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Title: The Chapel of the Holy Spirit in The Church of St. Peter's, Cranley Gardens, S.W.
Author: Morris, Percy C.
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Chapel of the Holy Spirit in The Church of St. Peter's, Cranley Gardens, S.W." ***

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Transcribed from the 1909 edition by David Price, email ccx074@pglaf.org
Many thanks to the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea Libraries,
Local Studies department, for allowing their copy to be used for this

                            The Chapel of the
                               Holy Spirit
                        The Church of St. Peter’s,
                          Cranley Gardens, S.W.

                                * * * * *

                    _Notes Descriptive of the Chapel_,
                   _its Furniture_, _and its Principal_

                                * * * * *

    “I lift mine eyes, and all the windows blaze
    With forms of Saints and Holy men who died
    Here martyred and hereafter glorified;
    And the great Rose upon its leaves displays
    Christ’s Triumph and the Angelic Roundelays
    With splendour upon splendour multiplied;

                                  * * * * *

    And then the organ sounds, and unseen choirs
    Sing the old Latin hymns of Peace and Love
    And benedictions of the Holy Ghost.”

                                            LONGFELLOW, _Divina Commedia_.


THE consecration of the new Chapel of the Holy Spirit by the Bishop of
London, on Tuesday, the 25th May, 1909, marks the completion of the large
scheme for the enlargement and beautifying of St. Peter’s, upon which the
Church Council has been earnestly engaged for nearly three years.  The
new organ has already been very fully described in the “Dedication
Service” booklets of last year, and it has been suggested that some
description of the chapel may be of interest to many who worship at St.
Peter’s.  Those who read it must pardon the writer if from inexperience
or lack of knowledge he has failed adequately or accurately to describe
it, or if, in describing it, he may have been driven by the depth of his
own feelings to strike too personal a note.

The chapel has been erected to form at once an integral portion of the
church and a feature distinctive in itself.  Ancient precedents for such
treatment are numerous, wherein a richness of material or ornament marks
the chapel as a pious memorial or its erection as an act of devotion.  In
this case it is attached to the north side of the chancel, and opens from
the north transept by a wide and simply moulded archway in harmony with
the chancel arch.  A short neck, lighted by a long lancet, connects it
somewhat more richly with the chancel.

Occasion has been taken to gain light in this corner of the building, and
the exigencies of lighting in a confined area have largely controlled the
form of the chapel.  It consists upon the ground floor of three bays, in
the upper part of two only.  The east window is thrown back from the
party wall, and carried by a rich segmental arch at the end of the second
bay.  The recess thus formed at the east end shelters the altar and
reredos under a panelled vault into which the canopies grow.

The two loftier bays of the chapel have LIERNE and slightly domical
vaults, each compartment intersected by the figure of a cross formed by
the ribbing, which is brought down in an Ogee point to the wall rib.  The
springers are arranged to form canopies over a series of sixteen
figures—Angels, Apostles, Prophets, Martyrs and Holy Church, the
Archangel Gabriel and the Blessed Virgin in the Annunciation flanking the
east window.  The head of our Lord crowns the eastern vault, and in the
surrounding bosses angels bear the emblems of the Passion.  The Holy
Spirit in the form of a dove, surrounded by angels bearing the insignia
of the various learned societies with which the donors are associated,
decorate the western bay.

Upon the walls the ornament is confined to the lower parts, which are
richly arcaded on the north side, and occupied by Sedilia and Piscina on
the south.  A bronze railing with gates separates the chapel from the
transept, and access is given to the chapel from the clergy vestry by a
narrow carved oak door.  With the exception of the mullions of the
windows which are of Doulting stone, only fine Bath stone has been used
in the interior of the chapel, the exterior being finished in Doulting
and Kentish Rag.

The above is a concise general description of the chief features of the
chapel drawn from notes kindly furnished by Mr. W. D. Caröe (the
architect), of 3, Great College Street, Westminster, to whose designs and
under whose supervision the chapel has been erected.  So far, therefore,
there is not much difficulty.  The difficulty begins when we commence to
try and describe the many details of the chapel interior.  It is almost
impossible to convey adequately to a reader _all_ the many thoughts and
ideas that have been worked up into and enwrapped in the carved stone or
painted glass or mosaic that will go with other things to complete the
little chapel.  There is much that is very personal about it, perhaps too
deep for words, but the spirit of the chapel may be the more easily
comprehended, if only those who read this will remember three things.  In
the first place, it is a _morning_ chapel primarily, nay, essentially,
intended for the administration of the Holy Communion.  In the second
place, it is to be _dedicated to the Holy Spirit_, “the Spirit of Truth,”
the promised Comforter by whose light the hearts of all faithful people
were to be taught and all the sayings of our Lord Jesus Christ were to be
brought into remembrance.  Lastly, it is a chapel which has been _built
to the glory and praise of God_, and _as a memorial_ by children and
descendants to their beloved parents and forefathers, of whom many,
though born in New England and educated at her Universities of Harvard
and Yale, have always valued and kept close the ties that bound them to
that older England in which their forefathers were born, and to those
older Universities of Oxford and Cambridge in which their forefathers
were nurtured.  Those who in the days before the Commonwealth went forth
from the Old England across the broad Atlantic to lay the foundations of
a Commonwealth not unworthy to be called by the name of New England
carried with them from Oxford and from Cambridge the spirit of places
where Culture was not as yet largely dissociated from Religion, and where
faithful regard was as yet paid to a founder’s injunction: “Religionis
puritatem ac vitæ ad posteros nostros propagare.”  Their descendants may
be pardoned if, looking back through the centuries to the great
Universities of those days, and regarding them as centres not merely of
culture, but also of religious light and truth, they picture them as
being the instruments by which the Holy Spirit has moved the world, and
have tried in the vaulting of the chapel roof to transmute this idea into
carved stone.

With these explanatory remarks it may now be possible to enable the
reader the more easily to catch the spirit of the place.


The groined roof is divided into two bays, and in each bay there is a
large central boss, having eight bosses encircling it, four large and
four small ones, the four small ones being in each case the further away
from the centre.  In the eastern bay from the central boss looks down
upon us the face of the Redeemer, crowned with thorns, surrounded by six
angels carrying in their hands shields bearing the emblems of the
Passion.  The other two bosses in this bay are foliated and bear the
“Alpha” and “Omega.”

In the western bay the large central boss is carved with the symbol of
the Holy Spirit, the hovering dove, from which emanate rays of light
spreading in every direction, and forming a radiating aureole about it.
Around it, receptive of the light, are grouped angels carrying in their
hands shields bearing the arms of the great Universities of England and
New England and of the Colleges and School with which the donors of the
chapel and their people have been associated.  Oxford and Cambridge face
Harvard, and Yale, and outside them on the outer ring Eton faces Trinity
College, Cambridge, and New College, Oxford, faces Emmanuel College,
Cambridge, Harvard being nearest to Emmanuel from which it directly
derives descent.  It may be of interest to note here that the secure
foundation of civil and religious life in New England, and the subsequent
pre-eminence of Massachusetts and Connecticut in shaping the policy of
national life and in the vigour of their moral and intellectual life, is
largely traceable to those who went forth from Oxford and Cambridge, and,
as far as Cambridge is concerned, from Trinity and Emmanuel.  New College
is also pleasurably associated in our minds with our present Vicar, Rev.
W. S. Swayne, as Trinity College, Cambridge, is with Mr. W. D. Caröe, the
architect of the chapel.

On the day of consecration there will be sung before the Communion
service Gounod’s anthem, “Send out Thy Light and Thy Truth, let them lead
me,” one peculiarly appropriate in the case of a chapel to be dedicated
to the Holy Spirit, and it may be of interest to some to note in
connection with the carving of the bosses of this western bay how closely
the mottoes of the Universities bear out the idea of their having been
intended to be centres of religious light and truth, the motto of Oxford
being “Dominus illuminatio mea,” whilst Harvard bears upon its shield
“Veritas,” and Yale “Light and Truth,” or rather the Hebrew equivalents
therefore, carrying us back in thought to the Urim and Thummim, the
jewels indicative of purity and perfection that gleamed on the
breastplate of the Jewish High Priest.


Coming down now to the carved springers, we must bear in mind that the
building of the chapel is “to the glory and praise of God,” and that it
has been the object of the donors of the chapel to try and express in the
springers and groined roof the spirit of the great festal expressions of
Christian thanksgiving and praise contained in our Prayer Book in the “Te
Deum Laudamus” (verses 1–13) and in the great Eucharistic thanksgiving.
As we raise our eyes to the “angel” bosses of the groining and to the
springers of the eastern bay we can say, “Therefore with the angels and
archangels and all the company of Heaven we laud and magnify Thy glorious
Name,” “To Thee all angels cry aloud,” for the Redeemer looks down upon
us surrounded by the angels, and beneath the springer canopies there
stand the figures of the archangels, “the seven spirits that are ever
before the throne of God,” and of the Blessed Virgin Mary, to whom was
given by the Early Church the sweet title of the Queen of the Angels,
“Regina Angelorum.”

In the north-east springer stands St. Michael (like unto God)
Captain-General of the Host of Heaven, Patron Saint and Prince of the
Church Militant, the Archangel of the Judgment, bearing in his hands the
sword and scales, and with his armour scarce covered by his ample cloak.
By him stands St. Gabriel (God is my strength), the Archangel of the
Annunciation, bearing in his hands the sceptre, and with the scroll
inscribed “Ave Maria, Gratia Plena.”  Facing them, in the south-east
springer stands the Blessed Virgin Mary, and next her St. Raphael (the
medicine of God), the chief of guardian angels, the angel of the
pilgrims, with the pilgrim’s staff and gourd.  In the south-west springer
of this bay, Jophiel (the beauty of God), the archangel of Truth and
guardian of the Tree of Knowledge, stands with the flaming sword next to
Chamuel (one who sees God) the archangel of the Sacrament, holding the
chalice in his hand, whilst in the north-west springer, Zadkiel (the
righteousness of God), the angel who stayed the hand of Abraham from
sacrificing Isaac, is seen, holding the sacrificial knife, with Uriel
near him, Uriel, the archangel of the Light of God, bearing the Roll and

Passing to the western bay we find, as we look round, that the springers
continue the tale of praise to God, from all the glorious company of the
apostles, from the goodly fellowship of the prophets, from Martyred Saint
and Holy Church.  St. Paul, the great apostle of the Gentiles, bearing
the emblematic sword, is grouped with the youthful St. John, the beloved
apostle, with the chalice in his hand from which the serpent issues, and
at his feet the symbolic eagle.  David the King, the psalmist prophet,
with sceptre and harp, is with Isaiah, the “Prophet of Faith,” the great
foreteller of the Messianic deliverance and of the Coming of the Prince
of Peace.  St. Stephen, the sweet proto-martyr of the Christian Church,
stands in the south-west springer with St. Alban, the Christian soldier,
and first of all our British saints and martyrs.  Last of all, in the
north-west springer is “Holy Church” represented by St. Peter, prince of
the Apostles, “The Rock upon which the Church of Christ was to be built,”
and by Frederick Temple, Archbishop of Canterbury, wearing his cope, and
carrying his archiepiscopal staff.  It was said, half musingly, by one
who saw this last springer in the carving, that the builders had, perhaps
unconsciously, elected that Holy Church should be represented by a
temple.  The connection between the name and the object to be represented
was, it is true, not perceived by them, but the selection was of fixed
design.  To those who knew and valued the great archbishop, who passed
away in 1903 in the fulness of years, his great qualities and his eminent
services to the Church seemed to mark him out as specially fitted to
stand beside St. Peter, both truly representative of the Church of


All round the chapel on either side, above the arcading and sedilia, and
in the recess in which the Holy Table is placed, runs, carved in stone,
the trailing vine with leaves and grapes, emblematic of our Saviour, “The
True Vine,” and of the Wine of the Holy Eucharist; and in the carving of
the arcading and sedilia and of the small bosses of the quatrefoil work
of the arch that carries the east window, will be found the pomegranate,
the lily, and the rose, symbols of Hope and Immortality, of Purity and
Love, together with the eagle of St. John and the crossed keys of St.


At the back of the Holy Table stands the Reredos, of richly-carved Bath
stone, the general idea of the sculpture being “the one great sacrifice
of our Blessed Lord,” made with blood-shedding upon the Cross,
represented in the Crucifixion.  Examining the reredos more in detail, it
will be observed that the whole is divided into three sections of richly
canopied niches by slender buttresses, upon which are angel figures
holding shields carved with the emblems of the Four Evangelists.  In the
central section our attention is first of all directed to the offering of
the Great High Priest of the “one oblation of Himself once offered on the
Cross.”  The sculptor has succeeded in combining that which it is so
difficult to do, the true pathos of human suffering with the dignity of
the Divine personality of the Holy Victim.  On either side of the
crucified Son of God are the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. John, whilst in
the two smaller niches are the figures of the two Maries, Mary the wife
of Cleopas, and Mary Magdalene.

The reredos and the whole of the carved work throughout the chapel are
the work of Mr. Nathaniel Hitch, the well-known sculptor of Harleyford
Road, Vauxhall, who has been ably assisted throughout by Mr. Harold


The altar itself, which is of carved English oak, and made by Messrs.
Dart & Francis of Crediton to Mr. Caröe’s design has a front divided by
carved work into three recessed compartments, into which will fit frontal
panels of plain oak, or of beautifully embroidered work, as occasion
demands.  There are four separate sets of these embroidered panels
(white, red, green and purple) the material of which is in all cases a
rich brocade, upon which very beautiful designs specially made by Mr.
Caröe, have been embroidered by Miss Hilda C. Morris (with the assistance
of Miss Parson and Miss Butler) at her studio, 10, Victoria Grove, S.W.
It would take too long to describe the designs in detail, as, though
small, they are very full of thought and work, and have taken a long time
to carry out, but to those who are interested in church embroidery they
will doubtless prove of very special interest.

It may be of interest to mention here the eucharistic vessels and the
candlesticks and flower vases, all of which are of silver, and have been
made from Mr. Caröe’s designs by Miss Woodward at her studio, 5 and 7,
Johnson Street, Notting-hill Gate.  The chalice, which is of the late
Gothic type, is about 7 inches high, having a circular bowl, round the
rim of which are engraved in appropriate lettering the words: “Calicem
Salutaris accipiam et nomen Domini invocabo.”  The stem and foot are
hexagonal, and with the knop are richly decorated with Gothic ornament.
The paten fits on to the top of the chalice, forming a cover thereto.
Round its edge runs the inscription, “Hoc est corpus meum quod pro vobis
datur,” whilst across its entire surface is embossed a cross, in the
centre of which is the sacred monogram in low relief, as are also the
squares of Gothic leaf ornament at the end of the arms.

The flower vases are some 6 inches high, oval in section with slight
angular ribs, and narrowed below the neck and above the foot.  Each has a
marguerite engraved upon it, emblem of the donor’s name, and an
ornamental initial letter M.

The candlesticks are oblong in section, with one broad side forming the
front, the shafts being decorated with emblematic marguerites and tracery
work upon a background of blue enamel.  An Ornamental initial letter M
and the date are engraved upon the fronts of the feet, which, like the
bowls, are of simple form in hammered silver, the decoration being
confined to the shafts.


With the exception of those portions upon which the chairs will stand and
which are laid in oak blocks, the whole flooring of the chapel is laid in
marble or marble mosaic, after the fashion of the old Cosmati work of the
12th {10} and 13th century.  This work has been carried out to a special
design prepared by Mr. Caröe, by Messrs. Arthur Lee & Bros., Ltd., Marble
Workers, of Hayes, Middlesex.

There is a good deal that may possibly be of interest in this pavement,
both because of the class of work and the variety of marbles used
therein, and because of the symbolic nature of certain portions.  We will
deal, first, with the actual steps in the chapel.  The two steps (Nos. 1
and 2) at the western end are laid in Lunel, the next step as you walk
east (No. 3) being of an Austrian marble, “St. Just,” whilst the three
easternmost steps (Nos. 4, 5 and 6) leading to and nearest the altar, are
of white statuary, grand antique, and Rosso Antico, respectively.  To
Dante lovers, and there are doubtless many such in St. Peter’s
congregation, these easternmost steps will recall the splendid symbolism
of the passage from the _Purgatorio_ (Canto IX. 94–102), which tells how
Dante came to the Gate of Purgatory, carried thither from the Flowery
Valley by the eagle, Lucia, a symbol of the illuminating grace of God:

    “La’ ve venimmo, alio scaglion primaio,
    Bianco marmo, era si pulito e terso,
    Ch’ io mi specchiai in esso quale io paio.
    Era il secondo, tinto più che perso,
    D’ una petrina ruvida ed arsiccia,
    Crepata per lo lungo e per traverso.
    Lo terzo, che di sopra s’ammassiccia,
    Porfido mi parea si fiammegiante,
    Come sangue che fuor di vena spiccia.”

and which Mr. William Warren Vernon in his admirable edition translated
as follows:—

    “There, where we came unto the first stair, it was of white marble,
    so polished and smooth, that in it I saw myself reflected even as I
    am.  The second was of a darker hue than perse, and of a rugged and
    calcined stone, full of cracks in all its length and breadth.  The
    third, which is piled on above, seemed to me to be of porphyry, as
    flaming red as blood that gushes from a vein.”

This passage has been variously interpreted, nearly all the early
commentators holding that by the three steps, by which the gate of
Purgatory is approached, Dante intended to symbolize the three acts of
penitence, as they were understood in the days of scholastic theology,
namely, (1) contrition of the heart, (2) confession of the mouth, and (3)
satisfaction by works, whilst in days nearer to our own Dean Plumptre has
observed that (1) the white marble in which Dante saw himself mirrored
indicates purity of conscience and that self-knowledge without which
contrition is incomplete; (2) the dark, gloomy hue, the broken and rough
surface of the second stair symbolizes the state of the heart as laid
bare in confession in all its black unrighteousness; (3) the crimson hue
of the porphyry is fit emblem of the charity or love which is the spring
of all works of satisfaction.  But whatever may be the exact meaning of
Dante’s symbolism, the general idea is plain, and the symbolism of these
three steps, white, black, and red, seems peculiarly appropriate in a
chapel to be used so largely for the administration of the Holy
Communion, at which the Invitation and Confession alike will be made in
words, with which the symbolism of the steps is so fully in harmony.

With regard to the mosaic pavement itself, we cannot do better than
append the short descriptive notes that have been very kindly furnished
by Mr. C. White, the courteous Works Manager of Messrs. Arthur Lee &

    “_Portion directly under Altar_ is composed of Vedrasse panels with
    Rosso Antico crosses inlaid in same.  The panel coming directly in
    front of this is composed of star-shaped pieces of St. Just with
    cosmatesque inlays round same composed of various fancy coloured
    marbles and borders in St. Just.  Foot-pace and riser are in Rosso

    “_Portion on the left of the Altar_.—The front panel is in Skyros,
    the back one in Vedrasse, the centre panel in St. Katharine’s.
    Circular panels—top left-hand corner, Brèche Sanguine; bottom
    left-hand corner, Irish green; top right-hand corner, landscape;
    bottom right-hand corner, Devonshire.  The matrix and outside borders
    are of St. Just, whilst the inlaid portions are of various fancy
    coloured marbles.

    “_Portion on right-hand Side of the Altar_.—This is similar to the
    one last described, but the front panel is in Pavonazzo, back panel
    in Skyros, and centre panel in tapestry Yava onyx.  Top right-hand
    circle, Old Convent Sienna; bottom right-hand circle, Brèche
    Sanguine; top left-hand circle, Irish green; and bottom left-hand
    circle, Landscape.

    “_Main Inlaid Panel_.—The matrix is of St. Just, and the circular
    panels, reading from left to right, are as follows:—Green Yava onyx,
    Corallo, Mexican agate, Giallo Antico, Verde Antico, Rosso Antico.
    The inlaid portions in various choice designs are composed of various
    fancy coloured marbles.  Directly in front of this main inlaid panel
    comes Step No. 3 in St. Just, and below this step on either side of
    the aisle or gangway are panels in Skyros, St. Just, and Vedrasse,
    arranged to harmonise, the inlaid portions round the same being in
    various fancy coloured marbles.

    “_The Aisle or Gangway_.—This is laid in three panels.  The first,
    which comes next to the centre portion of Step No. 3 (St. Just), has
    hexagons composed of statuary with one or two various fancy coloured
    marbles introduced here and there.  The inlaid portions around the
    hexagons are composed of various fancy coloured marbles.  The second
    panel has Skyros, St. Just, and Vedrasse for the main portion, laid
    out in small panels, and the surrounding inlays are in fancy coloured

    “The third panel, the nearest to the bronze gates, is composed in the
    main of St. Just and Pavonazzo, with one or two other colours
    introduced here and there, the inlaid portions being of fancy
    coloured marbles.

    “The borders to the two front panels in front of No. 3 step and also
    to the three aisle panels are in Lunel.

    “The following is a list of the principal marbles used in the
    construction of the steps and paving:—

Statuary.                           Rose Sienna.
Skyros, white, red, and yellow.     Landscape.
Brèche Sanguine.                    Pavonazzo.
Irish Green.                        Bardilla.
Vedrasse.                           Tapestry Yava Onyx.
St. Just.                           Green Yava Onyx.
Swedish Green.                      Mexican Agate.
Cork Red.                           Red and Yellow Verona.
Corallo.                            Griotte.
Bleu Turquin.                       Tinos.
Jaune Lamartine.                    Blue Pentelikon.
Jaune Antique.                      Rosso Antico.
Old Convent Sienna.                 Cippolino.
Campan Vert.                        Lunel.
Verde Antico.                       Grand Antique.
Devon, red and grey.


It remains now to deal with the stained glass of the chapel windows.  The
carrying out of this very important part of the chapel decoration has
been entrusted to Messrs. James Powell & Sons, Whitefriars Glass Works,
Tudor Street, E.C., the whole of the windows having been executed by them
to designs prepared by Mr. James C. Powell, to whom warm thanks are due
for the very special interest which he has so kindly taken in the work.
It was decided after careful consideration to follow the style of the
15th century (late Gothic) glass, is which it was found possible in a
singularly effective way to enshrine in a mass of white glass just enough
colour to give richness without great loss of light.  The charm of this
old glass of the Perpendicular period was to be found in its more
pictorial quality and in its extreme brilliancy, large masses of silvery
white and golden-hued yellow glass being introduced.  In the chapel
windows the glass has been treated in a translucent way and every effort
made to secure brilliancy by using glass of very varying thickness.  The
keynote to the subjects of the east window and of the three-light south
window is to be found in Galatians v. 22, 23:—“But the fruit of the
Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
meekness, temperance.”

These windows are intended to recall that verse, and to illustrate some
of the greatest instances of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.


In the two outer lower lights of the east window are St. John and St.
Peter, types of love and faith, whilst in the upper or tracery lights of
the window, angels bear scrolls inscribed with the Spirit’s fruits, and
in the topmost lozenge-shaped light is the motto of some of the donors of
the chapel, “Scuto fidei.”  In the four centre lower lights are the two
great scenes of the Annunciation and of the Baptism of our Lord, scenes
so beautifully connected with the outpouring of the Holy Spirit as the
words of Holy Scripture show (see Luke i. 35, and Matthew iii. 11 and


The south window has been chosen to _illustrate specially_ the greatest
of all these fruits, “Love,” and in the lower portion thereof is depicted
the Blessed Virgin Mary with the Infant Saviour in her arms, surrounded
by angels, whilst in the upper lights, which are indicative of the
Passion, are two angels, one bearing the Cross and the other the chalice
and the Crown of Thorns.  Above their heads are the Cross and the Crown
of Victory, and other symbols of the Passion, and in the topmost light,
the Holy Dove.  Perhaps no better subject could be found to illustrate
the greatest Love human and divine than the human Mother with her Divine
Son, the only begotten of the Father, whom the Father in His infinite
love of the world gave for man’s redemption.


For the long lancet window that faces east it was extremely difficult to
find a subject, owing to its extreme narrowness and height.  Many
subjects were tried, but in the end the difficulty was solved by a chance
holiday visit to an old Cornish church at St. Neots, and by the reading
of a passage out of the “Legend of the Cross” in Baring Gould’s “Curious
Myths of the Middle Ages,” pp. 379–382, {14} which was called to mind by
a valued Cornish friend.  Out of the “Legend of the Cross,” one of the
greatest popularity in the Middle Ages, and often lending itself to
representation in varied form in fresco or stained glass, has been
designed a window which tells of “Paradise Lost” and “Paradise Regained,”
lost when Adam was driven forth from Eden, but regained through the
Saviour who died upon the Cross, made, so the Legend runs, from the wood
of the three trees which, incorporated and confounded as to their several
natures in a single trunk, had grown from the three seeds of the Tree of
Life, given to Seth by the Guardian Angel and planted by him in his
father’s tomb.  “The Tree had grown till its branches reached heaven.
The boughs were covered with leaves and flowers and fruit.  But the
fairest fruit was a little babe, a living sun, who seemed to be listening
to the songs of seven white doves who circled round his head.”  So runs
the legend of the vision of the son of Adam, as, stopped at Eden’s gate
by the angel with the flaming sword, he looked into the future.  Perhaps,
after all, this vision of the redemption of mankind by the coming of the
Saviour endowed with all the seven-fold gifts of the Spirit, is not an
unworthy subject for a stained glass window in a Christian church to-day.


The little window over the Piscina tells of the vision of Isaiah (Isaiah
vi. 11).  “Then flew one of the seraphims, having a live coal in his
hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar: and he laid
it upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this hath touched thy lips and thine
iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged.”  Close to this little window
is the Holy Table, from which is to be daily given the body and blood of
our Lord Jesus Christ for the preservation of body and soul unto
everlasting life, and it has seemed appropriate to tell nearby in stained
glass the story of that earlier cleansing by the coal from off the altar.


The chapel contains only one memorial inscription, which is in raised
letters on the wall of the Piscina, and runs as follows:—

    “A M D G maiores dilectos sive in Anglia sive ultra Atlanticum mare
    natos studio ac pietate prosecuti hoc sacellum Sancti Spiritus
    ædificandum atque ornandum curaverunt minores.

    Lucia Augsburg Morris.

    Violetta White Delafield.

    Margarita Whitlock White.

    Alain Campbell White.

    Percy Copeland Morris.

    Iohannes Ross Delafield.

    Godofredus Grant Morris.

    Margarita Picton Grant Morris.

    Arturus Le Blanc Grant Morris.”

    A. S.  MDCCCCIX.

It is fitting that this little description should end with an
acknowledgment of the deep obligation that we are under to all those,
masters and men, men of various crafts and occupations, who have worked
so efficiently and with such unremitting care in the erection of the
little chapel.  The task has been one of more than ordinary difficulty,
owing to the cramped nature of the chapel site and the many details
involved in its construction and decoration, but, despite the many
difficulties, all employed upon the work have cheerfully given the best
of their skill and experience to the successful accomplishment thereof,
and a special word of thanks is due to Mr. A. J. White, the Clerk of the
Works, and to Mr. Ward, the Work’s Foreman to Messrs. Collins & Godfrey,
of Tewkesbury, the contractors.

The chapel itself will, we hope, always stand as a beautiful reminder of
the deep debt of thanks that St. Peter’s owes to Mr. W. D. Caröe, its
architect and designer.

Longfellow once wrote of a great minster:—

   “So, as I enter here from day to day,
   And leave my burden at this minster gate,
   Kneeling in prayer and not ashamed to pray,
   The tumult of the time disconsolate
   To inarticulate murmurs dies away,
   Whilst the eternal ages watch and wait.”

Those who have given this little chapel to St. Peter’s cherish the hope
that perhaps to many of those who may hereafter pray therein may come
that spirit of peace and rest so beautifully suggested by the New England

                                * * * * *

                                * * * * *

       _Wightman & Co._, _Ltd._, _Printers_, _Westminster_, _S.W._


{10}  Although the printed book has “the 12th and 13th century”, in the
author’s presentation copy to Chelsea Public Library the “12th and”
crossed out, presumably by the author, Percy C. Morris.—DP.

{14}  NOTE.—This legend is found related in the “Golden Legend” (a book
written by Jacobus de Voragine between 1270 and 1280, and published under
the title of “Historia Longobardica seu Legenda Sanctorum”), and also in
Didron, Christian Iconography, Millington’s translation, I. 367, in a
passage full of interest.

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