for each office. 


In collecting or describing seals it will be desirable to 
adopt a threefold system of classification. 

I. To divide all seals into (1.) Ecclesiastical ; and 
(2.) Lay or secular . 

II. To divide each of these primary divisions into 
(1.) Official; and (2.) Personal seals. 

III. To subdivide Ecclesiastical official seals into 
(1.) Seals of individuals, which make a reference to their 
dignities, offices, or preferments; (2.) Common seals of 
bodies corporate, and the like; and (3.) Official seals, 
which are not identified with any individual officer . 

Also, to subdivide lay and secular official seals into 
(1.) Those of sovereigns and royal personages ; (2.) Seals 
of other persons holding official appointments ; and (3.) 
Common seals of bodies corporate, and the like. 

Each of these subdivisions will also admit of a 
subordinate classification, which may in like manner be 



extended to all personal seals, as well lay and secular as 
ecclesiastical. The nature of the devices and legends, 
the class of the different offices, and the rank of different 
persons, with other distinctive circumstances, will de- 
termine the ultimate classification. 

There will remain a separate group of unascertained and 
miscellaneous seals, which it will not be possible con- 
sistently to include in any definite classification. 


These shields have two distinct designs, which in fact 
form the seal and counter-seal ; or the two designs may 
be considered to constitute a single seal, of which one 
design forms the obverse , and the other the reverse . 
Thus on every seal the sovereign is twice represented ; in 
the one case armed and on horseback, and in the other in 
royal robes, seated upon a throne. It appears that the 
mounted figures were regarded as the obverse, or the 
seal, and those enthroned were the reverse, or counter- 
seal. Until the time of John, the throne in these seals 
is a mere stool, with certain ornamental accessories. In 
the second seal of Henry III. the royal seat assumes a 
more dignified character, and architectural pinnacles and 



arcade-work are added to it. Edward I. copied the seal 
of his father, but his seal is better executed. The same 
seal was used by Edward II., with a figure of a castle 
added on each side of the throne. Great improvements 
in design, including elaborate architectural enrichments, 
with most interesting heraldry, were introduced in the 
different members of the series of Great Seals made by 
Edward III. The succeeding sovereigns also introduced 
various changes in the treatment of the design, and in 
the accessories with which it was accompanied. In the 
reign of Henry IY. two great seals are recorded to have 
been in use, one, as before, made of gold, and the other 
of silver. The equestrian figures of the obverse are all 
in energetic action ; and from the second seal of Stephen, 
the prince, armed from head to foot, holds his drawn 
weapon uplifted, as in the act to strike. In the earlier 
seals a lance appears instead of the sword. Most valuable 
illustrations of arms and armour are to be found in these 
seals. The equipments of the horses are peculiarly 
characteristic and remarkable. In the second seal of 
Richard I. the three lions of England for the first time 
make their appearance on the royal shield. Pig. 1 of 
Plate XII. is a fac-simile of the obverse of the great seal 



of the warlike Edward I. The armour is here well 
defined, and the lions appear on the bar ding of the 
charger as well as on the king’s shield. The legend 

(dominus) hybernie : dvx : aqvitaine. 

The great seals of Scotland bear a close general 
resemblance to those of the same periods in England. 
The seals of William the Lion, a.d. 1165, John Balliol, 
a.d. 1240, and Robert Bruce, 1800, are particularly fine, 
and the architectural canopy of the seal of Robert II. 
(Stuart), a.d. 1380, is worthy of special notice. The 
seal and counter-seal of Mary Queen of Scots are 
charged with the figure of the Queen enthroned, and 
with the royal arms of Scotland, accompanied with the 
crown and supporters. 

In the great seals of France the sovereign sometimes 
appears, after the manner that prevailed in the seals of 
England and Scotland, both enthroned, and on horse- 
back. The earlier seals (and they commence from a 
very early period) are antique gems. In the greater 
number of these seals the figure of the king is repre- 
sented once only, the reverse of the seal bearing either a 
large fleur-de-lys, or a shield charged with fleurs-de-lys. 


Plate III. 



On the seal of Philip III. (a.d. 1270 — 1285) the shield 
appears, and it is semee-de-lys. A figure of an angel holds 
the shield on a seal of Charles VI. (a.d. 1380 — 1422), 
and here the lilies are three only in number . 

The secreta of the different sovereigns are highly 
interesting, and they show how expressive a handmaid 
to history is Heraldry. 


As examples of the various seals which would be grouped 
in the classes that have been suggested to the archaeo- 
logical student, it will not be necessary to notice more 
than a very few characteristic specimens. 

The ecclesiastical seals generally exhibit the eccle- 
siastics themselves, with certain architectural canopies 
and tabernacle-work of their period, and also with 
shields of arms. It is common in these seals for the 
patron saint of the establishment to which any seal may 
belong, to be represented, with a small figure of an 
ecclesiastical official kneeling at the base of the seal. 
The seal of Thomas Arundell, Archbishop of Canter- 
bury, who crowned Henry IV., may serve to exemplify 
the classHo which it belongs. It is large, and a pointed 



oval in form ; at the base, within an arched canopy, is 
the prelate in his full vestments ; on either side of him 
are the royal arms and those of the see impaling his 
own ; above, occupying the centre of the field, is repre- 
sented the death of Becket ; and in chief, with rich 
tabernacle-work, appears the emblem of the Holy Tri- 
nity. The legend is only seen at the sides of the com- 
position. A fine impression is attached to a deed in the 
possession of the parish of Wymondham in Norfolk. 
The reverse of a seal of Binham Priory, Norfolk, in the 
possession of Caius College, Cambridge, is very curious ; 
Binham was a cell of the great Abbey of St. Alban^s, and 
accordingly upon this reverse the monkish legend of the 
death of the British protomartyr is exhibited; the 
Boman lictor, armed in mediaeval fashion, has smitten 
off the head of the saint with a mighty sword ; the head 
has fallen to the ground, but the headless body has 
scarcely commenced its fall ; meanwhile, the unhappy 
executioner is endeavouring with one hand to catch his 
own eyes, which have dropped from their sockets be- 
cause of the dreadful spectacle; the legend is martir 


The seal of Milo, Earl of Gloucester (about a.d. 1130) 



is a good example of early military seals ; it bears the 
mounted figure of the Earl, in a long hawberk, with a 
conical helm, a kite-shaped shield, a lance with a lance- 
flag, and a most formidable pryck-spur. The seal of his 
descendant, Humphrey de Bohun, fourth Earl of Here- 
ford, and third Earl of Essex, is no less characteristic of 
the commencement of the fourteenth century ; on the 
obverse is the Earl, fully armed, on his barded charger ; 
and on the reverse is the shield of De Bohun, sus- 
pended by its guige from a swan, the De Bohun badge ; 
and on either side of the central large shield is a much 
smaller shield, charged with the arms of the Earldom of 
Essex. The seals of Henry of Lancaster, afterwards 
Henry IV., of his uncle, the Black Prince, and his other 
unfortunate uncle and brother-in-law, Thomas, Duke of 
Gloucester, may be specified as affording examples of 
heraldic seals of the greatest excellence. The seal of 
Walter, Lord Hungerford (10th Henry VI.), is another 
striking specimen of a fine heraldic seal. A good small 
example of a personal seal of heraldic character is repre- 
sented in Fig. 2 of Plate XII. ; and in Fig. 3 of the 
same plate is shown a device-seal of a class which evi- 
dently enjoyed a widely-extended popularity; here a 



hawk or falcon is seen preying upon a rabbit — an incident 
which the legend thus explains : + alas ie supris. 
Another seal of a similar character (of about a.d. 1320) 
bears as its device a hare mounted on a hound, and 
blowing a hunting-horn, with the legend + sohov 
robin. Another device-seal is equally characteristic of 
mediaeval feeling ; it is the seal of Walter de Grendene, 
about 1340, and it bears the figures of the husbandman 
and his dog who were suddenly and unexpectedly, 
according to the ancient popular legend, carried up 
to the moon; the man had stolen a bundle of thorns 
from a hedge, and this was his punishment. In the 
seal the moon is a very slight crescent, and a couple of 
stars are close to the astonished rustic, who appears 
to express enigmatically the maxim that “ Honesty 
is the best policy” in the legend te waltere docebo 
cvr spinas PHiEBO gero — “I will teach you, Walter, 
why I carry thorns in the moon.” Punning devices 
upon names, trades, &c., continually occur, with almost 
innumerable varieties of other figures. 

The corporate seals form a particularly interesting 
series : many of those which belong to seaport towns 
are remarkable for the examples which they supply of 



the quaint shipping and craft, and the no less un-ship- 
shape-looking sailors of the middle ages. 

In forming collections of casts from early seals, gutta- 
percha will be found the material most easy to use, and 
at the same time the most enduring. 





Coins would, in the earliest ages of their adoption, he 
considered as pieces of sealed metal j that is, the lump or 
mass of metal would have a certain understood value., 
authenticated by the impress of the symbol of the city 
amongst whose citizens it circulated. In like manner, in 
transactions with other cities, or even with foreign 
countries, the symbol of the tutelar divinity of some 
particular state, or the image of some deity held in 
common and general reverence, would give authority 
and currency to the coin. The value of a regular 
coinage would naturally and necessarily soon become 
apparent ; and whatever capacities in art a people might 
possess, or a potentate could command, would speedily 
be brought into requisition, and coins would take their 
places amongst the art-productions of successive ages. 

The most ancient coins now known are those of 



Greece, and of these, the earliest were struck in the 
island of iEgina, in the seventh century b.c. The coins 
of Lydia may claim the next place in the order of chro- 
nological succession ; and to these succeed the gold and 
silver j Varies of the Persians. The coins of the Greeks 
may be divided into two great classes, which severally 
comprise the coins of the Greek cities or states , and of 
sovereign princes . The coins of the princes commence 
with Alexander the Great. The Greeks did not possess 
a gold coinage at the commencement of the Pelopon- 
nesian war, b.c. 430. 

The earliest coins are exceedingly rude in form and in 
both the character and execution of their types. The 
coins themselves are thick and globnlous in shape, the 
type being commonly a tortoise or turtle, with an in- 
dented square on the reverse. Of these coins great 
numbers have come down to our times. About 500 
years b.c., the Greek coins attained to some degree of 
excellence ; and in the century preceding the birth of 
Alexander the Great (from about 450 to 350 b.c.), they 
gradually acquired the highest qualities of numismatic 
art. At this time the coins of Pome began to claim 
particular attention, and they vary in their character 

o 2 



and in tlieir quality as works of art during the last 
years of the Republic and the first years of the Empire, 
until under Hadrian, a. d. 117 — 138, the Roman mintage 
reached its highest perfection. The Romans first coined 
copper or brass, and silver and gold coins were afterwards 
added to their currency. Their entire coinage may be gene- 
rally divided into the consular and the imperial coins ; and 
the imperial series will admit of a subdivision into the 
periods between Augustus and Hadrian, and Hadrian 
and Constantine, with a third class including the de- 
based but still interesting varieties which were produced 
in such abundance after the imperial recognition of the 
Christian faith. 

It will be observed that all the most ancient coins are 
impressed with representations of objects held in the 
highest reverence — with sacred symbols and figures, that 
is, and with the heads of personages who were regarded 
with special respect and admiration. Portraits, in the 
strict acceptation of that term, were not admitted upon 
any coinage until coins had been in use for several cen- 
turies : Julius Caesar was the first amongst the Romans 
who obtained permission from the Senate to place a 
portrait-head of himself upon the coinage. In the 



earliest legends which appear on coins, the letters are 
commonly retrograde ; or, when in two lines, they are 
alternately retrograde and in direct order. The legends 
themselves are almost invariably written with the most 
concise abbreviations, except in the case of the principal 
words ; and the forms of the letters will be found often 
curious and always characteristic. In connexion with 
the devices which they accompany and illustrate, many 
of these coin-legends possess the highest interest : thus, 
upon certain of his coins, both in gold and silver, the 
Emperor Claudius struck the words de britannis, and 
Vespasian and Titus have commemorated upon their 
coins an event, unique in the history of the world, 
with the legends ivdaea. capta., and ivdaea. de- 

The value of coins as illustrators of history it is im- 
possible to estimate too highly : they are, indeed, the 
most graphic, the most certain, and the most imperish- 
able of historical records. 


Barbarous indeed were the coins which the Celtic 
Britons used before the Roman invasion : still it is cer- 



tain that, however rude, a native British coinage did 
exist which had no connexion whatever with Rome. A 
rude figure of a horse was a prevailing type upon these 
primitive coins, and where the metal was stamped on 
both sides the reverse devices are apparently devoid of 
any aim at a definite signification. The prototype of 
these coins may have been derived through a trading 
intercourse with the Phoenicians : and when once any- 
thing resembling a system of coinage was established 
amongst the Britons, it is easy to imagine that they 
would adapt to their own sentiments and circumstances 
the prevailing types of such coins as they might obtain 
from more civilized regions. The coins of Cunobeline, 
who reigned over the districts to the east and the south 
of the Severn, and is said to have been specially favoured 
by Augustus Caesar, are occasionally found : they bear 
his name, generally in an abbreviated form, and they 
exhibit his natural inclination to the types of the Roman 
moneyers. Amongst his favourite devices are the horse 
and the ear of corn, with some figures from classic mytho- 
logy. It appears that the Britons coined in both the 
precious metals as well as in copper. 

After the establishment of the Roman power in Bri- 



tain, the Homan coinage superseded that of the native 
islanders. Of this Homan coinage a separate notice will 
he found at the end of the present chapter. 


The coinage of the Anglo-Saxons was rather derived 
from that of Rome than a direct imitation of it. Some 
of these coins are evidently the results of attempts to 
reproduce Homan types, but they more generally exhibit 
little beyond faint traces of a Roman origin. Others of 
the Anglo-Saxon coins are evidently original, though 
far from being worthy of admiration. Upon these coins 
some form of the cross is generally stamped. It is 
probable that coins of gold were not in use amongst the 
Anglo-Saxons. When gold was used by them for pur- 
poses of payment, it appears to have been their custom 
to employ that metal in the form of torques, armilke, 
and other personal ornaments. 

The principal Anglo-Saxon coins are the sceatta, penny 
and halfpenny of silver, and the styca of copper. Their 
value is doubtful, but it is certain that at the close of the 
seventh century the sceatta was the coin of the lowest 
value known to the Anglo-Saxons. Amongst the finest 



coins of this class are those of Offa, King of Mercia, a 
circumstance to be attributed to that prince having 
visited Home. The Anglo-Saxon types exhibit great 
variety. Heads and crosses prevail, with various figures 
surrounded by small dots ; and there also are brief 
legends. These coins were struck by all the princes of 
the Heptarchy, by the Saxon kings of all England, and 
by the archbishops of Canterbury and York. Some coins 
were also struck in the names of certain saints, as of St. 
Peter of York, and St. Edmund of Bury. 

Coinage was apparently unknown before the era of the 
Norman Conquest in both Scotland and Ireland. A few 
ancient coins have been assigned to early periods in the 
history of the latter country, but their authenticity 
remains uncertain. No coins of the Welsh princes have 
been found. 


It was a part of the policy of the Norman princes to 
impress their English subjects with the idea that they 
had succeeded by inheritance and lawful right to their 
crown ; and in their administration they, accordingly, 
conformed themselves to many of the popular usages of 



their Saxon predecessors. Upon this principle "William I. 
and his immediate successors were content to continue 
the Saxon coinage without any material changes. 


With Henry III. the English coinage may be said to 
have commenced. The prevailing practice of dividing 
coins into halves and quarters was prohibited, and no coins 
were authorized to pass current unless round in their form. 
In process of time, various new coins were added to the 
series already in use ; new types were introduced, and 
the old ones were modified ; and the art-character of the 
coinage assumed a more dignified position. Rigorous 
laws were also enacted to prevent forgery, clipping, 
and other frauds calculated to injure or debase the 

It is remarkable that, with the sole exception of the 
stycas of the Anglo-Saxons, the English coinage con- 
tinued to be restricted to the precious metals for nearly 
1000 years. Unlike the Romans, whose copper or brass 
coinage preceded their coins in gold and silver, and who 
struck coins in copper or brass at all periods of their 
history, our own ancestors refused to admit a currency 



in copper, notwithstanding its evident utility. The 

different coins which succeeding sovereigns introduced 

appeared in the following order : — 

Henry III. Gold penny; Groat , in silver. 

Edward I. Half-groat . In this reign there were mints 
in London, Canterbury, Bristol, Exeter, Newcastle, 
and Kingston-on-Hull. 

Edward III. Florin, Half and Quarter Florin, and Noble, 
in gold. By this great monarch the words dei 
gratia, long in use upon the Great Seals, were 
added to the royal legend of the coinage. 

Henry YI. Angel and Angelet, in gold. 

Edward IV. Rose Noble or Rial, with Half and Quar- 
ter Rial, in gold. 

Henry VII. Sovereign or Rouble Rial, in gold ; Shilling 
(then first coined), in silver. 

Henry VIII. Rouble Sovereign and Half Sovereign, 
George Noble (type, St. George and the dragon), 
Quarter Angel, Grown and Half-crown, in gold; 
Crown, in silver. The silver Shilling now bore the 
second title of Testoon. 

Edward VI. Treble Sovereign, and Half-sovereigyi, in gold. 



Half-crown, Six-pence, Three-pence, and Sovereign 
Fenny, in silver. 

Elizabeth. Half and Quarter Shillings, Three-halfpence, 
and Three Farthings , in silver. Milled coins were 
first produced in this reign. 

James I. Rose Rial, Thirty Shilling Piece, Fifteen Shil- 
ling Piece, Spur Rial, Unit, and Rouble Crown, in 
gold. Two Pence, in silver. Farthing Token, in 

Chaiiles I. Three Pound Piece, Twenty Shilling Piece, 
and Ten Shilling Piece, in gold. Twenty Shilling 
Piece, Ten Shilling Piece, Oxford Crown, and Groat, 
in silver. Also Siege coins, in silver. 

During the Commonwealth, the coinage consisted of 
Twenty, Ten, and Five Shilling Pieces, in gold. Half 
Crowns, Shillings and Sixpences, in silver : and Far- 
things in copper and pewter. Oliver Cromwell added 
a Croivn in silver. 

Charles II. Five Pound Piece, Guinea and Half 
Guinea, in gold. 

The coins last named appeared a.d. 1663. In this 

reign there was struck in silver the celebrated and beau- 



tiful “ Petition Crown ” of the eminent artist, Simon. 
Halfpence and ( farthings were also issued by Charles II. ; 
and during* his reign, various companies of merchants 
were authorized to strike money for their special uses in 
foreign commerce. Halfpence and farthings in tin were 
coined by James II., and the same in copper by Wil- 
liam III. So early as the time of Henry VIII. also 
private tokens in lead had been circulated to supply the 
urgent want of small coin : and from a period much 
earlier still, as early, indeed, as Henry III., for the ac- 
commodation of monks and pilgrims, Abbey Pieces or 
Rosaries were struck in brass or latten, of the size of the 
groat of the period, their types being a globe and cross, 
a dolphin, a fleur-de-lys, &c., with the legend ave 
maria, &c. 

Amongst the more remarkable types of the English 
coinage are certain modifications of the Greek cross , about 
which are grouped small circular bosses ox pellets, derived 
possibly from the similar marks that set forth the values 
of the multiples and parts of the Roman as, together 
with the bust or head of the reigning sovereign. Various 
other devices were also introduced. Thus, the noble of 
Edward III. is charged with a figure of the King, 
crowned, in armour and with his sword, standing in a 



ship which carries at its mast-head a pennon of St. 
George : the King’s shield bears the arms of France 
and England quarterly. This type, which was slightly 
modified under the succeeding princes, gave rise to the 
following significant couplet : — 

“ Four things our noble slioweth unto me, — 

King, ship, and sword, and power of the sea.” 

The Rose Noble is distinguished by the addition of 
one or more Roses of England. The Angel has on the 
obverse the Archangel St. Michael, trampling on the 
dragon and thrusting his spear into his mouth, and on 
the reverse is a ship with a cross for a mast, and the 
Royal Arms, with the legend pee. cevcem. tvam. salva. 
nos. cheiste. eedemptoe. The Soveeeigns have a 
figure of the reigning prince in royal robes, with various 
accessories. The Royal Shield of Arms appears upon 
Henry VII.’s Shilling, and the cross is charged upon 
it. This position of the cross, in pretence upon the 
shield, was continued until the time of James I., when 
the cross was no longer used. Among the earlier acces- 
sory devices are the Star and Crescent , which, in an entry 
upon the Rolls of Parliament of the time of King John, 
are described as being the “ King’s livery.” 

The Legends upon English coins are all in Latin, 



and written with more or less of abbreviation, the sole 
exception being the coins of the Commonwealth, which 
are inscribed in the English language. 

Many of the earlier English coins are fine examples of 
the art of the numismatist ; and they might well serve 
to rescue the English coinage of the present day from 
the excessive degradation into which it has fallen. 
Not only are many of the coins of past centuries executed 
with a genuine feeling for art, and more particularly for 
that expression of art which is appropriate to the works 
of the numismatist, but in their types and legends they 
also exhibit truly felicitous conceptions, expressed after 
the most effective forms. 

The standard value of the English coinage has been, 
at various times, subjected to many changes, which were 
productive of much and serious evil. The general cha- 
racter of our coinage, however, exhibits it in a very 
favourable aspect. It is worthy of remark that Charles 
I., notwithstanding his urgent troubles, never debased 
the currency ; while under Henry VIII. the debasement 
was so great that old Stow says, in his “ History of 
London,” “ I have seen 20s. given for an old Angel , to 
gild withal.” The current value of the “ old Angel” 



was equal to 6s. 8 d., and it was celebrated for the purity 
of the metal. The Noble was also in value equal to 
6s. 8 d. } or half a mark. The Mark itself does not ap- 
pear to have been an actual coin, but a mode of computa- 
tion or measure of value, as the term “ pound sterling” 
is employed to indicate a general ideal form of money 
by ourselves. The “ Mark” is said to have been first 
used by Alfred: in the tenth century its value was 100 
pennies, but in 1194 it was fixed to be equivalent to 160 
pennies, or 13s. 4 d. y the “ pound” being always con- 
sidered equal to 20s. The value of the gold Florin of 
Edward III. was 6s. It should be added, that Henry 
YI. raised the value of the Noble or Rial to 10s.; and 
that under Henry VIII. the Angel passed for 8s., and 
under Mary for 10s., which last sum continued to be its 
value until the time of Charles I., when the Angel ceased 
to be issued. 

The Tower Found , equal to 11 oz. 5 dwts. troy, was in 
use until Henry VIII. substituted for it the Pound Troy , 
with its divisions. The first English Pennies weighed 
22^ grs. troy of silver: and the same coins weighed, 
under Edward III., 18 grs. ; under Edward IV., 12 grs., 
and under Edward VI., 8 grs. From the year 1601, the 



forty-third of Elizabeth, the standard of English silver 
has remained the same. 

Before the year 1257, the forty-first of Henry III., 
whatever gold coins may have been current in England 
were of foreign mintage. At subsequent periods, also, 
certain foreign coins are commonly mentioned by early 
English writers : of these the Ducat of gold was in value 
equal to 9s., and the same coin in silver to 3s. ; and the 
Sequin and Pistole , both in gold, to 9s. and 18s. respec- 
tively. The French Livre was equal to a pound weight 
of pure silver from the age of Charlemagne to that of 
Philip I. (a.d. 800 to 1103), after which period it was 
subjected to continual and excessive debasement. 

Besides their English coinage, the Sovereigns of Eng- 
land issued many coins as “ Lords of Ireland and 
there was also a regular coinage for the English domi- 
nions in France, which may be distinguished as Anglo- 


Henry VIII. commenced a series of English numis- 
matic works, which are second only to the coins of the 
realm in interest and importance. These are Medals — a 



species of coin of a strictly historical and commemora- 
tive character, struck in honour of distinguished persons 
or to preserve the remembrance of great events. Many 
of these medals also assumed a political and satirical 
character. Portraits are generally struck upon medals, 
with inscriptions ; and the inconsistent and actually ab- 
surd practice has obtained of impressing upon English 
medals the allegories of ancient and pagan times, thus 
falsifying the vehicle for historical record. Amongst 
the more remarkable English medals is the series struck 
on the occasion of the Coronation of the Sovereign, 
which commences with Edward YI. The medals of the 
Commonwealth and of Charles II. were executed by 
Simon, and accordingly they are genuine works of art. 
Medals were struck in Scotland before they were intro- 
duced into England. On the continent of Europe they 
have always been produced in very great numbers. 


Roman historians assign to a very early period in 
their annals the establishment of a regular coinage. The 
earliest coins were in copper or brass only, and they con- 
sist of the As, with its multiples and parts. The As, also 




called Libra, Libella, and Pondo , was originally a pound of 
copper, and this pound was divided into twelve uncial. 
But, as a coin, the As , in the year b.c. 175, was reduced 
to half an ounce of copper. The earliest types of the 
As (derived probably from the Etruscans) are the bull, 
ram, boar, and sow, with the head of Janus and the 
prow of a ship. The Decussis and Quadrussis , pieces of 
10 and 4 ases, were stamped with figures of a biga or 
two-horse chariot, and a bull, and other less common 
types : and the semis, triens as and | as), and other 
parts of the as, had 2, 3, or more globes or pellets to 
indicate their value. The silver Denarius and Quinarius 
were severally equal in value to 10 and 5 ases; and 
these coins, at an early period, generally bore types of a 
biga and of a figure of victory, so that they were known 
as Bigati and Victoriati. Gold coins, denominated Aurei 
and Semi-aurei , were also current. The Aureus was 
equivalent to 30 silver denarii, but reduced by Claudius 
to 25. The value of the Roman currency varies through 
various changes in the standard; and consequently it is not 
possible to fix any scale of value of constant applica- 
bility : the average weight of the consular denarii, how- 
ever, appears to have been 62 grs. troy of silver, and 



their value accordingly would be 8 \d. of our money. 
The as was always a tenth of the denarius, and the 
sestertius a quarter of it. 

Besides the biga type, various family types occur in 
consular denarii , which commemorate some remarkable 
events connected with the consulships of certain in- 
dividuals. As historical records, therefore, these coins 
are peculiarly interesting. The coins of the iEmilian 
family supply striking examples of types of this class : 
thus M. Lepidus has a denarius, upon which he appears 
placing a crown upon the head of the youthful king, 
Ptolemy Epiphanes, with the legend tvtor. regis, 
Another denarius of the same family represents Aretas, 
King of Arabia, submitting himself to M. Scaurus, 
under the symbol of a figure kneeling by a camel and 
presenting an olive-branch, from which depends a dia- 
dem. And a third of these coins records the youthful 
exploit of M. Lepidus, who appears mounted and with a 
trophy; the accompanying legend being — m, lepidvs. 
an. xv. pr. h. o. c. s. ( anno xv. prcetextatus . hostem . 
occidit . civem . servavit.) Similar types and legends were 
continued in the imperial series, to which portraits were 
added. The imperial types also exhibit triumphs and 

p 2 



consular processions, the Emperors continuing to retain 
the ancient consular rank and authority. Allusions to 
the consulships and consul ships-elect of the emperors 
are frequent in the legends of the imperial coins : the 
compound titles which the emperors were pleased to as- 
sume, with their names, are also in this same manner 
recorded. It will be borne in remembrance that the 
title imp ( erator ) was not prefixed to the imperial name, 
until in later times the Romans had become so fami- 
liarized with sovereignty that they no longer hesitated 
publicly to recognise and record the fact. At a late 
period of the empire, the place of mintage was gene- 
rally denoted upon the Roman coins by letters struck 
upon the exergue , or space below the line upon which, in 
the reverse of any coin, figures are placed. 

The copper or brass coins of the empire were struck 
in three distinct sizes, which are respectively dis- 
tinguished and known as the First , Second , and Third 
Brass . The First Brass , the largest of the three, called 
by the Romans Sestertius , and from the Augustan age 
also designated JEreus or Nummus, was formed of yellow 
metal, and continued to bear the same general character 
until the era of the Antonines, when it decreased in size, 



and degenerated in both the interest of the types and 
the quality of the execution ; and under Gallienus 
(about a.d. 265) it finally disappeared. The Second 
Brass was formed sometimes of a yellow and sometimes 
of a red metal : the metal of the coins of the Third class 
(anciently called Assaria), was in colour generally red. 
Dioclesian supplied the place of the Sestertius with the 
FolliSj a coin of the same module as the Second or Middle 
Brass of the first emperors, but much thinner. Under 
Volusianus (killed a.d. 254), the Roman silver coins 
became exceedingly base ; but the standard was restored 
by Dioclesian (a.d. 284—305), and from this period the 
coins continued to be struck from a pure metal, but they 
gradually declined in weight. Under Constantine the 
Great (a.d. 306 — 337), a new silver coin, named Mil - 
liariensis , was issued; fourteen of these Milliarienses 
were equal in value to one Aureus of gold. This coinage 
continued in use until the end of the Byzantine Empire. 
Amongst the commonest of the Roman coins are the 
Small Brass of Probus (killed a.d. 282), of which no less 
than 2500 varieties have been distinguished, and the 
Brasses of Constantine and his sons. 




Under this title are included all those productions of 
the Roman mint which exceed the current coin in size 
and weight. These medallions were struck, both at 
Rome and in the provinces of the empire, on various 
occasions, generally for the purpose of commemorating 
some event of historical interest, and occasionally for 
ordinary currency. Before Hadrian (a.d. 117), Roman 
medallions are very rare, but subsequently they are of 
more frequent occurrence. The medallions struck by 
the Senate bear the letters S. C. (Senatus Consulto). 

Many varieties of Roman coins were used in this 
country, and they are found here in very considerable 
numbers. Some of the Emperors, also, together with 
the usurpers who assumed the imperial purple in Britain, 
struck coins which have a special reference to this coun- 
try. The following Emperors commemorated their con- 
quests in Britain on certain of their coins: — Claudius, 
Hadrian, Antoninus Pius, Commodus, Severus, Cara- 
calla, and Geta. 




Before printing and engraving had been discovered and 
were in general use, Writing and the decorative process 
known as Illumination were regarded as arts of the 
highest value and importance ; they were patronized by 
the wealthy and the noble, and the ablest artists were 
engaged in their production. 

It was the custom, from a very early period of the 
Christian era, to bestow great care upon the writing of 
manuscripts; and with this careful formation of the 
written letters was associated the practice of enclosing 
the columns or pages of the MSS. within ornamental 
borders, and also of enriching the more important initial 
letters with gold, colour, and diversified ornamentation. 
Miniature-pictures were added, and thus the Illuminated 


MSS. became illustrated works, produced absolutely and 
entirely by the hands of the illustrators. In this coun- 
try the early writings or palaeography , with its accompany- 
ing illuminations, attained to the most distinguished 
reputation, so that the “ Opus Anglicum ” of the Anglo- 
Irish and Anglo-Saxon illuminators enjoyed a European 
celebrity, and the peculiarities of its style exercised a 
powerful influence upon the artists of the continent. 
Some of the finest illuminated MSS. in existence are 
now preserved in our own country, amongst which are 
the “ Book of Kells,” at Trinity College, Dublin ; the 
“ Durham Book,” and some Bibles and Psalters in the 
British Museum, with the “ Benedictional of St. iEthel- 
wold ” in the possession of the Duke of Devonshire. 

Possibly known in Italy before the catastrophe of the 
Western Empire, it is from Byzantium that we must 
seek the origin of the art of illumination, as it has been 
transmitted to the various countries of Europe, and in 
them was practised during the middle ages. When 
once they had formed their system, the Byzantine illu- 
minators worked on, with but little change in purpose, 
and with equally little variation in artistic capacity and 
Art-feeling, for many centuries. Their miniatures , which 


bear traces of an original affinity with the nobler paint- 
ings of the Greeks, conveyed valuable lessons to their 
disciples in the West; but the western artists devised 
their own ornaments for themselves, and here they ex- 
hibit all that vigour and versatility of resource which 
distinguish the rise of nations, not unmixed with the 
rude barbarisms of uncultivated ages. 


These works commence with the fourth century. Cor- 
pus Christ i College, Cambridge, possesses a MS., in a 
debased form of Roman art, of the fifth or perhaps the 
sixth century. These illuminations are distinguished by 
the meagre patterns of their ornamentation and by their 
brilliant colouring ; by their miniature pictures, in which 
the peculiar treatment of certain Christian subjects 
became types with the illuminators of the West; by 
their use of certain characteristic architectural forms for 
ornamental purposes; and by their occasionally being 
executed in gold or silver on vellum which had been 
stained purple. It may here be observed, that from the 
Byzantine illuminated MSS. are derived the abbreviated 


forms which we still retain and use as monograms of the 
name of our Lord — the IHS (IH2) and the XPS or XPI 
being Latinized Greek abbreviations. 


In the sister island this art had both assumed a 
definite style and attained to a very high perfection 
before Anglo-Saxon MSS. became known. The illumi- 
nations in this style are produced from the most intricate 
and diversified interlacings of threads or narrow bands 
of various colours, with knot- work, all being arranged 
with singular skill and executed with surprising delicacy. 
Mr. Westwood counted one hundred and fifty-eight 
interlacings of a ribbon formed of white lines edged by 
black ones on a black ground, within the space of rather 
less than three-quarters by rather less than half an inch, 
in the “ Book of Armagh.” This interlacing work is 
accompanied with various wild grotesques and animal 
forms, attenuated to the utmost degree, and incorporated 
with the patterns. The initial letters are of gigantic 
size, and they exhibit a really wonderful combination of 
boldness of form with minuteness of detail. The writing 



for several lines, and sometimes for whole pages, is also 
very large ; and the letters, with the borderings, are 
commonly surrounded with one or more rows of minute 
red dots. There is no trace of Roman influence in the 
ornamentation or treatment of these illuminations ; the 
forms of the letters alone indicating their Roman descent. 
This style was practised in Ireland and in Wales until 
the twelfth century ; and in England it became associated 
with the 



In these works the Roman acanthus and scroll patterns 
with spirals are combined with the interlacings of Ire- 
land, and gold and silver begin to be freely introduced. 
On the Continent, the Roman type exercises a more 
decided influence than in our own country. The style 
thus formed has been distinguished by the name of the 
great prince in whose times it was fully developed, 
Charlemagne. About the same period, while our great 
Alfred flourished, the first Anglo-Saxon illuminations 
became celebrated. It is remarkable that, while in the 
majority of the Charlemagne MSS. the Irish system is 


but rarely apparent; several of the finest French illumi- 
nations of the period conform in their style very closely 
to works of the Irish illuminators. 



Miniature pictures and outlines begin now to be intro- 
duced into MSS. in considerable numbers; and they 
accordingly become very valuable illustrators of history. 
Winchester at this time became the great school for 
English illuminators; and here the much celebrated 
“ Opus Anglicum” was executed. Gold is introduced 
in masses into these fine and peculiar compositions; with 
“ divers beautiful colours” delicately applied. The bor- 
ders of the text are formed from broad golden bars; with 
which various foliage is intertwined with striking effect. 
The composition and drawing of the various figures and 
of the architectural accessories are remarkable for artistic 
excellence ; the colouring is effective and harmonious; 
and the enrichments are of the noblest character. The 
letters also are nobly formed after the Roman type. 
This style; essentially national; and the basis of the 


equally national styles of the fourteenth and fifteenth 
centuries, was extensively practised for nearly two cen- 



The art of illumination in this century was practised 
upon the same general principles throughout Western 
Europe, and it now may be considered to have attained 
to its highest perfection. The style is florid, rich, and 
varied : the initial letters are formed of elaborately inter- 
lacing branches, with animal forms interwoven amongst 
them : the Roman acanthus forms the basis of the treat- 
ment of the foliage, which shows the type of the charac- 
teristic architectural foliage of the first Gothic period. 
Figures and miniatures in the works of this century, are 
sometimes associated with the noble initial letters, but 
decorative borders are rarely to be found in the twelfth 
century MSS. The colouring exhibits the designs in 
white upon grounds variously tinctured, or the inter- 
weaving branches are richly coloured, and placed on 
grounds of gold or some dark hue. 





The style of the last century is now developed in 
works very highly wrought; the details having attained 
to the most elaborate finish. Figures are more frequent; 
and large square compartments with rich and delicate 
borders are devoted to groups of figures illustrative of 
the text. It is remarkable that figures are at this period 
occasionally introduced without any reference to the 
MS. itself; solely as ornaments. In the French illumi- 
nations of this century; which are very fine; and of which 
the finest examples were executed at Paris; the influence 
of Byzantine feeling is apparent. 

Long-tailed initial letters; which form a border to the 
side of the page below the initials themselves and 
are returned along the base of the page; are now in- 
troduced : and numerous small miniatures are frequently 
arranged about the enriched compartments; within 
which the large initial letters are placed. Gothic 
or Lombardic capitals now appear with letters of Homan 




Illuminations in this century assume several distinct 
systems of general treatment, and yet all conform with 
expressive consistency to the Gothic sentiment of the 
period. The foliage now in use is generally that of the 
ivy, and it is rendered by the illuminators with a special 
angularity both in the outline of the several leaves and 
in the aggroupment of the branches ; the colouring also 
is arbitrary. Early in the century the long-tailed initials 
expand into a complete side-border to a page, with pro- 
jecting branches above and below, and to this border the 
initial letter is appended. In some cases figures and 
scrolls are interwoven with the ivy foliage. As the cen- 
tury advances, the border-bar is much enriched and 
enlarged ; birds and various figures are introduced 
amongst the foliage, and miniature pictures add variety 
to the design. 

At this time the art of the illuminator begins to be in 
general requisition in various departments of literature, 
instead of his having his attention as heretofore exclu- 
sively devoted to the Holy Scriptures and devotional 


writings. Hence arises a departure from tlie traditional 
methods of representation which the treatment of sacred 
subjects had established. More natural forms and scenes 
are made to take the place of long recognised conven- 
tionalisms, and the fancy and inventive powers of the 
artists learn to expatiate in wider fields. These pro- 
gressive advances in art specially show themselves in the 
rendering of the backgrounds of the mediaeval illumina- 
tions. Having given up the Byzantine golden back- 
grounds, the illuminators first substitute for them delicate 
and richly coloured diapers or mosaic patterns in small 
squares ; then come backgrounds of scroll work, and 
various damasked devices in gold on coloured grounds, 
leading finally to backgrounds of natural scenery. But 
even after the confirmed adoption of natural scenery for 
backgrounds, the old feeling continually exhibits its lin- 
gering influences, in the habit of hanging some richly 
diapered drapery behind figures, which in other respects 
are represented in the open air. 

In the fourteenth century various miniatures are inter- 
mixed with the text, and the colours used by illuminators, 
and particularly the scarlets and blues, are brilliant in 
the highest degree ; and as the century advances towards 


its close, the Gothic feeling of that era is seen to have 
exercised the strongest influence over the various compo- 
sitions. In Italy, however, it may be observed that the 
northern angular ivy-leaf was never a favourite form of 
foliage, the Roman acanthus continuing there to exercise 
an influence, to be traced in the rounded outlines of the 
Italian illuminations. 



In this prolific and capricious century the illuminator’s 
art yields to the pervading impulses of the age, and 
adopts several distinct forms and systems of expres- 
sion, all of them equally distinguished by excessive 
enrichment and a gradual decline in art- feeling. At 
the first, the fifteenth century works exhibit a decided 
assimilation to the noble productions of the tenth, with 
much delicate ornamentation studied from the ivy-leafage 
of the fourteenth century. In another phase of the 
same works, the illumination forms a complete border to 
the page, this border being still based upon a framework 
of enriched bars, from which a profusion of scrolls, foli- 
age, and animal and grotesque figures issue forth, various 



miniatures being added, and the initial enclosing a 
miniature of special importance as in a frame. Several 
initials besides the first are also illuminated in each page, 
but in a manner altogether subordinate to the first ; the 
letters are all Gothic. Ruled lines, also, now appear 
beneath the lines of writing, and in the borders. This 
style of illumination is the last in which English artists 
attained to any great excellence, or produced a great 
number of works. In the middle of this century the 
earlier illuminations degenerate into a diversified series 
of mere border patterns, of which a vast number were 

On the continent at this period the designs are very 
rich and effective, and they are remarkable for their sub- 
ordinate use of the ivy-leaf ornamentation as an accessory 
to the more flowing and flamboyant devices ; the ivy- 
leaves themselves are always executed in gold. The ivy- 
leaf and the scroll patterns become associated in the 
middle of the century in continental illuminations, the 
result being a style of great richness and of the most 
intense elaboration. Large pictures are now introduced 
into such works as would admit them, and miniatures of 
excessive minuteness of detail, with borders of corre- 


sponding delicacy, distinguish the smaller productions. 
These were executed in vast numbers, and abound in all 
collections. In the illuminations of Italy the borders 
are bounded by lines, and a stiffness pervades the works, 
which are richly ornamented, and as richly coloured. 
The Roman letters are here apparent. At this period, 
in the Italian choral books, the initials are of gigantic 
size, some being above twelve inches in height ; they are 
generally composed of acanthus leaves in blue and gold, 
with a scale-like pattern in carmine relieved with gold. 

The characteristic of the illuminations of the close of 
the fifteenth century is their being executed upon solid 
backgrounds of gold or rich colouring, in place of being 
formed of open-work resting on the vellum. Natural 
forms now are painted with careful exactness ; at the 
first, flowers and fruits predominate, then birds and 
animals are added, nor are miniatures of various kinds 



The taste and feeling of the age are evident in their 
influence upon the illuminator’s productions. At the 

Q 2 


first, more genuine arabesques prevail, and then they are 
superseded by groups of armour, imitations of cameos 
and gems, jewellery, heraldic bearings, with medallions 
and other objects of the same class, wrought upon solid 
backgrounds. The colouring is gorgeous in the extreme. 
With the middle of the century the art fell into disuse, 
having been retained in constant practice until that 
period for the illustration and adornment of the 
earlier printed books. The last important and dis- 
tinct class of illuminations are more subdued in tone, 
and in better feeling than their immediate prede- 
cessors. Whatever illuminations were subsequently 
produced, are found to be altogether debased as works 
of art. 

One class of illumination remains to be noticed, which 
was introduced late in the fifteenth century. This style, 
termed CawJe-gris or Grisaille , consists either in adopting 
the prevailing designs of the period and rendering them 
in two or three tints of a bluish grey, or in altogether 
omitting all decorative borders, and introducing numerous 
small pictures and medallions executed in the same tints, 
heightened with occasional colour or on coloured back- 




Until the thirteenth century, it is probable that the 
MSS. were written and illuminated by the same persons. 
After this period, the greatly increased demand for 
works of this class led to their being produced after a 
more systematic method ; the illuminator and cali- 
grapher became persons who practised distinct branches 
of art, and it was by no means an uncommon circum- 
stance for artists to execute only some particular parts of 
the illuminations in use at certain periods, so that several 
illuminators may have been employed upon the produc- 
tion of a single MS. 

The beauty, precision, and uniformity of character 
which distinguish the writing in MSS., cannot fail to 
attract attention and to excite admiration. The plain 
and yet nobly simple forms of the Roman letters, and 
the rich dignity of the Lombardic, were thoroughly 
appreciated by the mediaeval caligraphers. They appear 
to have delighted in modifying the contour of the letters, 
and by varying both their size and their enrichments 
they evidently felt that they had at their command inex- 
haustible materials for the successful practice of their art. 




Inscriptions were written in the Roman character, 
somewhat modified in certain respects, until the thir- 
teenth century, when the Lombardic character was 
adopted. Towards the close of the fourteenth century, 
the Black-letter character succeeds the Lombardic. There 
is a rather close general resemblance between the small 
letters of the Lombardic and the Black-letter, but the 
former is by far the more dignified character, the latter 
having less simplicity in its treatment, and its capitals 
being altogether devoid either of dignity or elegance of 
form. It is by no means rare to find Lombardic capitals 
in use loug after the fourteenth century had passed away. 
The later Black-letter became very degenerate, and its 
cramped and ill-formed letters, with their strange con- 
tractions arid abbreviations, are obscure and difficult to 

In the earliest inscriptions the Latin language is 
employed. In the thirteenth century they appear in 
Norman-French, written in Lombardic capitals. The 
Latin reappears in the fourteenth century, though the 
Norman-French still is retained. In some instances the 



two languages appear in the same inscription : and, in 
this century, the exclusive use of capital letters ceases. 
In the fifteenth century the Latin language is almost 
universal. In the sixteenth century the English tongue 
prevails, the Latin being retained in inscriptions comme- 
morative of ecclesiastics, upon coins also and seals. The 
Black-letter is now found to assume very fantastic forms, 
and the Roman character is sometimes to be seen. In 
the following century the Roman character becomes 
general, and inscriptions are still written in either the 
Latin or the English languages. 

The Roman letters in the earliest inscriptions are 
commonly placed without any dividing spaces between 
different words. Abbreviations also are effected after 
various methods : as, by omitting letters or syllables ; 
by attaching one letter to another — as in the letters N.R., 
writing the two as one compound letter by omitting the 
straight stroke of the R. and joining the other parts 
of the letter to the N. ; or by writing one letter within 
another. The earliest Lombardic inscriptions have one 
or more dots between each word, and a cross is prefixed 
to the legend. After a while the dividing dots are sup- 
pressed, and a space is left between the succeeding 


words ; occasionally also a hand is found to have been 
substituted for the initial cross. It is to be observed 
that the initial symbol is almost exclusively restricted to 
those inscriptions which are so arranged as to form a 
border to a monument or other object. In monuments; 
inscriptions generally either form a border to the entire 
composition; or they are set at the feet of effigies : addi- 
tional legends are also often introduced upon scrolls; and 
sometimes they appear so arranged as to form decorative 
accessories of costume. It was the custom to place at 
the angles of a border-inscription the emblems of the 
four Evangelists — the angel; the emblem of St. Mat- 
thew, the winged lion of St. Mark; the ox of St. Luke; 
and the eagle of St. John. In these inscriptions; about 
the year 1400; various devices are placed between the 
several words of which they are composed. Heraldic 
devices are also introduced into inscriptions as acces- 
sories; and shields of arms within four-foils are fre- 
quently associated with the Evangelistic emblems in 
border-inscriptions or are substituted for them. The 
practice of dividing words by some device is occasionally 
continued till a late period. Abbreviations are con- 
tinually resorted to in framing inscriptions, and some- 



times are altogether arbitrary and capricious. Dates 
are not introduced before the fourteenth century, when 
they are sometimes written partly in capital letters and 
partly in full in words, the prevailing habit being to ex- 
press them in capital letters only. In the next century 
the date is sometimes written in small letters in place of 
capitals. With the dates, the Dominical letter of a year 
and the regnal year of a sovereign are sometimes given. 
The computation by calends, &c., is also found ; saints* 
days, with their eves, &c., are specified, and various pre- 
catory and intercessory ejaculations may be observed. 
These last are often found to have been erased. The 
Arabic numeral figures are rarely seen until late in the 
sixteenth century : examples, however, have been ob- 
served as early as the middle of the fifteenth century. 
The figures and numeral letters sometimes occur in the 
same date. The forms of some of the figures, the 4, 5, 
and 9 in particular, are very singular, and by no means 
easy to determine. 

The composition of the early inscriptions is generally 
very simple, and the legends are concise and brief. In 
the fifteenth century they begin to be more diffuse, and 
in the century following they are extended to admit 


minute and often irrelevant and inconsistent details. 
Metrical inscriptions were always in favour, particularly 
when the structure of the verses would admit of re- 
peated rhymes. Dates were forced into these verses 
after a very singular fashion; and the most was made of 
every opportunity for alliteration, punning, and playing 
upon the sound of words, and more especially of names. 

The brass to Sir John D^Aubernoun, at Stoke Dau- 
bernon, a.d. 1277, supplies a good example of the early 
Norman -French monumental inscription written in 
Lombard ic capitals 


(Sir John Daubernoun, Knight, lies here ; God on his 
soul have mercy.) 

Where a rhyme is not desired, inscriptions in this 
form commence with ici. gist, or icy. gist, or cy. 

In these inscriptions intercessory prayers are some- 
times sought by the promise of “ indulgences,” &c. 

Rhymes abound in Latin as well as in the Norman- 
French. In Latin the icy. gist, is rendered by 



the well-known hic. iacet. orate, pro. anima. 
is a common commencement of a Latin prose inscrip- 

The rhyming inscription in Latin, which forms a 
part of the brass to Sir Morys Russel and Isabel his 
wife, at Dyrham, in Gloucestershire, a.d. 1401, will 
illustrate this species of composition in a characteristic 
manner : — 







The translation of this legend may be left to be 
rendered by the reader. 

Other inscriptions commence in the manner follow- 



Monumental inscriptions are constantly found to be 
incomplete. In some cases the memorial may have been 
prepared by the person to be commemorated, and at his 


decease the date, &c., may not have been added. In 
other instances, when two persons are mentioned in one 
legend, blank spaces were left to be filled up after the 
death of the survivor, and some unexpected circum- 
stances may have prevented the fulfilment of this inten- 
tion. In inscriptions formed of letters cut out from 
pieces of metal, the several letters are inserted in hollows 
sunk in the face of the stone for their reception. They 
afterwards are engraven on plates, or either cut or cast 
upon them in relief. The letters are also engraved or 
worked in relief upon the stone or marble, but the metal 
plates appear to have been preferred. Incised letters are 
filled in with some tenacious substance. 

The accompanying engraving (Plate 13) exhibits fac- 
simile representations of parts of five inscriptions in 
Westminster Abbey. Figures 1 and 2 are in Lom- 
bardic capitals, and they severally form the commence- 
ment of the legends which are placed about the fine 
monumental effigies of Henry III. (a.d. 1272), and 
Eleanor (Alianor) Queen of Edward I. (a.d. 1290). 
Figure 3 is the commencement of the inscription on the 
monument of Edward III. (a.d. 1377). Figure 4 is the 


Tlaxe ZDI 

*fJP A 

0 J 



*i gegissaii ihiiofu 

ftfiTins dinaniiio 

4+ wiiiaslfQtJoDffloTjr 

Tig.l . Pram Toxrfb of of Ring Henry III, IT 7 3 . 

— Quern' Eleanor 1291 

King Edward III 1377. 

- AliaiioTe widcjw of Thomas ofllVoodstocl 399 

- King Eioha?d II 1399 . . 

-All in Westminster Abbey. 

>.6_ . 

O.Jewlt QaLetlitL. 

7ii3o.oir Brook* . 



initial cross with a part of the inscription, in the brass to 
Alianore de Bohun, widow of Thomas of Wodestoke 
(a.d. 1399). And in figures 5 and 6 are shown parts of 
the inscription which surrounds the tomb of Bichard II. 
(a.d. 1397). The letters are all Lombardic, except 
the capitals in the words Thomas Prudens and 
Bicardus, which approach to the Black-letter 

Besides the abbreviations so common in inscriptions, 
the most arbitrary spelling is employed, the same word 
being frequently spelt in the same inscription in a 
different manner each time that it is repeated. An ab- 
breviation constantly in use is that effected by the 
omission of the letters m, n, and r, usually indicated by 
a mark, or apostrophe, above the contiguous vowel : as 
aia, feme, gee , lo y , p* , glia, for anima, femme, grace, lour 
or leur , pour, gloria. With r a vowel is often omitted 
in words of which the first syllable, or the first two syl- 
lables, begin with p ; as ppciet, pdon, for propicietur, par- 
don. The article and substantive are united; as lalme, 
lamur, salme, for l y dme, V amour, son ame . Sometimes 
a vowel is written over an adjoining consonant. Entire 


syllables are often elided. Certain systems, indeed, are 
prevalent ; but no general rule can be laid down for 
determining the abbreviations in use in the middle ages: 
they will, however, be readily understood by the observ- 
ing inquirer. 




There are no relics of the early races and different 
generations of men that are either more interesting in 
themselves or better calculated to convey to the archaeo- 
logist truthful illustrations of the past, than the weapons 
which were used in warfare, and the armour which was 
adopted for the purpose of defence. Our own country 
furnishes a most complete series of these relics, com- 
mencing, in the case of the arms, from the times of the 
primitive and most uncivilized inhabitants of these 
islands, and continued through each succeeding age. 
The remains of armour are less numerous, in consequence 
of the generally less enduring nature of the earlier 
varieties of such defences. In addition to the actual 
relics, the archeological student will derive most valuable 
information from the manuscripts, and illuminations, 



and seals of the middle ages, and more particularly from 
the monumental memorials. 

The earlier weapons which have been discovered either 
through the agency of the plough or by other casual 
means, or as the result of deliberate investigations in 
ancient places of sepulture and memorial, have been 
generally classified under three periods : 1st, the Stone 
Period ; 2nd, the Bronze Period ; 3rd, the Iron 


This period must be considered to have closed consi- 
derably before the first appearance of the Romans in 
Britain, since it is certain that the Celtic Britons were 
acquainted with the manufacture and accustomed to the 
use of bronze. The weapons of this remote era consist 
of the heads of hatchets or axes , and of hammers , with 
spears and arrows , and they have been found in con- 
siderable numbers. However rude their general charac- 
ter, these primitive weapons exhibit traces of much skill 
in their production. The hatchets, or axe-heads, are 
known as Celts , and of these an example, found at Stan- 
ton Fitz-Warren, in Wiltshire, is represented in Figure 4 

JcwiU.'iel.ftt [iih ' 

Bgs.1.2 3.3rorr,e CSw ftm Jmm, Alderney SmdBsnWv- 

T?U- .,17177 ..... J 

Z • bt ^; Celt, from Stantai i , SU-'Wkn.’c 

Vincent; "Brinks Ifup 


of Plate X1Y. The hammer-heads are formed to strike 
both ways : they are also perforated, for the purpose of 
being fixed upon their handles. 


Which extends to the retirement of the Romans to 
the south and east of the Alps, includes the period of 
the Roman occupancy of Britain, and it is rich in mili- 
tary remains of the highest interest. The Britons them- 
selves retained the Celt ; but that weapon is now found 
cast in bronze, and exhibiting many varieties of form 
and ornamentation, and also with several arrangements 
for fixing and firmly attaching it to its shaft. The 
earlier Celts approach very nearly, in their wedge shape, 
to their prototypes in stone; but they subsequently 
appear finely proportioned, socketed, and with a loop or 
ear, and sometimes a ring, for securing them to their 
handles; they are also often embossed with ornamental de- 
vices. Moulds , made either of stone or bronze, in which 
Celts were cast, have repeatedly been found with the Celts 
themselves. Figs. 1, 2, and 3 of Plate XIV., exhibit three 
varieties of bronze Celts of the most prevalent types. 

* See note at page 269. 




Swords, spear and arrow-heads, axes, daggers and lenives, 
are the other weapons which were in use in this period. 
They all indicate both the taste and the skill of the early 
armourers. The sword-blades are remarkable for the 
beauty of their form : the hilts were made of horn or 
wood, and consequently the blades only remain. Fig. 
2 of Plate XV., is a characteristic example of these 
weapons. Figs. 4 and 8 of the same Plate are speci- 
mens of the spear-heads and daggers, which were made 
in bronze ; the hilt of this dagger is of polished ivory ; 
and Fig. 3 of the same Plate represents a sword of 
a mixed character, the blade being of bronze, as also is 
the metallic part of the hilt, but the cross-piece and 
pommel are of iron ; this weapon has also the form of 
the iron swords of the succeeding period, when pro- 
bably it was made. Fig. 6 is an example of an axe, 
such as might probably be used for various purposes as 
well as in war. 

It is remarkable that but very few examples of armour 
or of shields of these early periods have been discovered. 
Fig. 1 of Plate XIY. illustrates the circular shield of 
bronze used by the Celtic Britons, and it is an admirable 
specimen of their treatment of this metal. 


1%1 Bronze British. Shield . Z.<3. Bronze S^wurds . 4*. Bronze Spear-iLeacl 
5 Iron Spear-Head. . 6. Iron Battle-Axe . 7 Iran Bagger. 8. Bronze Daft6er. 
B d 0 1:n m Arrow-Ilea 3 b . /0 

Yixicent Brooks Ixnp 




Iron is the metal which is associated with the warfare 
of the Teutonic race. The weapon most commonly found 
is the spear, which varies very considerably in length and 
size, as also in form. Some of these spear-heads taper 
throughout their length, others are straight, and pointed 
at the end, and others are leaf-shaped. They may be 
divided into two classes, of which the one would comprise 
the larger examples, and which were intended to be used 
in the charge, the latter being javelins, or missile wea- 
pons. Fig. 5, Plate XV., is a good specimen of a taper- 
ing spear-head of iron, of which the socket is ornamented. 
A third class of Anglo-Saxon spears has the iron heads 
barbed : these weapons, which were called angons , con- 
stantly appear in the illuminations of the period, and yet 
but few specimens have been found. The arrow-heads 
are generally barbed, as in the examples represented in 
Figs. 9 and 10 of Plate XV. The swords generally re- 
semble in shape the weapon represented in Fig. 3 : at 
first they are made without cross-pieces, but as the period 
advances the cross-piece, or guard, becomes an important 
part of the weapon. Axes continue to be used, in form 

r 2 



being modifications of Fig. 6. Fig. 7 is a characteristic 
example of a dagger; the original was found in Ireland, 
but it is of precisely the same general character with the 
British weapons. War -knives, longer in the blade than 
the daggers, were in use. The hilts of all these weapons, 
particularly those of the swords, were often made of 
costly materials, and elaborately enriched; and famous 
swords were distinguished by the warriors who wielded 
them with appropriate and significant names. The 
long-low was also employed, and it became a formidable 
weapon in the hands of the Anglo-Saxons. 

It will be observed that, in addition to the weapons of 
iron which are characteristic of this period, the ancient 
arms of bronze and even of stone were often used by the 
lower ranks of the Saxons, and by their British asso- 

The Anglo-Saxon warriors appear to have worn for 
defence a species of hauberk , or tunic, made of metal 
rings ; also garments of thick leather ; and, in addition 
to these, they had leg -lands to guard their lower limbs. 
Conical helms protected their heads; they were made of 
a metal frame-work covered or lined with leather, and 
surmounted by a crest. Their shields , which constituted 



their principal defence, were generally round ; but a few 
oblong examples have been observed. The iron umbo, or 
boss, which was placed on the centre of the shield, is 
commonly found with the remains of an Anglo-Saxon 
warrior. Bits, stirrups, bridle ornaments, with breast- 
guards for the war-horses, and goad-spurs for their riders, 
have been discovered amongst the relics of this very 
interesting period. 


After the Norman conquest, the archaeologist ceases 
to obtain any examples of early weapons and armour 
from the graves of departed warriors. The chroniclers 
and illuminators are his principal guides : he finds other 
examples represented in ivory-carvings, and a new source 
of illustration opens before him in the armed figures 
represented upon seals. As he proceeds with his in- 
quiry, the student will observe a reciprocal influence 
exercised upon each other by the offensive arms and the 
defensive armour : as the former become continually more 
formidable, so the latter is more developed, until the 
knight is found to be equipped from head to foot in 



plates of steel, and having about many parts of his per- 
son one plate screwed over another. The next step is 
the general adoption of fire-arms, and then, the weapons 
having become too powerful to be effectually resisted by 
any defences, all armour falls gradually into disuse. 

The arms continue to be the same as those of the 
Anglo-Saxons : they comprise the Lance , with its Lance- 
flag , Sword , Dagger , Mace , Long-bow , and Javelin . The 
lance-heads have commonly the leaf or lozenge form, and 
the shaft is of uniform thickness throughout. The sword 
is straight, broad, two-edged, and pointed : the hilt is short, 
generally with a round pommel, and a, cross-guard that 
is either straight or curved towards the blade. The mace 
is short and heart-shaped at the head. In the middle of 
the twelfth century, the Battle-axe again appears as a 
knightly weapon. Several varieties of Bikes , ox Javelins, 
were in use by the common soldiers, each of whom was 
also for the most part provided with either a bow or a 
sling . 

Defensive armour consists of a Hauberk or Haubergeon , 
(the latter differing from the former only in being shorter,) 
worn over an iron breast-plate and a long quilted tunic 
called a Gambeson or Haqiieton. The hauberk is formed 



either of ring-mail, or of small pieces of metal attached 
to a tunic of leather, or simply of leather, and it has 
sleeves which reach sometimes only to the elbows, and 
sometimes to the wrist. Scale-armour , made of various 
materials including horn, was also in use. The lower 
limbs have defences of mail, similar to that of the hau- 
berk, but this is not the uniform practice of the period. 
A hood or coif, attached to the hauberk, covers the head, 
over which is worn a conical (or sometimes a flattened or 
rounded) helm , without any crest, but generally provided 
with a nasal or strip of metal which covers the nose, and 
thus protects the face from a sword-cut. The shield is 
long and kite-shaped, until about the middle of the 
twelfth century, when a triangular shield was introduced; 
the shields were generally made curved, to be the better 
adapted to cover the person of the knight; but some 
examples are flat. In place of the Saxon boss, a spike 
sometimes projects from the centre of these shields. A 
circular luclcler is occasionally to be observed. Various 
fanciful devices appear painted on the shields of this 
period, before regular heraldry had been recognised. The 
second great seal of Richard I. shows the shield of that 
warrior-prince charged with the three lions of England. 



The helm of the king in this remarkable seal is rounded 
at the top, and surmounted by a fan-like ornament, as a 
crest, and it has a vizor covering the face. Both the kite- 
shaped and the triangular shields have straps called 
enermes , to attach them to the left arm, and they are also 
suspended over the right shoulder by a guige or shield- 
belt. The knightly spur continues to be of the goad 
form. A mantle sometimes is represented worn over the 


Armour formed of mail, that is, of steel rings inter- 
woven to produce a continuous fabric, was in general use 
in this stormy century, when it attained to its highest 
perfection. Mail armour was worn at this period by the 
warriors of the East, as it is retained by them, almost 
unchanged both in fabric and fashion, to the present day ; 
and without doubt the chivalry of Western Europe 
adopted during the Crusades many improvements in their 
own equipment — improvements derived from their Orien- 
tal adversaries : it is not, however, to be supposed that 
mailarmourwas unknown in the West before the Crusades, 



and that it was first derived through those wonderful 
enterprises. Besides the mail, other flexible defences 
continued to be worn, such as scale-armour, thickly 
quilted garments, leather, and particularly the cuir-bouilli, 
or leather adapted by a process of boiling to the required 
purposes; rings and small plates of metal of various 
forms were also fastened to the quilted and leather de- 
fences, in order to render them still more capable of re- 
sisting hostile blows. 

About the middle of the thirteenth century, additional 
defences, formed either of metal plates or of cuir-bouilli , 
begin to make their appearance over the mail ; they are 
first introduced as guards for the knees, and next as 
similar guards for the elbows. About the same period 
also, the chausses , or mail defences of the lower limbs, 
appear covered with quilted trews, or cuisses , which are 
generally embroidered or otherwise enriched. In other 
respects, throughout this century, mail constitutes the 
defensive equipment, with a Flastron-de-fer to guard the 
breast beneath the mail hauberk. The coif de mailles 
covers the head, and both hands and feet are similarly 
protected. Over the hauberk is worn the long, flowing 
surcoat of rich materials ; it is without any sleeves, open 



in front, and secured by a narrow belt about the waist. 
Fig. 1 of Plate XVI., which represents the upper part of 
the brass to Sir John D^Aubernoun, at Stoke Dabernon 
in Surrey (the earliest known brass, a.d. 1277, the fifth 
of Edward I.), is an admirable example of the mail-armed 
effigies of this century; the mail coif is here shown with 
the fillet which secures it about the temples; on the 
right shoulder appears the guige , upon which the lance is 
resting ; on the left side is seen the upper part of the 
triangular or heater-shaped shield . 

The shield, early in the century, is much larger than at 
its close; it is generally of the form so well exemplified 
in the fine specimens represented in Plate III., variously 
modified. It is charged with heraldic insignia, and 
secured by the guige . The helm is large and massive, 
and worn over the mail coif. It is either cylindrical and 
flat-topped, with horizontal clefts for vision; or it is 
rounded or conical in form, and provided with a ventail 
or moveable vizor, or cleft and pierced with holes for 
breath and vision. Heraldic crests are worn on the 
helm. One form of helm, which resembles a sugar-loaf, 
is observed to be so long as to rest on the shoulders ; 
this would also appear to have been the case with some 



other varieties. A light helmet, ox casque, appears in 
place of the more ponderous helm, late in the century ; 
the helm sometimes is fastened to the wearer’s person 
by a chain, as in the Trumpingdon brass. 

The sword is now long, large, straight, and double- 
edged, with a cross-guard, which generally curves slightly 
towards the blade; the hilt and pommel are much 
enriched, the latter being in the greater number of 
examples spherical. The weapon is secured by a broad 
and heavy belt, loosely adjusted about the person, and 
attached by lacing in a peculiar manner to the scabbard ; 
it is buckled in front of the wearer, and sometimes a 
small strap attaches the sword-belt to the belt which 
encircles the waist. The Misericorde , or Dagger, is 
added to the weapons, though it does not appear in the 
knightly effigies until the following century. It would 
seem to have derived its name from the circumstance of 
its being the last resort in a deadly struggle, and because 
when thus uplifted it would compel the vanquished to cry 
for mercy. 

The Spurs remain the same as before, and are known 
as Pryclc-spurs . The straps are very simple, and they 
buckle over the instep. 



The Lance is the same as during the preceding cen- 
tury, and it is decorated with a Pennon-of-arms . 

About the year 1280, Ailettes are added to the knight's 
equipment. They are small, square, or lozenge-shaped 
plates of steel, and are attached to the hauberk at the 
shoulders; they usually display some heraldic devices. 
Press Ailettes appear to have been worn ; they were 
formed of leather, and covered with cloth or silk, and 
bordered with fringe. 

Besides the more ordinary military equipments of this 
period, a circular Buckler is sometimes seen, with various 
modiiications of the shield. Broacl-swords slightly curved, 
Axes , Maces , and Hammers of iron, are to be reckoned 
amongst the weapons. The soldiery also, besides swords 
or long knives, were provided with javelins , bows and 
slings , and with several varieties of the formidable com- 
pound weapons known as the Bill , Halbard , and Pole- 
axe or Guisarme . Each of these weapons is fixed to a 
long and stout staff ; the bill has a broad cutting blade, 
terminating in a pike ; the halbard consists of an axe- 
blade balanced by a pike, and having a pike-head at the 
end of the staff ; the pole-axe, as its name implies, is an 
axe with a long instead of a short shaft. 



Iii this century the singular custom of covering the 
war-horses with Bar dings, or voluminous trappings, in 
addition to some defensive armour, was introduced. The 
armorial ensigns of the knight appear on the bardings of 
his charger, and on both sides of the horse the head of 
the animal is regarded as the heraldic dexter. 

In this thirteenth century Monumental Effigies make 
their appearance, and supply most noble and valuable 
examples of arms and armour. 



A decided change in armour is apparent very early in 
the fourteenth century. The mail is not considered a 
sufficient protection, and fresh additional defences are 
continually placed upon it. The archaeological student 
will watch with much interest each step in advance 
towards the full development of the knightly panoply 
of polished plate armour. Plates (or, in the first instance, 
pieces of cuir-bouilli) are found to cover the fronts of the 
lower limbs, and to be continued in small flakes or scales 
over the feet, and similar plates guard the outside of the 
aims, and circular plates (or roundles) appear at the 



elbows and shoulders by about the year 1225; the 
mail-coif disappears at the same time, and in its stead 
there is a Basinet , or close-fitting steel helmet, from 
which the Camail , or tippet of mail, depends, and covers 
the shoulders. The shield is small ; the sword-belt is 
narrower, and attached to the scabbard by swivels ; the 
waist-belt disappears ; the surcoat gives place to a most 
singular garment called the Cyclas , which is cut short in 
front but left long behind, and from beneath this a 
second garment, or Haqueton , is seen over the skirt of the 
Hauberk , and the Hauberk itself is shorter and not open 
in front. The spurs have Rouelles . The Misericorde is 
sometimes seen. The Ailettes cease to be worn. 

As the century advances towards the middle, studded 
armour is common : the legs below the knee are com- 
pletely encased in Jambarts of steel ; similar Brass arts 
cover the arms ; the hands are covered by Gauntlets , and 
the feet by steel Sollerets acutely pointed at the toe. 
The Hauberk is retained, but it is shorter, and it appears 
from under the plate defences of the arms at the shoulder 
and elbow joints. The backs of the knees are guarded 
by Goussettes of mail. The Camail is well developed, and 
fastened by laces and little staples ( Vervelles ) to the 



basinet, which is tall and acutely pointed at the summit. 
The shield disappears. The Hauberk is covered by the 
rich Jupon, often emblazoned with arms, and escalloped 
or cut into fanciful forms below, just above the skirt of 
the Hauberk. The sword-belt is very rich, and buckles 
straight across the hips : it is attached to the scabbard 
without swivels or laces. The Sivord is narrower than 
before, long, with a perfectly straight cross-guard, and 
the pommel is commonly an elongated octagon in form. 
The Misericorde accompanies the sword, and both of 
them are commonly secured to the breastplate by 

Besides the massive hip-belt, a narrow belt is some- 
times worn which crosses the person diagonally. In 
effigies, the knight is commonly represented with his 
head resting upon his helm, which is decorated with its 
crest and Contone or Mantling . 

At the close of the century, the armour that has just 
been described is universal. It is distinguished by the 
most dignified simplicity and a thoroughly martial as- 
pect. The Camail is the only visible relic of the mail 
which remains, except for secondary and subordinate 
purposes of defence. The Hauberk , however, is still worn 



beneath the J upon. The camail-laces now are covered. 
The Belt remains the same, but it is fastened with a 
Morse or clasp more frequently than with a buckle. The 
joints of the Gauntlets are now commonly armed with 
small spikes, called Gacllyngs: instead of spikes, the 
gadlyngs of the Black Prince, in his gauntlets at 
Canterbury, are very small lions. Collars are now seen 
worn over the camail. 

Figs. 2, 8, and 4 of Plate XVI., supply much cha- 
racteristic illustration of the armour of this century. 
Fig. 2 is from the brass to Sir John D’Aubernoun the 
younger, a.d. 1327 : it shows the earliest form of the 
Basinet and Camail , with Berebraces of plate or cuir-bouilli 
which cover the upper arms externally over the mail 
sleeves of the Hauberk : the Bounclles appear at the 
shoulders, partly covered by the Cyclas % Fig. 3 is from 
the brass to Sir Hugh Hastings, at Elsyng, in Norfolk, 
a.d. 1347, a monument which is one of the most re- 
markable and valuable in existence. The head of the 
knight, represented in the engraving, is defended with 
a Vizored Basinet, the Vizor (or Ventail) being raised. In- 
stead of a Camail he wears a Gorget , or collar of plate, 
which rests upon his Hauberk. It may be observed that 


Plate XVI. 

0 Jerreirt dal "litR 

B&1 . Jam the Bra ss to Sir Joha\DL^aberi.u-aTa AD.1277; and 

? J’ 1 ' '' 1 ll ” 1 nga ,A.l) .1327. Both at Stok-Ilal'emon d.rrrev 

6 . Prom the Prass to Sir Hugh Hastings ,Elsyng .Horfelk . AD.1347 

4. Prom Hie Effigy cf lord MCntacu.t£ ; m Salisbury Cathedral , AD.1389 . 

5. Prom the Brass to Sir Ivo ntz-Waryn , in "Wantage C&irch, Perks A P. 1414 
b. Prom the Brass to Sir Hubert Staunton, Castle D onington Church , Leicestershire _AD.l 4 - 58 . 




in some instances the Camail is represented as being 

Fig. 4 is from the fine sculptured effigy in Salis- 
bury Cathedral, of John, Lord Montacute, who died in 
the year 1389, to which period this memorial may be 
assigned. Here the conical Basinet is shown, which 
covers the ears, and has the Camail attached to it by 
laces that are visible. A few years later the shape of 
the head-piece more closely resembles that shown in 
Fig. 5, and the camail-laces are covered. 

Throughout this century the same general equipments 
and weapons which were in use in the preceding century 
continue to constitute the military appointments of the 
soldiery : of course many modifications are introduced, 
and the forms and accessories may differ in many re- 
spects from the earlier examples ; the principles of con- 
struction and application, however, remain the same. 

The change from mail to plate armour, the use of 
secondary defences, the artistic treatment of both arms 
and armour, and the prevalence of heraldic accessories, 
may be considered to form the characteristic features of 
this century, which may be subdivided into a group of 






The change to complete plate armour was effected in 
the reign of Henry V., or about the year 1420. A 
Cuirass, formed of breast and back plates, at this time 
covers the knight’s person : from below his waist de- 
pend a series of narrow overlapping plates, which are 
attached to a lining of leather or quilted work, and de- 
nominated Taces : a Gorget of plate protects his throat, 
and joins the basinet, which is more globular in form 
than heretofore ; and there are Roundles at the shoulders, 
or sometimes elongated Palettes in their stead. The 
sword-belt is narrow, it crosses the person diagonally 
from the right hip over the taces, and is attached to the 
scabbard only in one point. In some instances the broad 
and rich baudricJc , or hip-belt , is also worn. The hilt of 
the Sword is long, and the pommel pear-shaped. Fig. 5 
of Plate XVI., from the brass to Sir Ivo FitzWaryn, in 
Wantage Church, Berks, a.d. 1414, exhibits the basinet, 
gorget, roundles, and the entire upper part of the figure 
of a knight in the earliest complete armour of plate. 
This knight wears smaller roundles at the elbow joints \ 



they are in general use until about 1435, when the fan- 
shaped coudiere, which had been introduced several years 
before, supersedes them, to give way in its turn in about 
ten years to more elaborate guards for the elbows. The 
Misericorcle is worn on the right side : the Spurs are 
often represented as having their rouelles guarded : and 
the great helm with its crest and contoise is in use. The 
rich wreath, or orle , on which the crest rests, is also often 
seen encircling the basinet. 

Additional plates, fixed over the others, appear before 
the year 1450. Tuttles, or pendant plates, are attached 
by buckles to the lowermost tace . The right and left 
arms of the knight are protected after a different fashion, 
there being an accumulation of plates to guard the 
left or bridle arm, while the right or sword arm is com- 
paratively unencumbered. The Breast-plate is partially 
or entirely covered with a second plate, and the Rest for 
the lance appears screwed upon the right side. The 
Sollerets and also the Spurs are extravagantly long, and 
the Coudieres no less extravagantly large. 

About the middle of the century the Salade generally 
takes the place of the Basinet : it is shown in Fig. 6 of 
Plate XVL, as are the Pauldrons , or new defences for the 

s 2 



shoulders; this example is from the brass to Sir Robert 
Staunton, at Castle Donington, in Leicestershire, of 
which the date is 1458. At this same time, and also 
somewhat earlier, a Tabard is worn over the cuirass : 
this is a short loose tunic with short sleeves, and it has 
the heraldic distinctions of the wearer displayed upon the 
sleeves, as well as upon the body of the garment. The 
Belt , still narrow and worn after the same fashion, is 
often attached to the sword-scabbard by two swivels. 
The Hip-belt now is rarely seen. It will be observed 
that the armour is now often fluted . During the course 
of the second half of this century the Taces , which have 
become escalloped, decrease in number, and the Tuilles 
increase very considerably in size. Pauldrons , or addi- 
tional shoulder- guards, become universal. The Gauntlets 
are enlarged and strengthened. The Sword , having a 
singularly short and ill-proportioned hilt, hangs in front 
of the figure. At the close of the century the general 
character of the armour may be described as distin- 
guished by the multiplication of defences and the in- 
crease of elaboration in ornament, in the place of the 
simpler dignity of the earlier styles. 

Besides the arms and armour represented, in effigies, 


the various weapons of earlier times are retained in use, 
with such modifications as would appear to increase their 
formidable character. The knightly lance itself is much 
larger and more unwieldy; the shaft of it swells towards 
the lower part, where it is provided with a Vamplate , or 
projecting defence for the hands. The weapons of the 
Halbard and Pole-axe species become very large and 
massive, and many of them are richly ornamented. 
Fire-arms also have now established themselves ; and the 
archaeologist will not fail to study the curious varieties 
of their early forms, together with the elaborate enrich- 
ments which are lavished upon them. 


In the commencement of this century the approaching 
disuse of armour is surely indicated by the manner in 
which the armourers endeavoured to assimilate their 
works to the ordinary costume of the period. The true 
feeling for armour had then ceased to exist, and there 
remained but steel dresses instead of the true knightly 
panoply. The Cuirass is now found to be wrought to a 
ridge, called the Tapul , and Passe-gardes (a species of 



upright steel epaulettes) rise from the Pauldrons . The 
Taces gradually disappear, and the Tuittes become larger 
and more elongated. The long Sollerets give place to 
Sabbatons, which are short, and very broad at the toe. 
The Sword again hangs at the left side, and the blade 
often crosses behind the figure. MoAl-armour appears to 
have been sometimes resumed beneath the different 
plates that were worn in the middle of this century. 
The Shield , when used suspended about the neck, is 
pierced at the dexter upper corner to admit the passage 
of the lance. Several varieties of new Helmets appear, 
and the Plume is for the first time added as a decoration 
to the head-piece. Feathers , when placed on the basinet 
or helm before this century, were set upright, and formed 
an heraldic crest, called a Panache . The two most com- 
mon forms of new helmet are the Burgonet and the 
Morion ; they are distinguished by the manner in which 
they completely encase and cover the head. The armour 
of the reign of Henry VIII. is very rich, and made to 
imitate the puffed and slashed costume of the time : it is 
also elaborately adorned with engraving and inlaid work. 
A favourite species of armour, called Russet , was pro- 
duced by oxidising the metal, and then polishing and 


otherwise enriching it, leaving the surface of a rich 
brown hue. 

The Lance now is ponderous in the extreme, and pro- 
vided with a large Vamplate , attached to the shaft ; but 
the great double-edged Stvord, which had remained in 
use from the time of the Conquest, at this time yields to 
the slight and thin Rapier , or stabbing sword. Fire- 
arms of all kinds increase in numbers, and improve in 
their style. It is remarkable that in this century Re- 
volvers upon the present plan were invented : there are 
specimens in the Tower. The Daggers , and weapons of 
that class, display infinite ingenuity in their construc- 
tion ; and some curious attempts were made to produce 
compound weapons, which should be both gun and lance 
— the prototypes these of the rifle and bayonet of the 
present day. 



Half-suits of armour were retained in use for some 
time after it had been both proved and acknowledged that 
armour was comparatively powerless as a defence against 
fire-arms. As this century advances, the Pistol takes 



the place of the Mace at the saddle-bow. The Boots of 
the cavalier are made of Buff -leather, and his Goat is soon 
of the same material. At first, the Buff-coat is covered 
with breast and back-plates, but in the time of Charles 
II., even these relics of the armour of the olden time are 
reduced to a small Gorget of steel, worn by the officers. 
Helmets , with breast and bach-plates and pikes, or long 
spears, lingered for a longer time amongst the soldiery, 
and were still to be found in the armies of Marlborough. 
But a few years, however, had passed after the close of 
the seventeenth century, when armour ceased altogether 
to exist in England, except as a relic of the past, until a 
certain number of breast and back-pieces were called 
forth once more from their honourable repose in the 
Tower, to be adjusted for the use of our Life Guards and 

The Harquebus , Caliver , Musquetoon , and Mushet— all 
of them guns of different kinds, with various Pistols , 
Blunderbusses , and other strange species of fire-arms, 
and with them the still more important Cannon , are 
found to have been continually improved, as their use 
became universal by those who bore arms for military 




In studying effigies and other mediaeval works of art 
which give representations of armour, the archaeologist 
will find the mail to be represented after several conven- 
tional systems. It has been considered that these diffe- 
rences in representation necessarily imply various modes 
of making the mail itself. This is a matter which has 
not yet been decided, and it will be well for all students 
to endeavour to investigate the principles upon which 
the early artists treated mail-armour. 

It is certain that the mail was often represented only 
in colour; and consequently, if in such examples the 
colour has ceased to exist, there remain no traces of the 
mailing. In other instances, the ring-work was pro- 
duced in a paste which hardened upon the stone of the 
effigy, in which but a few remains of the original mail 
will probably be visible. 

The student will occasionally find the shield in an 
armed effigy placed very low and partly (or sometimes 
altogether) covering the person, with the sword appear- 
ing from behind it. This was a French usage, and such 
works may be attributed to French artists. The guiges 



which support these shields will be observed to be very 

The more important pieces of mediaeval armour, with 
its accessories, may be classified as follows : — 

I. For the Head. — The Helm, Helmet , Vizor or Yen - 
tail, Nasal, Coif-de-Mailles, Basinet with Camail attached 
to Vervelles, Salade, Morion, Burgonet, Orle or Wreath, 
Crest and Contoise or Mantling . 

II. For the Body.— The HauberJc, Haubergeon, Bias - 
tron-de-fer, Cuirass, Gorget, Taces , Surcoat , Cyclas , Jupon, 
Tabard, Haqueton, and Gambeson . 

III. For the Arms.— Brassarts, Vambraces (from elbow 
to wrist), Berebraces (from shoulder to elbow), Ailettes, 
JEpaulieres, Palettes, Bauldrons, Passe-gardes, Boundles, 
and Coudieres ; also Goussettes ( Gussets ) at the joints. 

IY. For the Hands.— Mittens of mail, Gauntlets with 
Gadlyngs and Vamplates . 

Y. For the Legs. — Chausses, Cuisses, Cuissarts (above 
the knee), Jambarts (below the knee), Genouillieres (knee- 
guards), Tuilles, Culettes (Tuilles for the back of the 
limb), nroALambeaux (steel skirts). 

VI. For the Feet. — Sollerets, Sabbatons, Pryck-spurs 
and Bouelle-spurs . 



VII. Additional Plates.' — Tassets (small taces), Garde - 
de-reins (pieces depending from the back-plate); Placcate 
(second breast-plate) ; Volante -piece (additional defence 
on front of helmet) ; Mentoniere (guard for the chin) ; 
Garde-bras (covering for the middle of the left arm) ; 
Grande-garde (additional covering for the breast and left 
shoulder, fastened to the cuirass, &c., with screws) . 

VIII. Belts.— Guige and Enemies for the shield, 
j Baudriclc or broad Hip-belt, and others. 

IX. Weapons. — Lance, Sword, Misericorde, Mace, 
Battle-axe, Javelin, Bill, Halbard, Bole-axe or Guisarme, 
Long-bow, Cross-boiv, Sling, Pike , Bagger, Harquebus , 
Caliver, Musquetoon, Musket , and Pistol . 

In the production and ornamentation of arms and 
armour the artists of the middle ages exercised their 
utmost skill and ingenuity, and almost every art-process 
was called into requisition to co-operate with the armourer 
in the production and decoration of his works. 

Fine and characteristic examples of sculptured effigies 
and of brasses illustrative of arms and armour, ranging 
from the twelfth to the fifteenth centuries, exist (in ad- 
dition to very many others) in the following cathedrals 
and churches : — 



Twelfth and Thirteenth Centuries.— Westminster Abbey 
and the Temple Church; the Cathedrals of Salisbury 
and Gloucester ; the Abbey Churches of Great Malvern 
and Pershore ; the Churches of Hatfield Broadoak, Essex; 
Ash and Sandwich, Kent ; Hitchendon, Bucks ; and 
Southacre, Norfolk. , 

Brasses at Stoke Dabernon, Surrey; Trumpingdon, 
Cambridgeshire ; and Buslingthorpe and Croft, Lincoln- 

Fourteenth Century. — Westminster Abbey and the 
Temple Church ; Canterbury and Hereford Cathedrals ; 
the Churches of Bedale, Howden, and Ryther, Yorkshire ; 
of Whatton, Wark worth, and Dodford, Northants; of 
Clehongre, Herefordshire; of Alvechurch, Worcester- 
shire; of Fersfield, Ingham, and Wingfield, Norfolk; 
and the Abbey Church of Tewkesbury. 

Brasses at Acton, Suffolk ; Pebmarsh, Essex ; Stoke 
Dabernon, Surrey; Westley, Cambridgeshire; Ingham, 
Norfolk; and at Chartham, Minster, and Cobham, in 

Fifteenth Century. —Westminster Abbey; Salisbury 
Cathedral ; Staindrop Church, Durham ; Ashwelthorpe, 
Norfolk; Aston, Warwickshire; Bromsgrove, Worces- 



tershire ; Elford, Staffordshire; Hoveringliam, Notts; 
Stanton Harcourt, Oxon ; Wimborne Minster, and 

Brasses at Blickling and Eellrigg,Norfolk ; Dartmouth, 
Devon ; Spilsby, Lincoln ; Thruxton, Hants ; Great 
Tew, Oxon; Trotton, Sussex; Childrey, Berks; West 
Grinstead, Sussex ; Tong, Salop ; Castle Donington, 
Leicestershire ; and Little Horkesley and Little Easton, 

It is a subject for much regret that early examples of 
actual armour are very rare. Our armories are richly 
stored with the weapons and the defensive equipments of 
past times, but a few only of these relics are of a period 
earlier than the wars of the Boses. 

Note. — The “ Bronze and Iron Periods/ 5 severally described at 
pages 241 and 243, will be understood to imply the prevalence but 
not the exclusive use of the metals Bronze and Iron. Iron weapons 
and implements were occasionally in use long before the fifth 
century, and bronze in like manner was sometimes retained after the 
use of iron had become general. 



All military and defensive equipments, together with 
the weapons in use at early periods, having been described 
in the last chapter, the contents of this present chapter 
are restricted to such costumes and personal ornaments 
as are devoid of all warlike associations. The authorities 
which supply materials on this subject are chiefly the 
illuminations in manuscripts, seals, and monumental 
effigieg; other works in sculpture, with stained glass, 
and the works of early writers, also afford additional 


The tonsure, or shaven crown of the head, appears to 
have been the only personal distinction between the 
clergy and the laity at an early period, except when 
the clergy were actually engaged with sacred offices; 
and until the thirteenth century the ordinary clerical 



habit is not distinguished by any special or essential 

The ecclesiastical vestments, with which we are so 
familiar on mediaeval monuments, and which must be 
regarded as distinct from the ordinary costume of eccle- 
siastics, assumed their distinctive forms long before the 
Norman Conquest. The changes that succeeding cen- 
turies brought to these vestments are changes of fashion 
and ornamentation only, the vestments themselves re- 
maining the same. 

The vestments are : — 

1. The Amice , an oblong piece of linen having an em- 
broidered collar; it is tied about the throat so as to 
display this collar. In the earlier examples the amice is 
seen to be adjusted loosely and with much elegance, but 
subsequently it becomes rigid and devoid of graceful- 

2. The Alb , a very ancient vestment made of white 
linen, which envelopes the entire person, descending in 
flowing folds to the feet. It is not open in front, but is 
girded about the waist. The sleeves are comparatively 
tight. In front, at the foot, embroidery or Orphrey-work 
is attached to the alb, and in Saxon times this omamen- 



tation encircled the lower part of the vestment. Similar 
enrichments, called Apparels, appear at the wrists ; these 
apparels at first encircled the sleeves, but about the year 
1335, they begin to appear as small ornaments covering 
only the upper part of the wrists. 

3. The Chesuble or Chasuble , a large vestment nearly 
circular in form, but slightly pointed before and behind, 
has an aperture in the centre for the head to pass 
through, and its ample folds rest on either side of the 
wearer upon his arms. It is always of rich materials, 
and often splendidly decorated with embroidery and 
ornaments. Ornamental borders are often seen, and an 
Apparel somewhat in the shape of the letter Y, evidently 
derived from the archiepiscopal Tall , is of common 

4. The Stole , a long and narrow scarf of rich em- 
broidery, worn over the shoulders, crossing over the 
breast, where it is secured by the girdle of the alb. Its 
fringed ends descend considerably below the knees and 
may generally be seen, appearing one on either side of 
the front point of the chesuble. The earlier stoles are 
narrower than those afterwards worn, and have small 
squares of embroidery attached to their ends ; in the 



later examples, the stoles gradually expand in width 
towards their ends. 

5. The Maniple is a short stole, and it is worn over 
the left wrist, from which it hangs down. 

6. The Surplice, a vestment similar to that now in use 
under the same title, differs from the alb chiefly in its 
very large open sleeves, and in being shorter and without 

7. The Cope, a large cloak-like vestment, in form 
usually a semicircle, and furnished with a Caputium, or 
hood, is fastened across the breast by a Morse , or clasp, 
which is often elaborately enriched, and it covers the 
person. It is richly ornamented, and formed of costly 
materials. The Cope is a processional vestment, and 
not worn with the chesuble, which is the eucharistic 

8. The Aumuce , or Almuce, a species of tippet, or hood, 
of white fur, has long pendent lappets hanging down in 
front of the figure. In brasses it is generally represented 
by pieces of lead or pewter, which were inserted to 
receive the white tincture of the fur. 

9. The Tunic , a somewhat close-fitting robe, with 
rather narrow sleeves, reaches below the knees, where it 



has generally a fringed border. It is worn by bishops 
and abbots over the alb and stole. 

10. The Dalmatic resembles the tunic in its general 
shape, but is looser and shorter. Below, it is (as 
the tunic is sometimes) slit up at the sides, with 
fringe forming a border. This vestment is worn 
by the hierarchy over the tunic and beneath the 

11. In addition to the vestments the superior eccle- 
siastics are represented wearing embroidered Sandals , and 
with Gloves that are enriched with gold and jewels. 
Dings are also worn. The Episcopal Ring of office is 
worn on the middle finger of the right hand ; in effigies 
it appears over the glove. 

12. The Episcopal Mitre , also worn by abbots of the 
highest rank, with its Infula , or two pendent strips of 
rich materials fringed at the ends, is very low until the 
fourteenth century, when it assumes its most dignified 
form. It afterwards becomes convex in its contour, 
instead of concave, and is considerably elevated. At 
first simple and plain, the Mitre, which appears on effi- 
gies, in process of time is very elaborately enriched. 
Several mitres, made of different materials, were in 



use at the same time; the state mitre, however, was 
always precious and splendid. 

13. The Pastoral-Staff, of a crook form at the head, is 
the official wand of bishops and abbots. It generally 
has a Vexilhm, or Banner of the Cross, hanging from it, 
which is usually represented as encircling the shaft of 
the staff. In monuments, the pastoral-staff generally 
appears either held in the left hand of an effigy or rest- 
ing upon the left arm. The earlier examples of the 
pastoral-staff are very plain, but it afterwards became 
the custom to adorn this staff with jewels and other 
precious enrichments. The enamelled staff of Bishop 
William of Wykeham, preserved in New College Chapel, 
Oxford, is a splendid specimen of the second half of the 
fourteenth century. In Worcester Cathedral there is an 
effigy in episcopal habit, with a staff of which the head is 
upright, without either crook or cross. 

14. The Crozier is surmounted by a cross, or crucifix, 
instead of a crook, but in other respects it resembles the 
pastoral-staff. It is peculiar to archbishops. The staff 
of a patriarch has two cross bars. 

15. The Pall, or Pallium, like the crozier in being 
peculiar to archbishops, is a narrow band of white 

T 2 


lamb’s-wool, made in the form of a circle, which is ad- 
justed about the shoulders, and has two similar bands 
hanging down from it, the one before and the other be- 
hind. The pall is adorned with small crosses, and 
fastened to the chesuble with golden pins. 

16. These vestments and ornaments, or official in- 
signia, are represented in the effigies of ecclesiastics as 
being worn after the following manner : — 

Deacon : — Dalmatic and Maniple . Examples — Two 

figures in the canopy of Prince Arthur’s Chantry, 
Worcester Cathedral : fragment of a Brass at Bur- 
well, Cambridgeshire. 

Priest: — Eucharistic Vestments: — Amice , Alb , Stole, Mani- 
ple, and Chesuble . Examples — Sculptured Effigies at 
Beverley Minster and Worcester Cathedral ; Brasses 
at Horsemonden, Northfleet, and Monkton, Kent. 

Processional Vestments :■ — Cassock (a black under- 
garment, reaching to the ground, with close 
sleeves), Surplice, Almuce, and Cope . Examples — 
Brasses at St. Cross, Winchester; Fulbourn and 
Balsam, Cambridgeshire; Warbleton, Sussex; 
Exeter Cathedral, and Upwell, Norfolk. 



Bishop or Abbot: — Amice, Alb, Stole, Tunic, Dalmatic, 
Maniple , Chesuble, Sandals, Gloves , Ding, Mitre, 
and Pastoral-Staff. Examples — Sculptured Effigies 
at Salisbury, Lichfield, Worcester, Hereford, 
Ely, Durham, Peterborough, Rochester, and Exeter 
Cathedrals ; Brasses at St. Alban’s, Salisbury, 
and Hereford. 

Archbishop The same as the bishop, with the addi- 
tion of the Pall, and the substitution of the Crozier 
for the Pastoral- Staff. Examples — Sculptured 

Effigies at Canterbury and Westminster; Brasses 
at York, Westminster Abbey, and New College, 

17. The right hand of archbishops, bishops, and 
abbots, is generally held up in benediction, the fourth 
and fifth fingers being closed after the Latin usage. In 
many examples a book is held in one of the hands, and 
sometimes the hands are either clasped, or crossed over 
the person. In the Greek form of benediction both the 
hands are held up open. 

18. In some effigies the Tunic is omitted, and in 
others the Cope . In a very few examples the Stole and 
Maniple are wanting. Occasionally the Cope appears in 


place of the Cliesuble , in which case the adjustment of 
the Stole is shown, as at Upwell. 

19. Early effigies of bishops are decorated with a 
Pectorale , or jewelled ornament hanging over the breast. 
The pointed Mitre does not appear in illuminations in 
the eleventh century. 

At Croydon, and also at Guildford, in Surrey, there 
are some fine examples of episcopal effigies of a late 

20. At Denham, Bucks, and at Elstow, Berks, there 
are brasses of Abbesses. 

21. Monastic Habits are but rarely found to have been 
represented. The finest example is the Cluniac Habit of 
Prior Nelond, shown in his fine brass at Cowfold, 
Sussex, a.d. 1433 : he wears a large surplice-like vest- 
ment of black, with an ample hood. There is another 
very interesting example, the memorial also of a prior, 
at Dorchester, Oxon. Other canons wear a black Cas- 
socJc, a Rochet , or Gown, Cloak and Hood , and also a Cap, 
generally pointed in the crown. Examples : — -Sculp- 
tured effigies in Hereford Cathedral and the Church of 
St. Martin, Birmingham; Brasses in the Chapels of 
Magdalen and New College, Oxford. 



22. The Academic Habits represented in effigies are 
those worn by Graduates in Divinity, Arts, and Law. 
The two former wear a long Cassock , with a Gown , or 
Bochet , and a large Hood lined with fur : the latter ap- 
pear in a Goivn , with a (7<2j96 or Tippet lined with fur, 
over a Cassock. These habits are not very clearly in- 
dicated in effigies. Doctors wear a Cap. Examples — 
Brasses in the Chapels of Merton, Magdalen and New 
Colleges, and in the Cathedral at Oxford. 

23. Besides the staff and other official insignia which 
are commonly represented in ecclesiastical effigies, and 
which, in some monumental memorials, appear without 
any effigial portraiture, the Chalice is often introduced 
into memorials of this class. This sacred vessel, gene- 
rally formed of the precious metals, but sometimes of 
ivory or glass, was designed by the mediaeval artists with 
the utmost skill, and enriched with costly and elaborate 
decorations. In the earliest ages of Christianity, costly 
chalices were the most esteemed offerings of princes and 
nobles. It will be observed that the bowl of the mediae- 
val chalice is shallow, and with a wide opening; it is 
also for the most part plain, the decorations of the vessel 
being restricted to its spreading foot and the swelling 



knob of the shaft or handle. Fine examples are pre- 
served at Trinity (from St. Alban’s Abbey) and Corpus 
Christi Colleges, Oxford, and at Comb Pyne, in Devon- 
shire. Examples of chalices are represented in brasses 
at North Minims, Herts; Wensley, Yorkshire; and 
Higham Ferrars, Northants. 

24. The Paten was also enriched with suitable orna- 
mentation, and it is generally represented as placed in- 
verted over the chalice, thus forming a cover to it. It 
was the custom, during a long period, to bury a chalice 
and paten with the remains of a priest, and many ex- 
amples have been thus discovered. 

25. Amongst other appliances of sacred use that are 
represented in various works of mediaeval art, are the 
Ciborium , or vessel in which the consecrated wafer (the 
Host) was kept upon the altar, or suspended over it; 
the Pyx, a smaller vessel in which the Host was carried 
in processions or from one place to another ; the Super - 
Altar e, a term applied to a small moveable altar, and also 
to certain decorative coverings and accessories of the 
altar : Flagons and Cruets, for the service of the alta r 
the Pax or Osculatorium, a symbolical instrument, upon 
which both priests and people impressed the “ Kiss of 



Peace and the Flabellum, a species of light fan, often 
circular in form, for driving away insects or removing 
dust from the chalice, and other sacred vessels. 


1. The Royal Robes consist of the Tunic , Dalmatic, 
and Mantle , with richly-embroidered Boots. The Tunic 
and Dalmatic closely resemble the vestments of the same 
names worn by the hierarchy, but they appear in the 
royal effigies under various modifications. Thus they 
become shorter in the effigy of King John than they are 
in the effigies of his predecessors at Pontevraud. The 
Dalmatic of Edward III. is slit in front instead of at 
the sides, and that of Henry IV. has large embroidered 
openings at the sides. The Mantles of the earlier 
princes are secured, either in front or on the right 
shoulder, by a Morse ; those of Edward III. and Henry 
IV. have rich broad bands across the breast. In the 
effigies of these sovereigns there also appears a Tippet 
which reaches to the waist. This Tippet is afterwards 
made of ermine, and worn over the other robes. The 
Royal Crown and Sceptre , with the Sword , are shown in 
the effigies. Sometimes the Sword is placed beside the 



figure, having its belt entwined around the scabbard. 
The Royal Effigies of England are the following : — - 
Henry II., and his Queen Eleanor de Guienne ; 
Richard I. ; and Isabel d’Angouleme, Queen of John, 
at Fontevraucl, in Normandy : Berengaria, Queen of 
Richard I., at Mans, in Normandy : a second effigy of 
Richard I., at Rouen: John, at Worcester : Henry 
III.; Eleanor, Queen of Edward I. ; Edward III., and 
Philippa, his Queen; Richard II., and Anne, his Queen ; 
the remains of the effigy of Henry V. ; Henry VII., 
and Elizabeth, his Queen ; and Elizabeth — all in West- 
minster Abbey : Edward II., at Gloucester : Henry IV., 
and Joanna, his Queen, at Canterbury — in all twenty 
effigies, of which fourteen are in this country. 

2. Robes of the Nobility. — These appear in a few 
examples, and they differ but little from those worn by 
the sovereigns, consisting of a species of Dalmatic , with 
a Mantle of ample size guarded with fur. There are 
highly interesting effigies of this class in the Church at 
Arundel, in Sussex, and in the ruined Church of Douglas. 

3. Judicial Robes. — The official robes of Judges 
consist of a long loose Tunic, with narrow sleeves, a 
Hood, Tijppet and flowing Mantle ; the last two are lined 



with miniver, and the mantle is buttoned on the right 
shoulder. A Coif, or close-fitting cap, is also worn. 
Examples : — Brasses at Greveney, Kent ; Latton, Essex ; 
and Grimsby, in Lincolnshire. 

Sergeants-at-Law have Iambus-wool instead of mini- 
ver, and to their hood two Labels , or Bands , are attached. 
Example : — Brass at Gosfield, Essex. 


The costume of both sexes in the middle ages is dis- 
tinguished as well by a fantastic extravagance as by 
much dignified splendour. It has, however, been judi- 
ciously observed that in mediaeval monumental effigies 
the more extravagant fashions of dress have very rarely 
been represented. As it will not be possible to compre- 
hend within the limits of this volume more than a con- 
cise summary, the present and the following sections of 
this chapter upon costumes will, for the most part, be 
restricted to such Habits as are exemplified in commemo - 
rative memorials. 

The Anglo-Saxon ladies wore long andflowing garments, 
with veils adjusted about their heads after the fashion 
of the modern Spanish mantilla. Silk, cloth, and linen 



were the principal materials of which their dresses were 
made; and they appear to have preferred coloured fabrics 
to white. Many ornaments, such as bracelets and brooches 
(or fibulae), with chains and beads, were worn about the 
person, and the entire costume was generally rich and 

After the Conquest, the ladies retained the same 
articles of dress as had been previously worn, but they 
introduced many new fashions for their construction. 
The principal innovations consist in closely-fitting bodies 
to the dresses, and tight sleeves with many small buttons. 
Lappets to the sleeves, after a while, became general, 
and were worn for a long period ; they may be considered 
to have been derived from the very long and flowing 
ends to their tight sleeves, which it suddenly pleased 
the Anglo-Norman ladies to adopt towards the close of 
the eleventh century* From this sleeve the heraldic 
manncJie is derived. Gloves are introduced at this period, 
and the hair is displayed in long braids. 

The more important articles of female costume worn 
in England in the middle ages are the following : — 

1. The Mantle , a long and flowing robe of ample di- 
mensions, secured across the breast by a morse , or clasp, or 



more generally by a cordon drawn through jewelled studs 
(called Fermailes) on either side, and having long pen- 
dant ends. It is of rich materials, often embroidered 
or diapered, and in the fifteenth century it appears lined 
with fur. Towards the close of the sixteenth century it 
is not often represented. In the fifteenth and sixteenth 
centuries, the outside of the mantle is frequently em- 
blazoned with the arms of the wearer, as in the brasses 
at Enfield, Middlesex, and Long Melford, Suffolk; 
but at a much earlier period small shields of arms were 
sometimes attached to mantles ; this, however, was a 
French fashion, and only a very few examples of this 
species of decoration have been observed in England : 
there is a fine specimen in Worcester Cathedral. In the 
effigies of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries the 
mantle is commonly represented as being gathered 
up under the arms, as in the fine effigies of Aveline 
Countess of Lancaster in Westminster Abbey, and of 
two ladies at Worcester, and in the Lynn brasses. Other 
good examples of the mantle are at Oxford and Chi- 
chester Cathedrals, at Bedale, Yorkshire, and Wootton- 
under-edge, Gloucestershire. 

2. The Kirtle , or dress with tight sleeves, generally 



buttoned to the wrists, the buttons being very small and 
set close together under the arms : the sleeves are often 
continued, and form mittens, which cover the backs of 
the hands. This garment is frequently the outer dress 
of the wearer, but it no less commonly is found to have 
been worn beneath 

3. The Tunic , which is a long and flowing dress with 
large and open sleeves reaching a little below the elbows, 
or having its sleeves close and terminating but little 
below the shoulders, with long and narrow lappets, as 
in the brasses at Cobham, Kent, and Berkhampstead, 

Both the Tunic and Kirtle have often a row of buttons 
in front, which either stop at the waist or are continued 
from the throat to the feet. The Tunic is sometimes 
decorated with small shields of arms, as in a brass at 
Trotton, in Sussex; or it is emblazoned with heraldic 
devices, as in another fine brass at Warwick, and in a 
sculptured effigy at Selby, York. Pocket-holes appear 
in the Tunic in the fourteenth century, through which 
the girdle of the Kirtle may be seen, as in a brass at 
Winterbourne, Gloucestershire. This dress is generally 
worn without any girdle ; but a loose belt or girdle is 



seen in the effigies of Queen Anne of Bohemia, in West- 
minster Abbey, and of Lady de Bois, at Ingham, in 
Norfolk : these belts closely resemble the knightly bau- 
dricks of the period, and they are adjusted precisely after 
the same fashion. In both these fine effigies there is a 
Bodice richly embroidered, worn over the upper part of 
the dress. Both Tunic and Kirtle cover the shoulders, 
where they are cut straight across the figure, and, until 
about the year 1400, they always fit to the shape. At 
the close of the fourteenth century, these dresses are 
often made so high as to cover the throat, where they 
turn over, forming a collar : when made in this fashion, 
the dress is loose, and generally buttoned in front from 
top to bottom ; it is gathered in about the waist by a 
belt, and has very large sleeves, which are either very 
wide and open, or gathered in at the wrists, as in the 
brasses at Great Tew, Oxon ; Chipping Camden, Glou- 
cestershire ; Bedington, Surrey; Brandsburton, York; 
and Spilsby, Lincolnshire. The close-fitting fashion also 
prevails in the fifteenth century, as in the brasses at 
West Grinstead, Sussex. In these examples there is no 
belt, and sometimes the loose dress is without a belt, as 
in the brass at Acton, in Suffolk. Occasionally the 


tunic is open at the top, thus disclosing the kirtle beneath 
it, as in an effigy at Aston, in Warwickshire. 

Towards the close of the fifteenth century, all traces 
of loose sleeves disappear, and in their stead tight sleeves, 
with cuffs sometimes drawn over the hands and some- 
times turned back, are universal. The tunic is occasion- 
ally cut short to display the skirt of the kirtle, but more 
generally it is long and flowing. In many instances 
the outer dress now is cut very low. Richly ornamented 
belts, worn very loose, are general, and they have long 
pendant ends : large rosaries with various jewels, chains, 
and other ornaments are also attached to the belt, and 
rich and massive chains are worn about the throat. 
Good examples appear in the brasses at Islesham, Cam- 
bridgeshire; Luton, Beds; Cowthorpe, Yorkshire ; and 
Clippesby, Norfolk. 

The sixteenth century brings the stiff puffed and 
slashed costumes identified with the era of Elizabeth. 
The tunic now is open in front, and with a rich collar 
which falls over the shoulders : the kirtle is elaborately 
ornamented : a short scarf is tied about the waist : ruffs 
appear, and much jewellery is worn. Characteristic 
brasses of this and the following century exist at Water- 



perry, Oxon ; S awbrid ge worth, Herts ; Bradford, Wilts ; 
and at Ash and St. Mary’s Cray in Kent. Bromsgrove 
Church, Worcestershire, also contains two most charac- 
teristic sculptured effigies of ladies, both of them of 
about the middle of the sixteenth century. 

4. The sideless Tunic , or Cote -liar di , a singular gar- 
ment, but in such high favour that it is found to have 
continued in fashion from the time of Edward III. till 
late in the fifteenth century. It is seen in royal effigies, 
as well as in those which commemorate ladies of various 
ranks in society. This dress is made to fit the figure in 
front and at the back, but it is altogether cut away at 
the sides, where the under-dress with its girdle are thus 
disclosed to the view : it is sometimes cut short at the 
knees, leaving the kirtle to flow down below it to the 
feet; in other examples it appears but a very little 
shorter than the kirtle, while in others it falls over the 
feet in rich folds. This dress is generally richly guarded 
at the side-openings with fur, and it is ornamented with 
goldsmith’s work and jewels in front from the throat to 
the waist, where it is not encircled by any girdle. In 
some of the earlier examples it is slit up at the sides ; 
and on either side, at the hip, it often has a large jewel. 




Examples : — The sculptured effigies of Queen Joanna and 
of Lady Montacute in the Cathedrals of Canterbury and 
Oxford; others at Arundel, Sussex; Hoveningham, 
Notts ; Stanton Harcourt, Oxon ; and Staindrop, Dur- 
ham ; also the brasses at Cobh am, Kent ; Little Easton, 
Essex ; and Enfield, Middlesex. 

5. The Wimple, a kind of kerchief, worn by ladies of 
the highest rank in the twelfth, thirteenth, and fourteenth 
centuries. It is adjusted throughout this period, with 
slight modifications of fashion, about the throat, which 
it entirely covers, displaying only the face, to which it 
imparts a triangular form. The Wimple is a remarkable 
instance of the manner in which, in the middle ages, one 
sex imitated the costume of the other, this very un- 
sightly appendage to a lady’s attire being a kind of 
female Camail , to which it closely assimilates itself in its 
adjustment. The Wimple is covered by 

6. The Couvre-c7ief (or kerchief), which is so arranged 
as to cover the head, and to fall lightly on the shoulders. 

Widows wore a plaited or crimped wimple. Examples : 

The sculptured effigy of the Countess Aveline, at West- 
minster, and those of other ladies at Ryther, Yorkshire, 
and Gonalston, Notts; the brasses at Cobham and 



Minster, in Kent; Lynn, in Norfolk; and Trotton, in 
Sussex ; also the sculptured effigy at Sparsholt, Berks, 
and the brass at Acton, Suffolk, in which the wimple is 

The Couvre-chef continued to be sometimes worn after 
the disuse of the Wimple, as in the brass at S awb ridge - 
worth, Herts. 

7. The Head-dresses worn by ladies during the middle 
ages exhibit the eccentricities of fashion under some 
very peculiar forms. A species of Cap is found repre- 
sented in many effigies as being worn with the wimple 
and kerchief; and this cap is often made to resemble the 
contour of the knightly helm of the period. Royal 
ladies are represented wearing the crown over the ker- 
chief, as in the Fontevraud effigies : but both Queen 
Eleanor, at Westminster Abbey, and Queen Joanna, at 
Canterbury, have the crown set upon their heads without 
any other covering. Until about the year 1375, the hair 
appears to have been plaited, and gracefully adjusted 
about the head, though the wimple would permit but 
little of it to be displayed. As early as 1 350 the fashion, 
so long prevalent, of enclosing the hair within reticula- 
tions of fine goldsmiths work set with jewels, makes its 



appearance. From this time until the commencement 
of the succeeding century, various modifications of this 
Reticulated Head-dress, with caps made of lace and frills, 
are common. In many of these examples the hair 
appears from beneath the head-gear, and it falls on the 
shoulders, where it is rolled up into two balls, and en- 
closed within net-work that resembles the head-dress 
itself. A Veil , or kerchief, is frequently worn over all. 
Examples The sculptured effigies of Ladies Montacute 
and Mohun, at Oxford and Canterbury; and brasses at 
Ashford and Cobham, Kent ; Necton, in Norfolk, and 
Chrishall, in Essex. During the first quarter of the 
fifteenth century, a modification of the Reticulated Head- 
dress is prevalent : in this arrangement the hair is col- 
lected into a bunch on either side of the forehead, and 
there enclosed in a rich caul; the forehead is encircled 
by a fillet enriched with jewels, and a close kerchief 
descends to the shoulders, as in the brass to Lady 
Felbrigge, at Felbrigge, in Norfolk, and in the sculp- 
tured effigies at Staindrop, in Durham. About the year 
1425, the bands of hair are spread out more widely on 
either side of the face, being still enclosed within reticu- 
lated work; the kerchief now falls slightly over the 



forehead. The next change shows the kerchief plaited 
over the forehead, and slightly raised to a point above 
the head, as in the brasses at Snoring, in Norfolk, and 
Trotton, in Sussex. This form of head-dress then is 
seen to spread to a great width, as in the brass at Dod- 
ford, Northants. The Horned Head-dress follows, and is 
fairly in fashion by 1440 : this is a modification of the 
last form of coiffure, its distinctive characteristic being 
that it sinks down to a hollow over the crown of the 
head, and rises on either side : there are admirable 
examples in sculptured effigies at Hoveningham, Notts, 
and at Arundel ; and in brasses at Graveney and Herne, 
in Kent ; Castle Donington, in Leicestershire ; and at 
Enfield, in Middlesex. The concluding quarter of the 
fifteenth century brings with it the Butterfly Head-dress , 
formed of a light veil extended at the back of the head 
by wires, the hair being drawn back and enclosed within 
the ever-admired reticulated work. Examples -.—The 
brasses at Broxbourne, Herts; Dagenham, in Essex; 
and Blickling, in Norfolk. With the sixteenth century 
the Pedimental Head-dress makes its appearance : this is 
arranged in such a manner as to form an angle over the 
forehead, and it has long pendant lappets — as in the 



brasses at Ewelme, Oxon, and Luton, Beds. The close- 
fitting cap, called at the time the “ Paris hede ” and so 
well known in association with the unfortunate Mary 
Stuart, follows about 1540, and permits the hair to be 
seen about the forehead. Examples : — The sculptured 
effigies at Bromsgrove, Worcester; and of the Queen of 
Scots herself in Westminster Abbey; also the brasses at 
Cumnor, Berks, and Clippesby, in Norfolk. And, 
finally, about the year 1590, over a coiffure formed by 
depressing the centre of the “ Paris head,” and throwing 
forward the lappet which previously hung down behind, 
a broad-brimmed hat is worn, wreathed about the crown 
with various decorations. 

From the close of the thirteenth century, it appears 
also to have been an occasional fashion for ladies to wear 
their hair hanging over their shoulders, and simply con- 
fined about the brow with a diadem, or wreath. Ex- 
amples : — The bronze effigies of Queens Eleanor and 
Anne of Bohemia, and the sculptured effigy of Lady 
Daubeney, all in Westminster Abbey; and the brass to 
Lady del Bothe, at Wilmslow, in Cheshire. 




The civil costume of the Anglo-Saxons, as it is repre- 
sented in illuminations, consists of a Tunic descending to 
the knees, and having long and close sleeves. It sometimes 
is open at the sides, and is encircled by a belt. Over 
this is a short Cloak or Mantle , fastened by morses on 
both shoulders, or on one shoulder only, and sometimes 
on. the breast. Leggings and Hose , the latter covered 
with bands of cloth, worn crossing each other diagonally, 
or with a kind of Sock , and leather Shoes , complete the 
costume. In the tenth century this dress becomes much 
enriched, but in its general character it remains un- 
changed until after the Norman Conquest, when long 
Tunics and flowing Mantles were introduced and worn, 
in addition to the earlier costume. The Anglo-Saxons 
allowed both the hair and the beard to grow ; but the 
Normans shaved, and cut their hair closely. The long 
hair and beards, however, re-appear in the time of 
Henry I. At this same early period, the English civil 
costume began to assume many fantastic forms, which 
continued to be prevalent under various modifications 
for several centuries. The principal garments are the 



Mantle or Cloalc, the Tunic or Gown , Chausses or Leggings, 
Hose and Boots, with Hats and Caps of varied shapes. 
The Mantle and Tunic are remarkable for their close re- 
semblance to the garments bearing the same names that 
were worn by ladies — the only decided differences being 
that the Tunic of the men is shorter, and when there is 
a girdle it is worn lower on the figure than by the other 
sex. The borders of the Mantle are often cut into leaf- 
patterns and other fantastic devices, and the entire 
costume is much enriched with embroidery and other 
decorative accessories. The Mantle, fastened on the right 
shoulder, the tight-sleeved short Tunic , with its rich Hip - 
belt, the close-fitting C/iatcsses, and the embroidered Boots, 
worn in the middle of the fourteenth century, are well 
exemplified in the sculptured effigy of Prince William, 
son of Edward III., at York. The statuettes which 
surround the monument of the same King at West- 
minster are also highly characteristic of the costume of 
the period. The brasses at Great Berkhampstead, 
Herts, and Stoke Fleming, Devonshire, illustrate the long 
and loose Tunic, buttoned down the front, with its coif, 
or hood. In both of these effigies the hair is long, and 
the short double beard is seen : in one of them the 



anlace , or civilian’s sword, is worn suspended from a 
rich belt, which crosses the right shoulder. In the fine 
brass at Topcliff, Yorkshire, which is forty years later 
(a.d. 1391), over precisely the same Tunic a Mantle is 
worn, which is fastened on the right shoulder : here the 
anlace hangs on the right side. The brass of William 
Grevel, at Chipping Camden, Gloucestershire, affords 
another fine example of the commencement of the 
fifteenth century: the costume is exactly the same. 
Other examples are in the brasses at Northleach, in the 
same county, and at Tilbrook, Beds. Earlier in the 
century (about 1375), the Tunic is shorter in the ex- 
amples at Shottesbroke, Berks, and King’s Sombourne, 
Hants : still earlier (from about 1350 to about 1360), 
the brasses at King’s Lynn and Newark, and at Taplow, 
in Bedfordshire, omit the mantle, and show the tunic 
open at the bottom in the front, with pockets and tight 
sleeves, from which lappets hang down : over the shoul- 
ders a Tippet is also worn. In all these examples the 
shoes are very large, pointed at the toes, and laced, or 
fastened by a strap over the instep. About the year 
1130, the Tunic is made with a collar encircling the 
throat ; it is partially open in front at the bottom, and 



has very large sleeves (identical with those of the female 
costume of the period) gathered into small cuffs at the 
wrists ; the Belt sometimes has a long pendant end, and 
pointed Boots are worn, which lace inside the ankles. 
Examples : — Brasses at Bedington and Kingston, Sur- 
rey; Chipping Norton, Oxon; and Hitchin and Wheat- 
hamstede, Herts. About the year 1480, the Tunic is 
worn reaching to the feet, with large open sleeves, and 
open in front : it is guarded with fur, and has a fur 
collar. A large Gypciere (or purse), with an equally 
large Rosary , appears suspended from the girdle. The 
hair is long, and the feet are encased in very broad shoes, 
round at the toes. Examples Brasses at St. Alban’s 
Abbey; at Ardingly, in Sussex; in the Church of St. 
Mary Tower, at Ipswich; and atClippesby, in Norfolk. 
These dresses continue to be worn long after the com- 
mencement of the sixteenth century. As that century 
advances towards the year 1550, the Tunic becomes a 
large and loose Gown , which is lined with fur, and open 
in the front. At the first, the sleeves of this gown are 
large and open : then they are closer, but the arms pass 
through slits cut in them above the elbow, so that the 
greater part of the sleeves hangs down like large lappets. 



The Doublet, which is a short, closely-fitting garment, is 
worn and displayed beneath the Gown, and the lower 
limbs are encased in Hose. After the year 1580, the 
fur lining is rarely seen in the Gowns, and the sleeves 
become much attenuated : the Doublets are longer in the 
waist, and button up in front. T runic-hose are much in 
fashion : these are large short breeches, which were 
stuffed and slashed, in accordance with the strange taste 
of the time. At this same time gentlemen wore, instead 
of the civilian’s gown, short cloaks, with falling collars : 
Jack-boots and spurs are also seen in their effigies. 
Examples : — Brasses in the Churches of St. Mary Key, 
Ipswich, and All Hallows Barking, London ; at Shottes- 
broke. Berks; in several churches at Norwich; and at 
St. Mary’s Cray, Kent. Sculptured effigies of civilians 
of this period are also common. 


Under the denomination of “ Personal Ornaments ” 
may be included whatsoever objects have been worn, as 
accessories to costume, without having any special or 
distinctive signification as official insignia. 

The early races, who have left us so many visible and 



tangible relics of their occupancy of these islands, have 
not failed to transmit to our times very many examples 
of the personal ornaments which were held by them in 
the highest and most general repute. The ornaments 
which would be most naturally produced and worn in a 
primitive condition of society are. Beads , Collars, and 
Armlets , with some kind of Clasp, or Fibula, which might 
be used for fastening a cloak or mantle. These, accord- 
ingly, are precisely the ornaments which are frequently 
found, and which may be, without hesitation, assigned to 
the period of the Celtic Britons. Beads and Fibulce of 
both the Roman and Anglo-Saxon ages are also continu- 
ally brought to light, together with the various other 
ornaments, and also with the implements and utensils of 
domestic and ordinary life. The systematic researches 
that have of late years been conducted with such energy 
and perseverance beneath the surface of the ground, in 
connexion with casual disclosures, have furnished large 
and varied collections of relics of this class ; and these 
collections, in addition to their intrinsic value and inte- 
rest, must be regarded with peculiar gratification by the 
archaeologist, from the circumstance of their affording 
such copious illustrations of early civilization and his- 


Plate IHL 

0 . Jevvitt del . etlith. . 

Pig&AtoiS.Tario'as Brrtisli and An ^lo- Saxon Bea.cLs. 



The precious metals, with beads formed from various 
substances, were used in making the Celtic ornaments. 
Their favourite and characteristic personal adornment is 
the Tore — a twisted collar for the neck, or an armlet of 
the same kind. Tores intended to be worn about the 
arm, and distinguished as Armillce , are much more com- 
mon than any other varieties. They generally are com- 
posed of very pure gold, and are wonderfully elastic. 
After the introduction of Bronze, Armillse and other 
Tores, some of them of sufficiently ample dimensions to 
encircle the waist, were made in that metal. Fig. 1, 
Plate XVIII., represents a British Armilla Tore of gold. 
Of the Beads represented in Plate XVII., Fig. 1 is a 
remarkable example of the British period which was found 
near Oxford, and in common with the other specimens 
in the same Plate, it is engraved of the same size as the 
original. Figs. 2 and 4 are Beads of amber and ame- 
thyst, which were found near Ramsgate. Figs. 9 and 10 
are examples of Beads formed of Roman fine pottery, 
and the other examples are all Anglo-Saxon Beads. 
The whole, with the exception of Fig. 1, are in the 
British Museum : Figs. 10, 13, and 18 are in the Roach 
Smith collections : Figs. 3, 6, 8, 14, and 15, were found 


in Yorkshire, and Figs. 7, 12, and 18, are from the Bar- 
rows of Wilts. Figs. 2, 3, and 4 of Plate XVIII., are 
specimens of the pendant ornaments so commonly found 
with Anglo-Saxon relics : Fig. 7 is also a pendant Saxon 
ornament of a different class. Circular ornaments were 
evidently preferred by the Anglo-Saxons, and the greater 
number of their Fibula are of this form. Many of 
these fibulse are elaborately executed in filagree, or 
in other processes of metal decoration, and they are 
richly set with garnets and vitreous pastes of various 
colours. The Bronze Fibulae, Figs. 5 and 6 of Plate 
XVIII., are specimens of Saxon workmanship, in which 
the designs are conformed to Roman types. Figs. 2, 3, 
and 4 of Plate XX., are other examples of Fibulae, of 
different forms, all of them of bronze enriched with 
enamels, and all of them to be assigned to the Romans. 
Chains, pins, and rings, are also found in the Saxon 

The Ornaments of the Saxon age, which immediately 
preceded the Norman Conquest, and of the period which 
followed that important event, are characterized by the 
same art-feeling which shows itself in the illuminations 
and other productions of those times. It is the same 


Elate XVill 


Big .1 . Brili ah Armilla Tormxe of gold.' 

1 .5. A 7. i\Tjo)o-Saxan PwicLant Ornaments. 

5 . 6 . Anglo -Saxon Bron z e Rbiila; • 



'VExic.grrt Bzookis imp. 



with the ornaments that were worn under the Plantage- 
nets and their successors, and under the Tudors : the 
arts were employed to produce these luxuries, and we 
find them recording in their productions of this class the 
prevailing sentiments of each successive period. The 
number of personal ornaments of the twelfth and three 
following centuries which have remained to our times 
is comparatively small. Changes of fashion led, without 
doubt, to the reproduction of many early works after 
what was considered an improved taste, while others have 
perished, or are still awaiting the researches which will 
bring them forth from their hiding-places. 




Probably the earliest of manufactures, and evidently 
from the most remote period associated with art. Pottery 
supplies the archaeologist with an infinite variety both of 
subjects for inquiry and of materials from whence he 
may derive historical information. 

Through their keramic manufactures, the great nations 
of antiquity have transmitted to us the most graphic 
delineations of their civilization ; and in productions of 
the same class we trace the rude efforts of barbarous 
tribes to provide for the simplest requirements of daily 
life. The finely modelled and exquisitely painted vases 
and urns of the Etruscan Greeks who flourished before 
Rome had come into existence, and the ill-formed and 
unbaked vessels of the Celts who inhabited this island 
before a Roman had landed in it, have each their own 



tale to tell. It is the privilege of the archaeologist to 
read those legends with the faculty of appreciating all 
that they convey. 

Keramic works may be divided into three great 
classes ~1 . Sunburnt or Baked Vessels of Clay, called by 
the Italians Terra Cotta : 2. Glazed, Enamelled, and 
Vitrified Ware: 3. Vessels that are modelled and moulded 
and afterwards adorned with painting. Large collections 
of specimens of each of these varieties, and from almost 
every country, are preserved in English museums; and 
from these collections the student will observe at how 
early a period the higher branches of the potter’s art had 
been discovered and were in habitual use. The glazed 
and vitrified works of the Egyptians have never been 
surpassed, as productions of what we now designate art- 
manufacture. The Greco-Etruscan vases rank with the 
works of the highest order of Greek art. The Samian 
ware and the other fictile manufactures of the Homans 
are far from being the least interesting relics of that 
wonderful people. 

The Etruscan and other ancient potters chiefly used 
red, black, and white, in colouring their productions. 
They applied their art to various purposes, and produced 



many varieties of objects formed from clay, besides dif- 
ferent classes of vessels ; thus we find Pavements, Statu- 
ettes, Seals, Rings, and various ornaments to have been 
made of clay in great abundance ; and the fine vitrified 
glaze which was applied to these works leads to the in- 
ference that the ancient potters discovered at a very early 
period the enamel-processes necessary for the production 
of Porcelain. It is certain that enamelled porcelain was 
known at a remote age, and that it was then produced 
in the East. In Europe, the enamel-workers of By- 
zantium i, from the fourth to the thirteenth century, and 
those of Limoges from the tenth to the seventeenth (see 
Chapter XI.), rendered powerful aid to the keramic artists 
of the middle ages, who, in their Florentine , Majolica, 
Palissy, and other wares, transmitted a precious inheri- 
tance to their modern successors at Dresden, Sevres, and 
in our own country at Worcester, London, and in Staf- 


For the most part discovered in the burial-places of 
the Celtic Britons, various kinds of urns and other 
vessels formed of clay have, within the last few years. 


POTTERY . ' Hate ax. 


lags. 1.5. 6. British Urn amdVases Haundin Gneimsey. 

Z . Human Arrrphor found at Chester ford, QjGnhrid^eshire . 
3 Small HurusQa Yase , found al SHeffurd , Beds . 

4<. Human SamianVas? ; found at Cnesterford. 



been added to the museums of collectors of our national 
antiquities. Wiltshire, Derbyshire, and the Channel 
Islands have been particularly productive of these early 
fictile works. They are all rudely manufactured, with- 
out the application of the potter’s wheel or lathe, the 
materials being a coarse earth, not uncommonly having an 
admixture of felspar. The forms vary very considerably, 
though nearly all these vessels have wide openings. The 
ornamentation consists of zigzag work, rings, bands of 
small lines, and rows of dots, lozenges, and similar simple 
devices, arranged in rows around the vessels. Fig. 1 of 
Plate XIX. is a characteristic specimen : and Figs. 5 and 
6 of the same Plate are drawn from two of the more 
skilfully finished vases, of which such large numbers 
have been found at Guernsey. Many of these vessels 
have small projecting bosses which encircle them, and in 
others there are projections which serve as handles. The 
ornamentation is all produced by simple tools upon the 
clay while in a soft condition. The hardening process 
appears to have been only such as could be effected by 
the sun, and without the agency of any furnace. The 
urns usually found in barrows are — 1. Such as are of a 
large size, and when discovered commonly contain burned 

x 2 


bones; they are either set upright or reversed. 2. Small 
vessels, which hold about a quart, and are much orna- 
mented. 3. Still smaller vessels, more fancifully deco- 
rated, and perforated with small holes. In colour most 
of these vessels are of a dark grey or blackish hue. 


Vast quantities of pottery, unquestionably the pro- 
duction of the Roman period of British history, are 
continually found in all parts of the kingdom. Nume- 
rous potteries, and the very kilns in which the ware was 
manufactured, have also been discovered in many places, 
and thus it is certain that a large proportion of the fic- 
tile works used in this country were also made in it. 

Vessels of every variety of form and size, all of them 
indicating, at least, some degree of skill and experience, 
many of them being works of great excellence, occur. 
These various amphora, vases , urns, bozvls, cups, paterce, 
tazzas, and other vessels were made with the wheel, and 
ornamented with figures and device-patterns of much 
beauty. They are found in all shades of red and brown, 
of a blackish colour, of slate colour, and also of a dull yel- 
lowish white. Many are glazed, and their ornaments 



have the appearance of embossed work. In some ex- 
amples the ornamentation is produced by indentations, 
combined with engraven or impressed patterns. 

One variety of Roman pottery, well known through- 
out the empire and found in abundance in Britain, is 
always regarded as occupying a place amongst the most 
interesting relics of ancient art-manufacture. This is 
the celebrated Samian Ware , of which so many beautiful 
and delicate vessels were made for Roman use. The 
material employed for producing this peculiar ware is 
very fine clay, and the vessels themselves are generally 
formed with the utmost delicacy. The ornamentation 
consists either of groups of figures and animals, or of 
patterns produced by engine-turning, or by a species of 
graving tool, all of them remarkable for their exquisitely 
chaste finish. Hunting scenes, and figures of fish, are 
commonly found ; in other examples the groups illus- 
trate the mythology, and the manners and customs of 
the time. In the finer examples the figures were cast 
separately in moulds, and then attached to the surface 
of the vessels ; after which, it is probable that they were 
finished with a tool. Some of these figures are works 
of extraordinary merit. The colour of this beautiful 


ware is rich bright red, and it is admirably glazed. Each 
vessel generally bears the maker’s name stamped within 
it. In consequence of the thinness of the vessels and 
the delicacy of their manufacture, it is but seldom that 
the Samian ware is found unbroken. It is worthy of 
remark that in many instances the fragments of Samian 
which have been discovered in our own times were 
broken, and afterwards mended with rivets of lead by 
the Romans themselves. In Plate XIX., Eig. 2 repre- 
sents a large plain Roman amphora, or wine-jar. Pig. 3 
is an example of Roman pottery very characteristic of 
the period, and in Pig. 4 there is shown a small bowl 
of Samian. 


While retaining much of the manufacturing skill that 
they had acquired during the residence of the Romans 
in their country, the Britons, after the Romans had re- 
tired, and the Anglo-Saxons who subsequently became 
established amongst them, never attained to the same 
degree of excellence with the Romans themselves in 
their fictile productions. The remains of the pottery 
which was made during the long interval between the 



middle of the fifth century and the Norman Conquest, 
show rather a decline than any improvement in the 
potter’s art. Many of the specimens of this period are 
singularly rude, and they all assimilate more closely to 
the ancient British than to the Roman types. Urns 
and vases of various sizes and forms are found in the 
Anglo-Saxon tumuli : and with the articles evidently of 
British or Saxon design, occasionally others are observed 
which are no less certainly imitations of Roman works. 

The pottery in use in our country may probably have 
been manufactured at home ; we have not, however, dis- 
covered any authentic sources of information upon this 
subject. One thing is certain — that we are in possession 
of no such relics of the pottery of the centuries that 
intervene between the Conquest and the Reformation, as 
would enable us to deduce from them any distinct and 
definite information with respect to keramie manufac- 
tures during this period. At the same time, we know 
that inlaid and glazed Pavement Tiles were both used 
and made in England, and we have abundant evidence 
to show that they were produced in great numbers, and 
with admirable skill. 




These productions, now held in such high esteem in 
this country, appear to claim a brief descriptive notice 
in this place. 

I. The Arabs of Northern Africa, who appear to have 
been acquainted with the art of applying various glazes 
to their pottery from a very early period, carried with 
them into Spain the arts which they had cultivated in 
their own country : and in Spain they evidently found 
themselves enabled to effect important improvements in 
their keramic manufactures. The Hispano-Moorish 
pottery, of which many beautiful specimens have been 
preserved, is distinguished by both the peculiarity of its 
Arabesque decorations and its Oriental forms, and also 
by the colours and iridescent qualities of its enamel 
glazes. From this class of fictile productions, themselves 
in all probability derived from the same common source 
with the keramic manufactures of the Byzantine Greeks, 
Italy obtained the elementary principles of those pro- 
cesses which she cultivated with such success during the 
fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. 


Enamel , when applied to metals for the purpose of 
decoration, is elsewhere described (Chapter XI.). The 
same term, enamel , is used to denote certain substances 
of metallic origin which are applied to both pottery and 
porcelain, and which are also used in decorating glass. 

In the case of pottery, enamel is to be understood to 
signify a verifiable coating for the clay or paste, that is 
opaque and stanniferous (derived from tin). Glaze and 
varnish , as applied to the same manufactures, are both of 
them transparent verifiable substances, but the former is 
of earthy origin and does not melt except at a high tem- 
perature, while the varnish is plumliferous (derived from 
lead), and melts at a comparatively low temperature. 

Vitrifiable colours and translucid substances obtained 
from metallic oxides, and used for painting upon glass 
and for various decorative processes, together with the 
glazes of porcelain, are also called enamels . 

II. Luca della Fobbia, who flourished from about 
a.d. 1390 to 1430, commenced his artistic studies under 
Leonardo , a goldsmith of Florence of deservedly high 
reputation. Luca subsequently devoted himself in the 
first instance to sculpture in stone, and afterwards to 
modelling in clay. He discovered an opaque, white, and 


highly lustrous stanniferous enamel, which he was the 
first Italian to apply to terra cotta . He thus was enabled 
to impart to his figures and bas-reliefs in clay the polish 
and also the durability of marble. His first productions 
are in a whitish clay, but he soon adopted colours, his 
prevailing practice being to apply yellow, blue, violet, 
and green upon white grounds. The brothers of Luca 
and their descendants continued to produce plastic works 
in enamelled terra cotta, till the close of the sixteenth 

III. Majolica Fayence. This remarkable class of 
keramic productions is supposed to have derived its name 
of “ Majolica ” from Majorca, where the Hispano-Moorish 
keramists had long practised the art of applying a pecu- 
liar lustrous enamel to pottery. The term “J?ayence” 
now applied to all enamelled earthenware, and particu- 
larly to that of Italy, is obtained from Faenza , at which 
place Italian pottery was first covered with a white 
enamel glaze. 

The Majolica may be divided into the productions of 
three periods. 1. From about a.d. 1450 to about a.d. 
1485. The Fayence of this period, distinguished as 
Mezza- Majolica, has figures traced in blue or black upon 


a white ground, with coloured draperies. There are no 
shades or half-tints in the painting, and the flesh is not 
coloured. The whole is covered with a metallic glaze 
that produces a richly glowing iridescent lustre. An 
artist who flourished at Pesaro about 1480, and who em- 
ployed peculiarly brilliant ruby and golden yellow pig- 
ments, is the most remarkable keramist of the period. 
At the same time, the white enamel of della Robbia 
began to be applied to their pottery by the manufac- 
turers of Florence and Faenza , and at the close of the 
century it was introduced at Urbino , Gubbio , Gastel- 
Durante , Pesaro , and wherever the Majolica was pro- 

2. From about a.d. 1485 to about a.d. 1560. The 
true Majolica , distinguished by a ground of an opaque 
vitrescent enamel, engaged the attention of the great 
artists of the day, who furnished the designs which were 
painted on the enamelled clay in verifiable colours of 
wonderful brilliancy and beauty. The drawings of Raf- 
faelle and his disciples were largely used by the keramic 
painters, and hence this Fayence has been sometimes 
denominated Raff aelle-w are. Groups of figures, scenery, 
portraits, with heraldic devices and arabesques appear on 


these works ; and it will be observed that the manufac- 
turers produced bas-reliefs, vases, candlesticks, inkstands, 
and various other objects in Majolica, in addition to 
dishes, plates, bowls, and other vessels. The metallic 
lustrous glow continues to distinguish the finest works 
of this period. Amongst the most celebrated artists are 
Giorgio Andreoli of Gulhio , and his two brothers, Fran- 
cesco Zanto , and Orazio Fontana of Urbino . 

3. The third period, which extends throughout the 
decline of Majolica, may be considered to close about 
the year 1610, when the art of producing this manufac- 
ture gradually ceased to exist. 

The enamel ground of the Majolica was essential to 
the success of the work, in consequence of the compara- 
tively coarse and dirty-looking clay from which the 
Fayence was produced. 

Very many of the Majolica pieces bear dates, and 
some have also the signatures of the artists who produced 
them : thus Giorgio Andreoli signed his works with the 
monogram M°. G°. ( Maestro Giorgio ). The subjects 
represented and the towns where the pieces were manu- 
factured are commonly described in writing, on the backs 
of the Majolica works of the second period. 


4. Fayence of Bernard Palissy, or Palissy Ware. 

• — Tlie ardent, enterprising, resolute, and persevering 
Palissy, whose history forms a genuine romance, suc- 
ceeded in discovering the enamels which enabled him to 
execute his remarkable keramic works about the year 
1550. He had laboured through a memorable fifteen 
years, before success crowned his experiments. He com- 
posed “ rustic pieces,” or dishes ornamented with fishes, 
shells, plants, insects, and reptiles, all executed in high 
relief, and perfectly true to nature in both form and 
colour. He modelled exclusively from the fish of the 
Seine, from the fossil shells of the Paris basin, and from 
other objects found in the same localities. His enamels 
are hard and brilliant, and his colours rich and vivid, 
but he did not discover the pure white of the early 
Majolica. He made many large works for decorating 
fountains, &c., besides a vast series of smaller produc- 
tions of every kind to which pottery is applicable ; and 
considerable numbers of his works are yet preserved. 
This remarkable artist fell a victim to the Huguenot 
persecution in 1589. 

5. The French Henry II. Fayence of the Seventeenth 
Century . — This is a class of keramic works which comprises 


but a small number of specimens, and which flourished but 
for a short period. No particulars are known respecting 
either the artists who produced this Fayence, or the 
part of France in which they lived and worked. The 
material is a fine and very white pipe-clay, upon which, 
when it had been modelled to the desired forms, the 
decorative enrichments are incised, the incisions being 
subsequently filled in with different colouring substances 
of yellow, brown, and carnation hues. The designs are 
drawn and executed with the utmost delicacy, and 
covered with a thin, transparent glaze of a pale yellow. 
Small detached figures, with various objects, designed 
after the Renaissance feeling of the period, complete the 
ornamentation. The examples of this peculiar pottery 
may be compared to the Niellos of the preceding cen- 
tury, with accessories of repousse and chased metal-work 
(see Chapter XI.) ; and they contain some of the most 
delicate productions of fictile manufacture that are in 


These peculiar keramic productions were made during 
the fifteenth, sixteenth, and seventeenth centuries. They 



are formed from a dense, hard paste, which is opaque, 
sonorous, and capable of either dispensing with a glazing 
or of receiving it. The manufactures of the second half 
of the fifteenth century do not appear to have possessed 
any distinctive characteristics as works of fictile art : 
but in the following century various decorative devices, 
with figures, are added to the stoneware, either incised 
upon it or executed in low relief by means of stamps. 
Figures and other ornaments modelled in relief appear 
late in this century, and throughout the seventeenth 
century. The correct drawing exhibited in the figures, 
and the excellence of the coloured enamels which adorn 
this class of works, claim an honourable position for the 
men by whom they were produced. The term Delet is 
commonly applied to this stoneware. 


This beautiful and always admired manufacture differs 
from all other keramic works in this peculiar quality — 
that it is translucent . Thus it occupies a position mid- 
way between pottery and glass. It is presumed to be 
of Chinese origin, and to have been known and exten- 
sively manufactured amongst the Chinese from a very 


early period. The Portuguese first imported porcelain 
into Europe, about the year 1503. In the course of the 
sixteenth century Chinese porcelain, with that of Japan, 
was brought into Europe in such great quantities, that 
the manufacture of the fine varieties of European pottery 
declined, and gradually became extinct. Many attempts 
were made to produce porcelain in both France and 
Germany, but without success until the commencement 
of the eighteenth century, when Johann Friedrich 
Bottclier, the Palissy of Germany, discovered both the 
materials and the process of manufacture. The fine, 
hard, translucent paste of Bottcher produced true por- 
celain, and his manufactory was established in 1701 at 
Meissen, near Dresden. After a while, the secret of the 
process was so far divulged, that other manufactories 
arose in various parts of Germany, and particularly at 
Hochst , Furstenberg , Baden , Kronenburg , Nymphenhurg , 
and FranJcenthal . In the years 1720 and 1751, the 
great Porcelain establishments of Vienna and Berlin 
were severally founded, and they speedily obtained for 
their works a high reputation. The porcelain of Berlin, 
indeed, rivals that of Dresden. 

Meanwhile in France an artificial porcelain, formed 


from a compound soft paste, was produced as early as 
the year 1695 at St. Cloud . Manufactories were subse- 
quently established at Chantilly and Vincennes in 1735 
and 1745, and in 1754 the manufacture was trans- 
ferred (under a special royal sanction) to Sevres. An 
accidental discovery of the necessary material for the 
hard paste, in 1768, enabled the royal keramists of 
Sevres to produce true porcelain. The two varieties of 
porcelain (the genuine and the artificial) were made 
conjointly at Sevres until 1804, since which year the 
hard or true porcelain alone has been produced. The 
epithet “ soft ” ( tendre ) applied to the paste of the arti- 
ficial porcelain, and also to its glaze, has only a reference 
to the feeble resistance of this manufacture to the action 
of a high temperature, as compared with the true or 
“ hard )! porcelain. 


Before the reign of Elizabeth, articles of fictile manu- 
facture appear to have been imported into this country. 
During this reign attempts were made to establish manu- 
factories of pottery in England. In the succeeding cen- 
tury these attempts were renewed, and particularly at 



Fttlham and Lambeth y and in Staffordshire . The species 
of pottery produced was an enamelled stone-ware. But 
little of importance, however, was accomplished, until 
another Palissy arose in England in the person of 
William Wedgewood. The career of this remarkable 
man may be considered to have ranged from about 1760 
till his death in 1795. Under Wedgewood the keramic 
art in our own country was raised to a high standard of 
excellence, and from him the admirable productions of 
more recent periods must be considered to have been 
derived. The porcelain manufacture commenced in Eng- 
land at Chelsea , and about the year 1750 it produced 
works of great excellence. Stratford-le-Bow , Derby , and 
Worcester , successively became known as porcelain manu- 
factories. The city last named had a factory in 1751, 
and it has continued to produce porcelain, both hard and 
soft, in abundance, and of the best quality. The Wor- 
cester porcelain of the present day may be pronounced 
equal to the Fayence of the finest early periods. 


I. Roman Glass.— To Egypt and Phoenicia may be 
assigned the origin and the first practice of the art of 



glass-making*. From thence this art was carried towards 
the West. Under Augustus, glass was still imported to 
Rome from Egypt, but in the time of Tiberius, manufac- 
tories of glass were established at the Imperial City. 

The Romans speedily discovered methods for blowing 
and staining glass, and also for working it on a lathe 
and engraving it. They carried the various processes of 
glass-manufacture to the highest perfection, treating the 
glass as a medium for expressing the purest and most 
refined conceptions of art. Many vessels of beautiful 
form have been found amongst the Roman relics that 
illustrate the period of the occupancy of Britain by the 
Romans : and collections are also rich in specimens of 
similar works obtained from Italy. The Portland Vase , 
now in the British Museum, may be regarded as a 
triumph of art in glass. It is composed of two layers 
of glass, the one white and the other blue ; and it is a 
perfect representation of an onyx-cameo, having figures 
in white sculptured in relief upon a blue ground. It 
was discovered in the tenth century, and may be con- 
sidered to be the work of Greek artists. 

II. Byzantine Glass.— Art, under every condition 
and in every aspect, flourished in the capital of the 

y 2 


Lower Empire. The glass of the Homan o- Greeks of 
Byzantium was distinguished for the excellence of the 
fabric, the beauty of its forms, and the variety and rich- 
ness of its decorations. Incrustations in gold, paintings 
in coloured enamel, skilfully executed engraving and 
cutting, with filagree-works and other processes, were 
executed with wonderful effect by the Byzantine glass- 
makers. The system of decoration by means of over- 
laying coloured vessels with a network of glass -filagree, 
or of forming the vessels from several layers of glass of 
different colours, was always in high favour at Byzan- 
tium. These artists in glass appear, indeed, to have 
been masters of all the finer processes of antiquity, to 
which they added painting in vitreous colours as an in- 
vention af their own. 

III. Venetian Glass.— From the thirteenth century 
Venice has been celebrated for its glass-manufactures. 
In the year 1292, the island of Murano became covered 
with establishments for making glass of various descrip- 
tions, and after exactly three centuries the manufacture 
of beads and glass jewellery was carried on within the 
city itself to an immense extent. Every possible variety 
of useful and ornamental article that could be executed 



in glass was made at Venice; and the Venetian glass is 
remarkable, as well for the strangely grotesque and 
quaint designs in the shape of animals, fishes, non- 
descripts, and such like, as for forms of the most refined 
beauty, and for exquisitely graceful and delicate propor- 
tions and contours. The grotesque glass is, for the most 
part, the production of the fifteenth century; many vases 
of this class are pierced with several holes to receive 
and pour out the liquid, and they are constructed to act 
on the principle of the syphon. During the whole of 
the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, Venice con- 
tinued to be the principal manufactory of glass, from 
whence all the countries of Europe derived their supplies. 

Venetian Glass may be grouped under the following 
six general classes : — * 

1 . White, transparent glass, decorated with threads of 
coloured glass applied externally. 

2. Glass tinted in the mass, or which receives its colours 
from metallic oxides in the process of manufacture. 

3. Enamelled glass, which is decorated with subjects 
and ornaments in gold, vitreous colours, or coloured 
enamels after the vessels have been formed, these acces- 
sories being subsequently fixed in the furnace. 


4. Filagree glass; ornamented with small canes en- 
closing threads of milk-white glass (latticinio) , spirally 
twisted; or with similar canes enclosing coloured threads 
and varied designs in filagree. Works of this class were 
called ritortoli and afterwards ritorti. 

5. Double glass; composed of two sheets conjoined so 
as to exhibit a network of filagree; between each mesh 
of which a minute air-bubble is formed. This glass was 
known as Vitro di trina, and vases thus produced were 
called Vasi a reticelli . 

6. Mosaic glass {Millefiore or Vitro fiorito), in which 
thin slices of coloured canes are placed within two 
layers of white glass; the whole being fused into a 
mass from which vases and other objects might be 

IV. German Glass; consisting of vases and other 
vessels decorated with designs executed in enamel; was 
produced in small quantities in the sixteenth century; 
and in the following century a few similar works; 
executed with much greater artistic skill; made their 
appearance. The Bohemian white glass; with its medal- 
lion portraits; dates from the beginning of the seven- 
teenth century. In this century artists of eminence 



executed engravings on glass, and etching on the same 
material was also practised. 

Y. English Glass appears to have been made only 
on a small scale until the present century. The first 
establishment for the manufacture was at the Savoy, in 
the Strand, and it dates from the year 1557. In the 
course of the next century attempts were made to im- 
prove and extend the glass manufacture, but without 
success ; consequently, whatever early examples of glass 
exist in England are the production of foreign glass- 



The present chapter will be found to contain a series of 
brief descriptive notices of certain early art -processes 
and productions, which do not admit of being consis- 
tently grouped with any of the preceding divisions of 
this volume. 


I. Enamels are white or coloured substances of a 
vitreous nature, either opaque or transparent, which are 
obtained from metallic oxides, and applied to metals by 
fusion. Thus enamelling, which is of very early date as 
well as of very general application, is an art that employs 
one metal as the means for decorating another. 

Enamels are rendered opaque by the addition to the 
vitreous mass of an oxide of tin : hence these enamels 
are distinguished as stanniferous . 

The term “enamel” is also commonly understood to 


denote the object,, of whatsoever kind, which is decorated 
by the process of enamelling. 

Enamels form three distinct groups or classes, each 
distinguished by the peculiar method in which the enamel 
is applied : — 

(1.) Incrustecl Enamels, in which the vitreous matter 
is inserted into the mass of the metal. 

(2.) Overlaid Enamels, in which the design is executed 
in low relief upon the metal, the surface of which is 
afterwards covered with a vitreous coating. 

(3.) Tainted Enamels, in which verifiable colours are 
applied with the brush to metallic plates and fixed by 
the action of fire. 

(1 .) Ixcrtjsted Examels, which have been also called 
iC embedded” are subdivided into two classes, to which 
the French antiquaries have given the titles of “cloi- 
sonne” and “ champleve,” These names indicate the pro- 
cesses employed for the reception of the vitreous com- 
pounds in producing the enamel incrustations. In 
both cases, the outline of the design is formed by slender 
strips of metal, within which the enamel, in the condi- 
tion either of a paste or of a fine powder, is placed, and 
then fused in the furnace. The metals employed are 



gold, silver, and copper, the cloisonne enamels being 
almost always executed upon the precious metals. It 
will be understood that it is necessary for the metal to 
be capable of enduring the action of the furnace without 
being affected by such temperatures as will fuse the 
enamels. When fused, the plates with the enamels are 
permitted to cool gradually, after which the entire sur- 
faces are ground smooth, the metallic lines, if necessary, 
are gilt, and the whole work receives a fine polish. 

In the Cloisonne enamels the outlines are formed from 
separate strips of metal that are bent and arranged in 
accordance with the desired design, and then fixed in an 
upright position upon the plate of metal. This process 
was practised by the artists of Byzantium from an early 
period, and it continued to be held in great repute until 
the fourteenth century. It was employed for the deco- 
ration of crowns, swords, ecclesiastical insignia and 
church ornaments, and other precious objects of every 
description. The Alfred jewel, a relic of the great Saxon 
Prince, now preserved at Oxford, and a pectoral cross, 
probably of the tenth century, in the possession of A. J. 
B. Beresford Hope, Esq., are specimens of enamels of 
this class in England : amongst the most precious ex- 


amples on the continent, are the sword and crown of 
Charlemagne, at Vienna ; the pala d’oro, or altar-frontal, 
at St. Mark’s, Venice ; and the shrine of the Three Kings, 
at Cologne. 

The outlines in the Champleve enamels are first deli- 
cately marked out on the surface of the plate of metal, 
and then the intervening spaces are hollowed away, 
slender threads or strips of the mass of the plate being 
left, to define and indeed to form the outlines, and also 
to keep the enamel colours distinct. In this class of 
enamels the figures are often entirely expressed in the 
metal by chasing and engraving, in which case the 
vitreous colouring simply forms the ground, and also ap- 
pears in some of the details. Fig. 1 of Plate XX. re- 
presents a reliquary of copper, gilt, and ornamented 
with enamels by the process which has been just de- 
scribed. The subject is the death of Archbishop Becket, 
with his burial in the upper compartment., The champ- 
leve process was practised from the eleventh to the close 
of the fourteenth century, during which period the city 
of Limoges was the great manufactory from whence the 
champleve enamels emanated. In this country many 
specimens of this beautiful art are still preserved, amongst 



which are the ring of Ethelbert, in the British Museum, 
and the effigy of William de Valence in Westminster 

(2.) Overlaid Enamels appeared in the second half 
of the thirteenth century, and they continued to be pro- 
duced in great numbers until the close of the fifteenth 
century. In this process the devices and subjects are 
expressed on plates of gold or silver, often very thin, by 
means of chasing and engraving, and the entire surface is 
afterwards coloured by fine translucid enamels, which 
cover the whole, and are so incorporated with the chased 
and engraved designs as to impart to them the appear- 
ance of brilliant paintings reflecting a metallic lustre. 

(3.) Painted Enamels, apparently first executed upon 
metal at Limoges in th<e fourteenth century, in the course 
of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries are seen to as- 
sume positions of the first importance in the art-produc- 
tions of those periods. Very many specimens, the pro- 
ductions of the centuries last named, have been preserved : 
and with these there may be associated the similar works 
of later periods, the productions of Italian and German 
as well as of French artists. 

II. Engraving and Chasing, processes executed with 


graving tools, produce decorations upon metals by means 
of lines incised in their surfaces, or by removing such 
parts of their surfaces as will leave the required designs 
in slight relief. The two processes are generally com- 
bined, and both were derived by the artists of the middle 
ages from the arts of antiquity. Engraving thus applied 
for the purpose of expressing upon metals decorative de- 
signs must be distinguished from the great art, which 
bears the same name, and of which the sole aim and ob- 
ject is the production and multiplication of impressions of 
designs by means of the press. 

III. Niello is the engraving designs upon metals and 
filling in the incised lines and spaces with a black enamel, 
or sometimes with coloured substances of the same na- 
ture. Nielli are generally found to have been executed 
in silver : occasionally, however, gold received this species 
of decoration. A fine gold niello of exquisite work- 
manship, found in Norfolk, is preserved in the cabi- 
net of R. Fitch, Esq., of Norwich. This process was 
applied for various purposes of ornamentation from about 
the commencement of the twelfth century. Niello is 
specially distinguished amongst the decorative processes 
applied during the middle ages to metal- works, from the 



circumstance that Mazzo Finequerra, a skilful goldsmith 
of Florence, about the year 1460, was accidentally led 
by means of his niello to the discovery of the art of 
engraving for the purpose of producing impressions. In 
true niello the design is exhibited in the metal, and the 
black enamel forms the ground : but in some of the 
early engraven works, such as monumental brasses and 
incised slabs, the designs are incised, and rendered in 
outline by means of the black or coloured substances 
which are thus imbedded in the plates or slabs. 

IY. Damascening is a decorative art which expresses 
a design by means of slender wires of one metal, which 
are inserted in lines incised for their reception in the 
surface of a plate of another metal. The general usage 
is to insert wires of gold or silver in iron or bronze ; but 
sometimes the precious metals only are employed in 
damascene- work, gold being thus imbedded in silver, or 
silver in gold. Damascening is commonly used for the 
decoration of armour and weapons ; and it is also found 
applied to various other objects in metal. It is an art 
that was practised with success by the ancients, from 
whom it was derived by the early artists of the middle 
ages, and by them transmitted to later times. Parcel - 


Gilding , the partial application of gold to the surface of 
another metal, is a decorative process in some degree al- 
lied to damascening. 

Y. Embossing, produced by various processes, always 
implies designs which are executed in relief. Metals may 
be cast in moulds, and thus the desired reliefs may be 
obtained; or the plates may be beaten out, and the 
relief- work executed by the hammer. This latter process, 
invariably superior in its results to the finest castings, is 
distinguished as Repousse-worJc. It may be traced to a 
period of remote antiquity, and it was practised with 
eminent success by the artists in metal of the middle 
ages. The reliefs are finished with the chisel, and with 
the addition of chasing, engraving, and damascene- 

Of the long array of great and distinguished artists 
who worked in metal, and whose works have come down 
to us, three of the greatest are Lorenzo Ghiberti, the 
Florentine, who produced the bronze doors of the Baptis- 
try of St. John in the commencement of the fifteenth 
century : Benvenuto Cellini, also of Florence, who was 
born in the year 1500 ; and Quintin Matsys, of Antwerp 
who flourished between the years 1475 and 1529. 




Amongst the relies of the arts of the middle ages 
which attract the attention of the archaeologist, not the 
least interesting is the series of curious instruments 
which were invented for marking the progress of time. 
These clocks and watches, indeed, possess a twofold 
claim upon our attention, since they illustrate the art- 
processes of the workers in metal, while they exemplify 
the condition of practical science at early periods. 

Clocks were invented shortly before the close of the 
tenth century. Towards the close of the fourteenth 
century they began to be introduced into private houses. 
About the middle of the following century, the spring 
coiled within a cylinder was introduced, as a moving 
power, into clock-work. Next follow the complicated 
pieces of mechanism of the first half of the sixteenth 
century, which combine the most varied operations with 
the proper functions of clock-work. During the same 
period Watches make their appearance, and they con- 
tinue to be very curious instruments until their balance 
was adjusted by means of a spring by Huyghens, who 
first applied the pendulum to clocks, about the year 


1665. After this time, both clocks and watches begin 
to assume the character and appearance with which we 
are familiar. 

At the Reformation, Hour-glasses were attached to the 
pulpits in churches, for the purpose of regulating the 
length of sermons : many of these preachers* -monitors 
yet remain in their original positions, though their 
occupation has ceased for more than a century and 
a half. 


In addition to the iron- work employed as an accessory 
in architecture, the smiths of the middle ages executed 
various works in this metal, all of which are charac- 
terized by genuine art-feeling. Their locks, keys, and 
caskets, with their arms, armour, and military appli- 
ances, are particularly admirable ; and in common with 
many other objects they may be studied with much 
advantage, not only as specimens of elegant and appro- 
priate design, and also of skilful and rich workmanship, 
but as models from which we may elevate our own 
treatment of iron under all similar circumstances of its 
application and use by ourselves. 





1. Ivory Carvings constitute a class of works in 
themselves abounding in objects of the highest interest, 
and also possessing a peculiar claim upon the attentive 
regard of the arcliseologist from the circumstance of 
their forming the connecting link between the sculpture 
of antiquity and of the Gothic era of the middle ages. 

These works of the sculptor, executed in ivory, or 
sometimes in the tooth of the walrus, originated in the 
usage prevalent amongst the consuls of the imperial 
times of Rome, to send to certain personages commemo- 
rative presents, entitled Diptychs , or double tablets of 
ivory or wood. Each of these tablets consisted of two 
leaves, resembling the two covers of a book, which would 
fold one over the other, and so would enclose and pre- 
serve within them a surface of wax, upon which some 
legend was written. The exterior surfaces of these 
Consular Diptychs were adorned with various carvings. 
In process of time, the wax legends were omitted, and 
the carvings were executed on the inner sides of the 
folding-leaves, with the view to the protection of the 
carved works. Triptychs were also made after the 


same fashion with the diptychs ; and these peculiar 
works, with their small carved pictures of sacred sub- 
jects, and their folding-leaves, shutters, or “volets,” 
became universal with persons of every rank and condi- 
tion, as the companions of their devotional exercises. 

In the fourteenth century, the romance literature of 
the day furnished a different class of subjects for the 
sculptors in ivory; sacred subjects, however, still con- 
tinued to be produced after the earlier system, and they 
remained in special favour. These works continued to 
be executed in great numbers until the sixteenth century, 
when they ceased to be held in esteem. 

Besides diptychs and triptychs, caskets, tablets, 
mirror-cases, and other objects were sculptured in ivory; 
hunting-horns were produced in the same material, and 
enriched with elaborate ornamentation executed with 
the chisel. Wood-carvings were associated with the 
ivories of the fourteenth century, and in the century 
following the Germans introduced the practice of 
painting and gilding their small sculpture. The Byzan- 
tine origin of mediaeval ivory-sculpture is shown in the 
prevailing character of the art in these works, which 
lingered even after the development of Gothic prin- 

z 2 



ciples. These works exhibit a wonderful variety of sub- 
jects, always valuable as historical exponents of both the 
habits and sentiments as well as of the art of their 
period : they also demonstrate the admirable skill with 
which the artists in ivory treated their subjects, and show 
how thoroughly they understood the capabilities of the 
material in which they worked. 

With the ivories may be grouped the various medal- 
lion portraits sculptured in hone-stone (sjpecJestein) by the 
Germans of the sixteenth century, the sculptures in amber 
and other materials that were occasionally produced, 
together with the statuettes and carved works that were 
executed in hard woods . 

During the Renaissance period, ivory was used for 
making tankards and other objects of the same class, 
that were richly sculptured with bas-reliefs in the style 
and after the sentiment of the time. 

2. Cameos are sculptured works, necessarily on a small 
scale, which are executed in relief upon gems and hard 
stratified stones. One of the earliest of the arts, gem- 
sculpture attained to a truly wonderful perfection at the 
hands of the Greeks. It was practised with success by 
the Romans, and from them it was transmitted to the 
middle ages. In more recent times, cameos are gene- 



rally produced from certain shells which are formed in 
strata of white and some deep colour, and thus the de- 
sired object of obtaining a design in white upon a dark 
ground is obtained. 

3. Intaglios are the reverse of cameos, being designs 
sunk in gems, and consequently they are capable of pro- 
ducing impressions in wax or other soft substances. 
Thus the matrices of seals are intaglios. 


The art of producing devices and designs in colour by 
means of tesserae (small fragments, generally cubes) of 
variously coloured substances was practised successfully 
by the ancients, having in the first instance been applied 
to the decoration of pavements. At Byzantium this art 
flourished, and by Byzantine artists pictures for the 
adornment of the walls and domes of the early Christian 
basilicas were produced in mosaic. The art acquired a 
peculiar and typical form of expression at the hands of 
these artists, which it retained until it was raised to its 
noblest condition by the great Italian artists of the four- 
teenth century. In the fifteenth century the art of 
painting in Mosaic declined. Marquetry is a species of 
mosaic executed with coloured woods and ivory. 




The archaeologist, anxious to apply to the practical im- 
provement of the arts of his own times whatsoever the 
arts of past times have left for him to investigate and to 
elucidate, will not fail to search out the history of Paint- 
ing in Oil, and to examine with a careful eye its earliest 
productions. He will find that this art, generally sup- 
posed to be an invention of the fifteenth century, was 
known and practised at much earlier periods. 


The occupation of ladies of the highest rank in the 
times of classic antiquity, the art of adorning textile 
fabrics with various devices was carried to a high degree 
of perfection as early as the sixth century of the Chris- 
tian era, and it continued to be practised from that 
period throughout the middle ages. The earliest em- 
broideries were executed upon silk with gold and silver 
threads, and must have produced a brilliant effect. These 
embroideries, as well as those of later periods, are lost, 
but they are fully described in various inventories. 

The art, in some respects in a condition of decline, as 



it was practised in the eleventh century, is exemplified 
in the remarkable roll known as the “ Bayeux Tapestry” 
and still preserved at the city of Bayeux. This relic, 
attributed (and, as it would seem, most correctly) to 
Matilda, Queen of William the Conqueror, measures two 
hundred and twenty-seven feet in length, by about 
twenty inches in breadth, and it is worked in coloured 
worsted on a groundwork of rather fine linen, which now 
has assumed a brownish tinge. The colours of the em- 
broidery are remarkably fresh and vivid. The entire 
composition is divided into seventy-two compartments, 
each of which contains its own incident in the historical 
series that occupies the central portion of the tapestry, 
and is enclosed within ornamental borders filled with a 
variety of figures and other objects. Perspective and 
light and shade are entirely disregarded in this work, 
and the adjustment of the colours is most curiously arbi- 
trary : the drawing of the figures, however, and their 
execution, are spirited and expressive. This tapestry con- 
veys abundant illustration of the architecture, armour, 
costumes, furniture, and also of the manners and usages 
of the important era of the Norman Conquest. 

The episcopal vestments and mitre of Thomas a Becket, 



preserved at Sens, are characteristic specimens of the rich 
embroidery executed for ecclesiastical purposes in the 
twelfth century ; and the jupon of the Black Prince at 
Canterbury is a no less interesting example of the four- 
teenth century. It is evident from the recorded descrip- 
tions of the early embroidery executed in this country, 
that the productions of the English needle were of the 
most splendid description ; and it may also be learned 
from the same source, that these elaborate and beautiful 
productions were used for the decoration of churches and 
dwelling-houses, and also for the enrichment of costumes 
both ecclesiastical and secular. The embroidery of Eng- 
land was, indeed, held in such high estimation, that it is 
continually specified in foreign documents as distin- 
guished above all other works of the same class. A few 
early ecclesiastical vestments are known to be in exis- 
tence; but the existing relics of embroideries executed 
during the middle ages as hangings for walls or for other 
purposes, are rarely of a period earlier than the middle of 
the fifteenth century, and of these a few pieces only yet 





The Furniture in use at any period necessarily conveys 
much graphic illustration with respect not only to the 
then existing condition of the arts in general, but also to 
the prevailing manners, usages, and customs. In addi- 
tion to the representations conveyed by illuminations, 
much equally interesting and valuable information 
respecting mediaeval furniture is contained in inventories 
and other personal and household accounts and docu- 
ments. These sources of information have at present 
been but partially investigated ; and it is much to be 
desired that archaeological students should direct their 
attention to whatever documents of these classes may 
present themselves to their notice. 

But few examples of mediaeval furniture have been 
preserved to our own times, unless this term be con- 
sidered to include the Renaissance productions of the 
sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. It is certain, how- 
ever, that throughout the best period of mediaeval art, 
the furniture was in keeping with the architecture of the 
times, and it was both designed and produced by men who 
must be included within the ranks of artists. The general 



character of early furniture is evidently massive, and its de- 
corations consist both in carvings and in decorative metal- 
work. Marquetry, with various inlaid or superadded 
ornaments, appear in the furniture of the Renaissance. 


Wood-engraving differs from the kindred art of en- 
graving on plates of metal for the purpose of obtaining 
and multiplying impressions, in this most important par- 
ticular, that the impressions which it produces are printed 
from the surface of the engraven blocks, whereas in all 
plate-engraving the design is expressed by the lines which 
are incised into the metal. Hence, in engraving upon 
wood, the lines of the design remain, while the parts of 
the wood that are cut away are identical with those parts 
of the design that are to appear white in the impression. 
The printing from types and from wood-engravings is 
consequently effected by the same process, and thus wood- 
engravings and type are printed together . From this cir- 
cumstance arises the peculiar suitableness of wood- 
engravings for the illustration of printed books. It will 
be interesting to study the arts of wood-engraving and 
typography together, and to observe the progress of 
their development. 



Stamps cut in relief on blocks of wood, and used 
either to form intaglio -impressions or for affixing brands, 
were known from remote periods ; but the art of engrav- 
ing on wood, properly so called, may be considered to be 
nearly contemporaneous with Typography, and to date 
from about the year 1430. The earliest known wood- 
engraving, Lord Spencer’s St. Christopher, was cut in 
1423. As is well known, Gutenberg, with the assist- 
ance of Faust and Scheffer, brought his moveable types 
into a perfect working condition in 1452; and in 1457 
appeared the Psalter, which was the first book printed 
with a date and the printers’ names. In this Psalter 
are large initial letters, most beautifully engraved on 
wood, and printed in blue and red inks. In 1476 
Caxton appears with his “ Game and Playe of Chesse,” 
illustrated with wood-cuts, his “ Mirrour of the World,” 
similarly illustrated, following in 1480. The two arts 
gradually advanced with equal steps, until in the com- 
mencement of the sixteenth century, Albert Durer gave 
so great an impulse to engraving on wood. At the close 
of this same century wood-engraving shows symptoms 
of decline, and in the course of the following century it 
is found to have sunk to the condition of extreme degra- 
dation, from which it was rescued by our own distin- 



guished fellow-countryman, Thomas Bewick, in the con- 
cluding quarter of the last century. 


are alike of oriental origin. Both were known at very 
early periods in India, and apparently also in China ; 
and both the chess-men and the playing-cards have much 
in common in their original application. 

Chess was undoubtedly played by Edward I., and it is 
highly probable that cards were known in England in 
the same reign, under the title of the “ Game of the 
Four Kings.” Chess, however, may be presumed to 
have been known in this country as early as the reign of 
John, since chess-men, evidently executed during the 
first quarter of the thirteenth century, have been found 
amongst other relics of the same period. These early 
chess-men, with other pieces, the work of the fourteenth 
century, afford most interesting illustrations of both 
armour and costume. Cards are said to have been intro- 
duced into France about 1 393, in the hope of diverting 
the malady of Charles YI. ; they became common in 
that country, and also in both England and Germany, 
early in the following century, at which time card- 


making had become a regular trade in Germany. Cards 
appear to have been used for fortune-telling before the 
fifteenth century had expired, and tricks played with 
cards were in vogue about the same period. The earliest 
known European cards were made about the year 1440 ; 
the marks of the suits are Bells, Hearts, Leaves, and 
Acorns ; they were produced by stencilling , — that is, by 
cutting out the pattern in some thin substance over 
which, when placed upon the card, a brush charged with 
ink or colour was drawn. The set now in use may be 
considered to have been devised before 1500. Playing- 
cards were so much used in the time of Charles II., 
that they were made the vehicles for advertisements. In 
1660 Heraldic Cards were introduced, and these were 
shortly followed by others of an historical character ; 
after which, in the time of Anne and George I., Satirical 
Cards made their appearance. The historical cards 
which refer to the Popish plots and quasi-plots of the 
time of the Second Charles are very curious. 


Long before the days of Yandevelde and Hayward, 
illuminations and seals convey quaint and yet graphic 



illustrations of the singular craft from which the glorious 
navy of Britain has derived its origin. The student of 
archaeology will not fail to see in these un-ship shape- 
looking vessels much that will repay his care in tracing 
their progress, from step to step, until Henry VIII. 
built the “ Great Harry” which solitary vessel for a 
while constituted the royal fleet of England. King 
John may be said to have been the founder of the royal 
navy. Under his son, Henry III., the largest ships do 
not appear to have exceeded eighty tons in burden ; these 
vessels had small raised castles at either end, and two 
masts, but no bowsprit or fore-and-aft sails. The rudder, 
as now used, appears about 1300, together with a species 
of bowsprit. Guns are found to have been used for the 
armament of the ships of the year 1340, and by the end 
of the fourteenth century the vessels have increased con- 
siderably in size ; four masts sometimes are seen, and 
something like rigging is placed about them. Then 
follows Henry VIII., who sdon (a.d. 1512) adds the 
“ Regent” of one thousand tons, to the “ Great Harry ” 
having in the previous year secured a third ship of about 
the same size by capturing from the Scottish King the 
“ Lion ;” an incident which eventually led to the battle 



of Flodden. After this period, ships were continually 
built, and as constantly improved ; naval establishments 
were formed; and both the navy and the mercantile 
marine of England assumed an important character. 
Drake under Elizabeth, and Blake under Cromwell, 
asserted and maintained the maritime supremacy of their 
country ; and, having passed through the evil days of 
Charles II. and James II., the English navy grew 
steadily, until the ships identified with Nelson, in their 
turn have become as traditions of the past, steam and 
the “ screw” being the naval types of the present. 

The great Commercial Companies of the Merchants 
of the Staple of Calais ” and of “ Merchants- Adventurers f 
or “Hamburg Merchants f were severally incorporated by 
Edward III., after the capture of Calais, and by Edward 
I. in 1296. The East India Company was incorporated 
in 1600. The London Companies received their respective 
charters in the course of the fourteenth and fifteenth 


A List of the Monastic Orders established in England 
during the Middle Ages, with the periods at which they 



were introduced into this country, their distinctive cos- 
tumes, and the number of “ Houses,” or ecclesiastical 
establishments possessed by them at the time of the dis- 
solution of the Monasteries previous to the Reformation. 

I. Monks. 

1. Benedictine Order. Founded by St. Bene- 
dict, about 535. Introduced into England before 
the Norman Conquest. To them belonged the 
cathedral priories and the greater abbeys. Habit 
— a loose black gown and hood, worn over a 
garment of white flannel. 

2. Cluniac Order. Introduced about 1107. Tweu- 
ty-seven houses. Benedictine Habit. 

3. Order oe Grandmont. Introduced about 1110. 
Three houses. Benedictine Habit . 

4. Carthusian Order. Introduced about 1180. 
Nine houses. Habit — white, with black plaited 

5. Cistercian Order. Introduced in 11 28. Eighty- 
five houses, all dedicated to the Virgin. Habit — 
white cassock, and black gown : but a white gown 
when engaged in religious offices. 



6. Order of Tiron. Introduced about 1126. Three 
houses in Wales. Habit — light gray ; afterwards 

7. Culdees. Scottish monks, who had one house 
in England, at St. Mary’s, York. 

All these Orders were branches of the great Bene- 
dictine Order, and, with certain modifications and addi- 
tions, conformed to the Benedictine rule. 

II. Canons. 

1. Canons of St. Austin. Introduced about 1110. 
Upwards of one hundred and seventy-five houses. 
Habit — -black cassock, white rochet, black cloak 
and hood. They wore beards, and caps on their 
heads. There were three subordinate branches of 
these canons, who possessed nine houses. 

2. Premonstratensian Canons. Introduced about 
1140. Thirty-five houses. Habit — white cassock, 
rochet, long cloak, and cap. 

3. Lempringham, or Gilbertine Canons. Intro- 
duced in 1148. Twenty-five houses. Habit — black 
cassock, white cloak, hoods lined with lambs’ 
skins. The men of this Order observed the 
Austin rule, the women the Benedictine. 

A A 



4. Canons oe the Holy Sepulchre, or Holy Cross. 
Introduced about 1120. Fell into decay after 
1188. Two houses at the Dissolution. Austin 
Habit , with double red cross. 

III. Friars. 

1. Dominicans, or Black Friars. Introduced in 
1221. Forty-three houses. Austin rule. Habit 
—white cassock and hood : black cloak and cowl. 

2. Franciscans, Gray or Minor Friars. Intro- 
duced about 1224. Fifty-five houses. Habit — 
gray gown, cloak, cowl ; a cord for girdle, and 
bare feet. 

3. Maturines. Introduced in 1224. Twelve houses. 
Austin rule. White Habit , with red and blue cross. 

4. Carmelites, or White Friars. Introduced in 
1240. Forty houses. Rule of Basil. Habit — 

5. Crossed, or Crouched Friars. Introduced in 
1244. Six or seven houses. Austin rule. Habit 
—blue, with red cross. 

6. Austin, or Eremite Friars. Introduced about 
1250. Thirty-two houses. Habit— white, with 
black cloak and cowl. 



7. Bethlemite Friars. Introduced in 1257. One 
house (Trumpington, Cambridge) . Dominican 
Habit — with red star of five points, charged with 
blue circle. 

8. Friars oe St. Anthony oe Vienna. Introduced 
about 1225. Two houses. Austin rule and Habit, 
with blue Tan (T) cross on the breast. 

9. Friars Bonhommes. Introduced in 1283. Two 
houses. Austin rule ; Habit — blue. 

IV. Military Orders. 

1. Hospitallers, or Knights oe St. John oe Jeru- 
salem. Instituted about 1092. Introduced into 
England about 1100. Austin rule. Habit — black 
with white cross of eight points, worn over 
the armour when in action. Between the years 
1278 and 1289, when engaged in military duties 
they wore a red cassock with a white cross, straight . 
There was one house of Sisters of the Order. 

2. Templars. Instituted 1118. Introduced into 
England during the reign of Stephen. Sup- 
pressed 1309. Abolished 1312. Habit — White, 
with red cross of eight points, worn on the left 
shoulder. The Templar war-cry was “ Beau 

A A 2 



Seant Their banner, which bore the same 
name, was of black and white , — per fess , sable 
and argent . They had also for devices the Agnus 
Dei , and a figure representing two Templars 
mounted on one horse. 

The Benedictine, Cluniac, Cistercian, Carthusian, Aus- 
tin, and Premonstratensian Orders consisted of Nuns as 
well as Monks and Canons . There were also three other 
orders of Nuns, viz. : — 

1. Nuns oe Fontevrault. — Introduced into Eng- 
land in 1161. Three houses. Habit — Cassock of 
the natural colour of the wool, and black cloak. 

2. Nuns oe St. Clare, or Minoresses. — Introduced 
about 1293. Four houses. Franciscan rule and 

3. Brigittines. — Introduced about 1414. One 
house (Syon) . Austin rule. Habit — Gray wool- 
len tunic and cloak. 


In their ideal portraiture of saintly personages the 
artists of the middle ages were accustomed to encircle 
the heads of their figures with a luminous halo, which 


they called a nimbus . It was also their practice to dis- 
tinguish the different individuals whom they represented 
in sculpture, painting, or engraving, by some device or 

The Nimbus is represented by a circular figure placed 
immediately above and partly behind the head. In re- 
presentations of the person of Our Lord, the nimbus is 
cruciform — that is, it has a cross upon its under surface : 
of this cross, three of the limbs only are visible, the fourth 
being concealed by the back of the head. The head of the 
Dove, which is the emblem of the Holy Spirit, is en- 
circled with a cruciform nimbus. The radiated nimbus 
does not appear until late in the fifteenth century. When 
an entire figure is represented, encompassed by a glory, 
the radiant figure is styled an aureole . The aureole is 
generally in the form of a pointed oval, or Vesica . This 
pointed oval represents the outline of a fish, which was 
a primitive Christian symbol, the letters which compose 
the Greek word IX0YS (a fish) forming the initials of 
the words III20Y2. XPI2T02. 0EOY. YI02. 20THP. 
(Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Saviour). 

Two emblems appear in mediaeval art to symbolize the 
Divine and Blessed Trinity: — (1). A group consisting 



of a venerable personage, enthroned, and holding a cru- 
cifix, over which a dove hovers ; the heads in this group 
have the cruciform nimbus. (2.) A shield, or other 

PATER NON EST EILIYS % ure > 011 which a legend is 
arranged, as in the margin, 
and which will accordingly 
admit of a double reading. 

The Emblems of Our Lord’s 
Passion are constantly to be 
seen in early carvings and 
other works : they are generally grouped upon shields, 
and comprise the scourging pillar, scourge, seamless 
robe and dice, cross, crown of thorns, nails, hammer, 
pincers, spear, superscription, and hyssop on a reed, with 
some others of more rare occurrence. 

A lamb holding a cross with its right fore-foot and 
having a cruciform nimbus about its head is a symbol of 
Our Lord; it is called the Agnus Pei. 


The Four Evangelists. — St. Matthew , an angel ; St. 
Mark, a winged lion; St. Luke , a winged ox; St. John , 
an eagle. 

y* > 

o. ^ 







The Four Doctors of the Church. — St. Jerome, a 
lion ; St. Augustine, a heart ; St. Ambrose, a bee-hive, or 
scourge ; St. Gregory, receiving the Holy Communion, 
and Our Lord appearing to him. 

The Apostles. — St. Peter, two keys ; St. Paul, sword 
and book; St. Andrew, a cross saltier ( x) ; St. John, a 
chalice and serpent issuing from it; St. Philip, ay cross, 
or spear, or double cross ; St. Bartholomew, a knife ; St. 
Thomas, an arrow or spear ; St. Matthew, a club, carpen- 
ter’s square, or money-box ; St. James the Great, a pil- 
grim’s staff and wallet, and shell; St. James the Less, a 
fuller’s bat and saw ; St. Jude, a boat, a club, or car- 
penter’s square ; St. Simon, a fish or fishes, or a saw ; St. 
Matthias, a hatchet, battle-axe, or sword. 

The Virgin Mary, a flower-pot with lilies. 

St. Stephen, some stones, 

St. Lawrence, a gridiron. 

Jesse, a genealogical tree. 

St. Christopher, a giant carrying the Infant Saviour. 



The lapse of centuries has not yet effaced the traces of 



the hill-fortifications, which, in early times, were thrown 
up in many parts of Britain for military purposes. These 
works present themselves to the notice of the archaeolo- 
gist under two distinct aspects — (1.) Such as are irre- 
gular in form, simple in construction, and with slight 
hanks and low ditches, the works of rude and barbarous 
tribes. (2.) Such as are regular in form, have multiplied 
intrench ments, with lofty mounds and deep ditches, the 
evident productions of a people versed in the science of 

The camps and hill-forts of the Britons are circular in 
their outline ; those of the Romans are square or oblong, 
bounded by straight lines, and having the angles rounded 
off. The Romans often occupied British camps as either 
victors or allies. The Saxons generally availed them- 
selves of the hill- works that were already in existence, 
and which they altered and adapted to their own views 
and requirements. British camps abound in the south 
and west of England. There is a fine Roman camp 
at Sodbury, near Gloucester. At Badbury, near Wim- 
borne, Dorset, may be seen the Saxon camp of the great 

These camps continually disclose relics of the races 


who formed and occupied them. Amongst these relics 
are found the various implements and utensils in use by 
both Britons and Romans, as well as by the Saxons. 
Similar relics are also found in barrows, in addition to 
weapons and personal ornaments. Thus, various Celts, 
evidently intended for peaceful occupations, have been 
discovered : they comprise chisels and gouges of many 
forms and sizes. With these may be associated a 
long series of other remains of the same general 
character, such as querns, or stone flour-mills, pails, dif- 
ferent vessels, mirrors, and other articles for personal 
use, &c. &c. 

The scope of this volume would not admit the intro- 
duction of any specific notices of the manners, usages, and 
customs prevalent amongst our ancestors of early times. 
The archaeologist, however, will not fail to seek for illus- 
trations of these matters, fraught as they are with 
graphic pictures of the contemporaneous history of suc- 
cessive generations. He will also investigate the tenures 
upon which property or offices were held : he will ex- 
amine into the ceremonies and pageants, as well civil as 
religious, of past times ; and he will contemplate amuse - 



ments, now long obsolete, and punishments, now happily 
long fallen into disuse, — and from each and all he will 
gather some lesson that will make him better acquainted 
with the history of mankind, and so will enable him to 
play out more faithfully the part that has been allotted 
to himself in the great drama of human life. 




*** The figures of reference indicate the pages at which the 
several Terms will be found fully explained . 

Abacus , the uppermost member of a capital. 

Aisle, a lateral division of a building. 

Apse, a recess, usually semicircular, sometimes polygonal. 

Apsidal, having an apse-like form or arrangement. 

Arcade, a continuous series of arches. 

Arch ; 37. 

Arch, parts of, 38. 

Arched- Buttress, a buttress which conveys its sustaining power by means 
of an arch or arches. 

Ashlar, stone cut into regular forms for building. 

Astragal, the lowermost member of a capital next to the shaft. 

Bailey , 31, 65. 

Ball-Flower, 51. 

Base, the lower division of a pillar or pier. 

Basement, the lower division of a wall. 

Bay, the space enclosed between two buttresses, or two principals of a 
roof, 56. 

Bay-window, 45. 

Billet, 25. 

Boss, an ornament, complete in itself, and projecting from the adjoining 

Brace, 58. 

Buttress, a projection of masonry for providing support. 


Canopy , a decorative covering. 

Cant , 59. 

Capital , the tipper member, or head of a pillar or pier. 

Chamfer , an angle cut off to form either a flat or hollow surface, on a 

Clerestory , the uppermost horizontal division of a church : a row of win- 
dows that rise above any adjoining parts of a building, and so stand 

Clerestory -String, continuous mouldings at the base of a clerestory. 

Collar , 58. 

Coping , the covering course of a wall. 

Corbel , a projecting mass which supports some component part of a build- 
ing. A Bracket, on the contrary, supports an accessory only. 

Corbel-Table , a series of corbels supporting a string below a parapet. 

Cornice , the horizontal group of mouldings which finishes any part of a 
building at its head. 

Crocket , a projecting ornament. 

Crypt , a vaulted building beneath the surface of the ground, and under 
another building. 

Cushion- Capital, 24. 

Cusp, the point, generally ornamented, in which the Foils meet in Foil- 
arches or Tracery . 

Diaper , 51. 

Diagonal- Rib, 56. 

Dog-Tooth , a small pyramidal flower of four leaves. It varies in its treat- 
ment, and is generally used in long continuous trails. 

Donjon, 30. 

Dripstone, or Weather- Moulding, a projecting covering to any opening. 
It ought to be restricted to the external face of any opening, a 
similar covering on the interior being distinguished as a Mood- 

Equilateral- arch, an arch described about two sides of an equilateral 

Embrasure, 66. 

Escoinson-arch, 41. 



Fan-tracery -vaulting, 57. 

Fillet , 36. 

Finial , a crowning ornament. 

Foil-arch , an arch formed of a series of small arches, or Foils . 

Four-foil ( Quatre-foil ), the combination of four small arches. 

Groin, 27. 

Hammer-beam, 58. 

Haunch, 38. 

Herring -bone-work, 15. 

Impost, 15, 38. 

Intermediate-rib, 56. 

Jamb, 15, 38. 

Jamb-shaft , a shaft (or small pillar) forming part of the jamb of an 

Keep, 30. 

Key -stone, 38. 

King-post, 58. 

Label-dripstone, a dripstone that is square in its form. 

Lancet-arch, an arch described about an acute angle. 

Lintel, 22. 

Long -and- short -worJc, 15. 

Longitudinal-rib, 56. 

Machicolation, 66. 

Merlon, 66. 

Miserere, 77. 

Mullion, a perpendicular division of a window, or of a traceried screen, &c. 
Nail-head, 25. 

Neck-moulding, see Astragal . 

Obtuse-arch, an arch described about an obtuse angle. 

Ogee-arch, a pointed arch, each side of which is formed frjrn two united 
curves, of which one is convex and the other concave. 

Oilet , 66. 


Order , a member of a group, or one distinct group, 38.* 

Oriel, 45. 

Panel , a sunken compartment. 

Parapet , the uppermost part of a wall, rising above the spring of the 
roof, and forming a protection to persons standing on the roof. 

Pier , a massive pillar, or group of pillars. 

Plate-tracery, 43. 

Plinth , the lowermost member of a base. 

Poppy -head, 77. 

Principal, 57. 

Purlin , 58. 

Queen-post , 58. 

Quoin , 15. 

Rafter , 58. 

Rear -vault, 40. 

a projecting band on a ceiling. 

Ridge-piece , 57. 
jftoo/, 57. 

Rubble, rough masonry. 

Scroll-moulding, 51. 

Section, the aspect of any solid body or of any building, as it would be 
shown in profile by cutting vertically through its centre . 
Segmental-arch , an arch formed by part of a single circle. 

* The term Order is described in this Glossary as it is used in mediaeval architecture. 
In ancient classical architecture this same term denotes an entire column , consisting 
of base, shaft, and capital, with the entablature or member of the building which 
it supports. The classic column, with its entablature, forms the distinctive charac- 
teristic of each variety or modification of classic architecture. There are usually 
said to be Five Orders — the Tuscan, Doric, Ionic, Corinthian, and Composite. The 
Tuscan and Composite were not in use amongst the Greeks, but were added by the 
Romans to the three Greek orders. The Tuscan is a modification of the Doric, and 
the Composite is the Corinthian engrafted upon the Ionic. These classic orders re- 
appeared in the Renaissance Architecture of the seventeenth century, and were in- 
troduced into our country, where they have been produced in great quantities, some- 
times in stone, but more generally in stucco. Inigo Jones designed the Banqueting- 
house, Whitehall, between the years 1619 and 1621 ; and between the years 1675 and 
1710, Sir Christopher Wren witnessed the laying of the first and the last stones of 
St. Paul’s Cathedral. 


Shaf t , the part of a pillar between the base and the capital : also, a small 
pillar complete. 

Slab-tracery , 43. 

Solar , 63. 

Splay, a wide sloping flat surface : an extended chamfer . 

Springer, 38. 

Stilted , 21. 

String , a continuous horizontal moulding, or group of mouldings. 

Strut, 58. 

Sub-arch, an arch within another arch. 

Subordination , 43. 

Surface-rib, 56. 

Tesserae, 12. 

Tie-beam, 57. 

Tracery, decorative subdivisions. 

Tracery -bars, the solid (or raised) members which form the tracery, as 
distinguished from the Tracery -piercings, or Tracery -panels. 
Transom, 44. 

Transverse-rib, 56. 

Trefoil, the combination of three small arches. 

Tmforium, the central horizontal compartment of a church, between the 
Pier-arches and the Clerestory. It is generally an arcaded gallery. 

Tr if 'orium- string, continuous mouldings at the base of a triforium. 

Triplet, a group of three windows, generally lancets, of which the central 
lancet is in most cases loftier than the other two. 

Truss, 57. 

Tympanum, the arched space between the sweep of an arch-head and the 
horizontal lintel which forms the upper member of a square-headed 

Vaulting, 27, 55. 

Vaulting -shafts, shafts that rise to the vaulting-ribs, which they carry. 
Volute, a spiral scroll characteristic of the ancient Ionic capital. 

Voussoir, 38. 

Wall-plate, 58. 

Wall-rib, 56. 

Wave -moulding, 51. 


Acton Church, 135, 268, 287, 291 
Adare Abbey, 70 
iEgina, 195 

All Hallows Barking Church, 299 
Alvechurch Church, 268 
Antwerp, 335 

Arundel Church, 282, 290, 293 
Ash Church, 268, 289 
Ashford Church, 292 
Ashwelthorpe Church, 268 
Aston Church, 268, 288 

Badbury, 360 
Baden, 320 * 

Balsam Church, 276 
Bayeux, 343 

Bedale Church, 268, 285 
Bedington Church, 287, 298 
Berlin, 320 

Beverley Minster, 42, 60, 148, 176, 

Binham Priory, 190 
Birmingham, St. Martin’s Church, 

Blickling Church, 269, 293 
Bradford Church, 289 
Brading Church, 130 
Brandsburton Church, 287 
Bredon Chorch, 126, 145 

Bristol Cathedral, 85 
British Museum, 216, 301, 332 
Brixworth Church, 14 
Bromsgrove Church, 268, 289, 294 
Broxbourne Church, 293 
Burwell Church, 276 
Buslingthorpe Church, 136, 268 
Byzantium, 216, 324, 341 

Caernarvon Castle, 67 
Calais, 351 

Cambridge, King’s College Chapel, 
60, 87 

- — - — , Caius College Chapel, 


Canterbury Cathedral, 16, 28, 60, 
83, 125, 148, 161, 175, 268, 
277, 282, 290, 291 
Carlisle Cathedral, 44, 60 
Carrickfergus Castle, 70 
Cashel Cathedral, 70, 120 
Castleacre Church, 80 
Castle Bonington Church, 260, 269, 

Castle Burante, 315 
Chantilly, 321 
Chartham Church, 268 
Chertsey Abbey, 91, 93, 111 
Chester, St. John’s Church, 146 



Chetwode Church, 85 
Chelsea, 322 

Chichester Cathedral, 99, 285 
Childrey Church, 269 
Chipping Camden Church, 135, 287, 

Chipping Norton Church, 298 
Chrishall Church, 292 
Clare Abbey, 70 
Clehongre Church, 268 
Clippesby Church, 288, 294, 298 
Cobham Church, Kent, 268, 286, 
290, 292 
Cologne, 331 
Comb Pyne Church, 280 
Coningsburgh Castle, 31 
Constance Cathedral, 138 
Conway Castle, 67 
Corwen Church, 146 
Cowfold Church, 135, 278 
Cowthorpe Church, 288 
Cray St. Mary’s Church, 289, 299 
Croft Church, 136, 268 
Croydon Church, 278 
Cumnor Church, 294 

Dagenham Church, 293 
Darenth Church, 14 
Dartmouth Church, 269 
Denham Church, 278 
Derby, 322 

Dodford Church, 268, 293 
Dorchester Abbey Church, 278 
Douglas Church, 282 
Dover Castle, 67 
Dresden, 306, 320 
Dublin, 138 
Dunfermline Abbey, 28 
Dunluce Castle, 70 
Durham Cathedral, 28, 277 

Dyrham Church, 235 

Earl’s Barton Church, 16 
East Dereham Church, 99 
Elford Church, 146, 269 
Elgin Cathedral, 68 
Elstow Church, 278 
Ely Cathedral, 26, 28, 45, 60, 75, 
89, 118, 148, 277 
Elsyng Church, 166, 256 
Enfield Church, 285, 290, 293 
Evesham Abbey, 99 
Ewelme Church, 294 
Exeter Cathedral, 118, 277 

Faenza, 314, 315 
Felbrig Church, 167, 172, 269, 292 
Fersfield Church, 268 
Florence, 313, 315, 334, 335 
Fontevraud, 281, 282, 291, 356 
Fountain’s Abbey, 28 
Frankenthal, 320 
Fulbourn Church, 276 
Fulham, 322 
Fiirstenberg, 320 

Gilling Church, 144 
Glasgow Cathedral, 68, 138 
Gloucester Cathedral, 28, 60, 91, 
148, 268, 282 
Gonalston Church, 290 
Gorhambury, 92 
Gosfield Church, 283 
Graveney Church, 135, 283, 293 
Great Berkhampstead Church, 286, 

Great Casterton Church, 146 
Great Malvern Abbey Church, 91, 
93, 118, 268 

Great Tew Church, 269, 287 
B B 



Grey Abbey, 70 
Grimsby Church, 283 
Gubbio, 315, 316 
Guernsey, 307 
Guildford, 278 
— — — Castle, 14 

Haltwhistle Church, 114 
Hambledon Church, 146 
Hampton Court, 92 
Hatfield Broadoak Church, 165, 268 
Hereford Cathedral, 28, 116, 130, 
148, 268, 277, 278 
Hendon Church, 145 
Herne Church, 293 
Higham Ferrars Church, 280 
Hitchendon Church, 268 
Hitchin Church, 298 
Hochst, 320 
Holy Cross Abbey, 70 
Holyrood Chapel, 69 
Horsemonden Church, 276 
Hoveningham Church, 290, 293 
Hoveringham Church, 269 
Howden Church, 268 
Howell Church, 146 
Hull, 148 

Iffley Church, 22, 28 
Igtham, the Mote, 59 
Ingham Church, 268, 287 
Iona Chapel, 69 

Ipswich, St. Mary Tower Church, 


-, St. Mary Key Church, 


Islesham Church, 288 

Jedburgh Abbey, 28 
Jerpoint Abbey, 70 

Kedleston Church, 144 
Kelso Abbey, 28 
Kildare Abbey, 70 
Kilkenny Cathedral, 70 
Kingerby Church, 144 
King’s Sombourne Church, 297 
Kingston-upon-Thames, 298 
Kirkstall Abbey, 22 
Kirkwall, St. Magnus Cathedral, 
29, 68 

Kronenburg, 320 

Lambeth, 322 
Latton Church, 283 
Laughton Church, 140 
Leuchars Chapel, 28 
Lewes Church, 112 
Lichfield Cathedral, 95, 146, 277 
Limerick Castle, 70 
Limoges, 331, 332 
Lincoln Cathedral, 41, 44, 45, 60, 
74, 170 

Little Easton Church, 269, 290 
Little Horkesley Church, 135, 269 
Little Wenham Hall, 62 
Llanrwst Church, 112 
Long Melford Church, 285 
Long Wittenham Church, 126 
Luton Church, 288, 294 
Lynn Kegis, 132, 285, 291, 297 

Malmesbury Abbey, 22, 28, 90 
Mans, 282 

Margam Church, 145 
Melrose Abbey, 68 
Minster Church, 268, 291 
Meissen, 320 
Monkton Church, 276 
Murano, 324 



Necton Church, 292 
Newark Church, 132, 297 
Newcastle, 132 
Norwich, 299, 333 

Cathedral, 23, 28 

St. Peter’s Church, 139 

Northampton, St. Peter’s Church, 
24, 28 

Northfleet Church, 276 
Northleach Church, 297 
North Mimms Church, 280 
Norton Brize Church, 145 
Nymphenburg, 320 

Oakham Castle, 31 
Oxford, 301, 330 

Cathedral, 48, 285, 290, 292 

Christchurch College, 92 

Corpus Christ! College Cha- 
pel, 280 

— Merton College Chapel, 27 9 

■ New College Chapel, 275, 

277, 278, 279 

Trinity College Chapel, 280 

Pebmarsh Church, 268 
Penshurst Church, 145 
Pershore Abbey Church, 28, 118,268 
Pesaro, 315 

Peterborough Cathedral, 118, 277 
Pluscardine Abbey, 69 
Prudhoe Castle, 31 

Ramsgate Church, 301 
Rochester, 139, 277 

Cathedral, 28, 41 

Castle, 31 

Romsey Abbey, 28 
Roslin Chapel, 69 
Ryther Church, 268, 290 

St. Albans Abbey Church, 14, 28, 
47, 60, 90, 132, 139, 148, 176, 
277, 280, 298 
St. Andrew’s Abbey, 69 
St. Cross Hospital, 276 
St. Cloud, 321 

St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin, 69 
St. Paul’s Cathedral, note to p. 366 
Salisbury Cathedral, 45, 60, 74, 90, 
118, 124, 126, 257, 268, 277 
Sandwich Church, 268 
Savoy, The, 327 

Sawbridgeworth Church, 289, 291 
Selby Church, 286 
Sens, 344 
Sevres, 306, 321 
Shottesbroke Church, 297 
Sligo Abbey, 70 
Snoring Church, 293 
Sodbury Church, 360 
Southacre Church, 118, 268 
Southwell Minster, 28 
Sparsholt Church, 291 
Spilsby Church, 269, 287 
Staindrop Church, 268, 290, 292 
Stanton Harcourt Church, 41, 269, 

Staunton Church, 145 
Stoke Church, Lincolnshire, 146 
Stoke Dabernon Church, 133, 234, 
250, 268 

Stoke Fleming Church, 296 
Stowe Church, 28 
Stratford-le-Bow, 322 
Syon, 356 

Taplow Church, 297 
Temple Church, The, 118, 120, 268 
Tewkesbury Abbey Church, 28, 85, 
136, 148, 268 

B B 2 



Thornton Abbey, 130 
Thruxton Church, 269 
Tilbrook Church, 297 
Tong Church, 269 
Topcliffe Church, 297 
Trinity College, Dublin, 216 
Trotton Church, 269, 286, 291, 293 
Trumpingdon Church, 268, 355 

Upwell Church, 276, 278 
TTrbino, 315, 316 
Utter by Church, 144 

Venice, 324, 325, 331 
Vienna, 320, 331 
Vincennes, 321 

Wantage Church, 258 
Warbleton Church, 276 
Warkworth Church, 268 
Warwick, 125, 286 

Castle, 67 

Washingborough Church, 144 
Water Perry Church, 140, 288 
Wells Cathedral, 60, 74 
Wensley Church, 280 
West Grinstead Church, 269, 287 
Westley Waterless Church, 268 
Westminster Abbey, 79, 81, 91, 95, 
124, 125, 135, 148, 149, 158, 
164, 169, 236, 268, 277, 282, 

285, 287, 290, 291, 294, 296, 

Westminster Hall, 59, 162 
West Walton Church, 99 
Whatton Church, 268 
Wheathamstead Church, 90, 298 
Whitehall, the Banqueting-house 
at, note to p. 366 
Wimborne, 360 

White Tower, London, 27, 28, 31 
Wilmslow Church, 294 
Wimborne Minster, 269, 360 
Winchelsea Church, 148 
Winchester, 220 

Cathedral, 28, 60, 112, 

127, 148 

Wingfield Church, 268 
Winterbourne Church, 286 
Woodstock Church, 42 
Wootton-under-Edge Church, 175, 

Worcester Cathedral, 23, 42, 45 
47, 60, 75, 91, 111, 118, 123, 
146, 148, 276, 277, 282, 285, 
306, 322 

Gfuesten Hall, 59, 79 

Wymondham Church, 28, 190 

York Cathedral, 42, 45, 47, 48 
85, 148, 277, 296 

St. Mary’s Abbey, 353 

Youghall Abbey, 70 


Alexander, 195 
Alfred, 207, 330 
Andreoli, GK, 316 
Anne of Bohemia, 125, 287 
Anne, 349 
Antoninus Pius, 214 
Antonines, 212 
A-PgI^^s 211 

Arthur, Prince of Wales, 148, 276 
Arundell, 189 
Ashton, 176 

Augustus, 196, 198, 323 
Austin Caqons, 353 
Austin Friars, 354 

Bacon, 92 
Balliol, 188 
Becket, 190, 331, 343 
Benedictines, 352 
Berengaria, 282 
Berkeley, 175 
Bethlemite Friars, 355 
Bewick, T., 348 

Black Prince, 125, 168, 169, 171, 
191, 344 
Blake, 351 

Bottcher, J. F., 320 
Brigittines, 356 
Bruce, 188 

Caracalla, 214 

Carmelites, 354 

Carthusians, 352 

Caxton, 347 

Cellini, Benvenuto, 335 

Charlemagne, 208, 331 

Charles I., 203, 207 

Charles II., 203, 204, 209, 264, 349 

Charles VI. (of France), 189, 348 

Cistercians, 352 

Clarenee, 170 

Claudius, 197, 210, 214 

Cluniacs, 352 

Constantine, 196, 213 

Cromwell, 203, 351 

Crossed Friars, 354 

Culdees, 353 

Cunobeline, 198 

Dacre, 171 

D’Aubernon, 133, 172, 177, 234, 
250, 256 



De Bohun, 135, 165, 171, 191, 237 
De Bois, 287 
De Bures, 135 
De Clare, 90 

De Felbrigge, 167, 172, 292 
Della Robbia, 313 
Derby, 125 
De Sutton, 148 

De Valence, 124, 157, 164, 166, 332 
De Vere, 157, 164, 165 
Devonshire, Duke of, 216 
De Wheathamstede, 176 
Dioclesian, 213 
Dominicans, 354 
Drake, 351 

Edmer, 16 

Edward the Confessor, 16, 81, 158, 
163, 167, 173, 179 
Edward I., 95, 133, 169, 187, 188, 
202, 250, 282, 348 
Edward II., 149, 169, 187, 282 
Edward III., 165, 166, 169, 178, 
187, 202, 204, 207, 236, 281, 
282, 289, 296, 350 
Edward IV., 202, 207 
Edward VI., 202, 207, 209 
Eleanor of Castile, 95, 125, 165, 
236, 282, 291 
Eleanor of Guienne, 282 
Elizabeth of York, 125, 282 
Elizabeth, 203, 321, 351 
Eltham, John of, 163 

Fair Rosamond, 124 
Faust, 347 

Finequerra, Mazzo, 334 
Fitch, R., 333 
Fitz Waryn, 258 
Fontana, O., 316 

Fortescue, 161 
Franciscans, 354 
Friars Bonhommes, 355 
Friars of St. Anthony, 355 

Gallienus, 213 
Gaunt, John of, 170, 171 
George I., 349 
Geta, 214 

Ghiberti, Lorenzo, 335 
Gloucester, 170, 191 
Graham, 159 
Grandmont, 352 
Grevel, 135, 297 
Gundrada, 112 
Gutenberg, 347 

Hadrian, 196, 214 
Hallum, R., 138 
Harold, 152 
Hastings, 166, 256 
Hayward, 349 
Henry I., 295 
Henry II., 178, 282 
Henry III., 81, 91, 169, 177, 186, 
201, 202, 204, 208, 236, 282, 

Henry IV., 170, 175, 187, 191, 
281, 282 

Henry V., 171, 178, 258, 282 
Henry VI., 202, 207 
Henry VII., 125, 148, 202, 205, 

Henry VIII., 173, 184, 202, 206, 
207, 208, 262, 350 
Henry II. of France, 317 
Holy Sepulchre, Canons of, 354 
Hope, A. J. B. B., 330 
Hungerford, 191 
Huyghens, 336 



Isabel d’Angouleme, 282 

James I., 178, 203, 205 
James II., 204 
Jerusalem, Kings of, 174 

— , Knights of St. John of, 

175, 355 

Joanna of Navarre, 175, 282, 290, 

John, 123, 126, 127, 186, 205, 282, 

Jones, Inigo, note to p. 366 
Julius Caesar, 196 

Kent, 169 

Lancaster, 169, 285 
Lanfranc, 16 
Lempringham, 353 
Leonardo of Florence, 313 
Lepidus, M., 211 
Llewelyn, 112, 145 
Longespee, 124 

Major, Baron Hennxker, 162 
Martyn, 135 

Mary, Queen of Scots, 188, 294 

Mary, 207 

Matilda, 343 

Matsys, Quin tin, 335 

Mat urines, 354 

Milo, Earl of Gloucester, 190 

Mohun, 292 

Montacute, 257, 290 

Nelond, 135, 278 
Nevill, 161 
Norfolk, 169 
Nuns, 356 

Palissy, Bernard, 317, 320 

Percy, 163 
Petrie, 70 
Philip III., 189 
Philippa, 282 
Premonstratensians, 353 
Probus, 213 

Ptolemy Epiphanes, 211 

Baffaelle, 315 
Ramryge, 176 

Raymond of Provence, 158, 163 
Richard I., 187, 282 
Richard II., 125, 167, 171, 172, 

Rickman, 100 
Russell, 235 

St. Quintin, 140 
Scaurus, M., 211 
Scheffer, 347 
Severus, 214 
Simon, 204, 209 
Spencer, 171, 347 
Stapleton, 176 
Staunton, 260 
Stow, 206 
Swynborne, 135 

Templars, Knights, 174, 355 
Tiberius, 323 
Tiron, 353 

Vandevelde, 34 
Yernon, 161 
Yilliers, 163 
Yolusianus, 213 

Warwick, 125 
Wedgewood, W., 322 
Wellington, 161 



Westwood, 218 

William I. # 152, 178, 201, 343 
William II., 112 
William III., 204 
William, the Lion, 188 
William, Son of Edward III., 296 
Wolsey, 92 

Wren, Sir Christopher, note to p. 366 
Wykeham, 127, 275 

York, 170 

Zanto, F., 316 


Academic habits, 279 
Ailettes, 252 
Alb, 271 
Almuce, 273 
Altar-tomb, 147 
Amice, 271 
Angel, 207 

Anglo-Norman architecture, 17, 28 ; 
armour, 247 ; examples, 28 ; 
weapons, 246 

Anglo-Saxon armour, 244 ; bar- 
rows, 107 ; coins, 199 ; horse 
equipments, 245 ; masonry, 15 ; 
remains, 14 ; sepulchral depo- 
sits, 107 ; weapons, 243 
Anlace, 297 

Apostles, emblems of, 358 
Arcade, 23, 46 
Arch, 21, 37 
Arched buttress, 54 
Architecture, Anglo-Norman, 17, 
28, 29 ; British, styles of, 9 ; 
Gothic, 34, 35 

Architectural nomenclature, 100 
Armillse, 301 

Armour, classification of, 266 ; 
examples of, in effigies, 268 ; ge- 
neral remarks on, 265 ; original 
examples of, 269 

Arms and armour, 239 
Arms of England, 178 
As, 209 
Aumuce, 273 
Aureole, 357 
Aureus, 210 

Austin, Canons, 353; Friars, 354 

Badges, 170 

Bailey, 65 

Ball-flower, 51 

Baluster-shaft, 16 

Banner, 172 ; of Crusaders, 120, 174 

Banneret, 172 

Barbican, 66 

Bardings, 253 

Barrow, 103 

Base, 24, 48 

Basement, 49 

Basinet, 254, 256, 259 

Battlement, 66 

Baudrick, 258 

Bayeux Tapestry, 343 

Bay, 56 

Bay-window, 45 
Beads, 300, 301 
Belfry- towers, 99 
Bells, 98 

Benediction, attitudes of, 277 



Benedictines, 352 
Bethlemite Friars, 355 
Billet, 25 
Blazonry, 162 
Bodice, 287 
Bordnre, 168 

Brasses (See Monumental Brasses) 

Brigittines, 356 

Britisli shields, 242 

Bronze Period, 241 ; work, 96 

Buff leather, 264 

Bullae, 183 

Buttress, 53 

Buttress-strip, 27 

Cairn, 102 
Camail, 254, 256, 257 
Cameo, 340 
Canopy, 54, 147 
Canting heraldry, 175 
Capital, 23, 24, 47 
Carmelites, 354 
Carthusians, 352 
Castles, 29, 65 
Celts, 240, 241 
Chalice, 279 
Champleve, 331 
Chantry, 148 
Chapeau, 161 
Chasing, 332 
Chausses, 296 
Chess, 348 
Chesuble, 272 

Church-yard monuments, 150 

Ciborium, 280 

Circles, 103 

Cist, 109 

Cistercians, 352 

Cloak, 295, 296 

Clock, 336 

Cloisonne, 330 
Closing-ring, 95 
Cluniacs, 352 
Coat of arms, 153 
Coffin, 97 

Coinage of England, 202 ; copper, 
204 ; types of, 204 
Coins, 194 ; ancient British, 197 ; 
Anglo-Norman, 200 ; English, 
201 ; legends on, 205 ; most an- 
cient, 195 ; of Cunobeline, 198 ; 
Roman, 209 ; Roman imperial, 
212 ; standard value of, 206 
Collars, 174; of SS., 175; of Suns 
and Roses, 175 
Cope, 273 

Corbel-table, 26, 52 
Cornice, 52 
Coronet, 161 

Costume of civilians, 295 ; of ladies, 
283, 284 
Cote-hardi, 289 
Couvre-chef, 290, 291 
Crest, 160 
Cresting, 97 
Crockets, 54, 97 
Cromlech, 102 
Crossed Friars, 354 
Crossed-legged effigies, 120 
Crosses, 96 
Crown, 161, 281 
Cuir-bouilli, 249, 253 
Culdees, 353 
Cusping, 96 
Cyclas, 254 

Dalmatic, 274, 281 
Damascening, 334 
Decorated English Gothic, 35, 84 
Delft, 319 



Della Robbia ware, 313 
Denarius, 210 
Diaper, 51, 157 
Differencing, 168 
Dimidiation, 167 
Diptych, 338 
Dog-tooth, 50 
Dominicans, 354 
Donjon, 30 
Door-handles, 95 
Door-ways, 21, 39 
Doublet, 299 

Early English Gothic, 35, 84 
Early shipping, 350 
Earthworks, 359 
East India Company, 351 
Ecclesiastical vestments, 270 
Effigies, of bishops, 118 ; of eccle- 
siastics, 121; of children, 123; 
early examples of, 123 ; in wood, 
124 ; in bronze, 125 ; enrich- 
ments of, 125 ; feet of, rest on 
animals, 126 ; heads of, rest on 
cushions, 127 ; canopies of, 128 ; 
incised, 129 ; crossed-legged, 120 ; 
in brasses, 134 
Elizabethan houses, 64 
Emblems of Holy Trinity, 357 ; of 
Evangelists, 358 ; of doctors, 
358 ; of sainted personages, 359 
Embossing, 335 
Embroidery, 342 

Enamel, 313 ; stanniferous, 328 ; 
incrusted, 329 ; cloisonne, 330 ; 
champleve, 331 ; overlaid, 332 ; 
painted, 332 
Encampments, 359 
Encrustations, 81 
Engraving, 333 

Escoinson-arch, 41 
Escutcheon, 95 

Fibulae, 300, 302 
Finial, 54 

Fire-arms, 261, 264 
Flabellum, 281 
Flags, 171 
Florin, 207 
Foliage, 52 

Fontevrault, Nuns of, 356 
Franciscans, 354 
Fresco, 78 

Friars Bonhommes, 355 
Furniture, 345 
Furs, 157 

Glass, its varieties, 325 ; Roman, 
322 ; Byzantine, 323 ; Venetian, 
324 ; German, 326 ; English, 327 
Gloves, 274 
Gothic castles, 65 

Gothic style in Scotland, 67 ; in 
Ireland, 67 
Gown, 296, 298 
Grandimont, Monks of, 352 
Great seals of England, 186 ; of 
Scotland, 188 ; of France, 188 
Gypciere, 298 

Half suits of Armour, 263 
Haqueton, 254 
Hauberk, 244, 254 
Head-dresses, 291 ; reticulated, 
292 ; horned, 293 ; butterfly, 
293; pedimental, 293 ; “ Paris 
hede,” 294 
Helmets, ] 60 
Henry II. Fayence, 317 
Heraldic devices, 158 ; treatment 
of, 177 



Heraldry, 151, 153 ; ancient, 152 ; 
influence of crusades on, 152 ; 
an art, 177 

Herring-bone work, 15 
Herses, 96 
High-tomb, 147 
Hinges, 94 

Holy Sepulchre, canons of, 354 
Hose, 295, 296 
Hospitallers, 355 
Hour-glasses, 337 
Houses, 32, 61 

Illuminations, 215 ; early Irish, 
218 ; of eighth and ninth centu- 
ries, 219 ; of tenth and eleventh 
centuries, 220 ; of twelfth cen- 
tury, 221 ; of thirteenth century, 
222 ; of fourteenth century, 223 ; 
of fifteenth century, 225 ; of six- 
teenth century, 227 ; general re- 
marks upon, 229 
Impalement, 166 
Inlaid tiles, 88 

Inscriptions, Roman, 230 ; Lom- 
bardic, 231 ; composition of, 233; 
examples of, 234 ; incomplete, 
235 ; abbreviations in, 237 
Intaglios, 341 
Italian Renaissance, 64 
Iron-work, 94 
Ivory carvings, 338 

Jack-boots, 299 
Judicial robes, 282 
Jupon, 167, 255 

Keep, 30 
Key, 95, 337 
Kilns, 93 

Kirtle, 285 

Knightly insignia, 174 

Label, 168 
Lance-flag, 171 
Lance-rest, 259 
Lappets, 284, 297 
Late monuments, 149 
Latten or Laton, 96 
Lead- work, 97 
Lectern, 96 

Lempringham canons, 353 
Livery colours, 173 
Livre, 208 
Locks, 95, 337 
London Companies, 351 
“ Long and short work,” 15 

Mail-abmour, 248 
Majolica Fayence, 314 
Maniple, 273 
Mantle, 281, 284 
Mantling, 160 
Mark, 207 

Marks of cadency, 169 
Marquetry, 341 
Marshalling, 164, 167 
Masonry, 15, 37 
Maturines, 354 
Maunche, 284 
Medallions, 214 
Medals, 208 
Mediaeval sculpture, 71 
Merchants- Adventurers, 351 
Merchants of the Staple, 351 
Merchants’ marks, 176 
Minoresses, 356 
Misericorde, 251, 255, 259 
Mitre, 274 
Mixed armour, 25 



Monastic habits, 278 
Monastic Orders, 351 
Monolith, 102 

Monumental brasses, 131 ; Flemish, 
132; English, 132; crosses, 133; 
brackets, 134 ; effigies, 134 ; 
half-figures, 136 ; in Wales, 138; 
in Scotland, 138 ; in Ireland, 138; 
on the Continent, 138 ; engraved 
a second time, 139 ; rubbings of, 

Monumental slabs, 113 ; symboli- 
cal, 114; symbols in, 114; effi- 
gies in, 118 ; portraiture in, 118 ; 
small, 109. 

Morse, 281, 284 
Mosaic, 80, 341 
Motto, 161 
Mouldings, 24, 50 

Niche, 54 
Niello, 333 
Nimbus, 357 
Noble, 207 

Opus Anglicum, 216, 220 
Order, 38 
Ordinaries, 158 
Oriel, 45 
Oriflamme, 174 

Painted Glass, 82 
Painting in Oil, 342 
Palaeography, 216 
Palissy Fayence, 317 
Pall, 275 
Panache, 262 
Panelling, 55 
Parapet, 52 
Passe-garde, 261 

Pastoral-staff, 275 
Paten, 280 
Pauldron, 259, 262 
Pax, 280 
Pectoral e, 278 
Pennon, 172 
Personal ornaments, 299 
Pier, 19, 35 
Pillar, 19, 35 
Pipe, 97 
Pistole, 208 
Plate-armour, 258 
Playing-cards, 348 
Plume, 262 
Polychrome, 78 

Porcelain, 319; of Germany, 320 ; 

of France, 321 ; of England, 321 
Portland vase, 323 
Pottery, its antiquity, 304 ; classi- 
fication of, 305 ; Greek and 
Etruscan, 305 ; Ancient British, 
306 ; Romano - British, 308 ; 
Saxon, 310 ; Mediaeval English, 
311 ; Hispano-Moorish, 312 ; 
Italian, 313 ; French, 317 ; 
Flemish and German, 318 ; 
English, 321 
Precious metals, 98 
Premonstratensians, 353 
Pry ck -spur, 251 
Pyx, 280 

Quartering, 164 

Rapier, 263 
Rebus, 176 
Repousse-work, 335 
Rib, 56 
Ring, 274 

Robes of nobles, 282 



Roman remains, 11 ; bricks, 13 ; 
children, interments of, 105; 
sarcophagi, 105; tnmnli, 105; 
stones of memorial, 106 ; en- 
campments, 360 
Romanesque, 19 
Roof-timbers, 57 
Rosary, 298 
Rose-noble, 205 
Round towers, 70 
Royal effigies of England, 282 
Royal robes, 281 
Ruffs, 288 
Russett, 262 

Sabbaton, 262 
Saddle-bar, 96 
St. Anthony, Friars of, 355 
Samian ware, 309 
Sandals, 274 
Sceatta, 199 
Screen- work, 95 
Sceptre, 281 
Scroll, 161 
Scroll-moulding, 51 
Seals, 179; antique gems, used 
on, 181 ; impressions of, 181 ; 
appended, 182; en placard, 184; 
protected, 183 ; classification of, 
185 ; examples of, 189 ; corpo- 
rate, 192 

Semi-effigial slabs, 141 ; without 
a cross, 145 

Sepulchral deposits, 104 ; monu- 
ments, 101 
Sequin, 208 
Shafts, 36 
Shrines, 98 

Shield, the, and its divisions, 155 
Shield of arms, 153, 159 

Shield-belts, 248, 250 
Shoes, 295 
Sideless- tunic, 289 
Socks, 295 
Sollerets, 254 
Stained glass, 82 
Stancheon, 96 
Stole, 272 

Stone-coffin, 110 ; lids, 112 
Stone -ware, 318 
String, 25 
Subordination, 159 
Super- Altare, 280 
Supporters, 162 
Surcoat, 153 
Surplice, 273 
Styca, 201 

Tababd, 167 
Taces, 258, 260 
Templars, 174, 355 
Tesselated pavement, 81 
Tesserae, 88 
Tile pavement, 93 
Tinctures, heraldic, 156 
Tippet, 281, 297 
Tiron, Monks of, 353 
Tore, 301 
Tower, 26 
Tower-pound, 207 
Tracery, 43 
Transition, 33 
Transom, 44 
Triptych, 338 
Trunk -hose, 299 
Tuilles, 259, 260 
Tumulus, 103, 104 
Tunic, 273, 281, 286, 296 
Turret, 26 
Typography, 346 



Vamplate, 261, 263 
Vaulting, 27, 55 
Vesica, 357 

V estments of deacon, 27 6 ; priest, 
27 6 ; bishop or abbot, 277 ; 
archbishop, 277 
Vexillum, 275 

Wall, 13, 15, 17, 37 
Wall-painting, 78 
Wall-tiles, 93 
Watches, 336 
Wave moulding, 51 

Weapons of stone, 240 ; of bronze, 
242 ; Saxon, 243, 244, 246 ; of 
the thirteenth century, 251, 
252 ; of the fourteenth century, 
257 ; of the fifteenth century, 
260, 261 ; of the sixteenth cen- 
tury, 263 ; of the seventeenth 
century, 264. See also p. 267 
Wedge wood- ware, 322 
Weepers, 147 
Wimple, 290 
Windows, 15, 22, 41 
Wood-carving, 76, 77, 339 
Wood -engraving, 346