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Title: George Edmund Street Unpublished Notes and Reprinted Papers
Author: King, Georgiana Goddard, Street, George Edmund
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*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "George Edmund Street Unpublished Notes and Reprinted Papers" ***

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  No. 100

[Illustration: ZAMORA ON THE DOURO]










    I.                                                          1

   II. NOTES OF A TOUR IN CENTRAL ITALY                        59

  III. NOTES ON FRENCH CHURCHES                                97


         ARCHITECTURAL NOTES IN FRANCE                        127


  APPENDIX                                                    253

         S. MARY’S STONE                                      255

         CHURCHES IN NORTHERN GERMANY                         270

  INDEX                                                       333


  Zamora on the Douro                              _Frontispiece_


  George Street at about twenty-five                            8

  In Leon Cathedral                                            29

  The Old Cathedral of Salamanca                               46

  George Edmund Street in 1877                                 57

  Master Matthew’s Porch at Santiago                           92

  The Ambulatory, Cathedral of Tours                          127

  The South Transept at Soissons                              162

  Nave and Transept, Salamanca                                196

  The Templars’ Church at Segovia                             227

  The Western Porch, Saumur                                   249

  Rood-screen in Lübeck Cathedral                             271

  The Great S. Martin, Cologne                                307


_I have to thank Arthur Edmund Street, Esq., of London, for the
generous loan of some notebooks and drawings, and through these for a
more intimate knowledge of his great father’s fine temper and manly

Bryn Mawr, _Epiphany_, 1915


  “_And he that talked with me had a golden reed to measure the city,
      and the gates thereof and the walls thereof. And the city lieth
      foursquare, and the length is as large as the breadth. And the
      building of the wall of it was of jasper; every several gate
      was of one pearl._”



I have written the memorial, brief enough and all inadequate, of a
man who died more than thirty years ago, who lived a Tory and a High
Churchman, who worked to revive Gothic architecture in England. His
books are out of print, his occasional papers and pamphlets so entirely
dispersed and forgotten that not even a bibliography can be recovered.
His name goes unrecognized in general talk; his party is wasted to a
wraith or transformed beyond recognition; his Church is menaced by
Disestablishment in Wales, and Modernism on the Continent; his strong
and sincere architecture is superseded by steel and concrete; yet no
man ever less fought a losing fight, no figure ever less evoked regret
or toleration. He prospered, but his personality made that a kind of
happy consequence; he served God, but his genius made that a kind
of crowning grace; he was an Englishman, but was that in no mean or
halfway fashion. Rather, George Street embodied and expressed in his
own temper the very genius of the northern kind.

His people were substantial, of the strong British stock which is
good for grafting on. In the sixteenth century they were respected
in and about Worcester; one of the name went to Parliament in 1563,
and another had been Mayor in 1535. In the eighteenth century some of
them went to Surrey, and early in the nineteenth Thomas Street was a
solicitor in London. He had moved into the suburbs, however, before his
youngest son, George Edmund Street, was born. This was in 1824. The boy
did well enough at school, but at fifteen he was taken away, when his
father removed from Camberwell to Crediton. No school was at hand, and
a solicitor would not send his son to Eton and Oxford. Instead, he sent
him to the London office. This was in 1840. After the father’s death,
in that year, young Street was anxious to go to college and to prepare
for Holy Orders, but want of money made the hope impossible, and the
strong vocation proved to be for the Third Order--a layman’s part in
building up the house of the Lord and making fair the ministry therein.

It seems to have mattered not at all, in the event, that Street was
not a University man. In reading the correspondence of Keats, we must
deplore that he had not had certain conventions of good taste and good
feeling sharply imposed upon him at a great public school; in reading
the poetry of Browning we must regret that he missed the tradition of
self-criticism and academic stability which would have saved him from
the fantasticality of his Greek names and the dullness of his longer
_Parleyings_; but Street seems to have got out of his profession and
his associates all that Oxford would have given, and escaped whatever
harm it could have done. He saved, meanwhile, nearly ten years of
life, and spent these on churches, chiefly old. He has not the marks
of the University man, but for that he is none the worse. No more in
truth has Morris. Instead of culture he has energy, instead of urbanity
he has self-control, instead of classical he has professional reading
behind him. It is only in a very special sense, after all, that he did
without what we call culture and what we call urbanity; in the sense
of Newman’s rather malicious definition of a gentleman as a University
man who is too indifferent for enthusiasms and too sceptical for
prejudices. If young Street never went to school after he was fifteen,
and no record remains of his reading regularly or under direction, yet
he read irregularly all his life; by middle age he had read everything
that a man must have read. Beyond this, in the subjects that he had
at heart he had gone wide and deep. He must have mastered and spoken,
besides French and German, both Italian and Spanish, and he carried
on his research into Latin documents, it seems, with ease and speed.
After meals and on journeys the busy man found his opportunity; he
took up and took in a vast deal of contemporary thinking; finished
the newspaper quickly, and reviews and the graver sort of periodical
literature almost as fast. In his case, as rarely happens, another
art could give what most men seek in literature if they ever seek it,
and the taste was refined and the spirit inspired not so much by fine
poetry as by pure Gothic. The churches of England and the cathedrals
of France taught him that perfect measure, that economy of force, that
high seriousness, that austerity of beauty, for which others are sent
to the _Iliad_ and the _Divine Comedy_. Barring _belles-lettres_
and biology, there is little indeed, whether in science or in
mathematics, that the University can offer, which the arts do not
exact. If architecture is on the one side an art, it is on the other a
profession, and partakes as little of the tradesman’s mean-mindedness
as of the artist’s irresponsibility. It is probable, moreover, that his
passion for landscape had as much to do in forming the character as
Wordsworth’s. By the living rock and the ancient wall, by the perfect
fabric of Notre Dame and S. Marco, by the worship in chanted psalm and
antiphonal prayer, his spirit was forged and tempered.

At school he had sketched and scrawled, and when after his father’s
death in 1840 he was recalled to live with his mother and sister at
Exeter, he studied painting for a while as painting was taught in
the provinces, learning the management of oils and the science of
perspective. No harm could come from this except that in landscape
sketching later he was shy of strong colour, and set down Spain and
Italy more pallid than he liked; but already the current of his life
was running by church walls. In the year before, his brother, who was
eight years his senior and was brim-full of mediaevalism, had taken him
on a short walking trip for what they called ecclesiologizing. For a
while he lived near Exeter cathedral, drawn to it at that time by every
sentiment: grief for his father--since his domestic affections were
stable--and anxiety for the future, strong religious feeling, aesthetic
feeling as strong, the beauty of the service and the beauty of the
building. Thence he made another trip with this same brother, Thomas,
around about through the West of England to Barnstaple, Bideford,
Torrington and Clovelly. The diary of that tour, written shortly
after his sixteenth birthday, is simply the first of the always happy
notebooks which record his many journeys in the interest of landscape
and art. It sets down the lay of the land and the aspect of the streets
where they passed; it notes that he got up at six to sketch out of
his bedroom window; and it preserves more fact than comment, and less
of the trivial than of the significant. Within another year he was
articled to an architect in Winchester, studying the cathedral from
every point and at every hour. The two brothers tramped the country
for twenty miles about, and as they could pushed further, for the most
part on foot still. In the spring of 1843 they walked to Chichester; in
the autumn into Lincolnshire; the next year into Sussex. In 1845 they
reached Northampton, returning thither in 1846 and again in 1850. The
same autumn he went to the Lake Country and thence across to Durham and
home by the Yorkshire dales and abbeys. Jervaulx, however, he missed at
this time, nor does it appear among the sketches of other abbeys in a
notebook of 1875. In the spring of 1847 the two brothers were among the
churches of the fen-land in Norfolk and Cambridgeshire. Meanwhile in
1844 Thomas, who was the eldest of the brothers, and had succeeded to
his father’s practice, took a house near London and fetched his mother
and sister to live with him there.

George, who was lonely and heartily sick of Winchester, came up to
share it, with a letter for G. G. Scott and drawings of his own to
show. Taken on because work was pressing, he was kept on because his
work was good, and stayed in the office of Scott and Moffatt until
he was ready to set up for himself five years later. Thomas Street
by 1849 was married; the requirements of his profession, if not more
serious, were more exacting. He made fewer tours, but his taste for
architecture, and apparently his taste in architecture, remained sound.
“At this time, they were all living together at Lee, and afterwards at
Peckham,” says the _Memoir_ written in 1888 by George Street’s son. “My
aunt relates how the two young men used to arrive with sketch-books
full and rolls of rubbings of brasses, and would then sit up till the
small hours, in all the excitement of archaeological discussions and
arguments. My uncle [Thomas] was quite untaught. His love for and
appreciation of good architecture were quite spontaneous, and the
proficiency which he attained with his pencil and the knowledge he had
of this subject, more than considerable.”

As the first knowledge of architecture had come through a brother,
so Street’s first commission came through the sister. Miss Street
worked at ecclesiastical embroidery. She heard through another lady
embroiderer of a clergyman who intended building a church in Cornwall.
The story turns prettily on the scrupulous girl’s anxieties. Mr.
Prynne, the clergyman, begins--“Has your brother got much work going
on?” The sister, who wants to make him out as important as possible,
yet cannot bring herself to a fib; and the sorry truth that he is
quite at leisure from affairs of his own, unexpectedly satisfies the
impatient projector. The commission for Biscovey church led to others
in Cornwall. Between restorations and new churches and schools,
commissions accumulated, and Street at this period was in those parts
for several weeks together, three or four times a year, overseeing the
work in progress and finding new work ready always at hand. In 1849
he had chambers in London and was “on his own”: at the end of 1850 he
went to Wantage to be within reach of Cuddesden, being appointed by the
Bishop of Oxford, diocesan architect.

Two main interests mark this time. He was engaged to be married, and
he was at the well-spring of the Oxford Movement. He spent his Sundays
at Maidenhead with Marquita Proctor, on the river, seeing churches and
sketching; he spent his working days at Wantage.

“Mr. Street, having no special ties to any locality, desired to live at
Wantage where daily service and weekly celebration had been established
at a time when such were rare. He took, therefore, in conjunction with
Mr. Stillingfleet--one of the clergy of the parish--a little house in
Wallingford Street. During the time he lived there I saw him almost
daily.” This is Dr. William Butler, later Dean of Lincoln. “When not
called from Wantage on business, he regularly attended my service,
and took his part in the choir. He had, I remember, a baritone voice,
and took a tenor part. He was much interested in the improvement of
services, and, although at this time far from wealthy, he offered a
large annual subscription, I think it was £20, toward the payment of an
organist.... Never was there a man of simpler or less luxurious habits.
In those two years he dined with us and the clergy of the parish, he
drank no wine, and had only the plainest food.”

It was an energetic wholesome life, simple not so much by limitation
as by renunciation, full of interest and expression, keeping a right
line, as always, by the force of the initial impulse. The energetic,
wholesome figure stands firm in a clear sunlight that is hardly dimmed
by the space of sixty-odd years intervening. With nothing of the prig,
as little of the aesthete, he was alien to both types by virtue of
his vitality, his mirth, his essential soundness. A daguerreotype
taken about 1850 shows quiet strength with a sort of sweet gravity.
The hands are strong and flexible, not large, with tapering fingers
and fine modelling on the back. You would have turned in the street
to look after the head, with a big square brow jutting over blue
eyes, brown hair very soft and round chin very firm, a mouth poetic
and self-controlled. If poetry were (as once was rashly said) merely
an affair of genius, and genius the affair of energy, Street would
have been infallibly a poet. Energy and beauty in him were mingled
in unusual measure, and he found expression in active more than in
abstract creation: in loving landscape and sketching it, in hearing
music and singing it, in building Gothic churches and restoring them.


His invention was inexhaustible; he designed not only all the mouldings
for his churches, and all delicately various, not only reredos and
pulpit, baldachin and font, and once a whole book of organs, but
equally as a matter of course the windows, the stalls, the ironwork,
the very altar-cloths. About this time he painted the ceilings to some
of his churches after Fra Angelico, and elsewhere from his own designs.
His early work may have been a trifle severe at times, and at times a
trifle daring, but it had always freshness, vitality, one might say
vibration. His capitals ring clearer than glass when it is struck;
his mouldings sound as true a note as a violin when it is tuned. His
building expresses, beyond possibility of mistake, as specific a
sentiment as any composition of Palestrina or Fra Angelico:--viz.,
religious emotion, a combination of reverence and action, a solemn
joy. But with this power to express an emotion from within himself
and furthermore to create it in others, went an indefatigable energy.
He was tall and very ready of movement, thickset and thin-skinned,
blue-eyed and brown-bearded, ruddy, compact of strength and gentleness.

The energy found outlet normal and adequate in three directions--his
work, his affections and his religion. He worked apparently as a young
dog runs, from accumulated motor impulses, from strength that brims
over. You have never the pang of our brother the ass, over-ridden,
over-laden, that agonizes under the goad. You have never the fever
craving for work as anodyne, that drives on desperately at the
straining task as the only escape from the hell-hounds that bay hard
after the sickening soul. The work is never done for work’s sake. It is
a pleasure always, but only by the way. It is done to support some one
he loves and to add to the glory of God.

The affections are close and sweet, those of the hearth. His mother was
a good Christian but even more a Stoic, and Street held her the better
for it. Theirs was a love undemonstrative but recognized, of the most
exacting sort, neither of them accepting from the other anything short
of the very best. After he went to Winchester, being then seventeen,
she treated him like a man, and rarely praised him for doing what he
should. If a pleasure was renounced, she said, “I knew that under
the circumstances you would be Philosopher enough to give it up.” Her
grandson wrote: “It is enough to read the mother’s letters to see
the source of the son’s strength and steadfastness of character. She
was one of those women who, in some indefinable way, have a powerful
influence for good on all those into whose company they are thrown;
who, themselves rather sparing in outward signs of affection, create
in others a warm love and a perfect confidence. Her pride in her son
was unbounded, but was left to be inferred rather than expressed; while
her love was shown more in the demand for sacrifices, in the confidence
with which she appealed to her son’s sense of duty and obedience,
however severe the test.”

Besides a wide and wakeful kindness and untiring interest in others of
his own profession, he had full, warm friendships, but where he could
he took his pleasure with his nearest of kin. The early journeys were
made in his brother’s company, the continental with his wife, and later
with his son. The brothers, George and Thomas, were married to cousins,
and up to the very last the longest and most frequent visits abroad
were made to his son’s grandfather. After his wife’s death he took
for a second wife her close friend, an intimate of the household and
frequent companion.

The relations not of choice, the intimacies sweetened and consecrated
by tender use and wont and all the sanctities of the hearth, the
blind impulses of the blood and yearnings of the flesh toward kindred
flesh and blood, were for him alike inevitable and dear. Here also he
expresses the genius of the English stock. The northern race stood out
long for the righteousness of the married life even in the priesthood,
and the English church has at all times tended toward the family life
as distinguished from the cloistered, and elaborated and adorned those
services and sacraments which celebrate marriage and the birth of
children and their coming to maturity.

The Church of England may be in a position undignified, uncomfortable,
or even ridiculous, coupled up with the State as it is; the doctrine
of the great English churchmen may be honeycombed with Erastianism;
but the English church has the virtue of providing for every one of
her children, lay not less than clerical, a daily office in which they
may take an intelligent, a personal, and a common share. The first
characteristic of the primitive church was apparently the fact of
worship done in common, action in some sort not merely simultaneous
but mutual. There are some--the Society of Friends for instance--who
define religion by that collectivity of feeling, and in expectation of
the Holy Ghost assemble themselves together. They draw most profit from
thirty minutes of silent meditation where a hundred people in presence
make up that silence and meditate each one. The monastic life, with its
multiplied choir offices, met in another way this same desire for the
warmth of human contact, this same enhancement of the experience of the
whole far beyond the several experiences. The Roman church, with its
sodalities and confraternities meeting regularly for special services,
its litanies and rosaries recited by tired, troubled women together
after nightfall, has recognized this and is busy recovering hereby
what has been lost out of the Sacrament of the Mass. I remember after
three weeks’ incessant travel finding myself in Siena cathedral, among
women unquestionably devout, who held well-thumbed books, and, having
lost count of the Sundays after Pentecost, as I opened my _Paroissien_
I asked my neighbour on the right what Sunday it was. She shook her
head and questioned her neighbour; I turned to the one on my left, but
there was no one within decent whispering distance who knew what the
priests and the choir were singing that day. Against such a chance,
their church service assures Anglicans. The English Prayer Book may be
a compromise, the office for morning and evening prayer may be patched
up and anomalous, but it is an order of common prayer. The instinct of
kind enhances the personal expression of psalm and antiphon, and daily
service and saints’-day celebration have the sweetness and warmth of
the family life, the dearness of the sacred ritual of the hearth.

Into his religion Street was born, as he was born into his family.
In the dawn of consciousness he found it about him; with adolescence
he felt it an influence and a motive. In the months at Exeter he was
anxious often, but always there was the cathedral. In the last year
at Winchester he was lonely and sick for home, but at hand there was
the cathedral. While in Scott’s office he used to go with his sister
to mattins before walking into town; in the later years in London he
never missed with his wife the early celebration on saints’-days.
Church-going was as natural as eating, and as satisfactory. He loved
God as consciously as he loved his mother and his wife; and said
even less about it. After he gave up the hope of taking Holy Orders
he made a plan for a sort of half-monastic fraternity of artists and
architects, who should be in art what the Templars were, selected, set
apart, and dedicated. It was patterned after his own life unawares.

Younger than any of the great men of the Oxford Movement, he was
born in the Promised Land. What they had hardly won, he inherited
untroubled. Among the many things the average Englishman would rather
go without than talk about, even to himself, may be counted his
religion, but the strain of enthusiasm in the temper of Street, the
genius that leavens his English substance, would not let him rest
without a reason for the faith that was in him. He read and thought
much at this time. In later years, while the phrasing is reticent yet
the architecture is eloquent. In carved stone and hewn timber, in chant
and carol, in the colour and contour of his records of the visible
world, he let loose the strong inward impulse that burned upward like
a flame. His natural element was creation not conflict, and though
he could strike a good blow at “pagan” architecture and services
restricted to the clergy and the seventh day, he seems to have had
small joy in fighting and it, perhaps, killed him at the last. On the
ground, already won, of English Catholicity, he stood firm and built
strong and fair. Webbe and Neale and Wilberforce, and I suppose Keble
and Pusey, were friends and advisers, but his real contemporaries were
the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood with their allies and admirers who
launched the Aesthetic Movement.

How that was born at Oxford, and was baptized into the English church
with the _Heir of Redclyffe_ for godfather, is hard to keep in mind.
But Morris and Burne-Jones knew each other there and knew Street, who
had married in the June of 1852 and taken his wife to a house in
Beaumont Street. To us in another century it seems that in those years,
from 1852 when the two boys from Walthamstow and Birmingham met and
matriculated together at Exeter College, even to 1857 when Rossetti
brought them back to paint the walls of the Union, Oxford must have
been a place of lightnings and splendours. It sheds the same radiance
that a great city just beyond the horizon’s bound throws up at night
against low-hanging clouds. To them it seemed spiritually grey and
dull enough. The Oxford Movement was in a sense ended; some men had
broken away, some had got to cover, and in the rest religious emotion,
having gone past the stage of smoke and flame, glowed clear but very
still. Burne-Jones, according to his wife, “had thought to find the
place still warm from the fervour of the learned and pious men who had
shaken the whole land by their cry of danger within and without the
Church.... But when he got there the whole life seemed to him languid
and indifferent, with scarcely anything left to show the fiery times so
lately past.”

“Oxford is a glorious place,” he wrote home, “Godlike. At night I have
walked round the colleges under the full moon and thought it would be
heaven to live and die here.” He described it later:--

“It was a different Oxford in those days from anything that a visitor
would now dream of. On all sides, except where it touched the railway,
the city ended abruptly, as if a wall had been about it, and you came
suddenly upon the meadows. There was little brick in the city, it was
either grey with stone or yellow with the wash of the pebble-dash in
the poorer streets. It was an endless delight with us to wander about
the streets where were still many old houses with wood-carving and a
little sculpture here and there. The chapel of Merton College had been
lately renovated by Butterfield, and Pollin, a former fellow of Merton,
had painted the roof of it. Indeed, I think the buildings of Merton and
the cloisters of New College were our chief shrines in Oxford.”

These two undergraduates, both alike so young and so typically
English, lived at a high pitch in those years; each strong impetus
pushing hard upon the foregoing. There was, to begin, an intention
to take Orders, with a real and inward sense of dedication in both.
Out of that flowered Burne-Jones’s dream of a Brotherhood very like
that which Street had earlier nursed. “A small conventual society
of cleric and lay members working in the heart of London,” his wife
called it soberly, many years later, but he himself, at the time,
“the Order of Sir Galahad.” To a friend he wrote at the end of a
letter--and the postscript is like one of his own exquisite pencil
drawings, all archaic, and altogether lovely: “You have as yet taken
no vows, therefore you are as yet perfectly at liberty to decide your
own fate. If your decision involve the happiness of another you know
your course, follow nature, and remember the soul is above the mind
and the heart greater than the brain; for it is mind that makes man,
but soul that makes man angel. Man as the seat of mind is isolated in
the universe, for angels that are above him and hearts that are below
him are mindless, but it is soul that links him with higher beings
and distinguishes him from the lower also, therefore develops it to
the full, and if you have one who may serve for a personification of
all humanity, expand your love there, and it will orb from its centre
wider and wider, like circles in water when a stone is thrown therein.
But self-denial and self-disappointment, though I do not urge it, is
even better to the soul than that. If we lose you from the cause of
celibacy, you are no traitor; only do not be hasty. _Pax vobiscum in

That summer they went to France and saw Amiens. Their companion said:
“Morris surveyed it with calm joy and Jones was speechless with
admiration. It did not awe me until it got quite dark, for we stayed
till after seven, but it was so solemn, so human and divine in its
beauty that love cast out fear.” They went to Beauvais, Paris and
Chartres. “There we were for two days, spending all our time in the
church, and thence made northward for Rouen, travelling gently and
stopping at every church we could find. Rouen was still a beautiful
mediaeval city, and we stayed awhile and had our hearts filled. From
there we walked to Caudebec, then by diligence to Havre, on our way to
the churches of the Calvados; and it was while walking on the quay at
Havre at night that we resolved definitely that we would begin a life
of art and put off our decision no longer--he should be an architect
and I a painter. It was a resolve only needing final conclusion; we
were bent on that road for the whole past year and after that night’s
talk we never hesitated more--that was the most memorable night of my

They were to start _The Oxford and Cambridge Magazine_, and Burne-Jones
was to meet Rossetti and very heartily worship him but never to be
drawn, even by that blazing, fiery star, out of his own orbit of art
deliberate and devout. Morris meanwhile, as soon as he had taken his
degree, addressed himself to work under Street. Afterwards, as we know,
he tried painting, before he found his happiest outlet in decorative
designing, in dyeing and printing, and surely his finest and most
enduring expression in the writing that came so easily we can only wish
that he had taken it harder. A note of Burne-Jones’s in the year 1856
is so charming and so characteristic that it may well serve as the note
of the whole set when they had really found themselves. “There was a
year in which I think it never rained nor clouded, but was blue summer
from Christmas to Christmas, and London streets glimmered, and it was
always morning, and the air sweet and full of bells.”

Their lives were, however, what could not be called less than intense.
Their emotions were all fervid and their sentiments all impassioned,
their enthusiasms fairly militant, their convictions even intransigent.
Lady Burne-Jones communicates an exquisite sense of their way of being
something better than human nature’s daily food:

“I wish it were possible to explain the impression made upon me as a
young girl.... The only approach I can make to describing it is by
saying that I felt in the presence of a new religion. Their love of
beauty did not seem to me unbalanced, but as if it included the whole
world and raised the point from which they regarded everything.” Again
she quotes from a letter of her husband’s, written long afterwards, an
impression of that first journey into France. “Do you know Beauvais,
which is the most beautiful church in the world? I must see it again
some day--one day I must. It is thirty-seven years since I saw it and
I remember it all--and the processions--and the trombones--and the
ancient singing--more beautiful than anything I had ever heard and I
think I have never heard the like since. And the great organ that made
the air tremble--and the greater organ that pealed out suddenly and
I thought the Day of Judgement had come--and the roof, and the long
lights that are the most graceful thing man has ever made. What a day
it was, and how alive I was, and young--and a blue dragon-fly stood
still in the air so long that I could have painted him. Yes, if I took
account of my life and the days in it that went to make me, the Sunday
at Beauvais would be the first day of creation.”

Emotion exquisite and almost as frail as the dragon-fly, almost as
quick to pass as the Sunday sunlight! It is the impression of a
boy, an aesthete and a poet, who kept to the end of his days the
same sensibility and the same delight in beauty tangible. What he
expresses, however, he felt with his generation; his associates had a
like organization and a like attitude. In that very year Street, who
had gone first to France, at a like age, not so long before, wrote
from recollection, in a paper that was read at Oxford and published at

“One of the first elements is height. I know of no one thing in which
one is so much astonished, in all one’s visits to foreign churches,
as by the luxury of that art which could afford to be so daringly
grand. From the small chapel, not forty feet long, to the glorious
minster of some four hundred, one feels more and more impressed with
the sense which the old men evidently entertained of its value; and
exaggerated as it often is, even to the most curious extent, it is
never contemptible. It is indeed a glorious element of grandeur, and
not the less to be admired by Englishmen because we seem always to have
preferred length to it; whilst they, so they could have height, cared
little as to the length to which they could draw out a long arcade, and
prolong the infinite perspective of a roof. And there is perhaps this
advantage of height over length, that whilst the one seems entirely
done for the glory of God, the other is always more apparently for use.
So in a church, height in excess seems to typify the excess of their
adoration who so built; whilst the greater length makes one think of
possible calculations as to how many thousands of men and women might
pass through, or how long a procession.... And as I have said so much
about foreign examples I will but observe that the wonderful beauty of
the apsidal east ends abroad ought to be gladly seized upon.... No one
who has stood as I have at the west end of such a cathedral as that
at Chartres, and watched the last rays die out from all other windows
and at last gradually fade away from the eastern crown of light in its
five windows; or who has seen the mounting sun come through all those
openings one after the other, with matchless and continued brilliancy,
would deny that such glorious beauties are catholic of necessity, and
not to be confined by custom or etiquette to one age or one nation.”

There is the expression of the man, mustering his facts, enforcing
his conclusions, weighing his estimates, recording of his pleasure
the least possible part. The comparison is hardly fair to painter
or builder either, but it is none the less significant. His power
of expression, to be sure, is less, and his determination toward
self-control is greater, but all the while the source of delight,
though stiller, is no less deep. Street’s private notebooks are as
reticent as his public papers. Like everything else that he did, they
illustrate the characteristic maxim which opens _The Christian Year_,
that, next to a sound rule of faith, there is nothing of so much
consequence as a sober standard of feeling--strong feeling, but sober.
A better notion of his response to beauty could be formed from some
personal letters that he wrote in 1845, being then twenty-one years of

“I got out at Milton station and trudged off for Lanercost Abbey,
an enthusiastic ecclesiologist, with everything upon earth to make
my enthusiasm higher than usual--a glorious autumn day, a beautiful
walk and an abbey in prospect, in ruins it is true, but so lovely and
admirable in its ruin that in my admiration of it, the day, and the
scenery, I had almost forgotten to be enraged with its iconoclastic
destroyers; but it was not in mortal temper, after having seen and
sketched it and studied it carefully and lovingly as I did, to ascend
the hill away from it, to look at the river still rushing along as
beautiful and as swift as when holy men planned its bridge of yore,
to look at the sunny fields first cultivated by them, and not to feel
sorrow and indignation at the thought that avarice and sin could
so far have transported men as to lead them to the destruction of
so fair a scene.” “O that the abusers of the monastic system would
trouble themselves to examine this once happy valley, and watch the
soothing influence of the lovely building and landscape, and would ask
themselves whether they did not, in looking, feel more of reverence,
more of awe and of love for the religions and for the men than they
have heretofore felt.”

Street was twenty-six before he crossed the Channel. A foreigner may be
pardoned for feeling it a piece of his good luck that he should have
learned and loved the English Gothic before seeing the larger beauties
and the grander styles of France, lest otherwise his own should have
seemed to him fair but pallid, pure but cold, bearing much the same
relation to the continental that the English service bears to the
Roman use. It was not in him, however, to withdraw the affection once
given for due cause, nor yet to withhold that just devotion the larger
excellence could command. For him the greater glory would not dim the
less. Both shared henceforth in his life.

The foreign journey was omitted only twice, in the year 1855, when his
son was born in October, and in 1870, when the Germans had invaded
France. In the latter year Street went to Scotland; in the former he
stayed at home on the Thames with Mrs. Street’s people, bringing out
his Italian book and working on the buildings for the Bishop of Oxford
at Cuddesden. Towards the end of the year he moved to London and took
a house in Montague Place. The plans which he submitted in competition
for a new cathedral at Lille won a second prize, and the Frenchman to
whom the actual building was given in the end had been rated originally
below him. He had by this time at least three assistants working under
him regularly, Edmund Sedding, Philip Webbe, and William Morris. He was
perpetually occupied with parishes and private persons--on schools,
chapels, restorations, residences even, country churches fitted to a
village community, town churches designed for the artisan populace and
their employers. He had finished Cuddesden College and carried work far
already on the whole important cluster of diocesan buildings; he had
begun building for the Anglican sisterhood at East Grinstead; he had
been praised not a little in the competition at Lille; he was to take a
second place, the next year, with his design for the Crimean Memorial
and in the end to build the church; and shortly thereafter he sent in
plans for new Government Offices. About this last he reasoned, with the
spendthrift logic of youth, that while he could hardly expect to win
the commission with a Gothic design, the premium offered to him among
others of the best was a hundred pounds and would give him another trip
to Italy, while he would gain, furthermore, from the public exhibition
of the drawings.

The undertaking cost, to be sure, time and strength, but of these he
was never stingy. He seems to have known how to be at once thrifty
and generous of himself--generous perhaps because thrifty. All his
life he seems to have done three men’s work in a day and all work in a
third of the time that other men would take. He mentions once, being
on a journey, that “it rained, so we read, wrote, and occupied the
many hours in the rumbling diligence as best we might.” The notes were
written often in diligence or train, as the firm clear writing betrays,
while it remains characteristic and legible. He worked habitually till
half-past twelve at night, yet with all the incessant occupation of the
most exacting sort, in large measure creative labour, you never think
of him, as he never can have thought of himself, as overworked. The
essential soundness, the vital force made his way of life spontaneous
and inevitable. The strong, even, white teeth, the strong, curling,
brown beard, were the visible token of bodily sanity and power, a sort
of physical validity of which the cause was not merely physical.

As the mediaeval builders reared and poised their great churches by
a calculated balance of thrust and strain, and hung aloft in stone a
proposition in proportion, so, you feel, with Street, it must have been
some extraordinarily just measure, some perfect balance of temper, some
secret of self-control, only comparable to the engineer’s control of
his crane or hammer or locomotive, that gave him life so abounding and
yet so temperate, so huge in accomplishment and yet so undistressed.
If we know that at times the pulse and the invention flagged, yet it
is only because we know by testimony that tasks designed in hours of
gloom were not, indeed, fulfilled in hours of insight, but instead they
were destroyed, to be replaced later by designs better because of more
vitality and more _élan_.

Doubtless in this a fine natural constitution played a large part, but
even a larger part, one is tempted to think, belongs to faith. _Nisi
Dominum_, says the Psalmist, but here the Lord did keep the house
and their labour was not lost that built it. One thinks of Huxley
coming home exhausted from his lectures to lie on a sofa at one side
of the hearth, that on the other side being permanently occupied by
his wife. There can be little question which of the two men did more
for his generation, but also there can be no question which found
more substantial and untroubled happiness. “It is _not_ lost labour
that ye rise up so early, and so late take rest, and eat the bread of
carefulness, for so He giveth His beloved sleep.” By every reasonable
standard of happiness we must admit that Street’s work, untiring,
joyous, faithful, done in direct loyalty to God Almighty, bore the
fruit of a constant blessing.

The domestic affections and the service of religion filled up a life
singularly pleasant to contemplate. Boating, cricket matches and
riding, plain-song meetings and the Philharmonic Society, opera,
exhibitions and sales of pictures, all found place without crowding. If
he did not ride he wrote letters for an hour and a half or two hours
before breakfast. He had his office in the house and kept long hours
in it without interruption except from clients, but his little son was
admitted as something less than a trouble, and watched him designing.
An assistant said, later: “We worked hard, or thought we did. We had
to be at the office at nine o’clock and our hour of leaving was six
o’clock, long hours--but he never encroached on our time and as a
matter of fact I am sure I never stayed a minute past six o’clock.”

After dinner there might be music, at home or abroad, cards or reading,
or a cigar and talk on the balcony over the square--a London balcony,
dingy and flower-beset, above a London square in summer, dim with
twilight and coal-smoke, smelling of soot and dewfall on green leaves.
At half-past nine came tea and thereafter three hours more of good work
alone. He travelled, of course, more than a little, and on the journey
put in the normal day’s work. The same friend goes on: “I well remember
a little _tour de force_ that fairly took our breath away. He told us
one morning that he was just off to measure an old church, I think in
Buckinghamshire, and he left by the ten o’clock train. About half-past
four he came back and into the office for some drawing paper; he then
retired to his own room, reappearing in about an hour’s time with the
whole church carefully drawn to scale, with his proposed additions to
it, margin lines and title as usual, all ready to ink in and finish.
Surely this was a sufficiently good day’s work. Two journeys, a
whole church measured, plotted to scale, and new parts designed, in
about seven hours and a half. He was the _beau-ideal_ of a perfect
enthusiast. He believed in his own work, and in what he was doing at
the time, absolutely; and the charm of his work is that when looking at
it you may be certain that it is entirely his own, and this applies to
the smallest detail as to the general conception.... No wonder we were
enthusiastic with such performances going on under our eyes daily.”

Yes, it is good to know that such lives can be, filled with pleasure
in the exercise of conscious strength, sufficient unto the day, with
enough for all needs and to spare. It is like watching a blooded dog
or a thoroughbred horse. As a rule we compare men to pleasant animals
only when they are unpleasant men, and say they are engaging only when
we cannot say they are trustworthy. Here was one singularly engaging.
Every one in remembering him recalls his wit, fireside mirth, good
temper, ready answer. When a dull gentleman, having dissected at great
length the old mare’s nest about mediaeval irregularities in design,
wound up after a pompous question about the secrets of freemasonry:
“Now Mr. Street, what do _you_ think?” Street flashed back: “What do
I think? I think the beggars could not build straight.” When a young
architect consulted him about going to law to recover his designs from
a client--would it be wise? Street answered, “That depends on what sort
of man your client is and whether you have any expectation of further
commissions from him.” “His experience and natural shrewdness,” wrote
an acquaintance at the time of his death, “made him a valuable adviser
on points of professional practice, and he had a humour very often
caustic, which one could not help sympathizing with.”

He was a good son and brother, a good husband and father, without
loss of manliness. No man was less a prig. No man, indeed, was ever
more respectable, but the touch of genius makes respectability itself
engaging. He was not subtle, but his directness can make subtlety look
devious and insincere. He was not complex, but his straightness can
make complexity look morbid and mean-minded. In 1863 Crabbe Robinson
wrote in his diary:

“_October 17_. Dined with the Streets. Our amusement was three-handed
whist. Both Mr. and Mrs. Street very kind. On every point of public
interest he and I differ, but it does not affect our apparent esteem
for one another. I hold him in very great respect, indeed admiration.
He has first-rate talent in his profession as an architect. He will be
a great man in act--he is so in character already.”

He lived afterwards in Russell Square and then in Cavendish Square;
always in the dear, unspoiled, substantial, smoke-stained professional
quarter, the London of those that live there all the year, where autumn
lights vistas of tawny splendour down every street, and spring offers
nosegays of early wall-flower and narcissus from the Scilly Isles at
every corner; where the air perpetually tastes of soft coal, damp mud,
and warm malt; where in December the moist pavement glistens with a
permanent slime, and in May the porch roofs burgeon into azaleas pied
and trailing pink geraniums.

His life thenceforth falls into such periods as Ezekiel counted,--a
time and a time and half a time. Ten years, from 1855 to 1865, were
given to church-building, to travel for the sake of study, to writing,
beginning with the _Brick and Marble in Italy_ and culminating in
the _Gothic Architecture in Spain_. Mainly within the next ten fall
the great commissions--for the Law Courts, for building the nave
of Bristol cathedral, for rebuilding the cathedral at Dublin, for
restoring that of York. If this period is closed with the death of his
second wife, in 1876, there will remain just five years for bringing
all to a conclusion, finishing wholly or very nearly the great works,
lending a strong hand to such public undertakings as saving London
Bridge, adorning S. Paul’s, rescuing S. Marco at Venice, and serving
on the council of the Royal Academy. Finally, he was President of the
Royal Institute of British Architects. He delivered, as Professor of
Architecture to the Royal Academy, six lectures on Gothic Architecture
in the spring of 1881. Those were widely read at the time, printed in
the weekly journal, the _Builder_, as they were delivered, and in the
_Architect_; and reprinted by his son as an appendix to the _Memoir_.
In that same year he died and on the twenty-ninth of December was
buried in Westminster Abbey. He was only fifty-seven and he had been
ill only a month.

With Street’s actual building I have little here to do. Immense in
quantity, admirable in kind, it stands and long will stand, not only
amid the dense green of English hedgerows and in the bitter grime of
English towns, but beside the graves of Alpine valleys and in the
Stranger’s Quarter of continental cities. Of its technical excellence,
the way it meets and happily resolves the builder’s problems, I am not
competent to speak. Architects have praised him well. The distinguished
American who has devoted his own rich and exquisite talent to the quest
of Gothic, tells me that Street, of them all, had the most genius. To
the mere ecclesiologist, who comes to the American church at Paris, or
the church and schools of S. James the Less, in Westminster, or the
village spire of Holmbury S. Mary, it seems that if new churches must
be at all, they should be thus. Where Scott’s work seems colder than
death and Butterfield’s trivial or thin, Street’s alone has a kind of
present life, a pulse, an inner glow. It is again the abounding life of
the man which communicates of itself. Many have put their heart into
their work, but only a great heart lives and burns in it.

[Illustration: IN LEON CATHEDRAL]

Of architecture, apart from technical questions, structural or
archaeological, there is little profitable to be said. Like the other
arts which deal directly with bodily experience, it suffers from the
necessity of translating into an alien speech. You may talk about
Shelley forever, since poetry is made of words, or about Plato, since
philosophy is made of ideas, but the truest praise of the _Passion
according to St. Matthew_ is reserved for the organ, and the real
right comment on any Perugino is the Granducal Madonna. Criticism may
take a lawful pleasure in explaining, first, how a given work of
art came to be what it is--which is matter of history; and, second,
why we enjoy it as much as we do,--which is matter of psychology; but
the enjoyment itself criticism cannot express except by a laborious
process of transmutation and translation. Of all the arts architecture
is least apt for this sort of evocation. Even Pater hardly knows
that song to which the memory of Chartres would, like a mist, rise
into towers, though he could reweave by his magic the very spell of
Botticelli, and recall with his subtle harmonies the very presence
that rose so strangely by the waters of Leonardo. Those who have
lingered at nightfall in the nave of Chartres until through mounting
darkness the blue windows burned as by their own proper light, may
know, some of them, that a great church, like the deep sea, like the
ancient woods, like the starry heavens, can liberate for an instant
the soul from the limitations of the conscious intelligence. But even
if a man would tell of that, and no man would, there are no words for
the telling. To put the matter another way:--the experience of music
is a matter of the auditory sensations and their recall in memory;
the experience of painting a matter of the visual, for the most part;
that of architecture is a very curious combination of the tactual and
muscular with certain respiratory and vaso-motor functions. Words, in
each of the cases, are at the second and third remove from the actual
appreciation; and moreover architecture shares with music, except where
figure-sculpture enters in, the supreme condition that representation
merges in presentation, that form and content coincide.

The love of thirteenth century France flowered in the beauty of
Street’s designing; the knowledge of Catalan city churches bore fruit
in the frequent use of the lofty nave arcade, which barely marks
the aisle off, and opens all the church to sight and hearing of the
preacher; the long acquaintance with Italian brick construction led to
his perpetual endeavour by bands of colour to lighten the monotony of
English stone. But marbles under a southern sun will fade and stain
and modulate together, where other material and other skies will not
effect the combination, and while I feel that some of Street’s essays
in colour have been less happy than his other audacities, I feel
stronglier yet that the fault lies more with the material at hand than
with the shaping spirit of imagination.

He is supposed to have been at his best in designing middle-sized
churches for general use, like All Saints’ at Clifton, and S.
Margaret’s, Liverpool. I know he felt that he never worked more to his
own mind than when he built his own church at Holmbury. The American
churches in Paris and Rome, the English churches in Rome and Genoa,
the Anglican churches at Lausanne, Vevey and Mürren are all his. The
list of his buildings published in his son’s _Memoir_ stretches from
Constantinople to Trinidad. I notice that at the time of his death some
called the new nave of Bristol cathedral his most entirely successful
work. That may in a way be reckoned as restoration, if one likes, and
remain equally characteristic, for Street did much work of restoring,
and the list of original work is followed in the _Memoir_ by a longer
list of ancient work to which he lent a reverent hand. Against any
restoration but the most reverent he protested, both generally and in
such particular cases as that of the Lincoln doorways. He was a member
of Morris’s “Anti-scrape” society, though once at least that body fell
foul of him. The mere ecclesiologist in this case is again disposed to
admit that if, to keep a church above ground, some restoration must be
done, it had better be in such hands as his.

In truth all the best work of Street was done in the spirit and in the
terms of mediaeval work, as the best poetry of Morris was written. Each
by a rare chance found himself of blood kin, born to the same language,
gesture and emotion, with those long dead. I do not know that Street’s
church building was ever blamed for not being of its own age: certainly
such a criticism would be peculiarly unjust, for it is the translation
into brick and stone of _The Christian Year_. The Tractarians and
Street gave their lives to the same task, and they patched up their
churches so well that these will stand for generations yet.

His knowledge, in truth, of the Middle Ages was often enough made
a reproach. He was accused by competitors, by church-wardens and
committees, by journalists and critics, of allowing an undue influence
over his work to foreign styles. No one would be likely now to hold
that for a ground of grievance, but the charge is the less plausible
considering how early mature were both the man and his workmanship.
It was in 1850 that he went to the Continent for the first time,
already knowing his England well. Rarely, thereafter, he let a year
go by without crossing the Channel, and often he added, especially in
later life, an autumn or a winter holiday. There would be interest in
drawing up a table of his journeys, if one could be made complete,
year by year, and in supplying from letters and diaries his fresh
impressions, if these were available. With the help of old notebooks,
even without other material, may be made out a list tentative and
imperfect, indeed, but still suggestive,--by the change in recurrence,
for instance, by the perpetual discovery of fresh interest on ground
no matter how familiar. From what he saw he took refreshment and
suggestion, never precisely a model. There would be no use in setting
off, against the table of his travels, a table of his buildings.
These were the growth of English soil, and from his masters, the
cathedral builders of France and Spain, the masons of Germany and
Lombardy, he asked not what they did but how. More often, the direct
outcome of travel, the transformation of observation into activity,
was not the high-reared vault but the written word--figuring in the
_Ecclesiologist_, in the _Transactions_ of Diocesan Societies and
Architectural Associations, in the Italian and the Spanish volumes, and
in at least two more that he projected but did not live to finish.

Street never went to Greece or Russia, nor, I think, to Dalmatia. The
Gothic lands he loved, there his genius renewed its mighty youth. For
him as for the young Pre-Raphaelites in 1845 and then for the young
Aesthetes in 1855, the first sight of a great French church, say of
Amiens, marked as much the close of one stage and the commencement of
another, as if they all had not known Westminster and York Minster,
Iffley and Fountains Abbey; as if they were, in effect, young Americans
fed on nothing more ancient than those white wood pillars of a front
porch, that rough-dressed stone or bluish brick of a central square
with flanking wings, which appear in our earliest and only, our
“Colonial,” style.

If one is tempted to press the American parallel in the matter of
enthusiasm, as the only one adequate to express the degree of it and
the surprise, fresh as a May morning, irrevocable as falling in love
for the first time, one is even more tempted to push the same parallel
in the matter of method--of “doing” churches and “doing” towns at an
incredible rate. Burne-Jones and Morris on their memorable trip arrived
at Abbeville late Thursday night after a Channel crossing, and on
Friday had an hour in Amiens cathedral before dinner and stayed there
afterwards till nine, reached Beauvais on Saturday and went to Sunday
Mass and vespers, thence on to Paris the same night, spent sixteen
hours Monday in sightseeing, and had only three days there in all
with which to see the Beaux-Arts exhibition, the Cluny, Notre Dame,
the Louvre, and hear _Le Prophète_. Thursday and Friday they gave to
Chartres--a longer time, one likes to remember, than they spared for
any other cathedral. So, of Street, his son writes: “In September,
1850, ... in ten days he saw Paris, Chartres, Alençon, Caen, Rouen and
Amiens, sketching all the time with might and main.” That would be a
fair record now for any but the shameless, even if you substituted
kodak and motor-car for sketch-book and infrequent trains. “In the
summer of 1851 three weeks sufficed to make him acquainted with
Mayence, Frankfort, Wurtzburg, Hamburg, Nuremberg, Ratisbon, Munich,
Ulm, [Constance], Freiburg, Strasburg, Heidelberg, [Cologne], and
three or four of the best of the Belgian towns.” The next trip was his
wedding tour and reached the great churches of what might be called
in architecture, conveniently, the Burgundian March--Dijon, Auxerre,
Sens, Troyes; and the year after that, late in August, the pair came to
Italy. The things done and seen, and, even more the things thought, in
something like five weeks, crammed the notebooks and bore fruit in a
volume that Murray published in 1855, _Brick and Marble in the Middle

The first thing, and, even on reflexion, the most surprising, in all
this travel, is of course the quality and the quantity of what Street
did in his vacations, the incredibly rapid and inconceivably hard work,
no less than the enthusiasm and endurance of the man. The labour, in
the very doing, passes into creation. Besides the great sketch-block
he carried a leather-bound luxurious notebook or two, of heavy and
beautiful paper, some five or six inches by eight, and thick as would
go into a coat pocket, in which he put down alternately sketches
and notes, plans and measurements, names of local building-stone or
extracts from a parish register, and occasionally a memorandum of
railway trains or addresses and dates for forwarding letters. These
worn little volumes are evocative, are potent. He begins sketching,
always, the moment he reaches the Continent and keeps it up till he
touches the Channel again, but he rarely repeats a subject or an
observation. The text records facts and inferences, judgements and
estimates, more often than impressions; and emotions, I think, never.
The drawings preserve more often a plan, a detail, a profile, than a
façade or an interior--in short, a picture. In a sense everything is a
picture, in its vitality of line and unerring selection. For the rest,
the great views of ambulatory and transept, west front and apse, were
done on a larger sheet, and such of them as were not later used up or
given away still preserve in books the itinerary of the successive
years. Whoever has known churches hitherto by photographs only will
turn the leaves of these with strong delight. It is hard ever to say
fully why all drawings of architecture should satisfy more than any
photographs, and these overpass comparison. The camera, after all
cannot see around a corner and an artist can.

The solar print is a dead thing, and here is the living line. Street
can afford, with great economy of line, immense vitality; his son says
that he never carried an india rubber and never put in a line that he
was not sure of, and on the pages of the dusty note-books the line
lives and vibrates. One of 1874 may open at a chapel of the abbey at
Vézelay or a capital from the choir arcade of Auxerre, or another of
1860, at the church of Ainay or the gateway of Nevers; but all the
work of all the years is interchangeable in respect of firmness and
life, certainty and authority; and what you see on the page is not
merely knowledge, accuracy, dexterity, it is genius. The quick notes,
as surely as the large studies and the great original designs, show
never lack of it. Architecture is a craft, a thing a man by application
can learn, like journalism, and architectural drawings may be merely
exact, neat and compact, and give pleasure. But genius is like the
grace of God in a man’s work, it is all in all and all in every part.
The vitality of the line in sketching, the vitality of the design
in building, are the outcome of it. The very handwriting, rapid but
neither negligent nor meticulous, is as much a part of him as a man’s

The original notes, written from day to day, are never slight, or
stupid, or cock-sure. The _Brick and Marble_ volume has kept their
fresh, quick finality. Thanks in part most likely to _Modern Painters_,
landscape in the early journeys counted nearly as much as cities.
Street had seen the Alps in 1851 from the Lake of Constance, and looked
at them and stuck to his work. The next year, apparently, he visited
Switzerland with his wife and walked up as many as possible. On the
Italian journey two years later he literally made the most of the
mountains, going and coming--through the Rhineland and the Vosges, by
the lakes of Zurich and Wallenstadt, down the canton of the Grisons
and over the Splügen to the lake of Como, one way, and the other by
Lake Maggiore and the S. Gothard, climbing the Furka and including the
lake of Lucerne. As, on another visit, he comes down through the Tyrol
by Grauenfels and the Pustertal, the bare hints are electrical, the
reader’s imagination catches fire. In this first book, the landscape
gets more attention than ever again in print, but all his life he loved
a mountain about as well as a cathedral, he saw the Alps as often as
Amiens. His pencil was almost as often and as happily set to landscape
sketching as to any other; it caught the profile of a bluff and traced
the swelling and subsidence of a mountain’s flank. Now that in the
pursuit of colour and light most painters have abandoned form, and
second-rate Impressionists are content to let a landscape welter in
blues and mauves like a basket of dying fish, his forcible contours
and cool washes awake a tingling of reality.

In 1854 he went to Münster and Soest, and wrote for the
_Ecclesiologist_ during the following year three pieces on the
architecture of northern Germany, besides another for the Oxford
Architectural Society. Summary as are these brief and practical
papers, they remain still so entirely and beyond dispute the fullest
and most suggestive account of German brick work, they are so good
to steal from and so indispensable as adjuncts to Baedeker, and
finally, so characteristically foreshadow and supplement the Spanish
volume, that they are reprinted bodily in the appendix here. It is
precisely sixty years since they were written, and they are not only
not superseded, they are still unapproached. Back of the energy which
enabled him to cover a vast deal of ground and never miss a detail,
beyond the personal acquaintance, and not mere book-knowledge, of the
twelfth, thirteenth, fourteenth and fifteenth centuries in England,
France, Germany, Switzerland, Italy (to which later he was to add
Spain)--beneath all this learning lay the happiest instinct for what
was either first-rate or important or both. He rarely went out of his
way to look at a church that was not worth his while, he rarely failed
to look at every church in a town that would repay him. The _Memoir_
quotes a letter from this journey, with the characteristic prelude,
“he worked hard, as he always did, up early and in late”:--“I have got
a great budget of sketches; indeed, I have done pretty well, for in
a fortnight I have mustered about fifty-five large sketches besides
filling a goodly memorandum book. We enjoyed Lübeck immensely, and
amongst other feats astonished the natives by making rubbings of some
magnificent brasses, of which Marique did her share, to the delight of
the sacristan.”

His interest in German building was more practical than aesthetic; he
found suggestive parallels to his own problems in those of the rich
merchant cities, set down, often, in a country without accessible
stone. He recurs a dozen times, in his writings, to the similar
solutions found in S. Mary’s at Barcelona and S. Elizabeth’s at
Marburg, and the same type of building in brick developed about Lübeck
and Saragossa, Toulouse and Cremona--in the great plains of the north
of Germany, the north of Spain, and the north of Italy.

Though in 1855 he took no summer holiday, he went over in the fall
to see the designs at Lille with William Morris, and pushed on to S.
Omer. The notebook of that journey is particularly rich in detail, both
personal and architectural. The trip supplied material for papers in
the _Ecclesiologist_, supplemented by another two years later, through
Normandy, the Soissonnais and the German border. Even to-day when that
country has been written to death, ploughed up by pedants and harrowed
by illiterate motorists and photographers, the papers are almost too
good to leave in the dust of old libraries, with their tang of a spring
morning early enough to taste of frost. The notebook still is more than
half a journal, coloured with detail not so irrelevant as the writer
fancied, and I have snatched out a bit about Laon to reprint.[1]

Far more brief are the notebooks, however, of 1860, when he went to
the Bernese Oberland and took in the country that lies westward from
Lyons--Le Puy, Brioude, Clermont-Ferrand, Nevers,--and many of the
smaller churches of that curious Auvergnat type which was to help him
so well in the interpretation of Spanish Gothic during the following
years. There are sketches and plans aplenty, with the scantiest
jottings of fact, and then a few fragments of bibliography; lastly
terse notes of reading done, I fancy, in Paris on the way home.
These served for an essay on _The Churches of Velay_, which has been
printed twice in the _Transactions_ of the Royal Institute of British
Architects, once at the time, and again, long after his death, in 1889.
It is still inaccessible to most, and I reprint it once more, partly
for the bearing on his interpretation of Spanish building, and partly
because I know nothing better on Auvergne.

Nothing missed him, not the paintings on the wall at Brioude nor the
Liberal Arts on the pavement at Ainay. A scrawled road-map on one page
would be still the ecclesiologist’s best guide for the region. The
village of Monistrol which harbours, thereabouts, a characteristic
church, and to which he refers again for comparison in the Spanish
volume, is not, I take pleasure in noting, the scene of the first
meeting with Modestine. If it had been, you should not know from
Stevenson that a church stood thereby, for the good creature had no
great taste in churches, and though the _Inland Voyage_ lay through a
cathedral country, small good was that to him.

The volume shows how Street’s published books were made, and it shows
furthermore, what any other of these little leather books could
equally illustrate, how his instinct drove straight at the truth and
needed from documents only confirmation. He wrote once:

“For that period of just five hundred years so regular was the
development that it is not too much to say that a well-informed
architect or antiquary ought always to be able to give, within ten or
at most twenty years, the date of any, however small a portion, of
Mediaeval architecture with almost absolute certainty of being correct
when his judgement can be tested by documentary evidence.”

That was his practice, the _élan_ of his own judgement, as certain as
the stroke of his pencil, which other architects, of other nations,
have delighted to honour.

Señor Lampérez, in his great book on Spanish architecture, bears
generous and graceful witness to the justness and certitude of Street’s
conjectures. He even gives him the credit of finding the date of S.
Maria at Benavente, now known to be 1220, though in point of fact
Street had set down as opinion and not knowledge that the church must
have been built between 1200 and 1220. The only case in which I know
his instinct at fault is that of the belated churches of Galicia, where
Romanesque forms persisted sometimes even into the fifteenth century.
There, knowing few dates of buildings and fewer of builders, he hardly
estimated them enough of laggards, and guesses wrong sometimes by a
century, or nearly.

Precisely in a case like this, where an unknown condition vitiates the
experiment, one sees how just is his method and how right in all but
the actual year of our Lord, even here, is the outcome. The steady
judgement, the wide knowledge, the happy divination, which we call
genius, cannot play false. While the saint, by ancient dogma, cannot
sin, the foredamned cannot do right; and the provincial-minded, even
though all the data lie before him, is foredoomed by his _campanilismo_
to come out wrong. It is, moreover, a trifle ungrateful in a few young
Spaniards and a few fretful Hispanophils to scold at Street, for he was
the best friend and the most practical, outside the Peninsula, that
Spain had ever had--not forgetting either the Duke of Wellington or
Murray’s Ford. Let me quote again Señor Lampérez, what he has to say
at the opening of his admirable _Historia de la Arquitectura Española

“Two foreigners deserve especial place and mention in this survey,
the English Street and the French Enlart. Street was an architect,
profoundly versed in Christian art, Gothic in chief; he had studied
the monuments of it all over Europe; he visited Spain and before her
churches he sketched and took notes with so sure a vision that his
book on Gothic Art [_sic_] in Spain has come to be, if I may say so,
classic. It is the greater pity that Street saw of Spain only one very
small part. On any count, his work is of exceptional importance. His
text is too widely known for me to need to analyze it here; suffice
it to say that his method is based on a technical study of each
building, without any divagation into poetic descriptions or literary

_Some account of Gothic Architecture in Spain_, published in 1865, was
the outcome of the journeys in 1861, ’62 and ’63 and (I suppose) of
two more summers spent at home in research and actual composition and
publication. At any rate I find no record of autumn travel in ’64 and

It is hardly fair, in truth, for Señor Lampérez to say that he saw only
a small part of Spain. His journeys covered, geographically speaking,
much more than two-fifths of the Peninsula, and archaeologically
speaking, all the best of the Romanesque and Gothic, both Gallegan,
Castilian, and Catalan. What he missed was the pre-Romanesque, as it
is found in the Asturias, and the true Moorish, _i.e._ the Asiatic and
non-Christian. If he neglected the Mudejar work and the Renaissance
period, it was deliberately, because when he looked at them he misliked
them. The real difference between his field of labour and that of Señor
Lampérez consists not so much in the latter’s possession of Estremadura
and la Mancha, Seville and the south-east coast, as in his fuller
knowledge and more minute experience of the northern provinces. The
Castiles and Leon, Galicia and Navarre, and the ancient domain of the
kings of Aragon, have been examined league by league and published both
fully and frequently, since 1865. The peculiar styles which give their
importance to the regions of the Biscay shore and the Sierra Morena,
the Latin-Byzantine of Asturias and the Mohammedan of Andalusia, are
special phenomena and must always be treated apart; they may therefore
at need be omitted, without grave loss, from the general consideration
of mediaeval building in Spain; and if these are struck out, for
instance from the lists of Señor Lampérez, there will remain, as the
significant monuments and the important regions, precisely those which
Street had already treated. Cuenca and Soria, Poblet and Ripoll, Tuy
and Orense, Toro, Jaca, the Seo de Urgel, were all unvisited and
other churches yet; but the list is not long nor are the places vastly

Some of them, if it must be known, are still but little studied; and
with all the fine enthusiasm of Spanish architects, and societies
learned and popular, treasures of the great age still remain
unexplored. Only last summer the present writer rode over the flank of
a hill to salute, all unprepared, a superb transitional church of the
thirteenth century. It was not cathedral nor even collegiate, but mere
_parroquia_, and perhaps the finest parish church in Spain:--and it is
even to this hour, so far as may be ascertained, completely _inédite_.
When Street went to Santiago he was much in the same case. “I had been
able to learn nothing whatever about the cathedral before going there,”
he records, with ironic amusement; “in all my Spanish journeys there
had been somewhat of this pleasant element of uncertainty as to what
I was to find; but here my ignorance was complete, and as the journey
was a long one to make on speculation, it was not a little fortunate
that my faith was rewarded by the discovery of a church of extreme
magnificence and interest.”

The three journeys were so planned as not only to find out much that
was new each time but to repeat and verify earlier impressions. With
his usual sobriety he sets down the itinerary in the opening pages:

“In my first Spanish tour I entered the country from Bayonne, travelled
thence by Vitoria to Burgos, Palencia, Valladolid, Madrid, Alcalá,
Toledo, Valencia, Barcelona, Lérida, and by Gerona to Perpiñan. In
the second I went again to Gerona, thence to Barcelona, Tarragona,
Manresa, Lérida, Huesca, Zaragoza, Tudela, Pamplona, and so to Bayonne;
and in the third and last I went by Bayonne to Pamplona, Tudela,
Tarazona, Sigüenza, Guadalajara, Madrid, Toledo, Segovia, Avila,
Salamanca, Zamora, Benavente, Leon, Astorga, Lugo, Santiago, la Coruña,
and thence back by Valladolid and Burgos to San Sebastian and Bayonne.
Tours such as these have, I think, given me a fair chance of forming
a right judgement as to most of the features of Spanish architecture;
but it would be worse than foolish to suppose that they have been in
the slightest degree exhaustive, for there are large tracts of country
which I have not visited at all, others in which I have seen one or
two only out of many towns which are undoubtedly full of interesting
subjects to the architect, and others again in which I have been too
much pressed for time.”

Street is too modest here: his acquaintance with Spain if not
indeed exhaustive, like that with France and England, is entirely
representative; and however pressed for time, he never scamps his
work. The present writer may testify, having followed his tracks with
an exact piety all the way, that he exhausted every town. He passed
through Miranda at dawn, but he described, classified and dated the
church; he went up the coast, from Barcelona to Port Vendres, by train,
but he saw more churches and towers than the careful observer after
him. He continues:

“Yet I hardly know that I need apologize for my neglect to see more,
when I consider that, up to the present time, so far as I know, no
architect has ever described the buildings which I have visited and
indeed no accurate or reliable information is to be obtained as to
their exact character, age, or history.”

In that sentence is written down the debt Spain owes to Street.

He took his wife on the first journey but not afterwards. She was both
patient and spirited, but it was a little too rough for a lady. His
own endurance and good temper are unfailing, and infallible his sense
of due proportion. He never tells you what was for dinner, or how the
bed ailed, or when he quarrelled with the landlord. It is much if he
mentions, in a sort of postscript, that the journey to Compostela in
diligence took sixty-six hours, and, elsewhere, that in autumn a man
can live largely on bread and grapes. He is not, like Mr. Hewlitt or
Mr. Hutton when they go on the road, writing a picaresque romance, but
an account of Gothic architecture in Spain. The structural analysis
of Santiago, the discussion of the date of Avila, the appreciation
of the Catalan type of church-building--everyone knows that famous
parallel with “our own Norfolk middle-pointed”--such passages provoke
comparison and command praise, for substantiality and lucidity,
with the very best of writing on a technical subject. The dexterity
with which he singles out the English or Angevine elements at Las
Huelgas, and those of the Isle-of-France at Toledo, and signals there
the gradual interpenetration of local influences, has the happiest
certainty and the most admired ease. It is hard to say where he is at
his best,--whether in dealing with a style like the Romanesque of Cluny
or the Gothic of Paris, where he has a vast store of experience long
accumulated, and makes comparisons and illustrates distinctions from
England or Italy indifferently, or whether coming upon fresh matter
like the domed churches about Zamora or the brick building around
Saragossa, or even something so much out of his line as the Mudejar
work scattered about in the Castiles, he applies reason and method to
the unknown, and, arriving at conviction, he enforces it. Nothing could
be more succinct and more satisfying than his dealing with the dates
of Don Patricio de la Escosura, in _España Artistica y Monumental_.
“I see no reason,” he writes easily, “for believing that the plaster
decorations are earlier than 1350 or thereabouts.”

Only once in a very long while, a slight twist or tang of perversity
relieves the even good sense and good taste. Of the lovely sepulchre
in Avila of that young brother of Joanna the Mad, too early dead,
he remarks that the great tomb “is one of the most tender, fine,
and graceful works I have ever seen, and worthy of any school of
architecture. The recumbent effigy, in particular, is as dignified,
graceful and religious as it well could be, and in no respect unworthy
of a good Gothic artist.” The quaint anti-climax has the very, sweet,
_gaucherie_ of a woodcut by Rossetti or a bit out of Scripture by the
young, unspoiled Holman Hunt. We have come, since that could be said, a
very long way.


It would seem that he finished a great piece of work only to be free
for another. When he had published _Brick and Marble_ he moved to
London and went in for the Lille and the Government House competitions;
when he had published _Gothic Architecture in Spain_ he was to go in
for the National Gallery and the Law Courts. It is a great piece of
work. The reading it implies, that would have been for a mere student
no trifle, was done by a professional man already more occupied than
most. The drawings for it were made on the wood by a working architect,
already designing for his own churches every several moulding, every
piece of ironwork, every free-flowing tracery. Though the task took
all he had to spare out of five years of his life, that was, after
all, a life filled with other and more important interests; yet the
proudest nation in Europe has gone to school to him. Every Spanish
ecclesiologist knows this book, not by repute only but by heart. Even
those who disclaim all working knowledge of English have the volume on
their shelves and the substance of it in their heads. The part which
deals with Cataluña has been translated into Catalan and published
separately. A Castilian version of the half-chapter on Valladolid, with
rich and appreciative annotation and comment, appeared in the _Boletin
de la Sociedad Castellana de Excursiones_ in 1898. He is still cited
as a final authority. The effect of it was to teach the rest of Europe
that the glory of mediaeval Spain endured; that one could actually see
something south of the Pyrenees, neither Saracenic nor Jesuit, a great
religious art surviving, not decadent, not moribund nor morbid nor
corrupted by the gold of the Indies, strong, virile, spontaneous, the
expression of personal independence and manly piety. No one ever packed
up fewer prejudices in his baggage, no one ever brought out more truth.
On his accounts we still may confidently rely. The most important truth
was, of course, the debt to France, which Spanish pride still at times
shrinks from acknowledging. But what some amiable enthusiasts are
loth to admit for love of Spain, and others less amiable are fain to
deny for a grudge against France, the stones of the towns cry out to
testify, and they have Señor Lampérez and Don Rafael Altamira, let them
hear them! The glory of Street is that by the light of his intimate
knowledge and love of France, he saw it fifty years ago. To-day, as
then, his is the one book that cannot be spared. The great lover of
Spain, who set himself, on the first journey thither, to follow in the
steps of the Cid, reckoned also on planting his foot in the track of
Street. The casual traveller writes back to London for a copy and sits
down by the way for it to overtake him. It is the best companion in
the world, never irrelevant, or peevish, or stodgy. It never fails in
sensibility to exalted beauty; it is never betrayed into unction and
the professional whine, or what Swinburne once called rancid piety.
The English sobriety and good breeding just sufficiently are leavened
with enthusiasm--yet that temperate admiration was really, I suppose,
the betrayal of an inner passion: the sound rule of faith and the sober
standard of feeling being again in play.

With the National Gallery in mind, Street had gone abroad in 1866 to
study great halls, and swept a wide round through Munich, Vienna,
Prague, Dresden, Berlin, Hanover, Hildesheim, and the Belgian towns.
The next three years he was in Italy, and after the war oftener
there than elsewhere, coming or going by way of the Val d’Aosta or
the Engadine, the Bernese Oberland or the Austrian Tyrol. The sad
summer of 1871 he spent in Switzerland. Street could not, indeed,
have been born and lived and died in England in the Victorian age,
without feeling that same passion for high mountains which makes so
touching the letters of Meredith, in whom it was thwarted perpetually,
and so inspires the letters of Leslie Stephen, for whom it seems to
have supplied a source of spiritual regeneration. The two Stephens,
Tyndall, Clifford, Arnold and the rest of that strong mid-century race
that broke, most of them, with the church, and repudiated, all of
them, religion as by law established, found literally in the Alps a
substitute for God. Street was able to keep God and the Alps too--since
“all these things shall be added unto you.”

In 1874 he published a second edition of _Brick and Marble_, augumented
by notes gathered in journeys as far back as 1857. Both editions
have long been out of print. It would be a good work if the ancient
house of Murray would republish it, for the author’s most fantastical
reactions against Palladio cannot affect--shall I say, its solid worth?
Accurate observation, close and careful description, knowledge that can
read into every detail its implications, would make the dullest book
indispensable for reference, and this runs lightly as a traveller’s
tale. You are surprised when you find how few of the books, with
pictures and without, that every year unloads on the subject of Italy,
give any substantial information beyond the hotel door-step. Upon my
faith, every author, from the venerable Mr. Howells to the diligent Mr.
Hutton, will run on and on discoursing most excellent music--but if
you would know what a church really looks like, without or within, he
is not your man. Forms shift and dyes mingle in their descriptions as
in sunset clouds. Mr. Pennell will turn you off a wonderful portfolio
of pictures, each worthy to be framed and glazed and hung on the wall,
but if the church be Gothic or Romanesque, if the square be classic or
baroque, who can say? If you need to know, down comes the shabby Street
from the shelf, and after you have consulted the page and the drawing
you may have, belike, more than the author had when he set down what
he saw. His son notes somewhere that on referring to an old landscape
sketch they found accurate record of details they had not known till
later: so truly does truth stand by her lovers.

Meanwhile he had planned the companion volume on central and southern
Italy, to which he refers in the preface. It is a sad pity he could
not have found the time nor the heart to write this, for with it in
mind he pushed as far in 1873 as Ancona, Lucera and Benevento. The MS.
notebook, I fear, has perished which should have gone with a square
thick book of sketches more than usually stimulating and lovely. The
choir of the S. Chapelle at Chambéry shows the way he went; then plans
of S. Ciriaco, at Ancona, the crossing and dome seen from the nave, the
south porch, the eastern and western apses, with a tenderly faithful
drawing of the innumerably-arcaded front of S. Maria, imply the kind
of close study that culminates in a book. Had he but followed up his
observations there and elsewhere, at Lucera for instance, where he
recorded not only the cathedral and the castles, but a whole group of
churches and a cluster of castles that front the Adriatic coast thence
southward; or at Foggia, where, with a sketch of the façade of the
cathedral and a separate study of the most characteristic Pisan and
Pistojan traits he fairly underlined the relation and suggested Troja
to a surprising degree;--had he merely knotted up the syllogisms that
he laid out ready on the page, and written his Q. E. D., then, beyond
a question, from his intimate knowledge of the Royal Domain he would
have made out and declared, here as in Spain, the determining influence
of northern France, and anticipated the thesis of M. Bertaux. That
would have been such another triumph as the Spanish volume, for English
intelligence and English taste. But in these Christmas holidays of 1873
he snatched, as the train passed, a castle at Recanati and a portal at
Giulianuova, then from Foggia made a great leap to Salerno, and ended
for the nonce with careful detailed drawings of the ambons and towers
throughout the wonderful Salernitan group, at Amalfi and Ravello and

Year after year he went back to the south-west coast in winter; in
1874, after his wife’s death, spending Christmas with her father as
usual, going down by the Riviera and coming back by Florence and the
Brenner. It is this year, I fancy, that we may thank for a record of
Spoleto cathedral before the restorers had it, for a series of notes in
the Umbrian towns, and for another series of the churches of Asti.

This was all familiar ground, of course, to him. The MS. notes on
central Italy belong mostly to a journey to Florence made in 1857,
reinforced by another, in 1872, that carried him the rest of the way
to Rome. Of these notes I am reprinting not a little: in part because
such analysis as that of Assisi is profounder than any that has been
written since: in part because such comment as that on Siena and
Orvieto if not palatable is yet salutary even to those who have learned
to love the Tuscan Gothic. Of Florence, others have written more
eloquently though not with more sincerity. To the MS. of the Florence
episode the privileged reader will turn with keen curiosity indeed, but
without apprehension, to learn how Street felt about Donatello and the
primitives, having the assurance beforehand that he will not like the
wrong thing. If one has to forgive Shelley the tinkling guitar of Jane,
and to forgive Browning the thick legs of Guercino’s Guardian Angel,
and both an occasional lapse upon Guido Reni, Street wants no allowance
made. His taste is hardly out of date, even yet. His friends at home
had always been the young painters, his house in London held not only
some good pieces of theirs but some early Italian panels and tondi.

Inevitably he transposed his taste in architecture bodily into
painting: Giotto and Fra Angelico are sure of his liking, so usually
are their pupils; but Donatello’s S. George is “a poor knock-kneed
figure, and no one of the statues [at Or San Michele] comes near the
early French figures in any way.” Well, recalling the S. George on the
south porch of Chartres, on what ground shall one dispute that?

Not merely the dates that Street will like may be foreseen, but the
intellectual attitude and spiritual style: as he cared little for the
architecture of the Renaissance, he will care no more for the masters
of chiaroscuro, and the baroque style he will feel equally distasteful
in the two arts. Lastly, his abiding love for Perugino and Francia is
utterly in keeping with his Anglican faith; it recalls the very tone of
the boyish letter about Lanercost.

“It is particularly characteristic of Lanercost that all is in harmony,
every portion seems designed upon the same principle and with the same
amount of reverential feeling, and all is so simple as to indicate
truth and solidity and the absence of gaudy and hypocritical religion.
I dare say you have smiled at the way I come at architecture and
religion, it may perhaps be the bias of a profession which makes me
do so, but I cannot but think that architecture as well as, not more
than, the other fine arts, is a great and most important assistant
to religion. Again in the matter of abbeys, I know there will be an
outcry when you read my journal [_if we could but read that journal!_]
against my admiration of them and their system; but when I lament their
destruction I lament it because I venerate the men who founded them.”

Rome he never cared for so much as Tuscany and Umbria, that, too, being
temperamental. In the early weeks of 1876, after his second marriage,
upon making the usual visit to Naples he came back by Rome again,
taking the time from his business to see Subiaco, Albano, Palestrina,
and Frascati. The brief wedding journey, when almond trees must have
been in flower all the way, though it was to end so cruelly in a Roman
fever, had begun in a strong fresh flow of happiness that found outlet
in a set of MS. notes on Amalfi. That is the last bit of writing which
I can trace that is not strictly exacted by the circumstances of his

Occasionally always, when something called for it, he had written an
open letter or a brief pamphlet of protest or vindication. Like all
men of strong creative imagination, Street cared more for doing than
for undoing. He was not a man of war, but he was a good fighter when
the issue was clear and the charge laid upon him. Having taken part
in the stormy competition over Edinburgh cathedral in 1872, he said
forcibly during the proceedings, in the name of the English architects
engaged, that the award did not comply with the conditions. As finally
made it complied less than ever, and thereafter he said nothing. It
was a hurt and he held his peace. Some other great controversies in
which he was engaged, fell later and lasted longer. One’s own opinion
to-day is apt to sustain Street. In the matter of the younger Scott’s
restoration at S. Albans the work was generally challenged and came
out unsatisfactory; in that of his own dealing with the Fratry at
Carlisle, he felt himself at liberty, in the face of late and ugly
alterations, to replace and piece out such fragments of the original
work as he found embedded in the building; in that of re-adapting
to general and cathedral use the Minster at Southwell, his proposal
respected the visible indications of the architecture. The present
writer, being at Southwell not long ago, had contrived to make out by
mother wit, from the signs of vault and arcade, of structure and carved
decoration, just such intentions as Street, it appears, presumed.
His superb scheme for rearranging S. Paul’s, with the altar under a
great baldachin at the crossing, stood no chance of liking because it
ignored the average English habit of mind, it made religion splendid
and brought it near. Now the English like their religion chilly and
infrequent and a long way off. His stubborn adherence to Gothic for all
uses may have cost him the award for the National Gallery, and cost
England a new and intelligible building in place of that which still
survives. Street’s plan would have brought forth, in a way, something
not so unlike in effect, while quite different in style, to the Boston
Public Library, stately and gracious, a pleasure to the passer-by,
adapted not only to its use but to its dignity. The question of Gothic
with him was not only a matter of conscience, it was more, a matter of
temperament: all his life, all his religion, the very fibres of his
body, were strung to that interplay of thrust and strain, were tuned to
that upward reaching of the mountain’s heart toward God. He could not
otherwise. The battle of the Law Courts echoes still, though faintly,
in Englishmen’s depreciation and guide-books’ disapproval. The great
pile, notwithstanding, in every aspect is noble, and the question must
turn merely on the style. Modern Gothic granted at all, little can be
said against it, and if the sixties and seventies of the last century
had not used modern Gothic, what else could they have used? It seems
unlikely that the new Law Courts in New York will be better, built on
the plan of the Colosseum.

That work was to outlast his life. Meanwhile private commissions did
not fall off and ecclesiastical appointments multiplied. At Oxford
he had long been diocesan architect; and he held somewhat the same
relation to the cathedrals of York, Ripon, Winchester, Gloucester,
Salisbury and Carlisle. With all this he had building of his own
in which to take delight. In 1872 he bought land at Holmbury, near
Dorking, and made himself a garden there and in time a house, lastly a

The country is there of very ancient occupation, essential England.
The buxom contour of the hills, the generous leafage of the woods, are
richer than elsewhere. The lawns are springy with delicate turf of
grass fine like hair, the close hedges taller than a man, the stocks
and gillyflowers heavy-scented, the dahlias and snapdragons dark-hued
and gold-dusted. From the ridge the eye can range--but the English
landscape needs an English pen.

“The house he decided to place on a brow, with a terrace running all
along its front, the whole, or nearly the whole of the garden being
disposed in the hollow below. A certain formal effect had been obtained
by sunk rectangular lawns and banks. As the views to the south-east and
the south were almost equally good, he planned the house in two wings,
forming an obtuse angle one with the other;[2] one facing south-east
and the other full south over the sunken garden.... Below the hill the
ground swept down in an amphitheatre open at one end to give a glimpse
of the blue distance seen over a bit of park-like foreground, whilst
above it rose one spur behind another of the near hills, clothed with
junipers and grand bushes of holly, and over them again the farther
edge of the hill crowned with masses of dark firs.”

He had, as he maintained the architect should always in truth have,
a right judgement in all things, interior decoration as well as
structure, secular and domestic detail as well as ecclesiastic. When he
had thought of giving up the house in Cavendish Square a friend “told
me he never saw so charming a room as this drawing-room and he was
rejoicing that I could not leave it just now--nearly every one seems
to be of the same mind.... All my happiest associations are with these
rooms and I begin to think I should be less happy anywhere else.”

[Illustration: GEORGE EDMUND STREET IN 1877]

He was to need the happiness of associations. The work begun and
carried out by the nest-building instinct, that faculty which shapes
after one’s own desire a shelter for one’s own kind and kin, was to
prove a solace for grief at the last. His wife had died in 1874; two
years later Street married “a lady who had been of all my mother’s
friends the most highly prized, and had been so intimate with us as to
have been her companion on many of our foreign tours”--her step-son
writes. It is typical of the homing breed, of the instinct that holds
in the old paths, to rebuild with the least possible of novelty, and
recommence without snapping one of the old threads. The blind impulse
of solidarity finds its wants in the ancient walks, the ancient
intimacies, the ancient affections.

Mrs. Street lived only eight weeks after her marriage. Thereafter
Street kept men’s company mostly. He had for friends all that was most
living in London, the Rossettis and Holman Hunt, George Boyce and J. W.
Inchbold, William Bell Scott, Madox Brown, Morris and Burne-Jones.
That _enfant terrible_ of the last generation, Mr. Ford Madox Hueffer,
has probably reminiscences of him. He had, before all, his son, who on
quitting Oxford came up to work under him; he had his associates in his
own profession and in the Royal Academy. In that last year he made a
tour with Arthur Street among the German cities, but the drawings that
could date it are few, and one of the latest notebooks passes within a
few leaves from pulpits in southern Italy to the landscape around S.
Gervais. Thither he had gone in the autumn to take the waters: “he was
troubled more or less by headache the whole time, but he did a good
deal of walking and sketching in spite of very bad weather.” That was
in September. The stroke fell on him the middle of November; then he
was better, was planning a long journey in Egypt. On December 18 he was
dead. The tireless energy never knew a real abatement. He lies in the
nave of the Abbey as Pierre de Montéreau lies in S. Germain-des-Prés,
and in Rheims Robert de Coucy.

It is not a long life as you count it over: five years with Scott and
Moffatt; five in and near Oxford; twenty years in London of triumphant
work; then five of honours like the pause at flood-tide, and never the
ebb. Like such a great river as that he knew so well and frequented all
his days, his life flowed steadily and strongly, the brimming stream
augmenting always, deepening and widening, the heavier current moving,
at the end, more slowly but not through slackening of power, until,
at the last turn, the majestic estuary opens and broadens, as, with
no hurry of fretting waves, no straining through silted sandbanks,
undiminished, the mighty mass of waters mingles with the sea.




(_From a notebook of 1857_)

                              _August 20, 1857._

Left town at 8.30 P.M. by South-Eastern Railway for Folkstone. A close
push for it, as I was an unwilling auditor of Lord Riverdale in the
House of Lords till 7 P.M. I then had a conference with the Bishop of

I left them to settle if possible the Divorce question and rushed home
just in time to pack and be off. A very quiet passage over to Boulogne
was seconded by a weary hour’s waiting at the station before the train

We reached Paris at 9.10 and drove to the _Hôtel de l’Europe_ and
then wandered about for the day seeing sights. Tried for but could
see no good MSS. Drove to the _Bois de Boulogne_ and went to the
_Pré Catalan_, for which I cannot say much. By dint of watering the
grass vigorously they get it to look very green, but it is coarse
stuff, more like a water meadow in texture than an English lawn. The
_Pré Catalan_ without a soul in it except the show men, etc. eating
_al fresco_ dinners, is rather slow, so we came back soon. In the
afternoon went to the Hippodrome. The best thing probably was the
racing between three men each riding a four-in-hand and going at a
great pace. Dined at Véfour’s and then off to the station, and in a
rash moment, and in submission to the peremptory order of a grand
railway clerk, booked ourselves through from Paris to Turin. The train
was very full but I rested tolerably well and awoke in the morning
just in time to get a glimpse of the cathedral at Tournus.[3] At Mâcon
we changed to another train and crossing the Saône turned off toward
Geneva; the country invisible in a thick fog till we reached Ambérieu,
the junction with the line from Lyons, where it rose sufficiently to
disclose an exceedingly picturesque situation. From this point up to
Culoz, where we left the line, the country is very wild and beautiful.
The railway runs up a very narrow winding valley hemmed in with grand
hills, showing here and there fine bold bluffs of rock. The stream, a
mountain torrent, was nowhere--but wide banks of well-worn stones show
that it is powerful enough after rain or in the winter and spring. At
Culoz we embarked on a long and very shaky steamboat, the “Coquette,”
and going stern foremost a half mile down the rapid Rhone (here a dirty
white colour) we finally turned out of it into a sort of canal which
connects the Lac du Bourget with the Rhone. Our steamer was so long
that in getting along we invariably just touched land at one end and
occasionally at both, but by dint of great energy in the steering and
by aid of men who ran along the bank to push us off, we were safely
discharged into the lake. The water here is of the blue green which one
remembers at Geneva. The banks are precipitous and the lake, though
not very large, very pretty. The Dent du Chat on the south-west is
a fine hill, and the high bold hill above Culoz stands out to great
advantage over the immense, perfectly flat, meadow which occupies
the space between the Rhone and the lake, and which to-day is full
of haymakers,--I should say some two or three hundred--all hard at
work. We embarked at a temporary kind of port called S. Innocent and
went thence by railway to Chambéry. Here we stopped for five hours to
see the cathedral, wash and eat. The cathedral is of small interest.
Its flamboyant west front is fairly good of its kind. On the whole
the church wants dignity, and gives the impression of a parish church
more than of a cathedral. The castle which rises above the west side
of the town has not much old remaining. The chapel is poor flamboyant
with some good stained glass in the apse. The king has a fine papered
and cushioned gallery at the west end. I looked into one or two other
churches but found no old features.

The situation of Chambéry is exquisite. It is hemmed in on all sides
by mountains, and their outlines are generally unusually sharp and
bold, finishing as many of them do with great bluffs of rock. A figure
resting on the fore-quarters of four elephants who spout water from
their trunks is the most remarkable modern feature in the city. It is
to the memory of General ----[4], a great benefactor. The streets
contain few old houses: I saw one of the sixteenth century nearly all
windows. The fronts of the shops have the old arrangement of a stone
arch the whole width of the front and a bold stone counter.

We left Chambéry at 5.30 P.M. for S. Jean de Maurienne. The scenery as
long as we could see it was beautiful, but the clouds were low and at
the point where Mont Blanc ought to have been seen they effectually
prevented our seeing anything. At S. Jean we took possession of the
diligence for Turin and saw nothing till we were well up on the
mountain from Lons-le-Bourg. It took us two hours to scale this height,
pulled at a slow pace by nine mules and two horses. The ascent was
uninteresting but we gradually came upon more and more snow and the
pass increased in interest. There is a small lake at the top and a
dreary drive across a crest led us to the fine part of the descent.
This is, for the last hour and a half before reaching Susa, singularly
fine, finer indeed, I am inclined to think, than any descent I have
yet seen. The mountains are fine in their outlines, and the road winds
backward and forward between chestnut and walnut trees. Susa is mainly
remarkable for its beautiful situation among mountains with snowy peaks
always in sight, and a burning sun just now. The cathedral has a good
campanile of brick and a west front built on by the side of an old
Roman gateway, whose scale makes that of the church seem very small.
The spire of the cathedral is covered with small pieces of copper (I
think) cut like slates. The interior is painted all over in the worst
possible taste. Indeed throughout the Sardinian dominions there seems
to be a passion for painting shaded imitations of tracery upon walls
and groining. Chambéry cathedral is a notable specimen of this and
Susa not much better. We left Susa at 8.30 P.M. and reached Turin at
10.30. I expected nothing here and was agreeably disappointed. A city
cannot fail to be charming which has at the end of every street such
a view, of mountains and snow at one end and hills at the other, as
Turin can show. And then, though quite modern, its streets have that
narrow picturesque character so universal in Italy, and in every way
leave a pleasanter impression than one would expect from maps and

The women in Turin wear handkerchiefs on their heads. The streets are
some of them arcaded, by arcades filled with stalls of all kinds of
wares--but fruit is the staple commodity now. The effect is to make
the place look rather shabby and rubbishy. There is not one church of
any interest. The view of the city from the opposite bank of the Po
is charming, owing to the immense chain of Alps spreading from right
to left all behind the city, and the hills above the Po are very
respectable, rising as they do about 2000 feet above the city to where
they are crowned by the church called the Superga.

We left Turin at 5.30 and reached Genoa at 9.30. The views of the Alps
by sunset very charming. At Asti we had a bottle of the effervescing
_vin d’Asti_ brought to our carriage, and could not resist indulging in
the pleasant draught....

_The notes on Genoa appear in the second edition of_ Brick and Marble.

                              _August 29_, PISA.

My expectations were very high here and were a little disappointed. The
Gothic work in the grand group is mainly confined to the Campo Santo
and the baptistery, and in the former the traceries are, as Pisano’s
always are, very unscientific and more like a confectioner’s work than
an architect’s, whilst the latter has undergone such an amount of
“restoration” that not one old crocket is left and barely one old piece
of tracery. There is abundant evidence however in the Spina chapel and
in the few portions of the original marble still left in the Baptistery
that Pisano could do his work in a way very different from what we do,
and I therefore prefer to think only of what his work once was and
not of what it is. The external design is very striking and if the
cone above the dome were properly finished with a circle of canopied
traceries and figures I have no doubt its effect would be perfect. The
traceries, carvings, etc., when looked into are very bad, and it should
be seen therefore from a distance. The interior looks much older than
the exterior and there can be no doubt that this must be the case,
notwithstanding the inscription which says it was “ædificata de novo”
in 1728. Unquestionably this must refer to the destruction of the
exterior which left the interior all but untouched. The dome is in part
covered with red tiles and in part with metal.

The Campo Santo is architecturally not pleasing. Its large traceries,
unskilful and long, never at all fit on to the capitals of the shafts
that support them--but its great length and size are very effective
and the court with its greensward and some tall cypress trees at the
centre, the mountains blazing in the sun and the deep blue sky above,
combine to make a very charming picture. The great treasure here is
the frescoes with which its walls are covered. Orcagna’s great fresco
of the Last Judgement quite and more than came up to my hopes. It is a
wonderful work and full of exquisitely natural treatment of figures in
most delicate colours. The aureole round the figure of our Lord is too
green, I think, otherwise the dignity of the figure is unmatched if not

The cathedral is not to my mind a pleasing structure. Like most of the
great churches in this part of the world, it is raised on a basement of
several steps extending in front of it on every side. It is Romanesque
in character throughout, its nave of great height and the crossing
covered with a low and ugly tiled dome. The columns between the nave
and aisles (there are two aisles on each side) are either antique or
closely copied from the antique and have nowhere any trace either in
their proportions or sculpture of any really Romanesque character. The
columns everywhere have the entasis distinctly developed. All the walls
are arcaded externally and striped with black marble. All the Pisan and
Luccan buildings are similarly striped and (unlike the architecture at
Genoa) the black forms but a very small proportion of the whole wall.
It is generally spaced regularly, and introduced at springings and
sills of windows and under cornices, and there is no approach even to
irregularity in its arrangement. The roof is one of a class of heavy
panelled wooden roofs which were common here in the Renaissance period,
similar in idea to the roof of the Banqueting House at Whitehall. The
aisles are pleasing, vaulted without ribs. In the old glass, of which
some quantity remains, the colours are very rich, there is scarcely any
white (if any) and the designs are almost entirely made of lead lines
and not by painting. The pulpit has two figures and some lions under
the columns which were preserved from an older pulpit said to be the
work of Giovanni Pisano. The detail of all the ornamental mouldings
is completely Roman, the egg and tongue being everywhere finely

Of domestic buildings Pisa retains very extensive remains, inasmuch as
almost every house bears evidence of being mediaeval, but they have
been so much cut about that there is little to be seen now at all
perfect. There is an elaborate brick and terra cotta front to a house
on the Lungarno but it is of very late date--almost Renaissance in much
of its detail and very flat, regular, and ineffective.

On the opposite side of the Arno is another old house now used as the
Custom House; this is of stone but its traceries and details are poor,
very much like those of the Ptolomei palace at Siena. The windows are
shafted, but the capitals of the shafts are generally too large for the
arch mouldings which they have to support, and the mouldings, if they
may be called so, do not unite properly and are singularly ineffective.
Most of the old houses seem to have had a row of plain pointed arches
rising some twenty feet from the ground line, but I could not make out
whether they had been filled in with windows, or whether they belonged
to the stage of stables and coach houses so universal in these Italian
towns. The work is either brick or stone, but in no case did I see the
two materials countercharged.

On the Sunday evening there was a grand procession of a figure of the
B. V. M., with a vast number of attendants all with lighted candles, a
military band, and a few cavalry to bring up the rear. The view from
the lowest bridge looking up the Arno, with the picturesque outlines
of the bold hills above Pisa behind the towers, is one of the most
charming I remember.

A railway journey from Pisa of an hour brought us to Lucca. The railway
cuts some fine hills, and passes by the ruins of a large castle close
to the station before Lucca.

Lucca is entirely enclosed within elaborate brick fortifications, there
being, I think, no vestige of suburbs on any side. The ramparts are
well planted with trees, and the view of them from below, giving an
impression of the tall walls covered with trees and these surmounted
by the tall towers of the town, is fine. The view of the surrounding
mountains is, too, very exquisite.

Of course our first object was the cathedral. Its west front need
hardly be described. Its detail is very rich and beautiful and there
is a great deal of very good inlaid work. In the upper part subjects
from field sports are introduced, whilst lower down they are mainly
geometrical patterns. Some of the shafts are inlaid. The three great
arches which stretch across this front give a dignity to it in which
S. Michele, Lucca, Pisa cathedral, and the other imitations, are quite
wanting. They are remarkable for the way in which their arches are
treated; these are semicircular and the width of the voussures is two
or three times as great at the crown as at the springing--the effect is
good. An image is cut in the right-hand upper end of this front.

All the walls and arches are partially striped with black, the black
courses being very thin with a considerable space between them. The
north and south walls of the nave and transepts are cased in much later
work than the west front and are good specimens of Italian pointed of
the thirteenth century. The carving of foliage in this work is very
bad and what little moulding there is hardly looks like the work of
Gothic men. There is a good inlaid string-course under the windows.
A fine campanile stands a little in advance of the south-west angle
of the cathedral. It is of Romanesque date and built of brownish
rough stone below and of white stone (or marble) above; it is of very
considerable height and effect. The interior is certainly grand but
disappointing--almost all the arches are semicircular but (as the
groining bays are not square) the wall ribs of the groining bays are
pointed, and this gives in some way a general effect of pointed to the
whole work. The main arches are round, but they were so covered with
red hangings that it was impossible to see much of them. The triforium
is of great height and consists in each bay of two round-head windows,
filled in with slight tracery--the whole is of poor character and badly
proportioned. Above these two windows is a small circular window which
serves for clerestory. The groining of the nave is painted richly.
It has broad borders next the ribs and the wall is painted blue, and
figures in the centre of each painted in a circle. The borders have a
good many white lines, but there is no gold in any part of the work.

The planning of the transepts is very singular. They are divided by
an arcade down the centre, and as the nave arcades and triforia
are continued across them some singular combinations are produced.
The pavements have small compartments of Italian fifteenth century
geometrical patterns in mosaic, surrounded by square arrangements of
plain black and white.

Close to the cathedral is S. Giovanni, which, though not otherwise
remarkable, has an immense baptistery built on against its north
transept; it is a square of about fifty-seven feet internally and
covered with a square vault of a domical form. The old font has been

Near the south end of the cathedral is the little chapel of S. Maria
della Rosa. It is a small low building of about the proportions of the
Spina chapel, and mainly remarkable for the window tracery in its side
wall. This is, like all other tracery hereabouts, unpalatable to me.
The windows are shafted and I suppose therefore that they must have had
their glass put in frames inside. This seemed to have been the case in
the Spina chapel. There are dates of 1309 and 1333 on the building,
the latter on part of a door which in England I should venture to call
Renaissance. We could not get inside but saw through a window that the
interior had been completely modernized....

When we reached Siena we found the station elaborately decorated with
wreaths and flowers in pots, banners, and every possible kind of
railway utensil (even portions of engines), and all in honor of the
Pope who had left that morning for Città della Pieve on his way home
after a tour through various parts of Italy. He seemed to have been
greatly fêted at Siena.

Siena is situated on the irregular summit of a considerable hill. All
streets are up and down and in some places very precipitous. A sort
of natural amphitheatre in the centre of the city--the Piazza del
Campo--is the chief point round which the rest is built, containing
the Palazzo Pubblico, a grand Gothic building, out of the end of which
soars the finest campanile, after that at Verona, that I have seen.
On the circle of the Campo opposite the Palazzo Pubblico are some old
houses but not any of special interest. The Palazzo Pubblico is of the
usual type of brick buildings here and very regular.... The campanile
is brick without break or ornament of any kind for a great height, and
then is boldly corbelled forward on all sides; the whole of the work
is in stone. The arches of the machicoulis, the bands round them, and
some older parts, are rendered much more distinct by the introduction
of lines of black marble. Seen by a bright moonlight this campanile
possesses such an exquisite contour that nothing can be much more
beautiful. The contrasts of colours too are most admirably arranged,
and the exceeding simplicity of the lower part cannot be too much

A considerable ascent leads from the Campo to the east end of the
cathedral. This has a central door and on entering you find a small
chapel under the altar of the cathedral gained out of the slope of the
ground. The detail of this chapel and of the east end of the cathedral
above it is by far the best example of Gothic work in the city. There
are all kinds of things which, to an eye used to the exceptional
skill and care in fitting one part to another usual among northern
architects, are very unscientific-looking, but nevertheless this work
is original in its character and certainly beautiful in its effect.
It is of white marble striped sparingly with black. A flight of steps
leads up from the east end to a north doorway in the east wall of
the immense unfinished work which, though in the position of a south
transept, would really have been rather larger than the existing nave
of the cathedral.

This south transept is quite unfinished though very considerably
advanced. Its south wall shows that the vaulting was to have been
semicircular in section like that of the nave. The proportions of the
whole are very bold and fine.... The rest of the exterior has been
much modernized. The west front is much like that of Orvieto but I
don’t know how much is original. There is very little in it which I
should accept as really pointed architecture. The foliage and the
feeling of the whole is very Renaissance and the steep gables are all
sham and are very unpleasantly conspicuous in a distant general view
of the church. The campanile, coursed in black and white in nearly
even proportions (two courses of white material for one course of
colours), is Romanesque, of very great height, and follows the usual
rule of increasing its number of openings in each stage. It is capped
with square spirelets at the angles, and a low octagon spire, I think
of stone--this I thought had crockets, but I found they were only
some arrangements for illumination in honour of the Pope’s visit....
Internally the church has been painfully modernized; a row of Popes’
heads--about as artistic as a row of barber’s blocks--is ranged all
round above the nave arcade, and the whole of the church has been
plastered and painted in the most abominable manner. The walls are
striped in exactly equal courses (about eight and a half inches in
height) of black and white. The effect is certainly too bizarre. There
are no good specimens of carving, and the detail of groining ribs,
arches, etc., is hopelessly bad. All of the pavements are covered with
subjects formed by inlaying and incising the marbles which compose
them. There is a certain grandeur in the completeness of the idea but
the effect is not good....

We spent some hours to great advantage in the _Accademia_. The
collection of pictures of the early Sienese school is wonderfully rich
and gave me a very high idea of the power of some of the men whose
names one does not often hear.

There are three or four tondos similar to that at San Domenico and a
considerable number of reredoses of various sizes. A favorite subject
is the B. V. M., surrounded by saints in the outer compartments.
Nothing can exceed the beauty of some of the angels. In all, the
wood seems to have had canvas laid on it which was prepared with a
thick layer of size, and on this gold was laid all over preparatory
to painting. In some the colour has peeled off and left the gold
with lines for the outline of the figures scratched on it. Generally
speaking the preservation of the colours in these pictures is something
quite marvellous, not a crack being visible anywhere; may this be
attributed to the gold ground?

The later pictures are not so interesting nor is the collection of
them so complete as it is of the others. Room III is that in which the
work is most beautiful. There were several students at work drawing
from the life, and in one of the rooms all the designs submitted in
competition for prizes were exhibited. The architectural designs were
generally very commonplace but one or two for a holy-water stoup showed
power of drawing and some fancy. Renaissance is the only style thought

                              _September 2._

The view from Cortona is very fine, over the broad Val de Chiana with
the end of Lake Thrasimene full in view, and the irregular mountain
outlines of Monte Cortona and other heights filling up the whole of the

We left after only two hours’ pause and soon reached the head of the
lake. We were busy making out all the sites of the battle (which may
be done with great vividness), when we reached the Papal dogana. There
were two difficulties--first, my passport was improperly viséd but this
I got over; and second, our driver had no visé at all, and it was half
an hour before he was allowed to take us on as far as the next village
under strict promise to come back again at once. It rained heavily as
we started and we lost some of the beauty of this the best part of our
drive. Thrasimene is a grand sheet of water but wants some striking
feature on its banks, some jutting out rocks or mighty hills plunging
perpendicularly into its depths, to make it thoroughly attractive.
Now it has a deserted look: its banks are not grand and yet no houses
or villages show there and one gets a rather gloomy impression. The
place at which we changed our horse, Pasignano, is a miserable Italian
village,--and how miserable that is I can hardly say--with its fair
proportion of beggars, _i.e._, every one whose eye you catch holds out
a hand immediately for a _mezzo baioccho_. It is prettily situated,
and, as one of the places at which _vetturini_ stop on the road to
Rome, ought to be rather better favoured as to an inn. The only one did
not look promising and we preferred fasting to trying it. A few miles
more and we left the lake, and aided by two bullocks climbed a steep
hill above its banks, reached the cathedral and village of Magione,
and drove the rest of the way by moonlight to Perugia where we were
heartily glad to find ourselves at 10.30 P.M. very ready for something
to eat.

                              _September 4._

Lucca in its flat, surrounded by mountains, Pisa grand with water
and hills, Genoa with the blue Mediterranean at its feet, Siena on
its lofty though arid hills, and Arezzo with its fine prospect of
cultivated valley girt with hills, must all, lovely as they are, give
way to Perugia, seated on the irregular summit of a mountain, looking
one way toward Thrasimene and Monte Cortona, another toward the
irregular peaks of the Appenines, a third down the rich flat valley
of the Tiber, and last of all toward the noble mountain against whose
streaked side stands whitely shining in the distance the object of
many an artistic as well as many a religious aspiration, the shrine of
the great saint of Assisi. Add to this beauty of situation a beauty
of atmosphere which we never dream of in England, and the picture is

Certainly since we have been here this has been no land of cloudless
blue skies. We have had glorious weather, and yet without any doubt the
most glorious cloud scenery we have ever known anywhere. Sometimes a
violent storm in the distance and another close at hand, sunsets short
in duration but brilliant to excess while they last, and in midday
a purple, blue or violet tint over every portion of the wonderful

                              _September 6._

We started at 5.30 A.M. for Assisi.... The sacristan took us up through
the sacristy by a staircase which opens into the north transept of
the upper church. From the gloom of the lower church to the flood of
coloured light in the upper the contrast is very great. The latter is
in all respects one of the most joyous buildings I have ever seen,
bold, nervous and simple in its design, exquisitely harmonious in
all its colouring, and in most respects unharmed by the hand of the
restorer. Obviously however the frescoes on the roof are losing their
colour and being gradually washed out. This is not difficult to account
for when one sees the state of the outer roof of the church, which,
I have no doubt, admits an ample supply of wet at the top of the
groining. The upper church is used only on some few great days during
the year and is I suppose even less cared for. It gave me a pang to be
shown into such a building by a door in a corner, to see the principal
door permanently closed, grass growing thick upon the dreary piazza
in front of it: it was even more mournful, I think, than is the sad
solitude of the great group at Pisa.

I am much puzzled by the interior of this upper church. I cannot
get out of my head the impression that they [the two “churches”]
were designed and _in part executed_ by Frenchmen. The detail of the
groining piers and their capitals and bases are so peculiarly and
characteristically French that (seeing how very different Italian work
of the same date was) I cannot believe that they were ever wrought by
Italian hands from French designs, because sculpture of foliage was
just one of these things in which the character of different schools
was so marked that it was impossible to get any but Frenchmen to do
such work as this. Above this point I do not feel the same thing
because I see that the window traceries, though very fair, have a
feature peculiar to Italian Gothic--in the way in which the circles,
etc., in the tracery are put under the main arch, just touching but not
uniting with it. The string under the windows has for a considerable
portion of its length a complete English dog-tooth. The whole of the
walls are painted. Below the string-course, which is very high from
the floor, is, first a painted imitation of hangings (much like our
thirteenth century patterns) in which the diaper is continued regularly
without reference to folds in the draperies; then a row of noble
frescoes by Giotto; and above the string on each side of the windows
other frescoes by Cimabue. The roof is by the latter, and the groining
bays are alternately blue studded with stars, and frescoed in subjects.
The latter have a predominance in the ground of a rich chrome--reddish
yellow--and the ribs throughout are bordered with wide patterned
borders. The contrast of colours is admirable and finer than anything I
have seen. The borders round the work done by Giotto are very inferior
to those in Cimabue’s work. The latter[5] are all severely flat and
geometrical, indulging, after a few feet of plain pattern, in a

[Illustration: quatrefoil]

or one inscribed on a square, painted with a head on a blue ground.
Giotto’s, on the other hand, though in some respects very beautiful,
indulge too much in perspective, _e.g._ each division between the
groining piers is divided into the subjects by painted and shaded
imitations of twisted columns bearing cornices. There are some
features of interest in the work beyond the exquisite beauty. To me
it was new to find Cimabue painting with so little rudeness and so
much magnificent simplicity and breadth of purpose. I note another
of Giotto’s frescoes is interesting as showing the original use of
the painted roods of which we have seen so many. I think there can
be little doubt they were to be placed on the rood-screen, as he
distinctly shows them, and, curiously, I find in this upper church the
two ends of the ancient rood-beam sawn off a foot from the wall. This
was a few feet west of the crossing. The transepts, altar and stalls
are all modern in their arrangements.

Externally there is nothing to notice save the fine west door and
circular window over it, of a type peculiar so far as I have seen to
the churches of Assisi. The glass in the nave windows is certainly old
and good, very little white introduced.

After seeing this most interesting building well, we betook ourselves
to the not very easy work of climbing about the city to see the other
churches. The whole place is as decayed, forlorn and dirty as the
smallest and rudest of fishing villages in the worst out-of-the-way
parts of Cornwall, spread out to ten times the extent. Old walls
remain nearly all round, with gateways, and at the highest point the
picturesque ruin of a castle.

The west end of the cathedral is fine and the campanile by its side
is also of noble size and good character though built with very rough

                              _September 7._

We left Perugia this morning at 6 A.M. in the banquette of the
diligence for Arezzo. The day was charming so that we enjoyed the ride
thoroughly, though we had done it all so lately on our way to Perugia.

Here I shall note down a few of the things we have discovered on the

Hay and corn stacks are all made round a tall pole fixed in the ground.
Another piece of wood nailed across often converts this into a cross
over the corn.

In Arezzo cathedral during tierce a black cat was howling about the
cathedral in a most ludicrous manner. It belongs to the church and
is always howling about, sitting on altars, and so forth. Foreigners
never care about taking animals into church with them. Dogs are special
church-goers in Italy!

About Perugia the women’s costume is good: white sleeves, blue skirt,
pink bodice and bright handkerchief over the head. The women usually
wear immense straw hats about two feet six inches in diameter,
generally pinned on to the back of the head and flapping back to shade
none of the face. Between Arezzo and Florence the women often wear
round beaver hats with broad flat brims--and very ugly they are. Women
carry a fan instead of a parasol. Women in Genoa wear white veils.

The staple production of much of Tuscany, Siena, and the Papal States
seems to be olives. The trunks of the trees are always very old,
crushed down in the centre and sometimes two or three feet in diameter.
The branches are young wood and always trained out so as to leave a
hollow circle in the centre. The colour is a very blue green and as
they are planted everywhere in lines and at regular intervals, they do
not improve either the near or the distant view of the landscape. Maple
trees are trained in the same way for the purpose of growing vines. The
vines are festooned sometimes from tree to tree and at others festooned
round the tree itself.

The ploughs here are very clumsy, they have a very heavy wooden frame
with an iron shoe put on in front. It does not turn the dirt over
but only digs a rough furrow in the ground. Oxen are always used for
all agricultural work. They are ringed through the nose and a cord,
fastened to this ring and passing under a rope between the horns,
serves as a rein. The carts are so made that they are loaded far out on
the pole to the shoulder of the men.

All houses here have a pigeon house raised above the roof. On it are
painted some flying pigeons on a white ground. It is generally a large
construction and looks like a look-out room at first.

It is curious that we never see a bird flying about, yet we eat at
dinner every day portions of two or three. Where do they all come from?

All the houses are built over stables.

Wayside churches seem almost always to have a small window on each side
of their western door protected by a grating and with a shutter inside.
Often there is an arcaded porch above.

                              _September 8._

We left Arezzo at 6 A.M. in the diligence for Florence. With such a
bourne the pace of an Italian diligence is very aggravating--five and
a quarter miles an hour is the average speed, and the poor wretches of
horses have to go stages of twenty miles without stopping. The road is
very interesting. It passes nearly all the way through hilly country
rich in olives and vines and with the grand outlines of the Appenines
in the immediate neighborhood. I saw not one architectural feature in
the entire journey. We passed through two or three small towns busy
with festivities in honour of the Nativity of the B. V. M. but their
churches seemed to be all modern.

After passing ----[6] we recommenced a long ascent and aided by four
mules and ponies achieved the highest point after about two hours of
the hardest work under the hottest of suns. Here I caught a glimpse
of Florence in the distance; but about three miles further the whole
city suddenly opened to the view, filling up the valley of the Arno
with its campanile and dome thrown out grandly by a passing shadow
upon the delicate blue and violet tints of the Pistojese mountains in
the background. Fiesole was on our right and the whole country between
it and Florence seemed to be dotted over with villas, looking gay and
lovely in the brilliant sunshine. Behind Fiesole a long hill of rich
reddish brown stood out from the rest and afforded by its contrast
with the other colours of the landscape as complete a whole as can
be imagined. It is in vain to describe such a view: it is the most
exquisite of the kind that I have ever seen, and words cannot carry
the impression of an effect not produced solely by facts but in part
undoubtedly by sentiment.

A long drive through suburbs brought us to an old gate (shorn of its
old Florentine machicoulis, however) where we were detained nearly half
an hour about our passports and luggage, and this done we soon arrived
at our inn, crossing the Arno by the Ponte alle Grazie and passing
in our way the Palazzo Vecchio, Or San Michele and Giotto’s tower.
The latter was looked for eagerly and rewarded my anxious eyes. It is
certainly the most lovely piece of building I have ever seen. I shall
say no more but go on to journalize on the buildings as I am able....

  _Street’s appreciation of Florence was intelligent, ardent, and
      characteristic, but is, more than any other of his notes, a_
      journal intime. _I have respected his sincerities._

                              _September 13._

We spent the whole of the afternoon very profitably at Pistoia. The
cathedral has not much architectural character. The west front has a
good simple Romanesque door and an open arcade all across in front. At
the north-west stands a very lofty and massive campanile, plain below
but arcaded richly above with arcades that have the appearance of
being put on in front of the real tower instead of helping to support
it. They have semicircular arches and then have their tympana filled
in with chequer patterns in white and black marble. The whole of this
arcaded part of the steeple is coursed in alternate white and dark
green: the lower part is of stone. Internally the cathedral has little
to show. There is a moderately good monument near the west end to a
professor who is represented lecturing; no mark of his religious faith
(I think) is introduced.[7] ...

Opposite the cathedral’s west front stands the fine baptistery. This
is octangular in plan and built in equal courses of white and dark
marble. Its external effect is very good indeed. It has a western
door[8] and north and south doors and a small chancel projected on the
west side. The design recalls in some respects the baptistery at Pisa
and must have been built about the time that was altered. The interior
unfortunately is as plain and bare as whitewash can make it. The great
octangular font in the centre is of the same kind of work as the
screens at S. Miniato, Byzantine in the character of its sculpture, but
delicate and elaborate in its detail and altogether a good specimen: it
is executed mainly in white marble....

In another church, S. Bartolomeo, I found a pulpit (also dated, etc.)
made by Guido da Como in 1250. This is square in plan, supported partly
in the wall and partly on three shafts, two of which rest on lions’
backs and the third on a sitting figure of a woman. The sculpture is
rude but vigorous. The whole of the sides is covered with subjects, and
at the angles are three figures, or rather one figure with two others
looking out from behind him. The subjects are described by inscriptions
under each in Latin.

Going from here to the church of S. Giovanni Evangelista, we saw a
similar pulpit of later date and superior workmanship but evidently
very closely copied from the work in S. Bartolomeo. The two angle
columns remain, both resting on lions’ backs. The lions have been
turned round so as both to face the west wall,--a most ridiculous
position. It is clear indeed that all of these pulpits have been taken
down and reconstructed. In this work the central column at S. Giovanni
has been taken away. It seems to me that this pulpit at S. Bartolomeo
is the prototype of all those for which the Pisani have so much credit.
Giovanni Pisano is said to have sculptured the pulpit in S. Giovanni
and if so (and I think it seems probable) he simply copied the older
work. I do not know what the pulpit of S. Andrea is like, but I have
little doubt that it was really from this pulpit that they obtained
their idea for all their very similar works.

The south front of S. Giovanni is arcaded in the Pisan fashion (with
lozenge panels in the arches) and above arcaded with two rows of
elaborate arcading. The whole elevation is remarkable in its effect.
The roof is of the usual type, with long tie-beams, and quite flat in

We were followed about everywhere here by two very dirty and very
ragged urchins who took us to see everything. They knew about the
pulpits, talked about Luca della Robbia, etc., and when I gave them
an indivisible coin, about which they quarrelled, they settled the
matter by putting it into the poor box. How unlike any English boys
altogether! We were immensely amused by their sharp impudence.

The inn at Pistoia looked out on green shrubs and gardens, very
pleasant: the consequence was not so pleasant--the being kept awake
half the night and bitten in all directions by our troublesome enemies
the mosquitoes. We had to turn out early to join the diligence which
arrived by railway from Florence at 7.30 A.M. We made a brilliant start
but very soon altered our pace, the road beginning to ascend almost
immediately, and then for about four hours we toiled slowly up the
slopes of the Appenines, at first with six and afterwards with eight
horses. The day was fine but misty so that we lost very much of the
distant view. The scenery is fine but not alpine. It reminded me more
of the Jura, save that the hills seem here more to be shaken confusedly
about and not to range themselves into regular lines or masses. The
olive tree was seen for the last time as we went up and then we came
through great numbers of Spanish chestnuts, and lastly for half an hour
at most through a bleak, open and treeless country.

The descent was very different, down a narrow valley, following the
windings of the mountain stream, with fine combinations of scenery
and views. Stopped at La Porretta for dinner, and then on through a
fine country but along a miserable road constantly crossing the (now
dry) beds of mountains torrents. The soil is exceedingly liable to
land slips and seems to be sliding about in all directions--of course
road-making is difficult. At Vergato, a small village or town on this
part of the road, the old Palazzo Pubblico was passed, covered with
coats of arms in the usual way and distinguished by its Ringhiera still
perfect and jutting out into the narrow street. We reached Bologna at 8
P.M. A wall and gate was passed about a mile from the town; I could not
understand what wall it was.

                              _September 15._

S. Petronio is the grandest church in Bologna. Its west front is of
immense size and width but left nearly all in rough brick, the door
and basement alone being finished. This part of the work is of poor
character and the sculpture[9] (except in a stela on the south-west
door which I thought very vigorous) not particularly good. The interior
is magnificent....

S. Francesco is one of the finest churches in the town but shabby and
decayed outside and “painted and decorated” to such an extent inside
as to have destroyed nearly all its good effect. I never saw anything
more vile. The whole church is of brick and it has an apsidal east end
with an aisle all round the apse and chapels beyond. The buttresses are
“flying” but very heavy. The west door is good and indeed the whole
west front is striking. The windows are new but appeared to me to be
probably copies of the original windows. The campanili are curious.
There are two--one much smaller than the other and both on the south
side of the choir. They form a curious combination in the views from
the east....

                              _September 16._

The ride to Ferrara was very uninteresting--about four and a half
hours; we had left the hills altogether and saw nothing at all of any
distant country. The land was rich with vines, mulberry trees and rice
plantations, but certainly not picturesque. The grapes were being
picked, and we met everywhere here and in Bologna waggons bearing
magnificent casks for the reception of the grapes. These carts have
a great beam from back to front elaborately carved and ornamented
with colour, and wheels also carved and ornamented. They are really
very handsome and put one in mind of the framework for guns of Queen
Elizabeth’s time. They are always drawn by white oxen.

  _Here the_ Brick and Marble _volume takes up the tale. To 1872
      belongs a notebook particularly spirited in text and drawings.
      It opens:_

    1872--With M. S. and Jessie Holland (afterwards J. M. A. Street)

                              _February 24._

Left London at 8.35, and reached Paris at 7 A.M. ...

Towns generally built on hills. Curious number of churches in which
the tower and spire at one end and a very high choir at the other
have a low nave between them. The scenery has the large French
character, owing to absence of hedgerows and the very long lines of
trees--generally lanky poplars closely set. Just before Dijon, at
Plombières, I saw a very pretty tiled spire, tiles of golden yellow,
green, etc., very rich and charming in colour;--green not at all

Reached Mâcon at 8.30 and after coffee walked out to try to see
something. Moon rose beautifully over the opposite side of the Saône,
here a very fine looking river. Walked about nearly in vain but came at
last on remains of a church of some interest.[10] It has two octagonal
towers, the lower part of which seems to be Romanesque, and a nave of
some forty feet long with an enormous central doorway of the fifteenth
century, and aisle arches on each side of it (now glazed) of the
twelfth century,--choir entirely destroyed, and a small cloister arcade
built up in front. The whole has been all but destroyed and then I
suppose just patched up by some good-intentioned antiquary. It is (at
least in the dark) an architectural puzzle.

                              _February 25._

Called at 4.30 and off by train for Genoa via Turin at 6 A.M. As we
left and crossed the Saône saw that the church I had discovered last
night was the only old looking church, and that the cathedral is an
entirely new stone building. It was a fine frosty morning and we could
do no more than keep ourselves warm by shutting up windows, and so
seeing but little through the hoar frost on the glass.

At Culoz we had a second breakfast and found the hills all about us
suddenly looking like mountains owing to the snow on all their higher
points. When we came back from Geneva last year, fresh from the Alps,
we hardly deigned to look at them, and to-day they seem to all of
us about as lovely and grand as they could be. At Culoz we changed
carriages and then, keeping by the pretty Lac du Bourget, were soon at
Chambéry, and then all the way to Modane we entertained ourselves by
the discovery, first on one side then on the other, of snow mountains
of the first magnitude! At Modane carriages are changed again for
Italy, passports are examined, and then we start for the tunnel. The
railway runs round Lons-le-Bourg, where we used to take sledges for the
Mont Cenis, and then ascends winding round until the mountain above
Modane is reached. Here the tunnel begins and we were just twenty-six
minutes passing through it. I promised every one spring, oranges in
fruit, and trees in full foliage when we really reached Italy; but it
was just the opposite, for there was more snow, by very much, when we
reached Bardonnecchia than when we left Modane. We caught one or two
views of churches and I just managed to secure a note of Susa seen in
the most picturesque way far below us. We reached Turin at 6.42, got
some dinner at the railway station and had some much too sweet _vin
d’Asti_, and started again at 7.35 for Genoa, where we arrived at

                              _February 29_, GENOA.

A glorious morning welcomed us to this most delightful town. It was
really like summer and the views in all directions were most exquisite.
Even before I got up I saw through my window the beautiful outline of
the mountains of the Riviera all covered with snow, and just a line
of the blue Mediterranean above and beyond the crowd of vessels below
us in the port. We had rooms at Feder’s hotel--now Trombetta’s--and
our bedroom had an oratory in it with a very elaborately carved altar,
etc., which has been not very reverently turned now into a sleeping

I spent most of my day at the new English church directing the workmen,
etc. Lunched with the Shelbells, but did not see Brown the consul, who
had gone off to a castle he had bought near Sestri. The church looks
fairly well, but it is difficult to make anything lofty enough to
compete with the enormous houses which it is the fashion to build now
in Genoa and with which it is surrounded.

Walked a little about the city: into the Via Nuova which is straight
for the greater part of its length (instead of curved as I fancied)--up
and down the goldsmith’s street which seems always to lead to
everything--into the cathedral and some of my other old friends among
the churches. Noticed particularly the sumptuous effect which the
painted palaces produce. The palace now used by the British consul is
covered outside with painting, a good deal of which remains in fair
condition whilst the two arcades round the courtyard are in a very
fairly perfect state. The doors to the houses in Genoa had commonly
an oblong panel of sculpture over them. These were cut in slate at or
near Savona. The Gothic houses here have arcades below, and corbel
tables under the second floor, and the windows divided into lights by
very delicate shafts. The best samples are the Doria houses close to S.

We left Genoa at 9.00 by steamer for Livorno. The boat was small and
full of passengers, but I slept well on the floor of the cabin till we
reached our port soon after 5 A.M.

                              _March 1._

Started by the 9.12 train for Empoli. Murray describes Empoli in such
terms as made us feel no regret at having to stop there those three
hours. Unfortunately his description turned out to be all wrong, and we
found but little to see or sketch. The best thing there is the steeple
of the collegiata. The front of this church is a work of about 1600 in
white marble and serpentine. And the Pallei building opposite to it is
entirely seventeenth century, but has some wall painting outside which
somewhat redeems its otherwise uninteresting walls.

Our train left Empoli at 2.25 and did not reach Orvieto till nearly
10. During the first part of the journey I was well employed making
sketches from the windows of the carriage of Certaldo, S. Gemignano,
etc. We caught some beautiful glimpses of Siena as we dashed by, and
then as we passed through the wretched country just to the south of it,
we gradually lost the daylight, and slept away the hours till Orvieto
was reached. Here the station by daylight looks just under the town,
but it took us forty minutes to drive up.

                              _March 2_, ORVIETO.

I was out before breakfast and spent a long, busy, and happy day here.
The town is perched on the top of a rock which is on most sides a
precipice at first and then a long slope carries the eye on to the
river and valleys at the bottom. Beyond on all sides are distant hills
to be seen, one of them very picturesque in outline. In summer it must
be a perfect view, but now the olives are the only trees in leaf, and
their colour is so sad that it does not do much for the landscape.

The old walls exist round much of the town. They are generally set back
a few feet from the edge of the rock so as to leave a passage outside,
which in its turn is defended by battlements built on the cliff. The
lay of the ground reminds one of Toledo, but the country is more open,
and the river is not a Tagus and does not produce much effect on the
landscape. The views which may be had from various points of the
rocks and walls are, however, superb, and I have seldom seen anything
more striking. On the other hand there is no building of sufficient
importance in the town to give the best effect to the views. The
cathedral, not having any tower, produces but little general effect,
and the only towers are some of the plain square family fortress towers
like these sketched at S. Gemignano.


The cathedral more than fulfilled my expectations. The west front is in
its way very beautiful, delicate and refined--perhaps over-refined
everywhere, and beautiful in the symmetry of its arrangement. But it is
still not a great success. My great interest here is in the sculpture
of the piers between and at the sides of the doors. First of all,
I must say that they strike me as too small and delicate for their
place. This is their one fault. If they were to be there they ought to
be, as they are, small and in low relief so as not to interfere with
the flatness and look of strength in the walls. The sculpture in the
northern pier--the days of creation--is perhaps the most beautiful of
the four. Nothing can be much more refined in feeling or treatment.
The heads are a little exaggerated. The next pier which contains the
succession of the seed of Abraham seems to me to be altogether inferior
to the others. The third and fourth (from the north) are equal, or
nearly, to the first, though a little more crowded. In the last the
figure of our Lord surrounded by an aureole of angels, in the Last
Judgement, is beautifully designed. The foliage decorations of all this
work are very natural in their treatment and extraordinarily skilful.
The play of relief in leaves, whose extreme projection from the face
of the marble is often not more than an eighth of an inch, is of the
most delicate, subtle and artistic description. Contrast the skill with
which it is treated with the workmanship in the south door, and the
difference of power will be seen.

The interior is very large and simple--the architectural detail
generally very poor. Columns (large cylinders with exaggerated
capitals of queer semi-classic detail) carrying alternated arches,
show the characteristic faults of the Pisan school of architects. The
clerestory has long, simple, traceried windows, and the best detail
is in the east window, which has good geometrical tracery, is of
very long proportion, and is filled with stained glass of beautiful
design--subjects in square panels. The effect of its colour is perfect.
All round it are paintings by Agnolino of Orvieto, not very fresh now,
but giving a colour of the most tender kind to the interior, to which
the simple black and white striped construction of the columns and
walls leads the eye up gradually and well. In the east window the glass
is divided into small panels. There are four lights but in spite of the
irregularity caused by this even number the grounds of the subjects are
all countercharged, alternately ruby and blue....

  _What Street said, and what he thought, of Siena and Orvieto, is
      nearly unique. At Viterbo and Toscanella, he could only see and
      feel the first what others have since made familiar. Corneto is
      less known._

                              _March 4._

Looking back to Viterbo I saw it lighted up with beautiful effect by a
sudden burst of sunshine. Its towered walls were in deep shade whilst
a cloud of light, wind-started from the town behind, caught the bright
sunshine and seemed to set the steeples of the town in a sort of halo.
Behind rose the high mountain and to the left of this, in the far
distance, a line of snow-capped mountains which added immensely to the
beauty of the view. This open country is very charming--clouds casting
their shadows here and there and a horizon always lovely in the pure
colour of the mountains or hills which fringe it. All the way we had
Montefiascone in full view.

Corneto stands on a steep hill above the marshy flat which borders
the Mediterranean. Its old walls and towers standing generally on a
rocky base give it a very imposing appearance, but its interest seems
to be mainly Etruscan. The inn at which we stopped made amends for
any lack in the churches by its extremely good character. It is of
late fourteenth century work, but the internal courtyard with its open
arcades on two sides is most beautiful. The front towards the street
shows in some of its detail and especially in the construction of
the masonry in its upper portion, the influence of the Renaissance.
The building formed originally three sides of a quadrangle with a
passage-way corbelled out on the wall which forms the fourth side.
The lower storeys have fine open arcades, and the third a series of
delicate shafts with very effective capitals oblong in plan, carrying
a white marble lintel under the wall plate. The whole scheme is one of
extreme beauty and has much of the effect of being earlier in date than
it really is....

  _With a few notes on Rome, and the exquisite drawing of a living
      acanthus leaf at Paestum, the book dies away into a sort of
      Journal, that records talks with the Bishop of Gibraltar and
      Père Hyacinth_,--“I found him very pleasant and intelligent.”




(From a notebook of 1855)

                              _June 13._

Somer has lost much of its original interest by the destruction
wantonly in 1830 of nearly the whole of the abbey of S. Bertin. It
is wicked, but I did not lament this so much as I should have done,
had the church been of rather earlier date. From what now remains it
appears to have been entirely in one style, and that an early phase of
flamboyant--much more like some of our English late middle-pointed than
flamboyant, and really very effective in its mouldings and sculpture,
the two great tests of all architecture. The west front and the north
wall of the nave are all that now remains of the once magnificent
church, and the latter has lost all its window tracery and is in a sad
state of decay.

The west doorway of the tower (which is central at the west
end) is fine, and has cut in the lintel stone of its door an
inscription:--“_Castissimum Divi Bertini templum caste memento
ingredi._” The tympanum had a painted subject and much of the rest of
the stone work still retains traces of decorative colour. The west
window of the south aisle is an unhappy example of the worst kind of
flamboyant, the tower is covered all over with vertical lines of
panelling but is nevertheless, from its great size, imposing, and
indeed gives S. Omer all the character it has when seen from the
railway. A sentinel keeping watch warned me off as I was measuring the
aisle: I suppose having lost so much they were nervously alive to the
chance of architects’ hacking off what remains!

A long winding street leads from S. Bertin at one end of it to the
cathedral of Notre Dame at the other. This is a church well worthy of
a visit for several peculiarities and not less for its generally fine
effect, especially in the interior.

The original fabric--of which the choir with its aisle and two apsidal
chapels thrown out from the aisle, and the south transept and one and
a half bays of the north, are all now remaining--is of the earliest
pointed, with occasional round arches to windows, etc. The character
is very simple and mainly remarkable for the great beauty of the
profusion of sculptured capitals to all the shafts. The section of
the piers is singular and gives great lightness of effect; they are
in fact thin slices of wall, and not piers formed in the usual way,
and as the weight of them is not a crushing weight, I look upon them
as excessively scientific in their arrangement. The triforium is very
lofty as compared with the rest of the design, and consists of a very
simple arcade of pointed arches, supported only by long and slender
shafts set near together.

The groining is good, and in the chapels a small shaft rises from the
capitals for some feet and carries the wall rib: this gets over a
difficulty in mitring the mouldings. The Lady-chapel appears to have
been remodelled at a later day but upon the foundation of one coeval
with the choir. A very grand effect is produced by the great size of
the transepts--which have aisles on both sides--and by the placing of
a chapel in the re-entering angles between them and the choir-aisle.
In this way an internal effect of lightness and space, of very fine
character, is obtained.

One of the most remarkable features about this cathedral is, however,
the extent to which, in later days, the old design was persisted in:
_e.g._ the remarkable triforium is carried round the entire church,
varied a little in its details and quite different in its sculpture,
but still evidently a copy and from its great size giving an air of
great unity to the whole design. In the clerestory windows generally
there is a good deal of poor flamboyant tracery with a little glass
of the same date, but in the choir the original windows all happily
remain. These are, in the apse, rather wide lancets, and in the rest
of the clerestory simple triplets. In the aisle there were windows of
two lights with a simple quatrefoil above. Many of the windows have the
dog-tooth ornament round the external labels. The choir still retains
on the outside a very fine and original corbel table.

In a chapel south of the choir are extensive remains of some most
singular work for pavements--they are squares of stone slightly sunk
in regular patterns and then filled in with some very hard black or
red substance. The same work is carried up against the walls of this
chapel, and in other parts of the cathedral are several small fragments
of similar pavements. The stone is of a yellow colour and the system
seems to admit of being turned to most useful account.

Of the exterior, the south transept door is about the most remarkable
feature. It is very simple, almost plain, but nevertheless its great
size and the deep shadow cast by its outer arch combine to make it
a very magnificent work. The sculpture of the capitals is very good
and the delicate arcade, containing figures on either side below the
base of the columns, is thoroughly French in its beauty of detail and
exquisite finish. Unhappily it has decayed much. There is a stoup
inside against the pier dividing the doors; this is not used now. The
western tower is like that of S. Bertin, engaged, and has but little to
recommend it to notice.

In the interior there is a very fine high tomb of a bishop--I think
S. Omer--early in the thirteenth century, about of the same date as
the south transept door. The altar now stands on the east side of the
crossing; either side of it, a range of music-stools affords fitting
accommodation for the clergy, whilst behind, stalls are arranged in
the choir around the apse, encircling an organ which stands about
where the altar ought to stand. In front of this organ is a group of
music stands etc., for the accommodation of the orchestra. The choir
is enclosed with high stone screens toward the aisles--old but quite

At S. Leu we had a very _maigre_ meal at a small _café biliard_ close
to the station and left at 7.45 for Senlis. The road was rather pretty
and took us in sight of Chantilly, a prettily situated town on the Oise
with a château which belonged to the Duc d’Aumale. In little more than
an hour we rumbled through the old narrow street of Senlis and took up
our quarters at the _Grand Cerf_. Before dark we saw the church of S.
Pierre, desecrated and used as a cavalry stable. A soldier who spoke
some English insisted on our seeing the thirty “Hawks,” as he called
them, who occupied the church. This we agreed to in order to see the
building, which has, however, little to remark on save its elaborate
west front and flamboyant architecture. Near this church is the
cathedral and near this a desecrated church, but I must reserve them
until to-morrow.

                              _June 16._

My first visit in the morning was of course to the cathedral, of which
the west front with its magnificent south-west tower and spire is the
most delightful portion. The rest of the church, though retaining many
of its old features and arrangements intact, has been overlaid on the
exterior with flamboyant work to an unpleasant extent. The two transept
fronts are very elaborate and entirely in this late style. At the east
end some of the chapels which surround the apse are of Romanesque
date, semicircular in their plan outside and roofed with lean-to roofs
of stone. The west front was intended to have two similar towers and
spires: the towers are both built but only one spire. The detail of
the lower portion is very simple, that of the upper part of tower and
spire very elaborate and covered with ornament of varied description.
The whole surface of spire and turrets is covered with patterns which
contribute very much to the general richness of effect. The most
remarkable features are however the open pinnacles at the point where
the tower becomes octangular, and the delicate spire-lights which are
set on every side of the spire and rise nearly half its height. The
spire-lights are remarkable in their arrangement at the top; instead
of going back horizontally at the ridge they slope down rapidly to
the spire so as to produce a very piquant effect. The detail of all
the sculpture and mouldings is most carefully executed throughout,
and though the scale of the steeple is not large it produces a very
great effect of height. The crockets and finials on the spire are very
vigorously carved.

The construction of the spire is very ingenious and allows of
passage-ways in the wall to the base of the spire-lights. At this point
it is constructed in two thicknesses, one of which slopes and forms the
outer line of the spire; the other is perpendicular from the inside
face until it meets the external sloping portion and dies into it; the
two are occasionally bonded together with large blocks of stone, and a
passage-way is formed between them. The view from the steeple is fine.

Close to the cathedral on the south is the desecrated church of
S. Frambourg, a simple parallelogram in plan and finished with an
apse, rather broad and low in its proportions, but nevertheless very
effective. The groining is all sexpartite. The original windows remain
only in the apse, and there is but little to be said of the building
farther than that its west front is remarkable for the outer line of
moulding of a prodigious rose window, (now blocked up), and for a west
doorway which though mutilated has much beauty. There seems to have
been a tower at the north-west of the nave. This church is now used as
a store by a builder....

We left the city of Senlis with some difficulty. _Imprimis_ we had an
extortionate charge for a bad kind of accommodation at the _Hôtel du
Grand Cerf_, and next had great difficulty in getting places in the
omnibus to Pont S. Maxence. But all is well that ends well, and we
succeeded, happily, in getting away. The view of the cathedral as the
town is left behind becomes very fine, but it is soon lost as the road
plunges into the woods through which for the best part of the way it
runs. One village, Fleurines, was passed, with a poor late church; some
large stone granaries are passed and then the long street of Pont S.
Maxence. The Oise is crossed at its end and a few hundred yards bring
us to the station; from hence we booked to Noyon, passing on the way
Compiègne, which has an old town hall and two churches, one of which,
as seen from the distance, seems likely to repay examination. Noyon was
reached at four o’clock and we walked off to the cathedral which towers
up most conspicuously above the town.

The general character of the church is, internally, much the same as
that of S. Leu, etc., but it is very much loftier and has a singular
arrangement into four stages in height. There are in the nave:--1. the
arcades, 2. the triforium, very large, with windows and groined, 3. a
small arcade more like an ordinary triforium, and 4. a clerestory. In
the transepts there is no groined triforium and the two upper stages,
being of similar height and both of them glazed, give the impression of
a double clerestory. I do not at all like this quadruple arrangement of
the interior. The columns of the nave are alternately of clustered and
single shafts. The groining is divided into compartments of two bays
by reason of the transverse ribs from the clustered piers being much
larger than any of the others. Both the transepts terminate with apses
and there are many very noble points in the internal effect. Here as at
S. Leu the aisles are very narrow compared to the width of the nave,
and the spaces between the columns of the arcades are also very small
indeed. Of the exterior, the west end is perhaps the more striking
part. It has two immense and very simple towers with a grand triple
porch in front of its three great doorways. This porch was constructed
weakly and has been boldly buttressed up. North of the north-west tower
is a long building connected with the church, of exquisite beauty, and
other old buildings enclose a considerable space on the north side of
the cathedral. These buildings are remarkable, _inter alia_, for the
bold foliage which is introduced beneath the parapets in a fashion very
popular in this part of France.

There is a small porch of fine early pointed character on the east side
of the north transept and above it a very fine rose window. The ground
at the east end is planted out in a garden and the whole effect of the
choir with the restored steep roofs above the apsidal chapels is very
noble. There is what appears to be a distinct church (now desecrated)
attached to the east side of the south transept. It is of simple early
pointed and has in each bay two lancets and a round window above. It
has several bays of length, and an apse, and is parallel with the
choir. Careful works of restoration are going on here. I saw no trace
of any other old building, saving a portion of very late domestic work.

We left Noyon at 8.40 and reached S. Quentin at 10 P.M. ...

                              _June 17._

I turned out early and got a sketch of the great church before
breakfast. Its height is very imposing but in its general character
it disappointed my rather high expectations. It appears to me to be a
kind of late imitation of early work. For instance the triforium and
clerestory have almost geometrical tracery differing only in slight
points from the best kind of geometrical work. The proportions too are
good and the groining very simple. Many of the shafts in the choir are
single columns, but the carving of their capitals is very inferior
to that I have seen elsewhere. The choir has, too, a triforium which
seems to be much earlier than that of the nave, probably early in the
thirteenth century. One of the best features is the management of the
chapels and aisles round the apse. There are two transepts; the eastern
one does not show however in the ground plan. The tower was central at
the west end, but has been all modernized and does not now rise above
the immense pointed roof of the nave, so that in the distance the
church wants distinctness of character and outline, badly. The flying
buttresses are very elaborate and are steadied by arches thrown across
from pinnacle to pinnacle, so as to keep them from falling laterally;
notwithstanding these precautions the church has fallen out so much in
some parts as to look very unsafe.

In the market place there is a quaint old town hall standing on open
arches and rather elaborate in its details but very late in its
date. There was less to interest in S. Quentin than in most places
I have visited as yet, so I was very well able to get away at 11 to
Tergnier by railway; here we waited for an hour and then started in
a slow diligence for Laon through La Fère and Crépy. I could not
see any church in the former place, but in the latter--a good sized
village--are two, both of first-pointed date and one with a remarkably
good chancel having an east window and side windows of two lights
with a distinct circular window above, and all adorned with dog-tooth
ornaments. The other was remarkable for a very striking western porch.
The road was pretty and soon after passing Crépy brought us in sight
of the cathedral of Laon crowning its noble hill in right royal style.
A drenching storm of rain prevented our seeing much of the beauty of
the view as we climbed the steep road that winds round the hill into
the town, but in the evening when we walked round the ramparts we found
that it was one of most uncommon magnificence--a vast expanse of flat
country generally green in its colour, dotted here and there with woods
or villages, and bounded in some parts of the horizon with distant

Our first object in the morning was the cathedral. The original idea
of the church (which is said to have been built in the extraordinarily
short space of two years) was a great nave, choir and transepts,
the west front and both the transept fronts being flanked with two
towers of nearly equal height and even fairly similar design. Four
of these were completed, those on the east side of the transepts
having been only carried up to the height of the roof gables. There
is a combination of intense simplicity with an intricate and delicate
transparent effect in the open pinnacles at the angles which is
wonderfully fine. The scale is larger and the whole treatment though
similar is finer than that of Senlis, and though it was imitated it was
not, I think, rivalled, even in the magnificent steeples at Rheims.

There is a lantern at the intersection of the nave and transepts
which, had it been carried up some vast height above the other towers,
might possibly have helped to reduce them all to order; but there is no
sign of any such intention, and the only reason for it that can be seen
is the desire to elevate the groining at the intersection to a great
height above the rest of the roof. I have sketched and measured these
towers so carefully that I shall say no more about them, save that they
are groined just below the summit and that they were evidently intended
for some further finish than they now have, probably for spires like
those at Senlis.

The interior of Laon is singularly like that of Noyon, having the same
double triforium, but being finished at the east with a square end
instead of an apse. Going from one church to another differing only in
this respect seemed to give the best possible means of ascertaining
with some degree of certainty their relative merits; and certainly it
seemed to me that, of the two, Noyon was incomparably the superior, and
entirely on this account. The east end of Laon is nevertheless fine for
a square east end, and has the windows filled with very magnificent old
glass of deep colour. The altar is now brought forward one bay so as to
leave a passage beneath the east window.

The capitals generally of this church are very finely treated and would
afford endless examples of good work in this early style. In studying
the church one of the features most to be noticed is the frequent
recurrence of carved courses of foliage which everywhere take the place
of moulded string courses.

The south transept has double doorways, and above them a very beautiful
rose window. This has now become curious because by its side there
is the jamb of a middle-pointed window, evidently inserted by some
ambitious man who was going on to put in an entirely new window but who
was happily stopped here; I say “here” because he was unhappily not
stopped in the south transept and so we have to regret the loss of a
grand window suitable to the building and the insertion of one which in
no way improves it. On the north side of the choir a great alteration
was made in the thirteenth century by throwing out the outer walls to
the face of the buttresses in order to gain a considerable number of
chapels. This was done in very good style indeed and much improves this
part of the exterior.

The only apsidal terminations in the whole church are those of two
chapels thrown out on the east side of the transepts. They are carried
up three stages in height, one of which opens into the transept aisle
and the two others form another chapel out of the magnificent triforium.

Round the east end of the cathedral are large remains of old buildings
of early date, connected probably with the church (which, by the by, is
said to have been built in A.D. 1113 and 1114, dates which seem to me
to be at least fifty years too early for such a structure). The main
portion of these buildings consists of a long pile opening to a sort
of garth or cloister, north-east of the cathedral, with simple pointed
arches supported on low circular columns, and showing on the other side
the elevation which I have sketched roughly, and which, standing just
at the edge of the cliff, looks on a vast expanse of country until the
far distance is lost in mist. These buildings are now converted into
some Courts of Law, store houses and lumber rooms.

The Bishop of Laon lives elsewhere I fancy, as our landlord made much
of his having come expressly to join in a procession through the city
which we witnessed on Sunday afternoon. This procession was new to me
and may as well be recorded: it visited a number of altars got up in
a temporary manner, elevated on high flights of steps, and decorated
profusely with flowers, garlands and drapery. These were erected in
every available space, and I suppose by the zeal of the neighbors in
each locality. As the time for the procession came, all the good people
of the city hung up white sheets over the fronts of their shops so that
the whole street bore a most singular appearance, though the universal
white was here and there relieved by the old pieces of tapestry with
some sacred story on it hung out by some more well-to-do person.

Presently through the dense crowd came the procession--first, girls
bearing banners and draped in white, then other banners, clergy,
acolytes, censer-bearers and lastly the bishop under a square velvet
baldachin carried by priests, walking between two priests, bearing a
monstrance with the Host.

At intervals the censer-bearers turned and censed and then went on
again, till they reached an altar, which the bishop always ascended
and gave the benediction from it, displaying the Host to the people
all kneeling below. The procession was followed and kept in some order
by soldiers whose band, alternately with the choristers, accompanied
the march. In half an hour after the return of the bishop from his
rather long procession the town had resumed its old look, the white
sheets were gone, and the altars pulled down or denuded of all their
ornaments. All the towns we had been in had been preparing for the
same fête, which was to be greatest at Lille, where “_Notre Dame de la
Treille_”--whose day it was--is looked on as the patron of the city.

From the cathedral we went to the church of S. Martin at the other end
of the main street. The general effect of the exterior is very good,
and very superior to the interior,--which is very simple, rather bad
in its design, and much modernized. The south transept front is very
fine and remarkable for the boldness of the mouldings on its buttresses
and strings. The west front is, after this, the finest portion of the
building, being a very ornate addition in middle-pointed to the old
Romanesque church. It is very picturesque and I liked it much.

From the church we turned down into a walk which follows the line of
the old ramparts and nearly surrounds the city. The view, from this
part of it, of the cathedral standing on a sort of promontory, with the
cluster of houses around it, the vine-covered hill sloping down rapidly
to the valley on the right, and then the flat vale, lined all over with
rows of poplars, and finished against the horizon with fine hills, was
most charming. Indeed I have never seen any town of which the views
were so invariably magnificent as they are always round old Laon. We
saw no other old church here, save one below the hill with a central
tower and low spire, which looked at all as though it might be worth
visiting. In the street close to the south transept of the cathedral is
a gable end of a good middle-pointed house.

We left Laon in the coupé of a small diligence at 6 P.M. for Rheims,
grateful in the extreme for the one fine day which we had as yet
had--nowhere so grateful as here, where every turn disclosed some
view or some subject of which a bright sun was the most indispensable

Our going to Rheims afforded no incidents. When we crossed the hills
from Laon and descended towards the broad valley of Champagne we had
a most glorious view, simple in all its detail, but full of beautiful
colour, and rich and verdant in the extreme. One small village we
passed on the way had a church of which I managed to get a sketch while
we changed horses. I went inside and found the whole church fitted with
open seats on a raised wooden floor. The central tower is groined and
has only a small apse to the east, and the effect of this inside is
exceedingly good. The south aisle consists of a series of compartments
running north and south, the roofs boarded on the under side and coved
or canted, and descending not on arches across the aisle but on beams.
The steeple was, I think, the only part groined. From this village to
Rheims our journey was made in the dark and it was nearly eleven as we
drove along under the shadow of the great walls of the cathedral and
into the gate of the inn which faces its west front, where happily we
found rest for our weary limbs....

                              _June 19._

It rained fast when I turned out early this morning and continued to do
so perseveringly all the day. This was miserable and perhaps has made
my recollection of Rheims less pleasant than it ought to be.

The west front with its three great doorways is very magnificent. The
two steeples, which are developments from the Laon idea, and like Laon
unfinished, are at present not large enough for the porch and look too
much like turrets, and yet they are of immense size. The substitution
of second-pointed mouldings in these steeples for the first-pointed
shafts of those at Laon, is unfortunately not an improvement. The whole
porch is covered in the most lavish manner with elaborate sculpture of
the very finest character and detail, but it is generally spread over
the whole surface and gives perhaps an effect of littleness and fritter
to the whole front. The detail of the pinnacles and flying buttresses
at the sides is unusually fine, and all of the same fine early
middle-pointed date--that of the apse and the chapels surrounding it is
equally fine. The northern transept is also a fine composition, but the
parapets were intended to have flanking towers and these are carried
up in the same way as those both at Rouen and Chartres, hardly on a
sufficient scale to be looked on as towers. Their great open belfry
windows produce a fine effect. The three doors of the north transept
are all very fine, though the sculpture on some of them is of earlier
date than that of the west front, and of very ingenious execution.

On entering, the impression produced is one of exquisite proportions,
colour, and decoration, but perhaps a little too much of all this and
not so much of that indescribable feeling which some noble churches so
eminently produce. It is in fact a work of faultless art rather than
religious feeling, though so noble a work of art cannot help inspiring
great religious feeling. The whole design is extremely simple and as
free from superfluous decoration as the west front is crowded with it.
Its triforium appeared to be poor and insignificant in the extreme,
after the magnificent triforia of Noyon and the other early churches
with their ampler open spaces and fine groinings. The treatment of the
west wall on the inside is very curious. It is divided into a great
number of trefoiled niches with very little in the way of moulding,
each niche having a figure; and the background being coloured white
throws out these figures remarkably. Borders, spandrels, etc., are
filled in profusely with much delicately carved and very flat foliage,
all most accurately copied from natural forms. In the north transept
is a curious wooden clock-case of the fourteenth century.... We left
Rheims at 6 o’clock in the evening by railway for Meaux where we
arrived to sleep at 11.

                              _June 20._

As is my wont, I was very early at the cathedral this morning. The
scale is not large, and in particular the nave is singularly short,
only three bays east of the towers. One tower only is completed, and
that in a flamboyant style. The church is very open inside, having two
aisles, and chapels on each side of the nave and a good arrangement
of chapels, etc., around the choir. The great beauty of the interior
is its generally fine style--very early third-pointed--the beauty of
the triforia, and the particularly fine interior of the transepts. I
managed to get some sketches to show its general character before we
left, which was at 11 A.M. for Paris, and there seemed to be no old
buildings of any interest in Meaux, though I saw one old pile with
corner turrets near the cathedral.

We reached Paris at 12.30 having noticed a fine-looking church on our
way, at the station of Lagny, which well deserves a visit....

                              _June 22._

Wrote letters and then to Notre Dame.... A fee gave me admittance to
the new sacristy and small cloister. The detail of this is all very
good, save the doorways; and the glass, which is a _grisaille_ with
subjects boldly drawn on glass of very pale tincture but thick in
texture, was very good indeed. The encaustic tiles used here are very
inferior to ours.... On our way we just looked at the S. Chapelle, the
new turret on which appears to me to be most unsatisfactory.

At 12.20 we left Paris for Evreux, going by railway to Vernon station.
I expected much here and was much disappointed. The cathedral is a
building whose substratum is good first-pointed, but this has been
overlaid by an accumulation of late flamboyant work, so as to be almost
invisible. The west front has been rebuilt in bad classic. The north
transept is a rich and picturesque piece of flamboyant work of the
most ornate kind, and has across its angles internally some immense
squinches to carry a passage from the aisle to the end walls. A great
deal of very good grisaille glass of the thirteenth century has been
retained in the flamboyant windows, and in the others there is a good
deal of late stained glass which seems to be of fair quality. The
church internally is very narrow in proportion to its height and looks
consequently more lofty than it really is. The other church at Evreux,
S. Taurin, is a Romanesque church altered in flamboyant and adorned
with a west front of pseudo-classic. It is a fine church, and its main
ornament is the magnificent shrine of S. Taurin, of which I managed
to get some slight sketches. It is of silver or other metal, gilt,
with some very good ornamentation in enamel and niello. In the south
transept wall is an arcade filled in with coloured tiles, but it hardly
looks as if it would be original; nevertheless, it is said to be so and
I see no reason for supposing it likely that such an enrichment would
have been subsequently added in such a place.

                              _June 23._

We left Evreux at 7 A.M. for S. Pierre station and passed through
Louviers on the way. I had only time to run in for two minutes to
look at the cathedral. It is like Evreux, an early pointed church
with flamboyant alterations, but its scale is small. The triforium
and clerestory in first-pointed are very good, with relieving arches

We reached Rouen at 11 and though I had seen all its curiosities
before, I was glad to have another opportunity of looking at them.
The cathedral gains rather than loses in my estimation. Its general
proportions are fine and all its detail admirably good. Unfortunately
it is whitewashed and not much cared for, and so people fancy it a poor
church. It is on the contrary very fine, and much finer in all ways
than its rival S. Ouen....

After the cathedral almost everything in Rouen is very late in style
and unsatisfactory therefore; it is an interesting town in many ways
but in no way to be compared with such a town as Cologne for real
architectural interest.

In the evening I made a sketch of the north-west tower, which with
its quaint slated roof is a most picturesque composition. Indeed the
whole west front is very grand and broad in its effect, whenever it
can be seen without the detestable new cast-iron spire of the central

                              _June 24._

We left Rouen by diligence for Lisieux at 7 A.M. The ride is for much
of the way very pretty, notably so between Rouen and Elboeuf, and again
about Brienne, a small town with two churches, one of them undergoing
some restoration of not good character. At Bourgtheroulde I went into
the church and found all the roofs of wood, arched and boarded, with
tie-beams and ring-posts....

We reached Lisieux at 3 P.M. It was a fair day, and the _place_ in
front of the cathedral was crowded with people, shows and booths. The
church was very full, and in the choir, suspended on a beam, were three
great new bells just made, and I suppose in process of being blessed
before being hung in the tower.

The whole church is very fine and of nearly uniform date, the choir
rather more advanced first-pointed than the nave and with a late
Lady-chapel added. The triforium of the choir is very charming;
and here and in the side windows of the choir aisle--also very
beautiful--there is a great fondness displayed for cusped circles sunk
slightly in plain walling-spaces, as also in the spandrels of arches,
etc. This is the case notably in the west front and again in the fine
north-west steeple, where bands of circles are used as strings. This
was seen also in the steeple of Senlis. In the west front, which
has been elaborately restored, the side doorways are small but very
beautiful, finishing with trefoil heads and remarkable for the great
masses of regular foliage round their arches in place of mouldings.
These are used with the happiest effect.[11] The exterior of the south
transept is also a fine simple composition and the interior of this and
of the north transept are specially good. The church is apsidal with
two chapels besides the Lady-chapel.

The music used here was strictly Gregorian; so also at S. James’s,
where the congregation joined most heartily.... The two western towers
are very different, that on the south-west early and for a number of
stages of Romanesque work; the other very beautiful, and in its belfry
stage giving a type for others--as especially S. Pierre and others in
Caen--to copy. The north-west steeple has no spire and that of the
other has been much modernized. There is a low central tower which
forms a fine lofty lantern internally.

The only other mediaeval church in Lisieux is on a large scale but
entirely of poor flamboyant work. We were there whilst a collection
was being made; a Gregorian psalm was sung and the collection was made
by a priest first and then by a little girl dressed up very smartly in
white. There was a crowded congregation composed mostly of women.

A good many old wooden houses remain in the streets of Lisieux; few
however are of very rare character and all seemed of the latest date.
Our inn was dirty, disagreeable, but cheap,--two dinners, two beds and
servants coming to 8 francs only! But its merits were so questionable
that we were very glad to find ourselves on our way to Caen. We left at
6 A.M. and arrived there at 10. There were one or two fine views on the
road, but otherwise it had no interest until the many towers and spires
of Caen rose before us.... I had seen Caen before, but five years
had left me so far forgetful of the detail of its beauties as to be
heartily glad to discover them again.

The church of S. Pierre was close to our inn and its spire was first
of all looked at. It is certainly very glorious but not original. The
spire is copied from S. Étienne and the tower is a repetition of what
seems to have been the one idea of a tower in this part of France.
Lisieux has an early example, and so too have Bretteville, Norrey and
others; but giving up the point of his originality, the architect of
S. Pierre must nevertheless have great credit for his mode of working
up old ideas. S. Jean and Notre Dame in Caen have steeples copied
from S. Pierre, so that we have here an instance of the same design
being reproduced for three hundred years again and again, dressed only
in different detail. This is a most curious fact and one not often
paralleled, I think....

  _The discussion in detail of the many churches in Caen seems hardly
      to call for printing as mere record, for the ground has been
      well covered by later travellers and not, this time, reached by
      the German army._

                              _June 26._

To-day we changed our diligence travelling for a more agreeable mode,
by hiring a phaeton to take us to Bayeux in order that we might be able
to stop on our way at one or two churches.

At 8 A.M., we started; the view of Caen on leaving is fine, its towers
and spires standing up well against the sky. A village is passed very
soon with an early church whose bell-tower on the chancel end is of
good character. One or two steeples with saddleback roofs are seen near
the road, and at the end of about seven or eight miles the tall spire
of Bretteville l’Orgueilleuse rises on the road. The design is most
curiously like S. Pierre, Caen, but it is earlier and has been much
mutilated. All the piercings in the spire are filled in, and one only
of the spire-lights remains in its place, though there are evident
traces of others having existed. The tower rises above the chancel and
east of it is a sacrarium of the same date, square-ended and with two
lancets in the east wall, but groined in such a way as to make one
think that its architect could not forget his apsidal terminations.
The nave is modern, or perhaps I should rather say modernized. The
windows of the tower and sacrarium and the doorway in the north wall of
the former, are of very good detail--the transition from Romanesque.
There is a piscina in the south wall. East of this chancel has been
built within the last year or two a most frightful sacristy, intended I
suppose to be pagan but at present not very definite, as all the stones
which compose its wall are built up in block to be hewn out afterwards.
This of course blocks up the curious east end, but the priest to whom
I protested against this wanton piece of barbarism made very light of
the matter. I cannot see that the clergy anywhere take the interest
that one would expect in such matters, for I have seen nowhere any
restorations of at all proper character, except such as are being
carried out by government with public funds.

From Bretteville a drive of about a mile brought us to Norrey, whose
church is so remarkable that I measured its plan and sketched many of
its details.

It consists of a nave without aisles and a choir and transepts with
aisles and two apsidal chapels to the choir aisle. The nave is similar
in its detail of windows and doors to Bretteville, and in no way
worth particular notice, but the rest of the church is most singular.
Its decorations are extremely elaborate, the mouldings and ornamental
carvings being carved out with a depth of elaborate elegance seldom
rivalled. The mouldings are singularly deep and effective, and the
carving all very good. The style is thoroughly good pure first-pointed,
and looks more like English work than foreign. The dimensions are
exceedingly small, the width in the clear of the choir being only
about sixteen feet and of the aisle not seven feet, whilst some of the
intercolumniations are not more than three feet and a half and three
feet ten inches. The plan is nevertheless similar in all respects to
that of a large church of the first order, save in the absence of a
central chapel at the east end, and it is therefore much more properly
called a “model cathedral” than churches so dignified generally are.
The piscinae of the chapels are good and have one orifice and a large
space of shelf. One of the altars is original and has a mass of masonry
under it for, I suppose, relics. The whole church is in the most
wretchedly damp, dirty and neglected state, and a disgrace to all who
have any charge of it.

The main entrance is now by a beautiful porch to the north transept,
which is, unfortunately, rapidly decaying--as much of the other work
executed in Caen stone is doing everywhere. The small chapels of the
apse are roofed with most extraordinary stone roofs, of very steep
pitch, which at a little distance look like two great pinnacles, and
when seen close at hand look like nothing else that ever was built or
designed. There are very curious marks, in the exterior, of a change of
plan in some respects as the work went on, some of the choir windows
having been commenced with most elaborate mouldings outside as well as
inside, but altered either in one jamb or at their heads into a plain
double chamfer, in a most singular manner. There is some good arcading
commenced outside, and a beautiful arcade runs all round the inside
wall below the windows. The tower is just like Bretteville, but the
spire must have differed considerably from it; unhappily it was struck
by lightning some twelve years since, and there is now a poor slated
roof in place of the spire. The angle pinnacles still remain and I
think they prove that the transition from the tower to the spire must
always have been very abrupt. I think from the character of all the
detail and especially from the great love shown for the round trefoil,
that this church must have been designed by the same man who built the
eastern part of the cathedral at Bayeux. The mouldings are excessively
similar and the abaci are constantly used octangular in plan in
conjunction with square and circular.

An interesting road took us from Norrey to Bayeux, where we arrived at
3 P.M.

The general view of this cathedral is most magnificent,--owing to its
two completed and similar western spires and to the great height of
a central tower of flamboyant work capped with a pagan cupola which,
though of bad details and inconsistent with all the rest of the work,
certainly aids much in making the magnificence of the whole so great.
This central steeple is on the point of being taken down, I believe,
as the piers below are giving way; and the church is now filled
with timber shores, etc. I do not like the steeple but cannot help
regretting its loss....

There is a curious old chimney near the west front of the cathedral,
rising out of a modern house. Attached to a seminary near the
Hôtel Dieu is a good simple chapel of first-pointed date. It is a
parallelogram groined simply and lighted with windows of two lights in
each bay. The whole is wretchedly whitewashed everywhere and contrasts
strongly with the magnificent colour of the stonework throughout the
interior of the cathedral.

                              _June 27._

We left Bayeux at 11 A.M. in the diligence for S. Lô--I in the _coupé_,
my unfortunate wife in the dusty _rotunde_. The country was very pretty
indeed, quite like _good_ parts of England, and very grateful to my
eyes. The church of S. Loup, passed just after leaving Bayeux, has a
good Romanesque steeple capped with a low square spire and remarkable
for the great richness of its belfry stage and the eccentric narrowness
of the windows with buttresses between them. Two miles before entering
the town the cathedral of S. Lô comes in sight; and by the graceful
proportions of its two western spires gives promise of pleasure to the

                              _June 29._

We left Coutances this morning at 7.30 for Hambye en route for
Avranche. The road was all the way excessively pretty, and gave an
admirable view of Coutances, with the cluster of towers and spires
which crowns the hill on which it stands.... I walked off alone to the
abbey. The situation is pretty; under a steep woody and rocky hill,
with a clear stream near, and woods and _riant_ hills and dales all
around. The entrance is by a very simple gateway, double in front
and single-arched behind.... A few paces from this gateway stands the
church, of whose west front no traces now remain, and some old and
rustic buildings to the south of it, which have only one old doorway

The church is remarkable in its plan, having a nave without aisles, a
central tower, transepts with eastern chapels, aisles and chapels round
the choir. The end of the north transept is divided off by two arches
from the church, and was I think intended for a sacristy, corresponding
somewhat in position to the beautiful sacristy at Coutances--of which
cathedral this abbey church bears most marked evidence of being in
great degree a reduced and simplified copy. Two small chapels are
placed at the re-entering angles of the nave and transept, and,
supposing the choir to have extended to the western side of the
tower, these would have been most useful in allowing access to the
choir-aisles and transepts without passing through the choir itself.
The same point of arrangement occurs at Rayham abbey--also an aisleless
church--and would be necessary in all conventual churches of this
type. The effect of the interior is striking, owing to the excessive
lightness of the nave and to the great extension given by its aisles
to the width of the choir. The design of the choir is much like that
of Coutances--the same lofty proportions of columns, the same caps,
the same kind of clerestory window, and the same double lean-to roof
all round the choir, one side over the aisle and the other over the
chapels of the apse. The whole work looks early, though there are here
and there suspicious-looking mouldings and Murray says that the whole
church is of late date. If he is correct, it can only be, I think, on
the assumption that the builders of the present church used very nearly
stone for stone a large portion of the original first-pointed edifice.
The cloisters occupied the angle between the nave and south transept,
but no trace remains of them save the corbels which supported their
roof. A long range of old buildings still remains, south of the south
transept. On the ground floor they consist of: first, a small groined
room with a central column, and its groining and walls painted rudely
with patterns in distemper; second, of a long building divided by a row
of columns down the centre and entered by three open arches at the west
end, which we may assume to have been the chapter room; third, another
square room with a rude central column, also painted, and then another
room of that same kind; all these rooms are groined, and above them,
along the whole length of the building, extends a great hall with an
old timber roof, of such great size that it is difficult to surmise
its probable use unless it was that of a great dormitory arranged with
cubicles down its sides.[12]



(From the _Ecclesiologist_, 1858–59)


A short holiday among French churches has left so many pleasant
recollections of new ideas received, new thoughts suggested, ancient
memories revived afresh, that it is as impossible as it would be
churlish to refuse to communicate some notes of what I have seen;
and as they are asked for I proceed to give them, though they must
be more slight and generalizing than I could wish; for I have a very
profound conviction of the great grandeur of ancient French art, and
a corresponding sense of the danger of so treating it as to convey
too small a sense of its value to those who have not studied it for
themselves, or of offending those who are so happy as to have realized
that value to the fullest extent and from actual inspection of its
remains. It is needless to say that as the France of the present day
is an agglomeration of ancient and distinct provinces, so also in its
ancient buildings we can trace, without any difficulty, a variety of
different national or provincial styles: it would be strange indeed
were it not so. Even in England we have most striking varieties
in style confined, generally, within the boundaries of particular
dioceses; so that to understand ancient art aright, it is necessary to
have an exact acquaintance with the third-pointed work of Devonshire
and Cornwall as well as that of Norfolk and Suffolk, and to be able
to perceive all the difference between the first-pointed work of the
Yorkshire abbeys and that of Wells and Salisbury.

And if we have such marked differences in a country like this, we may
well expect a much greater variety in a country which, like France
in the Middle Ages, was not as now one great nation but divided into
sections antagonistic to each other and exercising little if any
reciprocal influence. It is easy, therefore, to map our France into
certain divisions, each containing within its boundaries a special
individual style of Gothic architecture, distinguished by notable
peculiarities, and each affording a separate field for very careful
study. Thus we have in the north of France distinct French styles,
in, first, Normandy, and secondly, the old Île de France and the
surrounding country, and thirdly, in the country bordering on Germany,
a style which is rather German than French in all its leading features.
Then going southward, we have, fourthly, a distinct Burgundian style,
and another, marked by extreme peculiarities, in Poitou and Anjou, and
(judging only by drawings, for I have never myself visited the extreme
south of France), again other styles, whose centres are respectively
at Clermont and at Arles. Of these various styles that of Normandy
presents a very great affinity to our own. It is there, and almost
only there, that we see the circular abacus, there only that we see
much attempted in the way of deep and complicated architectural
mouldings, whilst the general effect of many--especially among the
larger churches--is extremely English. The likeness is one of which we
may well be proud, for the architecture of this province is full of
beauty and interest to a degree second only to that of the district of
the old Île de France. Its very deficiencies, too, are English in their
character, for in going from Paris into the heart of Normandy, the one
thing which we notice more perhaps than anything else, is the general
absence of the figure sculpture to which we have become accustomed;
and this is the case also in England, where we have really hardly any
at all extensive remains of sculpture, and certainly none which can be
named with those whose pride it is to be the guardians of such churches
as the cathedrals of Chartres, Paris, Amiens, Laon, or Rheims.[13]
The study of the architecture of Normandy is therefore the proper and
natural sequel of a complete and careful study of English architecture,
and may be entered on with the less hesitation as I believe I may
safely venture to say, that what is learned there will be in no sense
foreign either to the precedents or the sympathies of England.

The churches of Anjou, Poitou, and Touraine, appear to me to be of
much less value for architectural study: though from the connection
which was maintained between our own country and those parts of France
during a long period of the Middle Ages, it is impossible but they
should present much that is of the greatest interest to the English
student. I have looked, however, in vain for evidence, either in
the general design or in the details of their architecture, of any
influence exercised by the English upon their art. In fact, when we
held the country, we held it as conquerors not as colonists, and we
left no mark of ourselves, but let the people go on building for us and
for themselves in their own way. And their way was full of peculiarity,
perhaps more so than that of any other part of France. They had their
own system of planning, their own system of groining: and this, it
should be remarked, is sure, if it has any peculiarity, to exercise a
most powerful and obvious effect upon the whole architecture. There is,
however, a heaviness, a repetition of the same idea, and an absence
of delicate skill, as well as of bold architectural inspiration,
which to my mind marks all the buildings in these parts inferior,
not only to the best French work, but also to that of Normandy and
of England. And now I go on naturally to say that I believe the best
work in France is that which I described shortly as that of the old
Île de France and the surrounding country; it is that which I have
studied the most carefully, and love the most of any architecture
that I know; it is one which presents no features unsuitable for our
country, or inconsistent with the demands of our climate; it is one
from the study of which I believe we should all derive an immense
benefit, for it were wellnigh impossible to spend much time among the
works of art which it so bountifully affords without being strongly
impressed with the stern grandeur and masculine character of the men
who conceived it, and without being elevated in our whole tone of mind
so far as we have been impressed. A district which affords examples
such as Rouen cathedral, S. Quentin, Amiens, Noyon, Laon, Soissons,
Meaux, Rheims, Troyes, Chartres, Notre Dame of Paris, Mantes, S. Leu,
S. Germer, Senlis, Beauvais, and others, must be conceded to be, if not
the best, certainly the richest field for the study of our art in all
Europe; and it is mainly to this district that I will take you, with
this expression of my extreme veneration for the art enshrined in its
architectural remains.[14] ...

At Beuzeville, where the Fécamp branch joins the main line of railway
to Rouen, it is worth while to walk a mile and a half to the church,
not because it is a fine building, but rather because it illustrates
well enough the differences between French and English ideas about
village churches. The unbroken nave, thirty-three feet wide and
sixty-nine feet in length, with its arched boarded roof,--the central
groined tower with a spire springing some four or five feet below the
ridge of the nave roof,--and the hipped vestry roof, are all unlike
English work, yet the whole effect is particularly good notwithstanding
the poverty of style, which is late flamboyant. There are four rows of
fixed seats all down the nave--modern, of course.

From Beuzeville to Rouen the railway took me over ground well known
to the majority of English travellers, and I would not say a word
about Rouen, were it not that the strong popular delusion which has
elevated the church of S. Ouen into its great attraction deserves to
be protested against always. And, this, not because the church is not
very fine and very pretty--it is both--but because S. Ouen-worship
leads people to miss altogether, or only to half see and understand
the extreme value and beauty of the cathedral. I have seen this often,
and I find that, unlike some other churches, each time I see it I
discern new beauties and new value in its art; and it lies so near to
us, and teaches us so much not to be learnt in England, and yet of the
utmost value to all of us, that I do not know how to express myself
sufficiently strongly as to the advantage of a careful study of it
to all workers in the revival. Indeed I think that the Architectural
Museum could perhaps do more for art by helping young carvers to go
for a time to Rouen for study, than by adding to their collection a
multitude of casts which are often of necessity of doubtful excellence.
The thing may be difficult to accomplish, but it ought to be done,
for this one cathedral contains such an abundance and variety of
sculpture as would almost put to the blush all our churches combined.
The western doors of the north and south aisles are, to my taste,
the most exquisite portions of the church. Their style is so early,
and so immediate a deduction from Byzantine or Romanesque work that
I can fancy a man, who had been taught to believe in the absolute
perfection of our English fourteenth-century style, would be long
before he appreciated to the full their perfection. They are moreover
of a kind of work which is as rare as it is excellent. In England we
have nothing, to the best of my belief, of similar style. I remember
that Mr. Scott once suggested to me the probability that they were
executed by the same man who executed the doorways in the west front
of Genoa cathedral, and the suggestion evidenced fully his sense of
the extreme rarity of the work. I believe, however, that they are
examples of a style which was not that of an individual only. That it
owed much to Italy I have little doubt: for even if there had been no
trace of an Italian influence in the extreme delicacy of the whole
of the sculpture, in the twining foliage of the door jambs, and the
very singular and graceful foliage of the archivolts, yet it might, I
think, have been detected indirectly. For in this same church, in the
aisle round the apse, there still remains a monument of an Archbishop
Maurice, the Italianizing character of which is most marked, and at
the same time its details show that it is a work of precisely the same
school as the western aisle-doorways. None who have been in Italy can
forget the almost invariable type of the finer early monuments--a
simple arch, surmounted immediately by a gable of very flat pitch, and
supported on detached shafts. They will remember them at Verona often,
in Venice, in Genoa, in Perugia, and indeed in all directions and of
all dates; well, in this monument, we have the same thing, a round arch
exquisitely adorned with angels (whereof two in the centre bear up the
soul of the archbishop) and immediately above the arch a very flat
pediment or gable. Perhaps, too, it is an Italian influence, which is
evidenced in another respect in the decorations of the western doors.
The alternate orders of the arch are simply chamfered, presenting in
section three sides of an octagon, and these are covered with regular
sunk patterns of the simplest kind, but marvellously effective. Go
from Rouen to Genoa and you find the western doorways executed in
marble, every plain surface in which is inlaid with geometrical
patterns,--light patterns on dark ground, and dark on light. The effect
is very similar in the two places: at Genoa the very best materials
were to be had: and at Rouen where nothing but common stone was used,
the artist struck out a system which produced an effect all but equal
to that obtained at Genoa. And yet with all this similarity I am not
disposed to class these two buildings together as the work of one
man. The architect of Genoa loved mouldings much more than did the
architect of these doorways; and I think I have met with a sufficient
number of traces of similar work to convince me that it was the style
of a class, not of a man, and one of those many and glorious phases
through which our art in her rapid progress passed. The western doors
at Mantes are very similar in their detail; those of Chartres--what a
study they are!--partake largely of the same spirit; in the western
façade of Notre Dame, Paris, there are traces of it; in Notre Dame,
Châlons-sur-Marne, the south doorway was identical in character, and
fragments of work of the same style have been discovered in the course
of lowering the floor of that church to its ancient level; and in S.
Germer, in the chapter-house of S. Georges de Boscherville, in the
western doorway of Angers cathedral, and in parts of S. Remi at Rheims,
I think we see the same style more or less developed. Undoubtedly the
work at Rouen is the most excellent of all, just as it occupies the
central position in point of date.

I am not afraid to confess that the whole of these examples are largely
Byzantine in their character; in my eyes this is a virtue, not a fault;
for I believe that it is here perhaps more than anywhere else that we
may succeed in developing from our forefathers’ work. There seems to be
here a mine of untold wealth, the workings into which were no sooner
commenced than they were abandoned: and the style seems to be one
which affords special opportunity for meeting our great difficulty at
the present day, as it indicates a mode of obtaining rich decorations
without being dependent for effect entirely on a horde of slovenly
carvers, who, without an idea in their heads, ruin all the rest of our
work by their failure in its sculpture.

This is a digression, but the subject was tempting: I will only
say further, as to these remains at Rouen, that they have the rare
advantage of not having been restored, and that they are entirely
covered in all parts with work of almost uniform excellence, though, to
my taste, the north-west door (the tympanum of which contains the life
of S. John the Baptist) is the finest. The effigy of Archbishop Maurice
is singularly elaborated: the patterns on the vestments, the details of
the censers, and indeed all parts, being finished with the elaboration
of a genuine Pre-Raphaelite. Before modern sculptors sneer at these
twelfth century works, I wish that they would themselves attempt to
produce even one block of stone, a foot square, as well wrought, and I
doubt not they would profit by the lesson, novel though it might be.

The western doors of the aisles are placed between large buttresses,
and arches are thrown over them from buttress to buttress. Between the
arches of the doors and these upper arches, a small space of plain wall
remained, which has been treated in the most ingenious manner. Figures
are marked in outline on the stone, which were, I think, painted, and
the ground throughout is diapered with a very simple pattern sunk in
the stone. Over the south-west doorway was the Last Judgement: and over
the north-west, our Lord seated with angels and saints on either side.
In the former our Lord is seated on a throne, between two candles:
angels present souls to Him, other angels bear a soul in a sheet, and
others again on the right drive the wicked into hell.

I must say little more about Rouen; but I ought not to forget to notice
the fine and very varied treatment of the capitals throughout the nave,
and the thoroughly Norman (and English) effect of the immense numbers
of clustered shafts, of which all the piers are composed. The double
division in height of the main arcade is not easily accounted for; but
if it was owing to an alteration in the height of the building, while
it was in progress, it is a happy instance to be added to many others,
of the skill with which mediaeval architects seized upon difficulties
as the best opportunities for achieving successes.

The ground-plan of this cathedral is, I think, altogether one of the
best in France. In particular the _chevet_ is of great beauty. The
aisle round the apse, instead of being completely surrounded by
chapels, has its alternate bays only so occupied, with great advantage
in point of effect, both internally and externally. The arrangement is
almost identical with that of the fine _chevet_ of S. Omer cathedral,
and appears to me to be a happy mean between the one chapel at the east
end of Sens, and the cluster of chapels which crowd the apsidal ends
of almost all the great churches in the north of France. Whilst in its
plan it is more skilfully disposed than the somewhat similar _chevet_
of Chartres, it is preferable to those of Mantes and Notre Dame, Paris,
where there were no projecting apsidal chapels,[15] or Bourges, where
they are so small as to produce no effect.

The north-west tower (that of S. Romain), should be ascended, if only
to examine the framework of the roof and for the bells, and to note,
among other things, the open wooden staircase in its upper stage. The
view, too, of the city is finely seen; and I know few cities that
reward more bountifully any trouble taken in the attempt to see them
in this way. A city it is, indeed, of desecrated churches, but still a
city whose situation on the noble river winding here under great chalk
hills, and there along the edge of meadows green, flat and extensive,
fringed with long perspective lines of poplars, is as beautiful and as
happy as it can well be.

It is not a long walk from Rouen to S. Georges de Boscherville, and
the view from the hill at Chanteleu is one of the best near Rouen. The
church is but of slight interest, though its flamboyant tower, with
a grand open western arch, forms a fine sort of porch, and indicates
a variety which might sometimes be introduced among ourselves with
advantage. S. Georges de Boscherville is too well known to require
description but if others have formed the same conception of it that
I had, they will thank me for saying that the chapter-house is an
exquisite example of the earliest pointed work, full of delicate and
beautiful detail. The three western arches are circular, but not
Romanesque in their character; some of their capitals have foliage,
some sculpture of figures, and the thickness of the wall is supported
by a miniature sexpartite vault. The vaulting of the chapter-house
is also sexpartite, with additional cells at the east and west end
to accommodate similar triplets. As I have before said, there is
much in the detail of parts of this building, which indicates the
same school as the early-pointed work at Rouen. The chapter-house
is a parallelogram, fifty-four feet in length by twenty-four feet
nine inches in width, and groined in three bays. Some of the western
entrance shafts are elaborately carved. The vault inside is coloured
buff, and diapered with red lines in a small regular pattern all over.

Between Rouen and Mantes, a pause of a few hours at Pont de l’Arche
enabled me to see the interesting remains of the abbey of Bonport.
The refectory is nearly perfect, and there is a great deal of simple
quadripartite vaulting remaining throughout the modern-looking
farm-house. But of the church, the bases of one or two columns, and
one respond alone remain, and these of an excellence of design which
make it very much to be regretted that it should have been destroyed.
The groined refectory, of five bays in length, is well worthy of a
visit. The side windows are of two lancet lights, with a circle above,
and at the north end is a window of four equal lancets, with small
cusped openings above. The south end and entrance from the cloister
are modernized. The pulpit staircase is perfect, and very ingeniously
contrived; but the pulpit itself is destroyed. Among the buildings,
which are of considerable extent, are some admirable examples of
domestic windows; and, to conclude, the whole is of the very best early
thirteenth-century style.

The church at Pont de l’Arche is one of those ambitious but very
picturesque buildings, of which we have no counterpart. It is
flamboyant in style, very lofty, and intended for groining throughout.
This, however, was never completed, and there is a coved wooden ceiling
in its place. A good deal of late stained glass, of _very_ poor detail,
exists in the windows, the subject of one of them being the Tree of

Of the ancient bridge over the Seine, at Pont de l’Arche, not a
vestige, I think, now remains.

The cathedral at Mantes is in many ways of much interest. Your readers
are, no doubt, well acquainted with Notre Dame, Paris, and with the
singular changes which have been effected in it from time to time. In
Mantes, I believe they may see almost the same kind of conception, left
with such slight alterations as do not in any way conceal the original
design. It is therefore of special value.

I have already referred to the western doors. They are much mutilated,
and the south-west door was replaced in the fourteenth century by
an immense and conceited composition of a doorway with pediment and
flanking pinnacles which is very damaging to the general effect of
the façade. The remainder of the front is uniform first-pointed, with
two steeples connected by an open screen as at Paris. The north-west
tower has been already nearly rebuilt, and the south-west tower is
now suffering from the same process, “suffering” I say, because I
believe firmly that the original design is being annihilated. In both
the belfry stage, which rises above the screen between the towers, is
now much smaller than the stage below; nothing can look much worse
than such a sudden diminution in size, and I am convinced that the
original intention must have been (as at Laon) to continue the shafts
and arcading which surround the lower stage up to the top. I made as
careful an examination of the work as was possible, and have hardly a
shadow of doubt that this was the case; but whether the authorities did
not know the glorious steeples of Laon, or whether they have a view of
their own as to what looks best, they are certainly making the upper
part of this unfortunate west front look as modern in its outline and
meagre in its character as it is new and fresh-looking in its colour.
It were better that old work perished altogether, than that it should
be scraped, re-chiselled, cleaned and modernized in this heartless

The most noticeable feature of the interior is the treatment of the
triforium of the eastern portion of the church. This is groined with a
succession of transverse barrel-vaults, the effect of which is to give
an immense addition of strength to the main walls. They spring from the
capitals of a succession of detached shafts which are placed across
the triforium, so that the perspective of its interior is singularly
picturesque. It was not very long after the erection of the church
that the western portion of the triforium was altered, a quadripartite
vault being substituted for the barrel vaulting, and wherever this has
been done, the thrust has been too great for the principal groining
shafts, which have bulged considerably, and are now held in place by
iron ties. In the apse, the bays being of necessity much wider on one
side than on the other, the ridge of the barrel-vault rises rapidly
towards the external wall: and the triforium is lighted by a succession
of immense simple circular windows. The internal elevation of one bay
of this cathedral is nearly identical with the original design of that
of Paris, though simple and (I fancy) rather earlier in date; but from
the shortness of the church and the absence of transepts (in which one
point it reminds me of the fine church of S. Leu d’Esserent) it has
both inside and outside the effect rather of a choir only than of a
complete cathedral. There are various additions to the church of later
date, which add much to its picturesque character, especially a chapel
on the south side, the chapels round the apse, and the sacristies on
the north side. The stone roof above the groining of one of these is
remarkable. The arrangement of coloured tiles on the roof is one of
the best I have seen. The pattern is rather complicated, and is formed
with dark tiles (green and black used indiscriminately) on a ground of
yellowish tiles.

The church from the apse to the western towers consists of but three
bays of sexpartite vaulting, each bay covering two bays of the main
arcades. Between the towers is one bay of quadripartite vaulting.

Walking from Mantes across the river to the suburb of Limay, a fine
view is obtained of the town and cathedral, which shows here the whole
picturesque exaggeration of height as compared with length which
distinguishes it. Limay church boasts of nothing save a tower and
spire on the south side, of late Romanesque character throughout. The
surface of the spire is covered with scalloping, and has spire-lights
and fine pinnacles at its base. Some attached shafts against the face
of the belfry stage, which seem to serve no purpose, are curious as
being probably the type from which some similarly placed shafts in the
steeples of the cathedral were derived. Here too, as in the cathedral,
a most effective form of label is used, the section of which is a
square cut out into diamonds like unpierced dogteeth. We see the same
thing in England, and among other examples there is a good one at
Lanercost. Its effect is singularly bold and piquant.

A mile on the other side of Mantes is the little village of
Gassiecourt, whose cross church is of much interest. The glass in the
three chancel windows is fine, and of late thirteenth-century date.
The east window of four lights with twenty-five subjects has been
restored, and two of the subjects--the thirteenth and eighteenth--have
been quite wrongly placed. The window represents the whole Passion of
our Lord. The side windows of two lights contain large figures under
canopies of the early part of the thirteenth century, in a sad state,
but of very considerable value. The east window of the south transept
has subjects from the lives of S. Laurence and another. The internal
arrangement is remarkable; the fifteenth century stalls, with subsellae
and returns, being placed in the two eastern bays of the nave, leaving
three bays to the west. The old altar remains in the east wall of the
north transept. The walls and roof of the south transept are covered
with painting; on the roof are four angels with the instruments of the
Passion, one in each division of the groining; the west wall has a
painting of the Last Judgement, and the east large figures on each side
of the east window; on the soffit of the arch into the tower are angels
playing on musical instruments. The whole appears to have been painted
in the fifteenth century, and, though of no great artistic merit, is
of value in France, where, as in England, such things are very rare.
A grand Romanesque west doorway, and a simple gabled central tower
with a good belfry stage are the principal external features of this
interesting village church.

Before I conclude, I must say a few words as to the evidence of popular
feeling in regard to pointed architecture in France. It is partly,
doubtless, owing to the fact that all the great churches are national
property, and entirely sustained by the State, that we miss so entirely
any of that evidence of personal and widely spread interest in them,
which so honourably distinguishes most people in our own country. But
descending to the second and inferior classes of churches, we find
unfortunately the same apathy, the same neglect: so that a tour among
French village churches would leave an impression on the mind of any
Englishman that the clergy and laity are alike careless of their fate
and ignorant of their value. One of the very few village churches which
I have seen in process of restoration was being done by order of the
Emperor, and by a rate imposed upon the _commune_, aided by an imperial
grant; but there, as elsewhere, the repair was entirely confined to
the fabric; and pews, pavements, altars,--all remain still in their old
state, ugly, dirty, and uncared for. I must make honourable exception
in favour of one large parish church, Notre Dame, Châlons-sur-Marne,
where, with the greatest care and love for the building committed to
his charge, the excellent curé is carrying on a restoration which
appears to me to be by very far the best and most faithful that I
have seen on the Continent. I have seen, I grieve to say, but little
evidence of any practical love on the part of the people or the clergy
for their glorious churches, but I will let M. Viollet-le-Duc--than
whom who can be a better judge?--say what can be said as to the real
impression which they produce:--

“Dépouillés aujourd’hui, mutilées par le temps et la main des hommes,
méconnues pendant plusieurs siècles par les successeurs de ceux qui
les avaient élevées, nos cathédrales apparaissent au milieu de nos
villes populeuses, comme de grands cercueils; cependant elles inspirent
toujours aux populations un sentiment de respect inaltérable; à
certains jours de solemnités publiques, elles reprennent leur voix, une
nouvelle jeunesse, et ceux mêmes qui répétaient, la veille, sous leurs
voûtes, que ce sont là des monuments d’un autre âge sans signification
aujourd’hui, sans raison d’exister, les trouvent belles encore dans
leur vieillesse et leur pauvreté.”


Leaving Paris for Beauvais, the first station at which I stopped was
l’Isle Adam, from whence a walk of two or three miles by the banks
of the Oise brought me to the fine village church of Champagne. This
is very unlike an English village church in its general scheme, but
full of interest. In plan it consists of a groined nave and aisles,
of six bays, a central tower with a square chancel of one bay, and
transepts with apsidal projections from their eastern walls. The date
of the whole church (with the exception of the tower arches, which
must have been either rebuilt or very much altered in the fifteenth
century) is about the end of the twelfth century. It is now undergoing
repair at the joint expense of the Emperor and the commune, but this is
being done in so careless a manner that it is to be hoped it will not
proceed further than is absolutely necessary for the security of the
fabric. The western façade has a very singular doorway, the tympanum
of which is pierced with a window of six cusps, whilst the abacus of
the capitals is carried across the tympanum, and a square-headed door
pierced below. Above is a large wheel window of twelve lights. The
aisles are lighted with lancets, whilst the clerestory has a succession
of circular windows, which internally form part of the same composition
as the triforium, the lower part being an unpierced arcade. The chancel
is lighted at the east with a circular window enclosed within a pointed
arch and on either side with early geometrical windows of two lights.
The finest feature is the steeple, which rises in two stages above
the roofs. The belfry stage is excessively lofty and elegant in its
proportions, having two windows of two lights in each face divided by
a cluster of shafts, whilst other clusters of shafts at the angles of
the tower run up to a rich corbel-table and cornice, under the eaves of
the roof. The finish is a hipped saddle-back roof of steep pitch and
covered with slate.

Internally the most rare feature is a very light cusped stone arch of
flamboyant character, with pierced spandrils, which spans the western
arch of the tower, and no doubt originally carried the Rood. The
capitals in the nave are boldly carved, and carry the groining shafts,
which are clusters of three. At the west end of the north aisle, and
projecting beyond the façade of the church, is the ruin of a small
gabled chapel, the object of which I did not understand.

Altogether this church, owing to its fine character, and the retention
of almost all its original features and proportions unaltered, deserves
to be known and visited by all ecclesiologists, who travel along the
north-of-France railway to Paris. A few miles farther on the left
rises the fine church of S. Leu, which I have known for a long time,
and which deserves, as I think, very much more notice and study than
it appears to have received. The plan, situation, details, and style
(early first-pointed) are all alike of the best, and I know few,
even among French churches, which impress me more strongly with the
thorough goodness and nobility of their style. The east end of the
church rises from the precipitous edge of a rock, which elevates the
whole building finely above the level of the _riant_ valley of the
Oise. It was attached, I believe, to a Benedictine abbey, the other
buildings of which are all in a most advanced state of decay. The
church fortunately, though much out of repair, and in some points
altered into flamboyant, is nevertheless sufficiently perfect for all
purposes of study. It consists in plan of two western towers (the
north-west tower being only in part built) then six bays of nave and
aisles, three bays of choir, and an apse (circular on plan) of seven
bays; round the apse is the procession path, and four chapels, also
circular on plan, lighted by two windows, so that one of the groining
shafts is placed opposite the centre of the arch into each, and over
the altars. In place of the fifth chapel on the north side, a circular
recess is formed in the external wall of the procession path, so as to
make space for an altar without forming a distinct chapel. I should
be disposed to say that this was the original scheme of the church,
afterwards altered and much improved by the substitution of larger and
distinct chapels.[16] The central chapel of the apse has the unusual
feature of another chapel above it, on a level with the triforium,
adding much to the picturesque effect of the east end. In addition
to the western steeples there are gabled towers which rise above
the aisles on each side of the choir, and the church is remarkable,
like the church at Mantes, for the absence of transepts. Perhaps, as
the internal length is not quite two hundred feet, this is of some
advantage to the general effect. A considerable change has at some
time been effected in the external appearance of the east end, for on
examination I found that each bay of the triforium was formerly lighted
by two lancet windows between the clerestory and the roof over the
aisles. My impression is, that this must have been altered when the
chapels round the apse were erected and within a very short time of
the original construction of the church; but whatever the reason, the
church has lost much by the alteration. The six bays of the nave appear
to have been built after the west end and the choir. The latter has a
noble very early-pointed doorway, rich in chevron ornament, and this
seems to have had a porch gabled north and south between the towers so
as not to interfere with the window in the west wall of the nave. The
south-west tower and spire, though small in proportion to the height
of the nave, are of elaborate character. All the arches are round, and
there are two nearly similar stages for the belfry. The spire has large
rolls at the angles and in the centre of each face (an arrangement seen
at Chartres and Vendôme) but in addition it has the peculiarity of
detached shafts, standing clear of the rolls on the spire and held by
occasional bands. They have a certain kind of quaint picturesqueness
of effect, but were never, I think, imitated elsewhere. The whole face
of the spire is notched over with lines of chevroned scalloping. On
entering the church the first thing that is remarked is the excessive
width of the nave (thirty-six feet between the columns) compared to
that of the aisles (about twelve feet). The result is, that a grand
unbroken area is obtained for worshippers, whilst the aisles appear
to be simply passage-ways. The general proportion of the building is,
however, rather too low in proportion for its great width. Almost all
the arches throughout the church are, more or less, stilted, and with
the best possible effect. When the eye is thoroughly accustomed to this
it is curious to notice how unsatisfactory any other form of arch is.
The fact is, that a curve which commences immediately from its marked
point of support is never so fine as where it rises even a few inches
perpendicularly before it springs. The capitals throughout the church
are finely carved, and those round the apse are of immense size, and
crown circular shafts of very delicate proportions, much as at Mantes,
and (though on a heavier scale) at Notre Dame, Paris. The construction
of this part is of the very boldest character, and exemplifies in a
very striking manner the extreme skill in construction to which the
architects of the day had arrived.

Great effect is produced by the profusion of chevron and nail-head
ornament used on the exterior of the church; a double course of the
former of the very simplest kind forms the cornice under all the eaves,
and is also used down the edges of all the flying buttresses. On the
north side of the nave there still remains a portion of the cloisters,
of fine early character; two sides only remain, with a room of the same
date with groining resting on detached shafts. Some remains of gateways
in the old walls of the abbey are worth noticing, as also the old walls
which surround the church, built for the most part against the rock on
which it stands, with here and there very small openings, which make
them look as though they were intended for defence. Whilst I was in the
church some boys came to toll the passing-bell. They said that they
always did so on Fridays, at three o’clock.[17]

I saw nothing between S. Leu and Beauvais, though in the part of France
bordering on the Oise, I believe that every village would afford
something worth seeing in its church. My time, however, was limited.

As you reach Beauvais, the country changes; there is a great deal of
wood, a very scattered population, and but few churches. Of course the
first object of every one at Beauvais is the cathedral; a building
from the study of which I derived less satisfaction than might be
expected. It is unpleasant to find an artist striving after more than
he is really able to attain, and this was conspicuously the case with
the architect of Beauvais. The church was consecrated in A.D. 1272 and
fell in A.D. 1284. In order to repair its defects the arches of the
choir were subdivided, and from the great size of the columns, and
the narrow span of the arches, the present effect is that of a church
in which the arches have but little to do, and in which everything
has been sacrificed to keep the building from falling again. Then
when the roofs and passages about the building are mounted it is seen
that the great object of the architect has been simply to obtain one
grand effect--that of height and airiness, and that to this everything
has been sacrificed, the details throughout being poor, coarse, and
slovenly in their mode of execution. The whole gave me the impression
of being the work of an unsatisfactory architect, though at the same
time it is impossible to deny the excessive grandeur of the vast
dimensions of the interior so far as it is completed, or the beauty
of arrangement which marked the original scheme of the ground-plan,
unpractical and unstable as it was. It may be right, however, to
attribute some of the failures, with M. Viollet-le-Duc, to the
carelessness of workmen; though no good architect allows himself to be
so excused.

It seems very like presumption to criticise such a building, yet
I know not the use of architectural study if it is to be pursued
with that blind faith which obliges one to admire indiscriminately
everything that was built in the thirteenth or fourteenth century.
The mere fact that the main intention of the people of Beauvais was
to build something finer than their neighbours at Amiens is in itself
suggestive; and I am not surprised that a building erected on such
terms is unworthy of its age. It is one of the very few buildings
of the kind which impresses me in this way; for usually the feeling
derived from the study of mediaeval churches is one of respect for
the absence of anything but the most thoroughly artistic feeling on
the part of their builders. No doubt the architect of Amiens did his
work in the best way he could, with little reference to what was being
done by his neighbours; and it is curious that the grand success which
he achieved should have led, both at Beauvais and (I think also) at
Cologne, to unworthy and unsuccessful attempts at rivalry. I can quite
see that a claim may be made for the architect of Beauvais, as a man of
genius who was not quite so safe a constructor as his contemporaries,
but who nevertheless conceived the grandest idea of his age, as far as
size and height were concerned. I can only answer that this is not the
character of a great architect, and would lead me to class him with
the architect of the abbey of Fonthill, rather than with the architect
of Amiens or Chartres. The first architect of Beauvais was, however, a
better architect, in some respects, than his successor; for though his
details (seen in the apse only) were not of the first order, those of
the latter are about the worst I have ever met with in a French church
of such pretensions.

The glass in the clerestory windows has a band of figures and canopies
crossing them at mid-height, with light glass above and below: this
is an arrangement often met with, and generally productive of good
effect, especially in windows of such great height. A museum attached
to the west side of the north transept contains a few antiquities; but
the feature of most interest is a late, but good cloister, noticeable
for the extreme delicacy of the shafts and piers between the trefoiled
openings. In the museum is a fair embroidered mitre, which belonged to
F. de Rochefoucald, Bishop of Beauvais, in 1792.

The church of S. Étienne[18] is, after the cathedral, the great
architectural attraction of Beauvais. Its west front has a grand arched
doorway, with a sculptured tympanum, containing the Nativity, the
Adoration of the Magi, and the Coronation of the Blessed Virgin, and
four rows of figures of angels and others in the arch. The jambs and
central pier are completely denuded of all their shafts and statues,
and the whole work is much mutilated in all its parts; nevertheless,
it is the best thing remaining in the city, as far as goodness of
sculpture and detail can make a work good. The gable of this porch
runs back into a triplet, and the main gable has a cusped circular
window, now blocked up. The date of the whole front is early in the
thirteenth century. On the north side of the nave there is a fine
doorway, of very ornate Romanesque; it has been carefully repaired.
An arcade of semicircular arches above the doorway is diapered with a
pattern sunk in the stone and marked at regular intervals by red tiles
inlaid, and about two inches square. The effect is good, and it is, I
suppose, a restoration. The circular window on the north side of the
church is remarkable for the figures sculptured outside its label;
it is evidently a Wheel of Fortune window.[19] The buttresses of the
aisles are valuable examples of late Romanesque work. They have a fair
projection, but are weathered off some five or six feet below the
eaves’ corbel-table; and from their summit in some cases one, and in
others two, shafts rise to support the corbel-table. The choir is lofty
flamboyant work, but ugly. The nave, of early Transition character,
internally has very heavy groining-shafts, and the far from admirable
peculiarity of a triforium with arches formed of very flat segments of
circles, and the string under the clerestory rising in the same line,
and forming, as it were, a label to the arch below.

The gateway to the bishop’s palace, with its steep and picturesque
roofs; the palace itself, with its valuable remains of Romanesque
work at the back; a portion of a Romanesque house near it; and a fine
fourteenth-century gabled house in the Rue S. Véronique, with three
pointed and canopied windows in its first floor, are the principal
features of interest after the cathedral and S. Étienne. There is,
too, a great store of fine timber houses, one of which, in the Rue
S. Thomas, is particularly noticeable for the elaborate filling in of
encaustic tiles between all the timbers.

From Beauvais I made an excursion of some ten or fifteen miles, to
see the abbey church of S. Germer. It is a church little known, I
suspect, to most English tourists, but of very rare interest, and
equal in scale to our churches of the first class. The drive thither
among woods and low undulating hills is pleasant. The church consists
of a nave and aisles of eight bays, transepts, and an apse of seven
sides, with an aisle and two chapels on either side. The place of the
central chapel at the east is occupied by a low passage of three bays,
leading to a grand Lady-chapel of four bays, with an apse of seven.
The whole of the nave and choir are of fine style, in transition
from Romanesque to pointed. Externally, hardly any but round arches
are seen, but internally the main arches are pointed. I know few
things much more striking than the treatment of the apse. The main
arches have their soffits composed of a very bold round member, with
a large chevron on each side; and the effect of this, in connection
with the acutely pointed arches, is strikingly good.[20] Above this
is the groined triforium, opening to the church with an arcade of
semicircular arches, subdivided into two, and supported on coupled
detached shafts. Immediately under the rather plain clerestory windows
is a corbel-table, and in each bay square recesses, now blocked up,
but which look as though they had opened to the roof of the triforium.
The groining-ribs of the apse are large, and profusely adorned with
sculpture. The aisle round the apse is all built on the curve (as is
usually the case in early work), and the groining, constructed in the
same way, has those ungraceful and difficult curves which result from
this arrangement. Very good low metal parcloses divide the choir from
the aisles. In the nave some of the capitals appear to be of very early
date (especially along the north wall, where the acanthus is freely
used); the whole of the triforium is stopped up, but the design of this
part of the church seems to have been similar to that of the choir,
with the exception of the chevron round the arches. The groining, too,
save of the two eastern bays of the nave, is of later date. At present
the only steeple is an eighteenth century erection over the crossing;
but there was evidently an intention originally to build two western
towers. An altar of the same date as the church, which remains in it,
is of much interest, as from its rather ornate character it seems
probable that it was never intended to be covered with a cloth. It is
figured at p. 180 of M. de Caumont’s _Abécédaire_.

The exterior affords many features of interest. It is, as I have said,
almost entirely round-arched, and the choir affords a good example
of the triple division in height, rendered necessary by the groined
triforium and the projecting chapels of the apse. The clerestory
and triforium are each lighted with one window in each bay, whilst
the chapels have three windows,--a wide one in the centre, and a
much smaller one in each side. There are no flying buttresses to the
clerestory, but small quasi-buttresses, formed of three-quarters of
a shaft, finished under the eaves with a conical capping. The eaves
cornice all round the church, of intersecting round arches, resting
on corbels, is so similar in its character to some of the work in the
beautiful chapter-house of S. Georges de Boscherville, that I can
hardly doubt that they were executed under the same influence, if not
even by the same workmen.

The feature, however, which lends the most interest to the building
and aids so much in its picturesque effect externally, is the grand
Lady-chapel,[21] said to have been built by the Abbot, Peter de
Wesencourt, between the years 1259 and 1266. In plan, disposition and
general arrangement it appears to be as nearly as possible identical
with the destroyed Lady-chapel of S. Germain-des-Prés at Paris, built
by the celebrated Pierre de Montéreau, between the years 1247 and
1255. Pierre de Montéreau built also the S. Chapelle at Paris, between
1241 and 1248, and died on the 17th March, 1266. A comparison of the
design of these three buildings has induced me to believe that in
this Lady-chapel of S. Germer we have another genuine work of this
great architect, for it was built before his death, and is identical
in many of its features with work which we know to be his. The plan
of all these buildings is identical.[22] They all had two staircase
turrets and a large rose-window at the west end, a parapet above
the rose-window, and a smaller rose in the otherwise plain gable.
The design of the window tracery, the gables over the windows, the
detail of the staircase turrets, buttresses and parapets, are all so
similar that my suggestion really scarcely admits of a doubt. The main
differences are, that at S. Germer the original western rose-window is
perfect, whilst in the S. Chapelle it is a flamboyant insertion, and
that the chapel is of one story in place of two. In this last point,
and in its complete separation from the church, it agrees entirely
with the destroyed chapel at S. Germain-des-Prés. The passage between
the apse and the chapel is of three bays, with a doorway at the side,
but, so far as I could see, no trace of an entrance from the apse.
It is groined: the windows (of four lights) are much elaborated with
mouldings, and have trefoiled inside arches: and an ascent of six steps
leads from it under a fine archway into the chapel. There is a north
doorway in the chapel, and the whole is groined. The dimensions appear,
as nearly as I can make out, to be precisely the same as at S. Germain,
but less than in the S. Chapelle, being about twenty-seven feet six
inches in the clear between the groining shafts, and between seventy
and eighty feet in length. The original altar of stone, supported on a
trefoiled arcading, remains fixed against the east wall. This is six
feet five and a quarter inches long by three feet three inches high.
In the museum at the Hôtel Cluny, at Paris, one of the most valuable
relics is a stone retable, painted and gilded, formerly in this chapel.
I have not its dimensions, but it is of much greater length than this
altar, and I have no doubt, therefore, that the principal altar stood
in its proper place under the chord of the apse, and that the retable
belonged to it. This arrangement was not uncommon; it was identical
with that of the altars in the S. Chapelle, the same arrangement
existed originally at Amiens; and we have an instance of it in England
in the choir of Arundel church.

The retable has subjects from the life of our Lord, and illustrative
of the legend of S. Germer. In the centre is the Crucifixion, SS. Mary
and John; to the right of the Virgin is the Church, and to the left of
S. John the Synagogue; then come figures of SS. Peter and Paul, the
Annunciation and Salutation, S. Ouen (uncle of S. Germer) healing a
knight, a noble speaking to a pilgrim, and S. Germer asking Dagobert
to allow him to leave the court, in order to found his abbey. The
whole of the figures are painted and gilded in the most sumptuous and
yet delicate fashion, and though much damaged, are still sufficiently
perfect to be intelligible.

M. de Caumont has given a drawing in the _Abécédaire_[23] of what
seems to be a remarkably fine shrine, of twelfth or thirteenth century
character, still in the possession of the commune of Coudray, S.
Germer. I believe this is within a few miles of S. Germer, and it ought
not to be missed by ecclesiologists who take this route. It has an
arcade of four trefoiled arches on each side, and one at each end, and
has a steep roof with a fine open cresting at the ridge.

Of the other buildings of the abbey very slight traces now remain.
Close to the west end there is, however, a very simple gate-house, and
the modern conventual buildings appear to be now used for a school,
superintended by nuns.

S. Germer is certainly one of those churches which no ecclesiologist
who goes to Beauvais should on any account miss seeing. Its rare scale,
dignity, and architectural interest, and its secluded situation afford
attractions of the highest kind, and I am confident that no one who
takes my advice in this matter will come back disappointed.


From Beauvais I made my way to Compiègne, where I found but little
of much interest. The principal church is in size, plan, and general
design, decidedly conspicuous; yet it is remarkable how little there is
in it to detain an architect beyond the general effect. The bulk of the
structure is of good uniform first-pointed character. It consists of a
nave and aisle (fifty-three feet in width) of six bays, transepts, and
an apsidal choir, the lower part of which has been modernized and has a
very badly planned flamboyant aisle round it; and there were intended
to be two western towers. The groining of the nave is flamboyant. The
best feature is the apse, which has a glazed triforium of two lancet
windows in each bay, and a clerestory of large single lancets. It is,
I think, characteristic of many French churches of this fine scale,
that they afford much less matter for study and description than our
own churches of one-fourth the size and pretension. Their details
are so uniform, and their planning so regular that a description of
one bay is, in fact, a description of the whole church, and there is
nothing in the shape of monumental effigies, screens, brasses, or
other similar relics, to give a special interest to each part of the
building. When we lament the general scarcity of examples of groining
in our English churches, we ought not to forget that it was, in part
at least, to this that we may attribute the extraordinary variety of
their character; for it is undoubtedly very much more difficult to
obtain those picturesquely irregular effects which charm us so justly
in English examples, when groined roofs are used, than when their place
is taken by roofs of wood. The points of support must be much more
equally spaced, the piers more regularly planned, and each portion more
exactly a reproduction of every other portion; and it has sometimes
struck me as possible that we owe the much greater variety of designs
in the treatment even of our groining, as compared with the French, to
the great love of change and variety which our architects had imbibed
in dealing so largely with wooden-roofed buildings. In this respect
indeed, they sometimes ran into excesses for which they had no example,
and happily, no imitators on the Continent; but on the whole, we have
undoubtedly reason to be grateful for a feature in our national art
which helped to place it in so high a position when compared with that
of other countries.

Another church, dedicated to S. Antoine, is of large size and late
flamboyant style. It has a fine font (now disused) of the same
character and material as the well known fonts at Winchester, East
Meon, and Southampton; the bowl of which is no less than three feet
nine inches square. The floor of the nave of this church is boarded,
and fitted up with very smart chairs, whilst the aisles have tiled
floors and common chairs, and there is a rail fixed between the
columns to shut in the select occupants of the smart chairs. It is a
mistake, therefore, to suppose that the introduction of chairs will
necessarily secure the annihilation of the pew system. Here, too, I
saw a “_mandement_” of the Bishop of Beauvais, Senlis and Noyon, dated
Dec. 8th, 1856, ordering the adoption of the Roman liturgy, in place
of the local uses, of which he says there were no less than nine in
his diocese, so that it often happened that the same priest “chargé de
deux paroisses, trouve dans l’Église ou il va célébrer une première
Messe une liturgie différente de celle qui s’observe dans la paroisse
où il réside:”--“le chant, les cérémonies, la couleur des ornemens, les
usages, tout est changé.” The Bishop interdicted, among others, the
Missals of Beauvais, Noyon, Senlis, Amiens, Meaux, and Rouen, and his
order took effect from Whitsunday, 1857.

Of less distinctly ecclesiastical edifices Compiègne retains some
remains. A cloister in the Caserne S. Corneille is a good example.
The arches have no tracery, and the piers have buttresses to resist
the thrust of the groining. This is very simple but good work,
though late in the fourteenth century. The old Hôtel-Dieu, too, has
a characteristic gable end towards the street, divided by a central
buttress, and with a pointed archway below and a large window above in
each division.

The very picturesque front of the Hôtel de Ville has been recently very
carefully restored, but so completely, that it looks almost like a new
building. The effect of the front is very good, though the belfry tower
rises awkwardly from behind the parapet of the building. There is an
illustration of this building in M. Verdier’s _Architecture Civile et
Domestique_, which will enable your readers to understand the character
of this picturesque though late building better than any description
that I can give. The roof of the main building, as well as that of the
turrets at the angles and the belfry, is covered with slate: and it
is worth notice how much the effect of these roofs depends upon the
thinness of the slate, its small size and the sharpness and neatness
with which it is cut. Foreign slating is in truth just as good in its
effect as ours is generally bad and coarse.

The château of Pierrefonds ought to be visited from Compiègne. The
ruins must be interesting, and I believe the site is very picturesque.
It is a fashionable place of resort, and at a distance of some
three hours through the forest from Compiègne. M. Viollet-le-Duc’s
description of the buildings is known probably to most of your readers.

From Compiègne I made my way to Soissons. It was here that on this
journey I came first on the grand style which distinguishes the
buildings of this part of France. Laon, chief in grandeur, both
natural and architectural, Noyon, S. Quentin, Meaux, and Soissons,
are magnificent illustrations of the main features of the style:
whilst smaller churches, remains of abbeys, such as those of Ourscamp
(near Noyon) and Longpont (near Soissons), and of castles, such as
Coucy-le-Château, enable us to appreciate all its varieties. It is to
be hoped that the stream of English travellers will for the future
set more in this direction than it has hitherto done, since it is
now possible in going to Strasbourg to take the railway through this
country to Rheims, and in so doing to make acquaintance with a group
of churches, which impress me more and more each time that I see them.
They are remarkable evidence also of the wonderful vigour of the
age in which they were built: for they are all of very nearly the same
date--the end of the twelfth and early part of the thirteenth century,
and conceived on the grandest possible scale. Indeed, France, under
Philip Augustus, affords a spectacle such as perhaps no other country
in the world can show. For if we think of the wars which characterized
his reign, it is almost incredible that it should nevertheless at the
same time have been possible to found such cathedrals as those of
Paris, Bourges, Chartres, Amiens, Laon, Meaux, Soissons, Noyon, Rouen,
Séez, Coutances, Bayeux: yet such was the case, and some of them were
completed in but a few years with extraordinary energy.


Few things are more impressive than the cathedral of Laon, even in its
present state: and what must it not have been with its central steeple
and the six towers and spires which once adorned its several fronts,
rising, as they all did, from the summit of a mighty hill, seen on all
sides for many a long mile by the dwellers in the plain which stretches
away from its feet! And yet, magnificent as is the cathedral of Laon,
it is one only among many; and such a city as Soissons, inferior as it
is in situation, affords nevertheless in its architectural remains,
matter of almost equal interest.

The general view of Soissons, obtained from the distance, is striking
only for its architectural character. The effect is mainly attributable
to the fact, that in addition to the cathedral, with its lofty
south-west steeple, the town also contains the west front, with two
towers and spires, of the ruined abbey of S. Jean des Vignes. It is
to this ruin that the eye first turns in anticipation of discovering
the famous cathedral of the city; but a little acquaintance with
the details of the two buildings leaves no room to doubt that the
cathedral, with its lonely steeple, is nevertheless by very much the
most interesting and noble example of art which the city contains.

Let us at once, then, bend our steps thither. We shall find a church,
the greater part of which dates probably from the end of the twelfth
or the first years of the thirteenth century, whilst its plan is very
remarkable, and its details in some parts of exquisite beauty. In plan
it consists of two western towers (one of which only is built), nave
and aisles of seven bays, transepts (of which more presently), a choir
of five bays, and an apse of five sides; chapels are obtained between
the buttresses of the choir, and the apse is surrounded by an aisle
and five chapels; these chapels are circular in plan at the ground
line, octagonal above, and are groined with a vault which covers the
aisle also; this is a mode which is seldom satisfactory in execution,
and a falling off from the structural truth of those plans in which
the groining of each chapel is complete in itself, and distinct from
that of the aisle. The south transept is finished with an apse, and
has a small circular chapel of two stages in height attached on its
south-eastern side. The north transept is square-ended and of later

It is impossible to examine Soissons cathedral without having
recollections of several other churches forced upon the mind. At Noyon,
for instance, we have a grand example of a church of the same date,
both of the transepts of which are apsidal; but the south transept of
Soissons has a great advantage over its neighbour, in that it has an
aisle round the transept opening with three arches, supported upon
slender and lofty shafts, into each bay, both on the ground level and
in the triforium. Indeed there are few fairer works of the period
than this south transept of Soissons; for whether we regard its plan,
general scheme, or detail of design and sculpture, all alike show the
presence of a master hand in its conception and execution;--the same
hand, I suppose, as is seen at Noyon, but at a slightly later period.
Then, again, a comparison of Soissons with Meaux will show so great a
similarity of plan, dimensions, and design in their eastern apses, that
it is difficult to avoid the conclusion that they were the works of the
same man, and at about the same time. And each of these churches has
nevertheless some one special feature of its own, wherein it is unique
and unmatched; Soissons has its exquisite south transept, Noyon its
western porch, and Laon its cluster of steeples, by which every one who
has seen them must especially have been struck.

One of the features which most marks the churches of this school is
the fourfold division in height of the main walls. There is first the
arcade, then the triforium[24] (which is large, groined, and lighted
with its own windows), then a blank arcade which is analogous to the
triforia of our English churches, and lastly the clerestory. I cannot
say that this arrangement is ever pleasing. The clerestory always
looks disproportionately small and dwarfed, and the blank arcade below
it rather unmeaning, whilst all the divisions have the appearance
of being cramped and confined. At Soissons it occurs in the south
transept, but not in the nave--where we see the usual triple division.
Some of the capitals here are well sculptured, though generally very
simply, and in the transept they are often held with iron ties (as in
Italian examples) to resist the thrust of the groining. I should notice
that the whole of the walling in this transept is circular on plan;
this is generally a mark of early date, and though it gave rise to some
complexity in the arches and groining, it undoubtedly often produces
a very charming effect. The windows of the three eastern chapels are
full of richly-coloured early glass, rather rudely drawn and executed;
some of it, I suspect, came from the clerestory, the eastern portion of
which is still full of similar glass. The clerestory has large lancet
windows and flying buttresses of two stages in height, with the arches
supported upon detached shafts, and a passage behind the lower order on
a level with the sill of the clerestory windows.

On the exterior, one of the most noticeable features is that the ridge
of the south transept roof rises no higher than the eaves of the rest
of the church. Yet such is the care with which the design is managed,
that this smallness of scale is not noticed, until from a distance a
general view of the building is obtained, when it looks undoubtedly
very lop-sided.

From the cathedral one goes naturally to the ruined but still imposing
church of the great abbey of S. Jean des Vignes. The west front of
this church is exactly in a line with that of the cathedral, at a
distance of about a furlong; and standing on higher ground, and still
retaining its two towers and spires, it produces a greater effect in
the general views of the city. It is now the centre of the arsenal,
with powder-stores, piles of shot, and various other preparations all
around it, which afford subject for rather gloomy forebodings, in case
Soissons should again suffer (as it has so often already suffered)
the danger of a siege. The remains of the church are almost confined
to the steeples and west front. The lower portions of these date from
the thirteenth century, but the upper portion is all of a very ornate
and rather late middle-pointed style; they are very pyramidal in their
outline, and have a rather heavy arrangement of pinnacles at the base
of the spires. The belfry-window of the north-west tower has a very
large stone crucifix contrived against its monial and tracery; there
is a canopy in the tympanum over the head of our Lord, and the tracery
seems to have been designed with a special view to the introduction of
the figure. The spires are crocketed on the angles, scalloped on the
face, and pierced with alternate slits and quatrefoils. The sculpture
of this front is not of very good character. From the south of the
south-west tower extends a remarkably fine portion of the domestic
buildings of the abbey, two stages in height, and eight bays in length.
Its south end has the favourite French arrangement of a central
buttress between two large circular windows, with two lancet windows in
the gable. On the west side each bay has a fine simple pointed window:
whilst on the east side the lower part is concealed by the cloister,
and the upper stage has a row of plain circular windows, similar to
those at the south end. The steep-pitched roof still remains, and
the whole building is a very fine relic, even among the relics of
this kind in which France is so peculiarly rich. The remains of the
cloister are in a very dilapidated state. Drawings which I had seen of
it had prepared me for earlier and better work than I found. I imagine
that it is not earlier than _circa_ A.D. 1300. The sculptured foliage
is in exact imitation of nature, very pretty, and no more. It is,
however, singularly instructive, as it illustrates just the kind of
work which our English carvers are most prone to introduce just now,
and which is generally (as it is here) very ineffective for want of
due architectural subordination. The windows of this cloister are of
four lights, with geometrical tracery; but the chief peculiarity is
the treatment of the buttresses, which are angular on the face, and
above the springing of the windows crocketed on the angles. Had the
sculpture been fifty years earlier in date, it would, I have no doubt,
have been a singularly beautiful cloister. A doorway which opened from
the cloister to the church is peculiarly flat in its mouldings and
sculpture, but remarkable for the still existing traces of painting
over its whole surface. The foundations of the east wall show that the
church was not of any great length from east to west.

The church of S. Léger is the finest edifice after these of which
the city can now boast. Anywhere its transepts and choir would be of
great interest for their early thirteenth-century date, and their good
architectural character. The church consists of a nave and aisles of
six bays (of which the four western are Renaissance), transepts of
two bays in depth, and a choir without aisles, which has one bay of
sexpartite groining, and an apse of seven sides. The detail is very
much the same as in the cathedral. The clerestory windows in the apse
are lancets, and in the rest of the church of two lights with tracery,
consisting of a cusped circle within an enclosing arch. In these
Soissonnais churches the label generally has a ball or four-leaved
flower at intervals. There is a procession path or passage, with
openings in the buttresses, round the church outside the clerestory
windows, dividing the church very markedly into two divisions in
height, and recalling to memory the very similar arrangement in
the church of S. Elizabeth at Marburg. The transept has fine angle
pinnacles and a large three-light window with early tracery, whilst the
cloister is somewhat similar to that of S. Jean des Vignes. Stepped
gables are a favourite feature here even in early work. The aisles of
S. Léger are so finished, as is also an early building by the side of
the cathedral.

The church of S. Pierre, which is desecrated, has a west front of much
interest. It has a nave and aisles, three western doorways (whereof the
central is pointed, the others round), and a single wide, round-arched
window over each door. The detail is peculiar,--of late Romanesque
character, and effective. Only two bays of the nave remain. The labels
and string-courses have a dogtooth enrichment, whilst the cornice
above them is adorned with a regular acanthus-leaf. The shafts of the
west door are fluted; and in this, as in the quadruple arrangement in
height, which I have already noticed as a frequent characteristic of
the Soissonnais churches, I suspect we may trace the influence of the
grand church of S. Remi at Rheims.

Of domestic buildings there are but few traces in Soissons. The best
are: a building near the west front of the cathedral, with stepped
gables, central buttresses in the end, and good simple three-light
windows in each bay;--a house in the Cloître S. Gervais, near the north
transept of the cathedral, with a steep unpierced gable and three
two-light windows in the stage just below it, and an unpierced ground
story;--and an old hospital near the cathedral, of good early-pointed
work, without groining, but with transverse arches from column to
column,--the capitals being carved, and the arches quite square in

From Soissons, an excursion ought to be made to the abbey of
Longpont.[25] I was not aware at the time I was there that it was in
this neighbourhood, but I believe that it is only some eight or ten
miles distant, and that the church is of rare interest and grandeur. I
regret extremely my inability to give any notes of it.

A walk of a mile across meadows took me to the remains of the great
abbey of S. Médard. These are very slight and consist of some remains
of crypts, in which are preserved portions of buildings or monuments
which have been dug up from time to time. An old view of S. Médard
shows it surrounded by fortified walls, enclosing a vast range of
buildings and two or three churches. Of all this nothing now remains,
beyond a modern house, converted into an asylum for deaf and dumb, in
one portion of which remains an old vaulted apartment, now used as the
chapel of the institution.

From Soissons, I made my way across country to Château Coucy ...
and from Coucy, I made a considerable détour to visit the abbey of
Prémontré. The situation is very striking, in a narrow valley, closed
in on all sides with steep, thickly-wooded hills, and with only a few
dependent cottages leading up to the gate of the abbey. This was the
chief house of the Premonstratensian Order, which established as many
as thirty-five houses in England. The abbots of the order were bound to
meet once a year at Prémontré, and as there were as many as a thousand
abbeys belonging to them, the wild valley must then have presented
a singular contrast to its present deserted state. Until lately the
buildings have been used as a glass manufactory: but they have just
been purchased by the Bishop of Soissons (who seems to have a great
character for piety and liberality among the people) for an orphanage.
I saw the nun who holds the post of superior of the institution, and
obtained permission to search for remains of the old buildings: she
seemed much surprised at my demand, and with some reason, as the only
traces left of them are a portion of (I think) a crypt under the
church, which has fallen with its groining, and is left a confused mass
of stones, just as it fell. On my way from Prémontré, I passed, between
Anizy-le-Château and Laon, a very interesting example of a village
church at (I believe) Chalvour. It is cruciform, with a good central
gabled tower. The chancel has single lancet windows to the east and
south, and the south transept a large boldly-cusped circular window,
and a small projection on the east for the altar, also lighted with
a circular window. The chancel, tower, and transepts, are groined:
the nave (with its aisles) is of inferior work. Altogether, this is a
very characteristic thirteenth century church, of bold and vigorous
character, and severely simple in all its details.

An ascent of about two miles leads up the side of the mountain, on
which Laon is perched, to the western extremity of the city. And here I
must pause, trusting another time to say somewhat of the architectural
glories of the place, upon which I suppose I can scarcely descant too


The two great architectural attractions of Laon are the cathedral and
its subordinate buildings, and the fine church of S. Martin. They are
situated at the two extremities of the long narrow ridge on which
the town is built, which towards the east falls precipitously on
three sides almost from the very walls of the cathedral down to the
broad vast plain which extends as far as the eye can reach, and from
all parts of which the grand mass of the building, with its almost
unrivalled cluster of steeples, is seen standing--just as our own
glorious Lincoln--on the very spot of all others fitted for a diocesan

I know no church which is altogether more calculated to leave a lasting
impression on the mind than the cathedral. What is wanting in grace and
delicacy is amply atoned for in force and majesty; and the completeness
of the plan, the short period which seems to have elapsed between
its commencement and completion, and the almost entire absence of
later additions or alterations, combine to make it in every respect
of the utmost value to the architectural student. The stern, solemn
majesty of its art is just what we modern men ought to endeavour to
impress ourselves with; but whilst I believe that all students would be
enormously benefited, they must not come here under the impression that
they are to see work which is pretty and attractive in the same sense
or degree as S. Ouen at Rouen, or Cologne cathedral.

In plan this church has the remarkable peculiarity of a square east
end, and consists of a nave and choir respectively of eleven and ten
bays in length, transepts with an eastern apsidal chapel to each, a
small cloister on the south side of the nave, and sacristies formed in
the angles between the transepts and choir. The groining is sexpartite
in the principal vaults, and quadripartite in the aisles; there is a
large vaulted triforium, and the fourfold division in height to which
I have already referred as a characteristic of many of the churches
of this district. But the most noteworthy feature is that the three
principal façades--on the west, north, and south--were each intended
to have two towers and spires, whilst a lantern crowned the crossing.
No less than four of these towers and the lantern still remain (though
without their spires, shown in an engraving by du Sommerard), as well
as the lower portion of the others. On the east and north the cathedral
is enclosed with extensive ranges of coeval buildings belonging to the
bishop’s palace, including the small private chapel, to which I must
recur again.

Let us hear what M. Viollet-le-Duc says about the characteristics of
this cathedral of Laon:[26]--“La cathédrale de Laon conserve quelque
chose de son origine démocratique; elle n’a pas l’aspect religieux
des églises de Chartres, d’Amiens ou de Reims. De loin, elle paraît
un château plutôt qu’une église; sa nef est, comparativement aux nefs
ogivales et même a celle de Noyon, basse; sa physionomie extérieure est
quelque peu brutale et sauvage; et jusqu’à ces sculptures colossales
d’animaux, bœufs, chevaux, qui semblent garder les sommets des tours
de la façade, tout concourt à produire une impression d’effroi plutôt
qu’un sentiment religieux, lorsqu’on gravit le plateau sur lequel elle
s’élève. On ne sent pas, en voyant Notre Dame de Laon, l’empreinte
d’une civilisation avancée et policée comme à Paris ou à Amiens; là,
tout est rude, hardi: c’est le monument d’un peuple entreprenant,
énergique et plein d’un mâle grandeur. Ce sont les mêmes hommes que
l’on retrouve à Coucy-le-Château--c’est une race de géants.”

I am disposed to think that M. le-Duc scarcely values the architecture
of Laon sufficiently highly, and that he is mistaken in his idea of the
democratic character imparted to it by the turbulence of the citizens
at the time of its erection. It appears to me that the peculiarity of
its character is derived much more from some connection with German
art, and I believe that the churches throughout this part of France
show many evidences of such a connection. The planning of the towers
of Laon is very German; I need hardly adduce examples from the Rhine
district, where, as we all know, the steeples are treated as so many
great turrets, nearly similar in size, height, and design, whilst the
crossing is often marked by a low lantern. The grand cathedral at
Tournai in this respect resembles very strongly that of Laon; and if we
were coming from Germany into France, we might at Andernach, Coblentz,
Trèves, and Châlons-sur-Marne (in the church of Notre Dame), see a
regular sequence of buildings by which we should arrive without any
very great or sensible break at Laon. The groined triforium is another
well known German feature, and though the apse is a very general
termination to German churches, it is yet not impossible that its
absence at Laon may be an evidence of Germanic origin, as we do meet
there with some examples of the same kind. In one particular feature I
am able to trace a most singular coincidence with a German example, to
which, however, I do not wish to attach very much weight, though it is
undoubtedly curious. The steeples at Laon are very fine compositions--I
should hardly speak too strongly of the steeple of the south transept,
were I to say that it is the best-designed steeple in France,--marked
by turrets at the angles, which are either octagonal or square in plan
with shafts at their angles, and very beautiful in their effect. In the
west front one of the stages has, in these open turrets, large figures
of oxen and other animals looking out from between the shafts on the
city roofs far away below,--a quaint conceit, which one would suppose
to be a purely personal and peculiar device, and of which nevertheless
there is an almost exact repetition in the very similar steeples of the
grand cathedral at Bamberg.

My belief is, that as we can trace a stream of Italian art coming
to the south and south-west of France, and thence working on to the
north in gradual and steady development, so we may also see the same
thing here. Italian art first spread down the Rhine, and thence spread
right and left, and in these border provinces of France influenced to
a greater extent than is generally supposed the French architects. On
their part there was a peculiar skill and art displayed which soon
enabled them to develop from the germ which they received; but the
Romanesque work out of which they developed their buildings was of
a different order from that which was the ground-work on which the
architects of Poitiers, Bourges, and Chartres had to work; the latter
having in Italy a Byzantine origin, whilst that of the Rhine churches
was rather Romanesque. Something therefore of the magnificent character
of the best early French Gothic is owing to Germany, and it was the
situation of the Île de France, the meeting point as it were of these
two developments, which made it the centre from which the best Gothic
architecture of the world naturally sprang. But whatever was the
history of Laon cathedral, no one can doubt the excessive grandeur of
the result. No doubt the magnificence of the situation, which recalls
forcibly some of the most interesting of Italian cities, such as Siena
and Perugia, has something to do with the colouring of memories of
Laon; but in the church itself there is but one point on which it is
possible to feel that there is any serious shortcoming, and this, as
an Englishman, I am almost afraid to say is the absence of an eastern
apse. It is only when one travels from church to church finished with
apsidal choirs, that the eye sees the whole evil of the square east
end as the termination of the vista in a large church. But there can
be no doubt that there is less completeness and unity of effect,
fewer fine effects of light and shade, and altogether less skill and
architectural ingenuity in the English plan than in the other: and
though I should be sorry to see the apse commonly introduced in small
churches, yet I think it fortunate that attention has been a good deal
drawn to this matter of late years, and that men have not been slow
to recognize the advantage of importing this one foreign practice at
any rate into our own country. Both externally and internally the east
end of Laon is deficient in effect, and gives the impression of being
low and awkward in proportion. There is an eastern triplet which comes
down very near to the floor, and a large rose window over it; an arcade
of open arches, flanked on either side by a pinnacle, conceals the
lower part of the gable. This elevation is indeed the worst thing in
the whole church, and contrasts unfavourably with that of the north
transept. This is perhaps a little later in date and owes much to the
irregularity of outline caused by the completion of one only of its
steeples. It has the peculiarity of two double doors; and the large
rose window composed of eight octofoiled circles surrounding a ninth,
is of rare beauty. It is to be prized the more, too, because in the
fourteenth century there was a plan for its removal, of which we have
curious evidence: one of the side jambs and part of the arch of a large
middle-pointed window having been inserted by cutting away the wall
close to a buttress in such a way as to disturb very little of the
original work, and yet to afford us a very curious evidence of the way
in which alterations of this kind were made by the mediaeval masons,
without the introduction of a single shore or support of any kind.
Fortunately the alteration was stopped just where it ought to have
been, after it had afforded evidence of the customs of the masons, but
before it had destroyed a perfect first-pointed façade; and I suppose
that by this time we have outlived the rage for middle-pointed work so
far that it would be difficult indeed to find any one so wrong-headed
as not to be grateful for the stoppage of the alteration at the point
at which we see it now. Of the western façade I can say but little. It
has been my fortune to see it twice, but an evil fate has so covered
it with scaffolding at one time, and taken down and rebuilt so much at
another, that I have only been able to guess at its general effect.
The western doorways are adorned with sculpture, and this is almost
the only place in the church in which figure sculpture still remains;
but the whole exterior of the church is remarkable for the fine
architectural character of the sculpture of foliage, which is used with
special lavishness along almost all the string courses. I hardly know
any finer work of its kind, but it is altogether conventional in its
treatment, and arranged with very particular reference to architectural
effect, the foliage in each bay being very nearly identical in its
design. A peculiarity in the external effect of the church is the
lighting of the triforium with separate windows, so that we have three
heights of windows in the elevation belonging to the aisle, triforium,
and clerestory.

Of the various steeples which adorn the church, and whose character is
generally very similar, the most beautiful is, I think, that of the
south transept. The lower stages are lighted with couplets of lancets,
and have buttresses at their angles; above the roof line square
pinnacles are set diagonally at the angles, and in the topmost stage
the tower is an octagon in plan with octagonal angle pinnacles resting
on the square pinnacles below, and lighted by lancet windows of very
light proportions. The octagonal pinnacles are composed entirely of
shafts supporting arches, and are of two stages in height; and within
them are contrived some newel staircases of exquisite design. They
consist of a series of delicate shafts--one on each step, supporting
another above; the capitals of these shafts are all well carved and
with great variety; the effect of this winding cluster of shafts, seen
through and behind the shafts of the pinnacles, is a great lesson in
the beauty of shafts and the value of scientific construction. Much of
the beauty of the design is owing to the very light and airy character
of these angle pinnacles, and it is much to be deplored that the spires
shown in du Sommerard’s view no longer exist.

The small cloister on the south side of the nave is one of the features
to which it would be unpardonable not to refer. It forms only one side
of the enclosure, the east and west ends being occupied by the chapter
room and a groined chapel projecting from the south wall of the nave,
whilst the wall of the aisle forms the north side. The merit of this
cloister is, therefore, not its extent, but the beauty of its design.
The windows are of two lights, and above these is a quatrefoil opening
enclosed within a circular moulding, round which are pierced sixteen
small circles. The tracery was glazed, though the lower part of the
windows appears to have been always open as it is at present. The whole
design is a very good example of plate tracery. The outer wall of the
cloister abuts on the street, and though only pierced with small square
windows, is yet so skilfully buttressed and finished with a cornice so
finely sculptured, as to be a very successful architectural feature. At
the angle of this wall near the south transept doorway, a buttress is
brought out from the transept, and against it is placed, standing on
a corbel under a canopy, a grand angel which now holds a sundial; and
though the dial is not old, I suppose, to judge by the position of the
hand, that it takes the place of one coeval with the fabric. The angle
of this buttress, coming forward rather awkwardly in front of the door,
is cut back in a very skilful manner, and has two recessed shafts with
capitals and bases, affording a capital example of angle decoration.

There is not much of which I need make special mention in the interior.
The main columns are generally plain cylinders, with very large
capitals from which the groining shafts rise; these are banded very
frequently in their height with bad effect. There is the fourfold
division in height to which I have already adverted, and considerable
matter of study in the sculpture of the capitals, which is however in
some cases rather too rude and early in its character.

There is some very fine early glass in the eastern windows of the
choir. In the transept there are two arches across next the wall,
supporting a floor on a level with and connecting the triforia, the
spaciousness of which is quite wonderful. They are groined throughout,
and the views of the church obtained from them are very good. I found
some middle-pointed screens dividing the several bays of the triforium
in the nave, and there was a good deal of thirteenth century glass
lying on boards, and about to undergo restoration. Considerable
alterations were made in the last century by the insertion of chapels
between the buttresses of the choir, but these do not detract much from
the general effect of the church, which exhibits a degree of general
uniformity hardly to be paralleled save at our own Salisbury.

I think it admits of a fair doubt whether such a cluster of similar
great steeples at regular intervals around one building, as we have
here, could ever be perfectly satisfactory; but of the beauty of their
design, taken separately, there cannot be two opinions. It is possible
that if the central lantern had been carried up to a great height,
whatever defect there is might have been rectified, but there is no
sign of any such intention.

To the east and north of the cathedral are very large remains of
buildings of the same date as the cathedral, and fairly perfect in
their external effect. Towards the interior they all rest on open
arcades, whilst on the exterior the outline is well and picturesquely
broken by a series of turrets projecting from the walls of the great
hall of the palace, said to have been built by Bishop Garnier in A.D.

The bishop’s chapel, a groined building with nave and aisles, and of
two stages in height, still remains. It is of slightly earlier date
than the cathedral, is covered with a roof of one span, and has a very
small apse at the east end.

There seems to have been a communication directly from the bishop’s
palace to the eastern part of the cathedral; and if the people of Laon
were as turbulent as they are said to have been, the bishops were wise
so to place their palace, and so to connect it with the cathedral as
to enable themselves to stand a siege if need be.

After the cathedral, the church of S. Martin, at the opposite end of
the town, is the principal architectural relic still left in Laon.
Like the cathedral, it is remarkable for its square east end. It is
cruciform in plan, and consists of nave and aisles, choir without
aisles, and transepts with chapels on the east side. Two towers are
placed in the angles between the transepts and nave. The general
foundation of the fabric is Romanesque work, but the choir and
transepts are of a rather ornate early first-pointed, much more German
than French in its character, and the western façade is one of the best
examples that I know of a middle-pointed front to a church of moderate
pretensions. The early-pointed work at the east is remarkable for the
very heavy character of its mouldings and string-courses, the use of
both round and pointed arches, and the very ingenious arrangement of
the chapels in the east wall of the transept, and of the buttresses
above them. Three chapels are formed under two bays of vaulting, so
that the vaulting shaft and buttress come over the point of the arch.
The church is well groined. The steeples are poor in character and
rather insignificant, but they appear never to have been completed, and
in the neighbourhood of the cathedral it was dangerous to venture upon
any but the most careful and noble work.

The west front is very ornate, and is marked chiefly by the fine
octangular pinnacles at the angles of the clerestory and by the large
sculpture of S. Martin in a quatrefoil which fills the gable. The
three western doorways are composed of a succession of small reedy
mouldings, and against the buttresses beyond the central doorway are
figures of saints considerably mutilated.

Almost the only other interesting church is a small building attached
now to an educational institution for boys. A priest told me it had
belonged to the Templars, and at any rate it is an octagonal building
with a small chancel on its eastern side, and a smaller circular
apse. At the west end there is a small porch. The whole is in a late
Romanesque style, and very small, the external measurement of each side
of the octagon being only about eleven feet.

Here and there are to be seen remains of houses and gateways, but there
is nothing of sufficient interest to require a special note here, and
the only other building I need mention is the very curious church at
Vaux-sous-Laon, a village at the foot of the hill below the citadel
and cathedral. This has a western porch or narthex, nave and aisles of
five bays, transepts and low central steeple, and a choir and aisles of
three bays, groined, and both loftier and wider than the nave. The east
end is square, and has a triplet and a large rose window above, very
similar in design to the east end of the cathedral. The columns are
cylindrical, with simply carved caps of bold design. The choir is all
first-pointed, the nave of earlier date and much simpler character and
not groined.

I must conclude this brief notice of Laon and its buildings with just
mentioning two of the existing buildings in the neighbourhood which
ought to be seen and examined. These are the magnificent granary of the
abbey of Vauclair near Laon, and the still more interesting hospital
for lepers of Tortoir: both of these are figured by M. Verdier in his
_Architecture Civile et Domestique_, and appear to be of rare beauty
and interest.


The cathedral of Rheims is most unquestionably a very noble, I might
almost say, a perfectly noble, piece of architecture, and nevertheless
it seems to fail in producing so great an effect on the mind as many
other French churches of smaller dimensions and less architectural
pretension. The truth is, that it is a work conceived and executed
at two periods and by two (if not more) architects; and though the
ground-plan, some portion of the walls, and a little of the sculpture,
of the first architect have been preserved, the general aspect of the
church at the present day savours more of the later artist than of his
predecessor. It was in the year 1212 that Robert de Coucy (a friend of
Wilars de Honecort) commenced the erection of the present cathedral,
and it was after his death and from _circa_ A.D. 1250 to _circa_ A.D.
1300 that the whole of the upper portion of the building, the western
portion of the nave from the ground, and the elaborate western façade
were in course of erection. There remains to us, therefore, little
of genuine first-pointed work, for it has been clearly shown by M.
Viollet-le-Duc that the lower stage only of the building was the work
of Robert de Coucy. He seems indeed to have contemplated a building
of greater height and grandeur than the present, since his work is
remarkable for the great size of the buttresses and the thickness
of the walls, which were diminished at once, and abruptly, by the
architect who followed him, and whose work is nevertheless amply solid
and massive for the existing edifice.

It will be seen from what I have said, that we must not go to Rheims
expecting to see a work of the best period of the thirteenth century.
We shall find a small portion of sculpture in one of the doors of
the north transept, and the plan and basement story of the building
throughout, of this early date, but the bulk of the structure and
almost the whole of the decorative features are purely middle-pointed
work of the end of the thirteenth and early part of the fourteenth
century. There is exquisite grace about most of this work, but an
entire lack of that stern character which makes Chartres the grandest
of French churches; there is prettiness where there should have been
majesty; and in parts a nervous dread of leaving a single foot of wall
free from ornament, which reminds one much more of the work of an
architect of the nineteenth century than of one of the thirteenth. The
west front, on which all the greatest efforts of the later architects
of the church were lavished, can thoroughly please none but those
who see in elaborate enrichment of every inch of wall the evidence
of art, whilst I need hardly say that to those who have studied the
best examples of architecture in whatever style, such elaborate
ornamentation is in itself an evidence of weakness. There is a kind of
sacredness about the simple breadth of wall and buttress which must be
reverenced by all who would produce really grand work. But for this the
later architects of Rheims had not the slightest feeling, and their
work seems therefore to me to be more really allied to the debased art
which followed it, than to the pure early work which had immediately
preceded it. As at Laon, so here, the original design was to have a
grand group of towers and spires, six for the three grand façades, and
a seventh over the crossing. Some of these spires were, I believe,
actually erected, and in lead; and whether this was the first intention
or not it is certain that the plumber’s work was in great request in
this church and city, as there still remains a very fine flèche on
the point of the apse roof of the cathedral, some good detail of lead
work on the roofs, and a much modernized leaded steeple in the church
of S. Jacques; whilst in the west front of the cathedral we see large
gurgoyles of lead simulating enormous animals. The interior of the
cathedral is very noble in its proportions (though the triforium might
well have been more dignified), and is remarkable for the immense size
of the capitals of the piers in the nave; they are very closely copied
from natural foliage, and fail to satisfy me that such work is the best
fitted for architectural enrichment. The decoration of the west end is
not confined to the exterior, the whole inside face of the wall being
divided into panels and niches filled with foliage and single figures.
The stone imitation of hangings in the lower part of this wall ought to
be recorded, though hardly without a protest.

On the south side of the cathedral is the archbishop’s palace which
still retains its thirteenth century chapel of two stages in height,
and good, though simple, character. It is a parallelogram of five bays
in length with an apse of seven sides.

And now that I have ventured to say so much in the way of criticism
upon what I believe most Frenchmen consider their most glorious church,
and without any attempt at a detailed account either of its general
architectural arrangements or its sculptures (the latter exceedingly
rich and suggestive), I must take my reader with me along the dreary
dirty road which leads to the squalid quarter of the city in which
still stands as a rival to the more modern cathedral the enormous
church of S. Remi. The exterior, with the exception of the apse, has
been much modernized, and presents accordingly but few features of much
interest. The south transept has been all remodelled in flamboyant,
whilst the nave is simple Romanesque, and the west end--recently almost
entirely rebuilt--is a singular agglomeration of anomalous work,
half classic or Pagan, and half Romanesque or Gothic and Christian.
In the apse we have flying buttresses supported on fluted shafts,
a clerestory of triple lancets, and a triforium also lighted with
three-light windows. The proportions of the buttresses, roofs, and
walls are however heavy and unskilful, and give evidence of the early
date of this nevertheless very grand attempt. It is on entering by the
transept, through a doorway covered with fine flamboyant sculpture,
that we see how grand the attempt was, and how fine the internal
effect. I think I know no church whose whole interior gives a greater
idea of spaciousness and size, whilst the beauty of the design of
the apse and the aisle and chapels round it is extreme. And indeed
the appearance of size does not belie the facts, for the dimensions
of the building are singularly fine. It has a Romanesque nave and
aisles (groined with a pointed vault) of thirteen bays, transepts,
and a choir of three bays with an apse of five. Round the apse is the
procession-path aisle, and opening into this a series of chapels,
whereof the five eastern are very noticeable. The Lady-chapel is of
three bays in length, with an apse of seven bays, whilst the other four
are very nearly circular in plan, and each of the chapels opens into
the aisle with three arches supported on delicate detached shafts.
The groining of each of the four smaller chapels forms a complete
circle in plan, with eight groining ribs, whereof two are supported
on the columns opening into the aisle. Each chapel is lighted by
three windows, recessed so much as to allow of openings being pierced
in the groining piers to admit of a passage all round the interior.
This arrangement (as well as the beautiful planning of the chapels)
is a distinct feature of the churches of Champagne. The chapels of
Notre Dame, Châlons-sur-Marne, are similarly planned, and in those
of the cathedral at Rheims it is clear that Robert de Coucy had the
same plan in his eye, though he gave up the triple-arched entrance
from the aisle; whilst at S. Quentin we see an almost similar plan
at a rather later date. The whole of the nave retains the original
very simple Romanesque arcades, and lofty groined triforia; but its
groining throughout is fine early-pointed work and of grand dimensions,
the width in clear of the vault being about forty-five feet. It is a
curious fact that in this nave the triforium compartment is absolutely
more lofty than that below it which contains the arch opening into the
aisle. In the choir there is a sort of fourfold division in height
such as I have described at Soissons and Laon, an arcade of pointed
arches being introduced between the clerestory and the triforium; but
as this arcade is in part a continuation of the lines of the clerestory
windows, and as there is no string-course to divide the stage in two,
the effect is better than in other examples of the same arrangement.

There is much matter for careful study in the interior; among other
things may be noticed the remarkably fine and large corbels supporting
the groining shafts in the eastern part of the nave, adorned with
figures of the prophets bearing scrolls and still retaining traces of
their old colouring; and again, the very beautiful sculpture of some of
the early capitals near the western end of the nave, and on either side
of the great western doorway. In the windows of the apse are some small
remains of fine early glass.

Among the other architectural remains in Rheims is the church of S.
Maurice, consisting of a Romanesque nave and aisles, and a lofty
groined flamboyant choir, the west front of good character, having
small buttresses supported on shafts on each side of the central door,
and separating the western triplet of broad lancets above the doorway.
The rest of the church is very uninteresting.

There is also the church of S. Jacques, whose west front has the
unusual feature of a sham gable on either side of the real central
gable.[27] These gables are above the aisles, and completely conceal
their roofs and the clerestory. The nave is of early-pointed date, but
very much altered; only the two eastern bays appearing to retain the
original triforium and clerestory,--the latter a lancet with internal
jamb-shafts, which are continued into the triforium and form a portion
of the arcades of four pointed arches which occupy each bay,--an
arrangement very similar to that of the clerestory of S. Remi. These
two bays are groined with a sexpartite vault, which is slightly domical
in its longitudinal section. The alternate piers in the nave consist of
coupled columns of very solid character, and with very deep capitals.
Some of these columns are regularly fluted. The rest of the nave has
been much altered in the fourteenth century, whilst the choir is
flamboyant, with aisles of Renaissance style, but groined in stone.
The crossing is surmounted by a very large flèche of timber covered
with lead, almost completely modernized, but showing still some large
three-light windows of middle-pointed style.

The _Maison des Musiciens_, in the Rue de Tambour, is a well-known
example of excessively good domestic architecture of the thirteenth

From Rheims I made my way by railway to Châlons-sur-Marne, where I was
rewarded by the sight of one of the most interesting churches I have
ever seen, that of Notre Dame, and of a cathedral of inferior interest.
It was the more gratifying to find such really fine work just on the
extreme borders of the country to which French influence extended, and
beyond which to the eastward the churches appear to be entirely German
in their style.

The points of resemblance between Notre Dame de Châlons and the church
of S. Remi at Rheims are too obvious to be overlooked. The planning and
the general design and detail of their chevets are precisely similar,
though the scale of Notre Dame is considerably smaller than that of S.
Remi. The former church has however the great advantage of being of the
same character throughout, wonderfully little damaged by time, and
singularly fortunate among French churches in being under the care of
a priest, M. Champenois, whose zeal and enthusiasm for his beautiful
church is equalled by the care and skill with which he has himself
carried out its restoration. It is the most conservative restoration
I have as yet seen in France; it could not be more conservative, and
hence it is impossible that it could be better. M. Champenois feels
that every stone is a deposit entrusted to him, and I would that we
saw signs of such zeal as his rather oftener in the French clergy.
Unfortunately, it seems to be too generally the case that they take
no interest whatever in the churches which they serve. They have been
taught to look to the government as the owner and restorer of all
religious buildings, and they have ceased to concern themselves about
either the security of their fabrics or the character of their fittings
and decorations. Fortunate indeed is it for us in England that the
State is not so careful for us as it is in France, for then we should
see here, just as we do there, a people utterly careless of the noble
buildings which surround them, in place of--as we do here--a people
whose love for their old monuments is enhanced and in part created by
the fact that they are themselves perpetually invited to help in their
restoration and repair.

The church of Notre Dame consists of a nave and aisle of seven bays
in length, transepts, and a very short apsidal choir (an apse of
seven sides), with an aisle and chapels planned like those of S.
Remi, beyond it. There are four towers, two at the west ends of the
aisles, and two in the angles between the transepts and the choir.
The triforium throughout is large, lofty, and groined. As at S. Remi,
the external effect of this church is much inferior to the internal
effect. It is rather too heavy and ungainly, and savours much of the
character of German Romanesque work. The four towers have the defect
of being almost exactly alike, of four stages, richly adorned with
round-arched arcades, and rising hardly at all above the level of
the ridges of the roof. The south-west tower retains its fine leaded
spire, with four tall pinnacles at its base, and a cluster of eight
spire-lights about midway: it is an exquisite example of lead-work, and
still more precious to us as affording evidence of the extraordinary
extent to which decoration was sometimes carried in the Middle Ages.
The pinnacles at the base still retain distinct traces of decoration
on the lead, each side having a large crocketed canopy, below which is
a gigantic figure, in one case of an archer with a bow. The whole is
done in white and black only, the ground being the dark lead on which
the white lines seem to have been marked by a process of tinning or
soldering. It is a kind of decoration which we may well attempt to
revive. A spire very similar to the other has recently been erected
on the north-west tower, and the western front is now therefore quite
in its old state, and singularly well does it look. I almost doubt
whether the addition of similar spires to the two eastern towers, for
which the Curé is now collecting funds, will really improve the look
of the church. With four steeples, it is well that two at least should
be pre-eminent, which is the present state of the case; whilst the
completion of the others would reduce all to the character of mere
turrets--a result not to be desired. The variety of string-courses
and cornices throughout the exterior of this church, all filled with
sculpture of foliage, gives a very ornate character to the external

The principal entrance is by the south door of the nave. This has been
cruelly damaged, indeed nearly destroyed, but what remains is of great
interest, owing to its very close resemblance to the noble western
doorways of Rouen cathedral; the doorway is double, with eight shafts
in each jamb, the alternate shafts having figures in front of them,
as in the west doorways of Chartres; whilst the tympanum is similar
also, having a figure of our Lord, surrounded by the emblems of the
four Evangelists. Portions of archivolt enrichments and other sculpture
have been dug up in the neighbourhood of this doorway and carefully
preserved, and they appear to me, by their vigour and grandeur of
character, to be undoubtedly the work of the same artist, and possibly
portions of this once magnificent but now woefully mutilated entrance.

It is in the interior, however, of this church that the effect is
finest and the architecture most noble. The whole is very uniform
in character throughout, marked by great solidity of construction
and proportion, and by the boldness and distinctness of all its
architectural detail. The triforium throughout opens with two arches
enclosed within another, the spandrels being unpierced, and throughout
the church it is groined; nor must I forget to say, that at the present
day the spacious area it affords is turned to some account; for,
when I was there, on one side they were making the organ pipes, on
the other constructing the organ, and in another part the carpenters
were busy upon the organ case; and the Curé assured me that he not
only had the satisfaction of seeing everything executed in the best
possible way, but at the same time there was no inconvenience, and no
want of reverence, on the part of the workmen. The clerestory consists
throughout of lancet windows, the lower portions of which are filled in
with an arcade in the manner I have described in the choir of S. Remi,
at Rheims. The sculpture throughout this church, though almost entirely
confined to foliage, is very instructive, and at the same time a little
puzzling; for we see almost side by side work of the best Byzantine
character--almost rivalling the sculpture we see in Venice--and
distinctly thirteenth century French work, whilst the building itself
shows no corresponding diversity, and I can only suppose, either that
the sculpture was in hand much longer than the building of the church,
or that two sets of sculptors were at work, the one educated in a
Byzantine school, the other influenced by the more developed school of
the Île de France.

I have said enough, I trust, to induce others to examine carefully this
very interesting church; it is valuable as being a little in advance of
the most perfect period of the French pointed style, and as being much
more instructive, therefore, than a building which, like the cathedral
at Rheims, is in the main a little after the most perfect period, and
full, therefore, of symptoms of decline, instead of promise of advance.

From Notre Dame to the cathedral it is a descent from the finest early
first-pointed to commonplace middle-pointed, full of German character
in its detail. The west front and the whole of the apse have been much
modernized, and the finest remaining portion of the exterior is the
north transept front. The windows are geometrical middle-pointed of
four lights, and the flying buttresses on a large scale, double, and
surmounted by pinnacles. There is some good stained glass of late date
in some of the aisle windows.

Another church, dedicated, I think, to S. Alpin, has a nave and aisles
of six bays groined, without a triforium, and of the same date as
Notre Dame. There are transepts and a central tower, and a choir in
flamboyant style, and of a most unusual plan; the two arches east of
the tower diverge from each other, so that the width of the choir
gradually increases up to the point at which it is finished with an
apse of three sides. An aisle surrounds the whole, the windows of which
retain some very rich stained glass. This choir is the most remarkable
example that I have met with of a very late revival of, perhaps, the
earliest type of chevet. There are a great many altars in this church,
pews throughout with doors, and no sign whatever of any improvement.
In Notre Dame, where pews had disappeared and everything was being
restored, all the side altars had disappeared, and there was only one
altar left besides the principal altar in the choir.

And here I might well conclude these notes of French architecture. From
Châlons I went to Toul, and thence by Metz to Trèves, and I found,
as might be expected, nothing but German work. At Toul there are two
churches, the cathedral and S. Gengoult, both of some interest, and
with good cloisters; but it is very remarkable how we find here, not
only German detail, but the favourite German ground-plans also; S.
Gengoult is a cruciform church, with an apsidal chancel, and a small
apsidal chapel on each side opening into the transepts; whilst the
cathedral has an apsidal choir without aisles, and a square-ended
chapel on each side opening from the transepts. The window tracery
in S. Gengoult is perhaps the ugliest ever devised even by German
ingenuity, and yet of early geometrical character (_circa_ A.D. 1300),
and still retaining much very beautiful glass of the same date. The
nave of the cathedral has been recently seated with very smart fixed
open seats, of the kind which might have been erected fifteen or twenty
years ago in England.

Of Metz I can say but little more than of Toul. The cathedral is
undoubtedly magnificent in its scale and general proportions; but its
detail throughout is miserably thin and meagre, and the church appears
to me to be utterly undeserving of the praise I have heard bestowed
on it by some English authorities. Of course, however, the degree of
admiration felt for such a building depends very much upon the standard
of perfection which each man sets up for himself. If he comes to Metz
strongly possessed with a sense of the noble character of German
Gothic, of course he will admire this extremely German edifice; if,
however, he have the slightest feeling for early French art, I imagine
that he will turn away with disappointment and sorrow from this church,
so vast, and yet, as compared with fine French churches, so tame, poor,
and weak.

The best of the other churches in Metz is that of S. Vincent, a work of
better style than the cathedral, and with a well-planned German east
end, showing undoubtedly marks of the same hand as (or at least of
imitation of) the famous Liebfraukirche at Trèves.


From Metz I made my way by Sierck (whose small church has a groined
roof forty feet in clear width) to Saarburg; here the church is
noticeable for a tower oblong in plan, and roofed with _two_ thin
octagonal spires which unite together at the base; and from Saarburg I
went to Trèves.

Trèves well deserves a long notice. Its churches are full of interest,
the cathedral for students of early art, and the Liebfraukirche, as
being (I think) the most beautifully planned thirteenth century church
in Germany. The close juxtaposition of these two churches is singularly
effective in all points of view. Then there are the very fine Roman
remains, and finally a really enormous number of houses of the
thirteenth and fourteenth century, all in very fair preservation. From
Trèves, by the interesting abbey of Laach, I reached Cologne, and at
once made my way to the cathedral, anxious to see whether the opinions
which have grown on me more strongly the more often I have visited it
would remain unshaken now that so great progress has been made in the
new work. It is impossible to overrate the excellence of all the new
constructions; nor are they obviously open to any hostile criticism in
regard to their conformity with the general character of the old work;
but it is at the same time useless to conceal the fact, that the work
is of a poor kind, and that it certainly does not improve as one sees
more of it. The only comfort is that the interior will be much finer
than the exterior, and that it is worth while therefore, to put up with
some shortcomings in the latter in order to obtain what will, no doubt,
be the sumptuous effect of space, height, and (I hope) colour, which
the former promises to afford. It is much more difficult to spoil the
interior than the exterior; it must of necessity be simple and uniform,
and it admits of less attempt at enrichment with such crockets and
pinnacles as cover the exterior. The south transept front, which is
the most conspicuous portion of the new work finished, is, I think,
thoroughly unsatisfactory. The crocketed gable over the great window,
repeated again just above up the roof gable, is perhaps the most
unhappy repetition of a leading line that could have been hit upon. If
a gable was necessary over the window, it should have been different
in its pitch from the other; and then again, however much the old
architect indulged in reedy mouldings and endless groups of crockets,
it does seem to be a sad thing that a nineteenth century artist should
feel bound to emulate his enthusiasm for such worthless things. I grant
at once, that he has done no more than follow precedents. In the old
west front of the cathedral, there is scarcely a moulding three inches
in diameter, whilst the central doorway between the steeples is very
small, and made up of a repetition _usque ad nauseam_ of orders of
reedy mouldings and small flowers, and admits not for one instant of
comparison with any good examples of French doorways; and, it is indeed
very striking how, as one comes fresh from French churches, all this
work looks thin, petty, and wanting in expression.

In the sculpture of foliage in the new works, the system seems to
be to take sprigs of two or three leaves and fasten them against a
circular bell, with no evidence of any kind of natural growth, and
no proper architectural function to perform. They seem to require a
piece of string or a strap round them to attach them to the bell. The
copying of the foliage is perfectly naturalesque, even to the marking
of the fibres on leaves which are to be elevated to a great height in
the building. I have heard all this sculpture so often referred to in
terms of the highest praise, that unpleasant as it is to criticize
work executed at the present day, I feel that I am bound to express
my dissent from those who so speak of it. The whole work is so famous
that all the world is interested in it. English tourists, year after
year, going in great numbers on their travels, admire thoughtlessly
everything that they see, and architects even seem to me to follow in
their wake, forgetting that our true function is not simply to admire
the work, because it is a vast and noble enterprise, but to weigh and
compare it with the most perfect work we can find, and to endeavour, if
the faults we see in it are great, to point them out by way of warning
for ourselves and others. Indiscriminate admiration of such a building
does enormous mischief, just as a wild enthusiasm for the fourteenth
century work which we see throughout Germany would be fatal to the eye
and taste of the enthusiast.

Undoubtedly the architect of Cologne has had an office of enormous
difficulty. The national enthusiasm, which has raised the funds
hitherto expended, must have needed very cautious treatment. It would
probably indeed be indispensable that the steeples, if ever completed,
should be built exactly on the old plan so curiously preserved and
discovered, but the elevation of the transepts, on which so very much
of the external effect of the whole church depended, was just one of
those points on which the architect might have ventured (one would have
thought) to step out of the old path a little, and--just as the old
architect when he wanted a perfect ground-plan went to Amiens for his
example--he might at this day have gone to Chartres or Amiens, Rouen
or Paris, and grafted something of their grace and grandeur on the
otherwise merely German conception of façade which he has given us.
That this might have been done without detriment to the old portions of
the building is I am sure unquestionable; and that if well done it must
have resulted in great gain and increased beauty is equally certain.
If (as we all, with insignificant exceptions, admit) it is well for us
to study early French art as well as English, surely some attention
to it must be even more necessary in Germany, whose national art was
inferior, in the thirteenth and fourteenth century, not only to that of
France, but almost as much to that of England.


(From the _Transactions_ of the R. I. B. A. 1889)

In the course of last autumn,[28] after having spent three weeks in
climbing Swiss mountains, I was able to devote a few days, on my way
home, to a district which, as far as I had been able to gather from
books, appeared to contain a mine of interest for the architect, not
less than for the geologist and the lover of natural scenery. From Lyon
I went by Monistrol to Le Puy, which was the grand object of my tour;
thence by Brioude into Auvergne, and through Issoire, Clermont-Ferrand
and Nevers, to Bourges and Paris. I was so much struck by what I saw,
that, though I am well aware that my visit was too hurried to be at
all exhaustive, I think I cannot do better than give you the results
of my journey, in the trust that what was full of interest, novelty,
and instruction for myself, may be of some use also to others who have
not been able to make this journey for themselves. The complete-Gothic
architecture of Velay and Auvergne is not, it is true, to be compared
to the best work in the north of France. I am not, however, going to
tell you about it, but about an earlier style, which, as I hope to
show, has special value as illustrating, among other things, the way
in which French Gothic was developed from Romanesque and Byzantine
buildings; and our attention will, therefore, be almost entirely
devoted to buildings which are either Romanesque or Romano-Byzantine
in their character, or belonging to the period of transition from
those styles to first-pointed. The complete-Gothic buildings are
comparatively few, and have no special value; and I shall, probably,
not have time now to refer to them even in the most cursory manner.

I will begin with Le Puy, the ancient capital of Velay. The city is
crowded up the side of a volcanic rock, one end of which is crowned
by the picturesque mass of its Eastern-looking cathedral. It consists
of a network of narrow streets not passable by carriages, and reminds
one forcibly of some such city as Genoa. Above the rock on which the
cathedral is perched rises another, called the _Corneille_, on which
are some old fortifications, and which has just been crowned by a
monstrous image of the Blessed Virgin, made of the metal of guns
taken at Sebastopol, to whose charge I may fairly lay much of the
imperfection of my account of the buildings beneath her feet; for
I had the ill-luck to arrive at Le Puy only three days before the
inauguration of this statue, and I found the whole city so entirely
occupied with the preparations for the fête, that it was with the
greatest difficulty that I examined the cathedral at all, and into
some portions of it I was quite unable to penetrate; whilst the
only condition on which I could obtain rooms at an inn was that I
should not stop for more than two days, and should make room for some
bishop, prince, or cardinal (of whom there were a legion on the
road), before the great fête-day. I had to work very hard, therefore,
to do as much as I did, and I make no doubt that a more leisurely
and uninterrupted examination would have enabled me to discover and
do much more. Separated from the great volcanic rock I have already
mentioned by one or two furlongs only, is the smaller, but even more
striking rock, called the _Aiguille de S. Michel_, and crowned with a
little chapel dedicated to that Archangel. It rises, in the most abrupt
and precipitous manner, to a height of about 265 feet. The distant
background includes a series of truncated conical hills, evidently
ancient volcanoes, and from almost every point of view a landscape of
the most picturesque and extensive description is seen. Rarely have I
enjoyed a more charming ride than that which, for the last twenty miles
into Le Puy on the road from S. Étienne, made me generally acquainted
with the remarkable physical formation of this mountain district;
beautiful throughout, it was at its best just when, some twelve or
fifteen miles before I reached the city, I first saw the “angelic”
church, as it is styled, standing up boldly on its rock, the centre of
an almost matchless landscape.

The story of its claim to this style of “angelic” is this. Bishop
Evodius, at the end of the sixth century, on being made first bishop
of Le Puy, wished to construct a church; the Virgin, who had before
shown to S. George the place where she wished one to be built,
appeared to a sick woman on the Mount surrounded by a crowd of angels,
and desired her to tell Evodius to proceed at once with his work.
After much prayer he went to Rome, and the Pope sent back with him
an architect and senator named Scutarius, under whose auspices the
church was soon built, and whose tombstone is still to be seen near
the transept door. Evodius and Scutarius then started for Rome again,
but on the way met two old men, who gave them two boxes of relics,
and desired them to return to Le Puy, saying that as soon as they
arrived with the relics before the church the doors would open, the
bells would ring of themselves, the whole interior would be bright
with torches and candles, and they should hear divine melodies, and
smell the sweet perfume of the heavenly oil which had served for the
consecration of the church by the angels. Everything happened just as
had been foretold, and Evodius felt it unnecessary again to consecrate
his church, which from that time to the present day has been called
the “angelic” church. No doubt you all know how curious a parallel to
this legend the history of our own Abbey of S. Peter at Westminster
affords.[29] But in searching for information about the churches of
Auvergne, I came upon a continuation of the Le Puy legend, to which the
Westminster story affords no such parallel. This second legend tells
how, when the seraphic basilica of Le Puy had been thus dedicated,
S. Anne descended from heaven to visit the palace of her daughter.
Not content with this human work, she seized the hammer of the
master-mason, and, taking wing, descended on the summit of a hill, and,
turning towards Auvergne, which to her mind offered no church worthy
of the Queen of Heaven, she threw the hammer, saying as she threw it,
“On the place where the hammer falls a church shall rise.” The hammer
fell on the right bank of the Allier, and immediately there rose from
the soil like a flower the church of Les Chases, which was dedicated
forthwith to S. Mary.[30]

Let us now leave legends, and direct our attention to the ground-plan
of the cathedral. Its architects have ingeniously contrived to cover
the whole of the summit of the rock on which it stands. It consists
of a nave with aisles, transepts, a choir, and choir-aisles, and a
steeple at the east end of the north choir-aisle. To the south of the
cathedral is the modern bishop’s palace, whilst to the north are the
cloisters, two grand halls, some ruins, and to the north-east a chapel
dedicated to S. John and other buildings. There are entrances in the
east walls of each of the transepts, but these were rather intended, I
suppose, for the exit than for the entrance of the people, and the mode
in which they were admitted forms one of the most striking features
of the whole scheme. I said that the church was built on a rock, and
its western face, forming one of the principal streets of the city,
is so steep as to consist alternately of steps and inclines, until,
at a short distance in advance of the west front, it is changed to an
almost interminable flight of steps. The grand west entrance is an open
porch, like an enormous crypt, beneath the three western bays of the
nave and its aisles, whose walls and piers it reproduces in its plan.
The steps[31] formerly rose in a straight line, until they came up in
the very centre of the church, in the fifth bay of the nave, and in
front of the roof-loft, and of the miracle-working image of the Blessed
Virgin, which, brought from the East and given to the church by S.
Louis, was, until its destruction in A.D. 1789, the greatest attraction
for pilgrims in France.[32] This singular entrance, and the mode of
exit by the eastern doors of the transepts, gave rise to an old saying,
“In Notre Dame du Puy one entered by the navel and went out by the
ears.” Unfortunately, however, the central entrance has been diverted,
and after ascending a hundred and two steps, and arriving at the Golden
Gate, as it was called, the passage branches right and left--on the
left ascending into the cloister, and on the right winding round the
south side of the church, until the hundred and thirty-fifth step lands
the weary pilgrim in the south aisle, near the transept.[33] This,
then, is the general scheme of this most singular church. Let me now
go on to describe it in detail, beginning with the oldest portion.
This comprises the choir, the transepts, and crossing, and the two
easternmost bays of the nave. The choir is completely modernized, and
I am unable to say whether any portion of the internal arrangement is
old. It presents the peculiarity of a square exterior and a circular
interior. This is a not uncommon arrangement in the earliest Italian
examples of the apse, and is seen at St. Mark’s, Venice, and elsewhere.
The arches opening into the choir-aisles are old, and I believe that we
may venture to say that the original plan must have been very nearly
the same as that of the church of S. Martin d’Ainay, at Lyon, in which
the choir-aisles are shorter than the choir, and all are terminated
with apses.[34] I shall have other occasion to point out that at a
later date the architects of Ainay and of Le Puy must have been the
same. The date of the foundation of Ainay is some time in the ninth
century, and it was carried on until the end of the eleventh; but the
apse and capitals of the columns of the crossing--for the columns
themselves are Roman--cannot, I think, be later than about A.D. 940
to A.D. 1000, which latter would, I think, be the date generally
accepted for this portion of the work at Le Puy. To proceed with my
notice. The crossing is surmounted by a quasi-dome, carried up as an
octagonal lantern, much of which has been modernised in restorations,
whilst much is quite new; though the universality of the raised central
lantern in the churches of the district makes it probable that it is,
to some extent, a proper restoration.[35] The transepts are covered
with barrel-vaults, strengthened by transverse ribs of a square section
below them; the small apses in their end walls have semi-domes, and
the tribunes which cross them are groined with quadripartite vaults
without ribs. The whole of the nave is covered in the same way as the
crossing, each bay being divided from the next by bold transverse
arches, and having a quasi-dome, supported by arches across the angles
of each compartment, and all of them, in truth, being not domes, but
eight-sided pointed vaults, springing from the octagonal bases thus
contrived. There are no pendentives, properly so called, and the
construction is, I should say, that of men who desired to erect domes,
but had no knowledge whatever of the way in which they were constructed
in the East; or--to take a more favorable and, perhaps, juster view--of
men who, desiring to give a small building the greatest possible effect
of space, to roof it with stone (not knowing anything yet about flying
buttresses), and to light it from a clerestory, actually solved all
these points in a successful way. Where this kind of roof was first
attempted I am quite unable to say. Certainly the central lantern at
Ainay is so identical in character with some of those at Le Puy, that
the same workmen must have executed both; but there seems to be no
other example in the same district as Ainay, whereas at Le Puy, and
in Velay and Auvergne, everything is more or less roofed on the same
principle. The second portion of the cathedral at Le Puy consists of
the third and fourth bays of the nave, and the third portion of the
fifth and sixth bays.[36]

The latest portion is of early pointed character, and not later in
date than _circa_ A.D. 1180 to 1200, and it was at the same time that
this was erected that the greater part of the enormous substructure
forming the porch was also completed. The aisles throughout the church
are vaulted with quadripartite vaults, the three western bays alone
having ribs. In the two western bays there are engaged shafts both in
the porch and above it in the nave, but the rest of the piers are of
the simplest plan, large and generally cruciform in their section,
save at the crossing, where the arches are carried on coupled detached
shafts. There is much elaborate sculpture introduced in the capitals of
the pilasters and columns of the nave, but it is nowhere of any very
high merit, and is so inferior in delicacy and beauty to the sculpture
of the same age to be seen on the banks of the Rhone, that I should
attribute it to a native school of sculptors acquainted, probably,
with none but inferior Roman sculpture, from which they endeavoured
to develope a style for themselves. A clerestory of wide and rude
round-headed windows, one in each compartment, lights the series of
domes in a very effective manner.

The arches across the nave are very bold, and, in the wall above them,
an opening is pierced under each of the cupolas. As is generally the
case, however, in churches covered in this way, very little is seen
of the real vault in any general view of the church, these transverse
arches only, with the quasi-pendentives above them being seen. The
pendentives are true semi-domes, constructed in alternate courses
of dark and light stone, and the difference between their plan and
the square angle in which they are placed is skilfully concealed by
detached shafts, with capitals placed under the pendentives.

I think you will agree with me that considering its early date (no
part probably later than _circa_ A.D. 1150 or 1180), it would be
difficult to find a grander or more nervous scheme, or one which, with
such small dimensions, conveys nevertheless so great an impression
of size and importance. The choir-aisles were altered at various
times. That on the south has been rebuilt in second-pointed of poor
character, and is now a mere passage-way to the modern sacristy, and
that on the north was probably interfered with not very long after
its first construction, when the great steeple which now abuts upon
it was commenced. M. Mérimée,[37] in his very interesting description
of the church, suggests that the base of the tower was originally a
baptistery, but I see no reason whatever for this suggestion and it is
impossible to doubt, when we carefully examine the whole design, that
though the steeple was long in building, the main feature in its design
was from the first just what we now see it to be. Moreover, the chapel
of S. Jean close by is said to have been the baptistery for the whole
city until within the last sixty years. The design of the steeple is
very bizarre and unusual. It consists of a long series of no less than
nine stages on the exterior, and it diminishes rapidly in diameter, and
is, perhaps, on the whole, more curious than pleasing in its outlines.
If you look at the ground-plan you will see that its construction is
most remarkable. The internal diameter of the tower at the base is
twenty-four feet six inches, but this is reduced to only twelve feet
by four detached piers, one foot ten and one-half inches square. These
piers are carried up from the base to the very summit, detached in the
three lower stages, and forming part of the thickness of the wall in
the portion above. The highest stage of the steeple, twelve feet in
internal and sixteen feet in external diameter, is therefore, as nearly
as possible, carried up on these four piers, and the rapid decrease
in the external dimensions, from thirty-six feet to sixteen feet, was
only rendered possible by this very ingenious mode of construction.
So far as I know there is only one other example of the same scheme,
viz. in the steeple of the cathedral of S. Étienne at Limoges. Here,
however, the base is the only portion remaining of the original work,
and the columns are cylindrical in place of being square, but it is
evident that the intention was the same as at Le Puy. The steeple at
Limoges is probably the first in point of date. M. Viollet-le-Duc
dates it at about A.D. 1050, but the Abbé Arbellot, in a learned paper
on the cathedral, in the _Bulletin_ of the _Société Archéologique et
Historique du Limousin_, maintains that it was certainly built before
A.D. 1012, when the Bishop Arnaud de Périgeux, after assisting at
the consecration of Bishop Gerald at Poitiers, accompanied him to
Limoges, and put the cords of the bells into his hands. The lower part
of the steeple at Le Puy may, I think, safely be referred to the end
of the eleventh century, and its completion to the end of the twelfth,
whilst the planning appears to me to be thoroughly characteristic of
a Byzantine artist, the construction of the piers in the lowest stage
being almost identical with that of the main piers under the domes of
S. Mark’s, Venice, and S. Front, Périgueux.

The arrangement of the belfry stage, with its gable on each face, is
very noteworthy, and is, perhaps, one of the earliest examples of a
type which was developed afterwards into the well-known arrangement
of the belfry of the south-west tower at Chartres, and this, with the
influence of the churches of the Rhine,[38] developed in almost all
subsequent modifications of the spire with its gabled spire-lights;
one of the windows under this pediment is planned in a most ingenious
manner, presenting externally a semi-dome pierced by two pointed
arches; another window is pierced with a trefoil head, the diameter of
which is much larger than that of the light it surmounts. This is a
favorite form of cusping throughout this district. I have seen it in
Lyon, at Vienne, often at Le Puy, at Brioude, at Notre-Dame-du-Port,
Clermont, and in the south porch at Bourges; and there can, I think, be
little doubt that it is somewhat Eastern in its origin, and analogous
to the horseshoe form of arch.

The cloister on the north side of the church appears to be in part
coeval with the earliest,[39] or, perhaps, the second portion of the
fabric, and in part with the later additions to it. It consists of a
simple arcade of round arches on rather solid piers, with a detached
shaft on each face. The capitals are all richly sculptured, some with
figures, some with foliage. The spandrels of the arches are filled
in with a reticulation of coloured stones; above the arches runs a
band of similar ornament, and above this again a carved cornice,
which in the later part of the cloister forms a sort of frieze. In
this portion the arches have sculptured key-stones, a peculiarity
which I hardly remember to have met with before in work of the same
date. On the south side there are two fluted shafts and one spiral;
all the rest are circular, but noticeable for their very considerable
entasis. The groining is all quadripartite without ribs, and executed
with rough stones, set in concrete, on a centring of boards. The
cloister was surrounded on all sides with buildings. On the south is
the cathedral; on the east, and opening to the cloister by an arcade
of open arches, is a large hall covered with a pointed barrel-vault.
This was originally called the choir of S. André, and in it masses in
commemoration of the dead were said, and services held on the feasts
of the Invention and Exaltation of the Cross, and on the feasts of
S. Andrew and S. Eustachius. It was also called “cæmeterium,” being
used for the burial of the clergy, and is now called the chapel _des
Morts_. On the wall are still to be seen remains of a painting of the
Crucifixion, with many prophets and angels, S. Mary and S. John, the
sun and moon, etc. In the northern gable of this building is a fine
cylindrical chimney, built in alternate courses of dark and light
stone, and rising from a fireplace in a chamber over the hall, and of
the same date as the hall. M. Viollet-le-Duc gives a drawing of the
fireplace, which is of a not uncommon early type, the head projecting
considerably on a semicircular plan. At the north end of the _Salle
des Morts_ is a passage leading to the cloister, and along the whole
northern boundary once stood a vast range of building called the
Maîtrise.[40] Nothing now remains of this save its undercroft, which
was spanned by bold pointed arches of stone, on which the wooden floor
rested. The Maîtrise was pulled down a few years since, and, not long
before, a tower close by it, called the tower of S. Mayol, was also
destroyed. It is described as an erection of the eleventh century,
battlemented, but without machicoulis.[41] It seems to have served as
part of the fortification of the church, which was also attended to
in an alteration of the building on the west side of the cloister, in
the fourteenth century. This building contained, below, a hall on a
level with the church, which was the chapel of the Holy Relics; above
was the _Salle des États_ of Velay, with a stone barrel-roof, now
both thrown into one room. Above these again was an open space under
the roof, protected on the side towards the town by a magnificent
overhanging battlement and machicolation of the fourteenth century,
and quite open on the side towards the cloister save for the stone
piers supporting the roof. The machicoulis are some of the finest
I have ever seen, and project from the buttresses as well as from
the walls. The only access to this stage of the building seems to
have been from the roof of the cathedral. Le Puy was, in the first
instance, selected as a site for the cathedral because it afforded so
secure a refuge from attack, and in later days it seems to have been
not less necessary to provide against danger: for among other enemies
the Lords of Polignac, whose magnificent castle is visible from the
steeple of the cathedral, only some four miles distant, were the most
conspicuous as they were also the most powerful. M. Viollet-le-Duc
supposes, indeed, that the tower of the cathedral was meant in part
for defence; but I see no evidence of this, and possibly he had in his
mind the destroyed tower of S. Mayol, which, as well as the double
wall of enceinte which formerly surrounded the whole cathedral, was
no doubt a purely military construction. Fortified churches are by no
means uncommon in this part of France. At Brioude is a painting showing
the church entirely surrounded by a crenellated and turreted wall in
A.D. 1636; and Royat, near Clermont, and the abbey church of Menat,
also in Auvergne, still retains provisions for defence. The _Salle
des États_ contained formerly the archives of Velay, and in removing
them a few years since (about A.D. 1850) portions of a hanging of
blue wool, “semée” with fleurs-de-lys, and adorned with the armorial
bearings of Jean de Bourbon, Bishop of Le Puy from A.D. 1443 to 1485,
were found.[42] At the same time a curious painting on the east wall
of the lower chamber was discovered under the whitewash. It represents
four liberal sciences--Grammar, Logic, Rhetoric, and Music--as females
seated with ancient worthies at their feet. Priscian sits below
Grammar, writing; and two boys, with open books, are on her other side.
Logic holds a lizard in one hand and a scorpion in the other, and
Aristotle is arguing below. The inscription underneath is--“Me sine
doctores frustrâ coluere sorores,” and each figure has a corresponding
leonine verse inscribed below. Rhetoric holds a file in her left hand,
and Cicero sits at her feet. Music plays an organ, whilst Tubal,
with two hammers, plays upon an anvil. There used--according to the
“_Chronique des Médicis_”--to be a second painting here with figures
of young demoiselles gorgeously clothed, and from the same chronicle
it appears that Messire Pierre Odin, official of the Bishop Jean de
Bourbon, who died in 1502, presented both:--“Il estait si grant orateur
que, par son mellifère et suaviloquent langage, fust commis plusieurs
fois estre ambassadeur devers le Pape à la requette du très-excellent
et redouté Prince Louis XI. roy de France, lequel dudict Pape obtint
grande louange et avoir, ce que il employa en divers façons et moyens
en aulmosnes et à la décoration de cette saincte église du Puy.” The
picture has considerable merit; its detail is a mixture of Renaissance
and Gothic, and the Gothic portion--as for instance, the chair on which
one of the figures sits--is not Italian, and I should be inclined to
suppose that it was the work, therefore, of a French artist. Its date
must be between 1475 and 1502. Louis XI. came to Le Puy on a pilgrimage
in 1475.

The external side elevation of the church is best seen from the
cloister, and, with a few words upon this, I will leave this portion
of the building. Here, even more clearly than inside, the division
of the building into work of different epochs is seen. The two bays
nearest the crossing have large coupled windows in the aisle, with
parti-coloured voussoirs and jamb shafts. The clerestory is very
peculiar in its treatment, and undoubtedly very effective; the windows
are of one light in each bay and round-headed and on each side of them
above the springing there is a recess in the wall, in the centre of
which a detached shaft is placed to carry the cornice. A similar recess
and a smaller shaft occur immediately over the arch of the window, and
the window-arch being built of alternately dark and light stone, and
all the sunk panels being filled in with geometrical patterns, composed
in the same way, an extremely rich effect is obtained. Recesses of the
same kind in the upper part of the walls occur all along the eastern
face of the transept at Le Puy; and between the clerestory windows
of Notre-Dame-du-Port, Clermont; S. Paul, Issoire; and commonly in
Auvergne. But so far as I can judge from the portion of the cathedral
in which they occur, and from the early and simple character of the
work itself, I am inclined to believe that it is earlier here than in
any of the other examples. It would be of great interest to have some
more positive evidence on this and other similar questions of date.
But, so far as I have been able to discover, there is no such evidence,
and we are left in doubt, therefore, whether this portion of the
architecture of Velay came from Auvergne, or whether the reverse was
the case; as also whether this external decoration of the fabric is
coeval with its first erection, or is a subsequent addition.

The two central compartments of the nave have circular windows (sixteen
feet in diameter) to light the aisle, and round-headed windows in the
clerestory; and between the arches of the latter windows are small
arched recesses. In the two western bays the clerestory is similar,
save that the intermediate recessed arch is omitted. In both the
voussoirs are counter-charged, and the wall from the springing up to
the eaves is coursed with stone and lava. The transept gables are only
noticeable for the courses of inlaid patterns with which they are
enriched. All these patterns are formed with white stone and lava.
The latter, indeed, forms the whole ground of the walls, and varies
in colour from a greenish grey to black; and the patterns are formed
with the darkest lava and stone. The cloister is similarly inlaid above
the arches, but it has almost all been restored in a most injudicious
manner. They have _struck_ and _ruled_ (I believe that is the technical
phrase for this most abominable of inventions, is it not?) an enormous
red mortar joint between all the stones,[43] and wherever this has been
done the diaper appears to be formed with a chequer of black and red;
wherever the cloister has not been retouched the diaper is black and

I have left, almost until the last, that which is after all the
crowning wonder of this singular church--the western porch. I have
already referred to its position and plan. The majesty, I may say
the awfulness, of this entrance, can hardly be exaggerated. It owes
little to delicate detail or enrichment of any kind, for, though these
have been, they are no longer; but it is the gloom and darkness, the
simple, nervous forms of arch and pier, the long flight of steps lost
in obscurity and crowded constantly (when I saw them) with a throng
of worshippers, which constitute the strange charm of this strangest
of entrances. I told you that in the nave the two western bays of the
aisle alone had groining ribs; in the porch below it is only in the
western bay that they are used, and this affords interesting evidence
of the very gradual yet regular development of our art.

The spaces below the aisles in the third bay from the west form
chapels--that on the right dedicated to S. Martin, and that on the left
to S. Gilles. Before the last extension of the building these chapels
were at the extreme west end. They have western doorways, which still
retain the wooden doors. Each of these doors was of four divisions in
height, covered with subjects carved in low relief. They are executed
either in cedar or oak (I am uncertain which, for they are covered with
paint), and the subjects, inscriptions, and borders are all obtained
simply by sinking the ground three-sixteenths of an inch. The figures
are, of course, only in outline, but it is still evident that they
were carefully painted with draperies, etc., so as to be thoroughly
distinct. There is some appearance of the ground having been painted
with broad horizontal bands of colour, but the traces are so indistinct
that it is difficult to speak positively.[44] The doors are hung
folding, and those to the chapel of S. Gilles contain subjects from the
early life of our Lord, whilst those in the chapel of S. Martin contain
subjects from His Passion. The meeting-rail in the former fortunately
contains an inscription of extreme value: “Gaulfredus: me: fct: Petrus:
epi”; after which some letters are lost. If my reading of the last
letter but one as “p” is correct, I think it leads to a most important
inference. No one who looks at the design of these gates can doubt that
they are thoroughly Eastern in their character; and, upon searching
for the lists of bishops of Le Puy since my return, I was delighted to
find that the first bishop of the name of Peter[45] was consecrated at
Ravenna by Leo IX. in A.D. 1043, and died at Genoa A.D. 1053, as he
returned from the Holy Land. Gates of the same description are said to
exist in the churches of Chamaillères and of Lavoulte-Chilhac in the
same district, whilst other evidence of intercourse with the East is
afforded by fragments of _tissus_ preserved at Monestier, at Pébrac,
and at Lavoulte-Chilhac. These _tissus_ are all extremely Eastern
in their character, and very similar to the famous cope at Chinon
described by M. de Caumont in the _Abécédaire_, and to the Le Mans
_tissu_ described by M. Hucher in the _Bulletin Monumental_ (1846,
p. 24). The date ordinarily attributed to them is the middle of the
eleventh century, which exactly tallies with the return of Bishop Peter
from the Holy Land. I dwell on this the more because, if the inference
I have drawn from the inscription be true, it gives the date also to
the second portion of the construction of the cathedral, to which the
chapels in the porch undoubtedly belong; and the result would be that
whilst I should date the earliest portion of the church at about the
end of the tenth century, or quite the commencement of the eleventh,
the second portion would be dated at about A.D. 1050; and, finally,
there is little doubt as to the whole having been completed in the
course of the twelfth century.[46] These dates are, as in all such
cases, of course only approximate; and it is pretty clear that there
was seldom any long pause in the works, and the development in their
architectural features is therefore very gradual.

The external elevation in the west front is similar in style to the
clerestory on the north side, and mainly executed in alternate courses
of lava and stone. The aisle-roofs are masked by walls with pediments.
Throughout this part of the work you will observe that its early date
is proved by the fact that the round arch is almost invariably used for
ornament, and the pointed arch only where great strength was required.
A great buttress, which had been built against this vast front, was
removed during the recent restorations.

I observed before that there are doorways on the east side of both
transepts--the “ears” referred to in an old saying. The south transept
door is in itself remarkable for the peculiar form of the cusping of
its arch, and still more for the magnificent porch built over it. The
date of this is the latter part of the twelfth century. It is open
on the south and east sides, and abuts on the church on the west and
north, occupying the re-entering angle between the transept and choir
aisle. The arch is remarkable for a rib detached below the arch, and
connected at intervals with it by columns, so as to have the appearance
of being suspended. My impression is that the architect feared that
his arch had not sufficient abutment, and hoped by bringing some of
the weight on to the lower rims of the arch to remedy this defect. The
whole detail of this porch is a very rich kind of pointed, full of
half-Romanesque and half-Byzantine detail. The groining, in alternate
coloured courses, is quadripartite, but has the very rare feature (in
France) of ridge ribs. Above the porch is a room or chapel, to which
I omitted to gain access. Over the door of the other (north) transept
a great arch, thrown from the cathedral to the chapel of S. Jean,
carries another chapel, lighted with a first-pointed triplet. This
door is square-headed, and covered with rich though rude ironwork. The
door-handles have a resemblance to one in the cathedral at Trèves made
by Jean and Nicholas of Bingen, which struck me, and was remarked on
also, I find, by M. Mérimée. The lintel of the door is deeper at the
centre than at the sides of the door, pediment-like, and has figures of
our Lord and the Twelve Apostles carved on it, whilst above, under a
circular arch, is another figure of our Lord, with an angel on either
side. The whole has been very much mutilated and all the figures are
hacked to pieces. The ground was painted, and no doubt the figures were
also, and the woodwork of the door was covered with linen or leather
under ironwork.

The very ancient chapel of S. Jean is close to this door, and by its
side is a fifteenth century archway. The chapel is arcaded on its south
side and pierced with very simple windows. Some antiquaries assert that
it is a piece of Roman construction, and it is not impossible, though I
should be much more inclined to call it tenth century work. The chapel
has a rude quadripartite vault, and its apsidal chancel is roofed with
a semi-dome.

I must conclude my long notice of this church by some mention of the
extensive remains of painted decorations still visible. During the
late restorations of the cathedral, I understand from M. Aymard, the
greater portion were destroyed. The vaults of the north transept and
the semi-domes of its apsidal recesses are still, however, covered with
paintings, though they are scarcely intelligible, owing to darkness and
dirt. In one of them occurs a figure of our Lord giving the benediction
in the Greek fashion, and it is one of the many evidences which may
be adduced of the Eastern influence visible here in so many respects,
though I am not disposed to lay so much stress upon it as some of those
did who engaged in the controversy it occasioned.[47] In the western
porch there are also extensive remains of painting; the soffits of the
arches in the third bay from the west are all painted, and so too are
the walls over the altars in the chapels of S. Martin and S. Gilles.
The painting was executed on a thick coat of plaster, and the nimbi
are of gold with lines incised on them. No doubt the whole church once
glittered with gold and colour, and, seeing how fine its effect still
is, we may, aiding the indications still left with our recollections of
Assisi, of Venice, and of Padua, people the bare walls once again, and
bring before our eyes an interior of the most gorgeous magnificence.

I may conclude what I have to say about the cathedral with a few words
about the sacristy and its contents. The building itself is not more
than a hundred and fifty years old, and most of its treasures have
been lost. The most precious relic still left is a Bible, which, by a
note at its end, is stated to have been written by S. Théodulf, Bishop
of Orléans, in the ninth century, and sent by him, in accomplishment
of a vow, to the shrine of Notre Dame du Puy. It is a quarto of
347 leaves of very fine vellum, some white with black letters, and
others purple or violet with gold or silver letters. It contains the
Old and New Testament, commentaries on the text, interpretations of
Hebrew, Greek and Latin words, and some poems by Théodulf. The pages
are interleaved with excessively delicate tissues of various colours
and patterns, which appear to be of the same age as the book, and of
Eastern manufacture. They are made of china crêpe, cotton, silk, linen,
poil-de-chèvre, and camel’s hair, of extreme fineness, and of various
colours and patterns.[48] The binding is, however, later, and of red
velvet on chamfered oak boards, with good simple metal knobs. There
are also preserved here some wax candles, tapering considerably in
their length, and stamped with a pattern made by a pointed instrument;
and, finally, there is a tippet embroidered with a tree of Jesse,
said to have been of Charlemagne’s time. It is not so old as is said,
but may possibly be (though I very much doubt it) of the twelfth or
thirteenth century, but it has been much damaged by removal from its
original ground and by partial re-working. The sacristy also contains
a reliquary of very late sixteenth-century date, of which a photograph
has been published by M. Aymard, but which was not shown to me; and an
almost endless roll of vellum illuminated with a chronological tree of
the history of the world.

How much has been lost may be guessed from some statistics which I have
come upon as to the number of silversmiths and specimens of their work
in Le Puy in the Middle Ages: in A.D. 1408 there were no less than
forty resident in the city, whilst as to their work I find in A.D. 1444
there were in the sacristy 33 _châsses_ and reliquaries, 26 chalices,
11 statues of the Blessed Virgin Mary, angels, and other figures, 10
candelabra, 9 crosses, 9 lamps, 9 mitres, crosses with their stems,
episcopal rings, crowns for the Virgin, censers, paxes, basins, plates,
books with covers adorned with chasings, pearls and precious stones,
and many like things; and in A.D. 1475 I find that Louis XI. gave 30
silver marks for a canopy over the miracle-working figure of Notre
Dame du Puy, which was made by François Gimbert, a silversmith of Le
Puy. Other churches in the neighbourhood have been more fortunate
in retaining some of their old plate, and a fair list might be made
out, if I had time, of their possession, many of which have been
photographed by M. Aymard.

The building of the greatest interest, after the cathedral, is the
little church of S. Michel, which crowns the rock fitly called the
Aiguille. It is reached by steps winding irregularly round the rock, to
the shape of the summit of which it has been most ingeniously adapted.
The oldest portion of the building is the square choir, covered with a
dome, under which stands the principal altar. To the (ritual) east and
north of this are apsidal projections, and to the south an archway,
which as it agrees exactly in dimensions with the others, opened,
no doubt, into a third apsidal chapel, like the others, whilst the
entrance was at the west. This archway now leads into a chapel of very
irregular form, part of which extends over the porch of entrance, in
the arrangement of which one may trace a certain kind of analogy to
that of the cathedral, though it is perhaps older. West of the choir
is a nave, somewhat like a cone in plan, and surrounded by an aisle,
from which it is divided by arches supported on slender shafts. The
choir has a square domical vault, and the chapel over the porch a true
dome, the pendentives under which are just like those of S. Fosca at
Torcello. The apsidal chapels have semi-domes and the rest of the
church has a waggon-vault of very irregular outline. An arcade against
the walls of the side corresponds with that between the aisle and the
nave. At the end of the nave is the tower, which was probably built
at a slightly later date than the main building. The whole interior
appears to have been richly painted, but faint indications only of
this portion of the decoration remain. In the central dome there is a
sitting figure of our Lord on the east side; emblems of the evangelists
are at the angles, and angels and seraphim around our Lord. Below these
is a line of single figures, six on each side--the four-and-twenty
elders--and below this again are subjects, the whole combining together
to make a very interesting example of the treatment of the Last
Judgement. The dome of the chapel over the porch is also painted with
our Lord, angels, and the evangelists.


The walls generally are built of lava, though a little white stone is
used in the steeple and for the sculptured capitals.

The columns are very small, averaging eight inches in diameter, and
decrease considerably in diameter from the base to the capital. The
dimensions are exceedingly small, the central choir being only thirteen
feet six inches in diameter, and the spaces between the principal
columns in the nave varying from four feet to four feet nine inches.
The effect is rather that of a crypt, but, in spite of its small size,
it is solemn and religious.

The steeple suggests comparison, in some respects, with that of the
cathedral; the arches are built with alternately light and dark
voussoirs, and there is a peculiar spire-light rising out of the
parapet, as to the antiquity of which I have my doubts.[49]

The only part in which any rich decoration has been introduced is
the front of the porch. It has a semicircular arch, trefoiled above
a horizontal lintel. The walls are richly inlaid, and there is also
a good deal of sculpture. In the centre division of the trefoiled
tympanum is an Agnus Dei, and there are figures kneeling and holding
chalices within the cusps on either side. In the five divisions of
the arcaded cornice are--in the centre our Lord, on His right S. Mary
and S. John, and on His left S. Michael and S. Peter. The mosaic is
executed with black tufa, red and white tiles, and a light yellow
sandstone. I know no other example in this district of the use of
tiles for inlaying, though M. Mallay mentions one at Merdogne in
Auvergne, which he says is of the seventh century, though his dates
are not always to be implicitly trusted; but at Lyon, in the extremely
beautiful Romanesque domestic building called the Manécanterie, and
at a slightly later date in the church of Ainay, in the same city,
they are freely used and with admirable effect. Odo de Gissey, in his
history of Le Puy, published in A.D. 1619, states that the first stone
of S. Michel was laid in A.D. 965, and that the church was completed
in A.D. 984, when Guy II. was bishop of Le Puy, “as one may learn from
the ancient charter of its foundation, and from other manuscripts which
I have read.” Brother Théodore, in his _Histoire de l’Église Angélique
de Notre Dame du Puy_, A.D. 1693, says that the first stone was laid in
August, 962, and that his statements are “derived from the deed for the
foundation of the church, and from the book of obits in the cathedral.”
These dates, if they refer to the existing building, can only do so to
the central portion with its apses; the nave may have been added some
time in the eleventh century, and the steeple, perhaps, in the course
of the twelfth.

At the foot of the flight of steps which leads up to the picturesque
entrance of this little chapel are the remains of a small detached
building, probably a residence for a sacristan or priest.

Very near the Aiguille of S. Michel is a curious chapel. It is an
octagon, with an apse projecting from the eastern face, the octagon
covered with an octagonal domical vault, and the apse with a semi-dome.
The walls are arcaded inside and out below the vault, the internal
arches springing from engaged shafts in the angles. Some of the arches
outside are cusped in the usual way, the cusping not starting from the
cap with a quarter-circle, but with a half-circle, the same as all
the rest. There are doors in the west and north sides, with tympana
filled in with mosaic, and the wall in the spandrels between the arches
outside is also inlaid. The exterior of the apse is not visible, but
I found, on making my way into the cottage and barn built against it,
that it is perfect and undamaged. The popular opinion at Le Puy is that
the chapel is an ancient temple of Diana, a fiction which a minute’s
examination destroys. M. Didron maintains that it was a mortuary
chapel, and he refers to the chapel of S. Croix, at Montmajour, as an
example akin to this. M. Mérimée, on the other hand, says that the
Templars had property in the Faubourg de l’Aiguille, and compares it to
the similar oratory of the Templars at Metz, and he might have added
the curious Templars’ church at Laon as another case in point.[50]

This concludes my notice of early buildings in Le Puy, and I have no
more than time to catalogue the church of S. Laurent, famous for the
monument of the Constable Duguesclin, a large second-pointed building
of poor character, and very Italian in its plan and design,[51] and
with an enormous sham front; the gabled end of the hospital chapel,
with its fifteenth-century bell-turret; a pretty little fountain, and
a large number of picturesque houses of the fifteenth and sixteenth
centuries; and a very scanty remnant of a gateway at the bottom of the
town, called, I think, the Porte de Panessac, against the proposed
destruction of which I find M. Aymard protesting only a few years back
in the _Bulletin Monumental_.

About four miles to the north of Le Puy, close to the ruins of the
magnificent castle of Polignac, is the Romanesque church of the
village. This is parallel triapsidal in plan, and the piers are
planned, as are those in the cathedral, in the shape of a cross, with
columns in the re-entering angles. The little church at Monistrol is a
good example of the Le Puy style applied to a very small building; and
the church at Le Monestier, which has many features of similarity to
the cathedral at Le Puy, and is rich in early plate, ought not to be
forgotten, but I am unable to speak of it from personal inspection.

I will now turn to the churches of Auvergne. Though numerous, they
are so much alike in their character, details, and design, that a
description of their peculiarities need not be so long as might be
supposed. These churches all lie in a group together, Clermont-Ferrand
being their geographical centre,[52] and to its north are Riom, Volvic,
Menat, Mozat, and Ennezat; to the east Chauriat; to the west Royat and
Orcival; and to the south S. Nectaire, S. Saturnin, and Issoire.

Beyond the bounds of the province, at Brioude, at Conques, at Toulouse,
and in the church of S. Étienne at Nevers, there are, among many
others, examples of precisely the same description of design and

It will be well to describe the general type of these churches, and
then give a few notes as to particular examples. In plan they consist
of a nave and aisles, western narthex and steeple, central dome and
steeple, transepts with apsidal chapels on the east, and apsidal
choirs with the aisles continued round them, and four or five apsidal
chapels round the aisle. Under the choir is sometimes a crypt, in
which, in addition to the columns under the columns of the apse, are
four shafts which were intended for the support of the altar, and whose
presence certainly seems to suggest that it must have been a baldachin
and not merely an altar that they were designed to support.[54]

The naves are roofed with waggon-vaults, either with or without cross
ribs below them. The aisles have quadripartite vaults without ribs, and
the triforia above them are roofed with a continuous half barrel-vault,
which resists the thrust of the vault of the nave, and is, in truth,
a continuous flying buttress. The triforia galleries are lighted with
small windows, and this, the only light analogous to a clerestory,
being entirely inadequate, the effect of the nave roof is generally
very gloomy. The transepts are vaulted with barrel-vaults like the
nave, and in one or two instances are divided in height by a sort of
tribune level with the triforium. At Brioude, where this arrangement
is seen, there is an original thirteenth-century open fireplace in the
tribune, and M. Mérimée ingeniously suggests that the noble canons
of Brioude, for they all had the rank of Count, were in the habit of
hearing mass before a good fire; but it is fair to them to say that the
fireplace is in the east wall, and that I saw no signs of an altar near
it. The crossing under the tower is generally roofed either with an
octagonal vault or with a circular dome with an opening in the centre.
To resist the thrust of this dome on the north and south sides the
upper vaults of the triforia are continued on between the transepts
and the crossing, or else vaults of the same section are introduced
at a higher level, where the central dome is raised (as it often is)
higher than the barrel-roof of the nave. The western steeple, as well
as the centre lantern, was sometimes domed; and that at Brioude is a
most valuable example of the best type of dome in the district. The
choirs are vaulted with waggon-vaults terminating with semi-domes, and
the apsidal chapels are also each covered with a semi-dome. The columns
are generally square, with half-columns engaged on three, and sometimes
on four sides, the latter only when the main vault of the nave has
transverse ribs below it. The columns round the apse are circular,
and detached shafts against the apse walls carry the groining, and
occasionally shafts are introduced inside and outside the window-jambs
of the choir. In the nave and triforia, the windows are generally very
plain with a label containing a billet-moulding, though the latter
have sometimes, as at Notre-Dame-du-Port and Issoire, jamb-shafts.
The capitals of the columns are carved with great richness, sometimes
with foliage, but often with Scripture subjects. At S. Nectaire, for
instance, perhaps the most elaborate of all these churches in this
respect (M. Didron is my authority), the capitals round the apse have
subjects from the New Testament, four on each capital. Frequently
griffins and other animals are carved, and in one case, at Brioude, is
a demon holding an open book on which is written the sculptor’s name,
which does not seem to be a very complimentary arrangement. It is in
the earlier examples that sculpture of subjects and figures is commonly
seen, and, as the style developed more towards Gothic, foliage took
the place of subjects. The arcades are remarkable for their generally
lofty proportions. They are of course not so lofty as pointed arcades,
but they have seldom, if ever, the heavy and low proportion commonly
found in the arcades of Romanesque buildings. The arches are generally
semicircular, and in the apses stilted.

The walls were probably covered with paintings of Scripture subjects.
At Brioude there is some of this decoration remaining in a chapel
dedicated to S. Michael in the gallery over the narthex. The semi-domes
of the apsidal chapels in this church were also richly painted, and
in one of them traces of colour exist all over the window-jambs. At
Notre-Dame-du-Port, Clermont, in cleaning the nave, after removing
seven or eight coats of whitewash, considerable traces were found of
gilding on the capitals, and if this portion of the church was thus
highly decorated, there can be no doubt that the colouring of the choir
was at least equally sumptuous.

A stone seat is in some cases continued all round the walls of the
apse and its chapels inside and out, and in one or two cases the iron
grilles still remain. The only instance of the old pavement that I
saw was at Brioude, where it is composed of black and white stone in
chequers; but this is a mere fragment and of poor design.

The entrance to the crypts is by stairs from the transepts or crossing.
The staircases to the upper portion of the building are variously
placed. At Notre-Dame-du-Port they are in the middle of the north end
of the aisles; at Brioude, in the transepts, and also at the west end;
and in this church, an enormous wooden stair leads from the south door
up to the chapel of S. Michael over the narthex.

On the exterior the designs are as much alike as in the interior. The
aisle walls are divided into bays by pilasters, above which arches are
turned over the aisle windows, and then above are the windows lighting
the triforia, which are generally more richly decorated than those
below, and form part of an arcade with carved capitals and moulded
bases. The walls are finished by a boldly-projecting cornice supported
on large corbels. The transepts are buttressed at the angles, have
a heavy engaged column in the centre, from which two arches spring,
within which are pierced two windows; above these are other windows,
either two or three lights, and the gable is either filled in with
mosaic or pierced with more windows. It is on the exterior of the
apse that the main effort at display is made, and the more ornate
examples of the style, as Notre-Dame-du-Port, Issoire, and Brioude,
are singularly rich in their effort. The two former examples are of
very nearly the same date (about A.D. 1080 to A.D. 1130); the latter
is considerably later (probably _circa_ A.D. 1200). I will describe
Notre-Dame-du-Port first. Here the transept-chapels are much lower than
those of the chancel, and the latter (four in number) have cornices
below the cornice of the aisle, and gable walls are raised on the aisle
walls to receive their roofs, which would otherwise run back to the
clerestory. There are windows between each of the chapels, and a great
part of the beauty of the effect, both internally and externally, is to
be attributed to this fact. I am not sure that the whole arrangement
is not a modification of the original plan, for on close examination
I found that the labels of the large windows between the chapels are
returned and mitre with another label against which the chapels are
built, and which might very well have formed part of an arcade pierced
at intervals with windows. In the neighbourhood, about half-way between
Clermont and Issoire, at S. Saturnin, there is a church precisely
similar to what this would have been without its chapels, and the
eccentric position of the chapels at Notre-Dame-du-Port, there being
none opposite the centre,[55] would be just such as would have been
rendered necessary if it had been desired to add them after the work
had progressed somewhat towards completion. In any case, however,
there could not have been any great interval of time between them, and
probably the chapels and the clerestory are of exactly the same age.
The whole of this apse is full of beautifully inlaid patterns, made
with red and black scoriae and white stone. The enrichment is always
confined to the walls above the springing of the windows, and does not
generally extend quite to the cornice. The spaces between the corbels
under the cornice are inlaid and the under side of the cornice is
carved with a sunk pattern and in some cases appeared to me to have
been coloured. Between the clerestory windows is precisely the same
arrangement of shafts supporting a flat lintel under the cornice that I
described in the first portion of the clerestory of Le Puy, and here,
as there, the recessed wall is all inlaid.

At Issoire the general scheme is precisely similar. Here, however, a
square chapel juts out from the centre of the apse, and the question
arises whether this is an original arrangement. The suggestion I should
throw out here, as at Clermont, would be that this is the only original
chapel, and that the others were added, just as those at that place
may have been. In both these churches the buttresses are alternately
rectangular and circular, and the latter are always finished with
carved capitals.

S. Julien, at Brioude, is an example of a later date, but it adheres
closely to the same type, save that there are five apsidal chapels;
and though the windows are much more elaborate, having jamb-shafts and
moulded arches, and being arranged in a regular arcade of triplets in
the clerestory, there is much less positive effect of decoration owing
to the comparatively small amount of inlaying.

The churches at Brioude and Issoire are both on a much larger scale and
generally finer than Notre-Dame-du-Port.

Lastly, I come to the steeples of these churches. Of these there were
generally one or two at the west end and one over the crossing. I
believe that not one of those over the narthex now remains, though two
or three have been recently rebuilt. Those at the crossing were treated
in a singular manner. The eastern wall of the transept, carried up much
above the height of the walls of the apse, forms an enormous mass for
the support of the steeple, and is arched and pierced with windows,
or inlaid. The steeples seem generally to have been octagonal, and
to have consisted of two stages arcaded and sometimes shafted at the
angles, and capped with stone spires sloping at an angle of about sixty
degrees. The steeple at Issoire is quite modern, and I believe no
authority existed for it. That of Notre-Dame-du-Port is also new, the
finish having been a bulbous slated erection, with an open lantern at
the top, only a few years ago. Ancient examples, more or less perfect,
still exist at S. Saturnin, Ennezat, Orcival, and S. Nectaire, and all
of these are octagonal. These churches tally with most other early
churches in this feature of central steeples.

I have not yet mentioned the roofs. In those which I was able to
examine, they are covered with slabs of stone, supported from the
stone roofs without any use of timber whatever. The ridges are also of
stone, elaborately carved, and the whole construction seems to be as
imperishable in its scheme as anything I know of the kind.

The churches of the Auvergnat type present so little variety, and
were built within so short a space of time, that a description of
each of them in succession would be wearisome. Of course there are
some variations. S. Amable at Riom, for instance, has the main arches
pointed, whilst the triforium arcade is round-arched, and the vault of
the nave is also pointed instead of round. The vault of the nave of
Issoire is another example of a pointed vault. At S. Nectaire the usual
piers in the nave have given way to columns. At Brioude, the style
reached its perfection, and, indeed, I know few effects more striking
in every way than that of the aisles round the choir; the roof,
constructed as a regular barrel-vault and without any ribs, seems to be
true in principle, and to carry the eye on even more agreeably than our
ordinary Gothic vaulting of circular aisles, in which the eye is often
distracted by numbers of conflicting lines of ribs. The wall arcades
between the chapels recall the peculiar form of trefoil to which I have
before had to refer, and it is again met in the triforium of the south
side of Notre-Dame-du-Port.

The doorways appear to be of two kinds; one enriched with sculpture,
the other with inlaid work. Of the former the south door of
Notre-Dame-du-Port is a fine example. The opening is square, covered
with a pediment-like lintel, on which are sculptured in low relief the
Adoration of the Magi, the Presentation in the Temple, and the Baptism
of our Lord. Above the lintel is a round arch, under which is a figure
of our Lord, seated, with a seraph on either side. Against the wall,
below the lintel on each side of the door, are figures of Isaiah and
S. John the Baptist. In the much-altered church at Mozat,[56] near
Riom, is a door of a somewhat similar kind, and both are very like the
doorway in the north transept of Le Puy. At S. Nectaire is an example
of a door with the tympanum filled in with mosaic.

The masonry is usually of wrought stones squared, but not very neatly
put together. M. Mallay, the architect of Clermont, who has restored
some of them, ascertained the curious fact that the stone-masons who
wrought the stone for the arches, and wherever else superior work was
required, marked their stones with the usual mason’s mark, whilst those
who wrought the stones for plain walling, jambs, and quoins, made no
mark; and he found that precisely the same masons’ marks occurred at
Issoire and Notre-Dame-du-Port; whilst the details and plan of Orcival,
a few miles south-west of Clermont, are again so identical with both of
these, as to leave little room for doubt that it was executed by the
same workmen; and I found another evidence of the way in which details
were repeated, in some fine ironwork in the south door of Brioude,
which occurs again at Orcival.

The arches are generally built with small stones of the same size and
of even number, so as not to allow of a keystone. M. Mallay says that
the mosaic work in the walls of these churches had wide joints of red
mortar, projecting from the face of the wall. These mortar joints in
the restored work appeared to me to be a bad modern device, and I
think that the evidence in their favor ought to be very strong to be

The proportions of these churches are very similar. At Issoire, the
width from centre of aisle wall to centre of nave column is one-fourth
of the whole width, equal to the width from centre of nave columns,
and to the diameter of the chapels in the apse, and one-half the
height of the aisle, and one-fourth that of the nave. The height from
floor to ridge is equal to the extreme width at base of walls. At
Notre-Dame-du-Port the same kind of proportion exists, but from the
outside of the buttress to the outside of the nave pier is one-fourth
of the whole width.

I must now, before I conclude, say a few words as to the date of these
churches, for which M. Mallay[57] is inclined to claim rather too great
an age. He dates most of them (conjecturally) in the tenth century,
though he admits that buildings in which the pointed arch is introduced
may be as late as the twelfth century; and he considers the date of
Notre-Dame-du-Port, Clermont, as _circa_ A.D. 863 to 868. He founds
this belief on the fact that no lava was used in its construction,
and that the mosaics in its walls were formed of scoriae found on the
surface of the soil. He considers that lava was not used until the
eleventh century, but he must also prove (which he has not done) that
stone was never used in Auvergne after the lava had once been admitted.
M. Mallay depends no doubt to some extent on the admitted date of the
nave of S. Amable, at Riom, where the main arches are pointed, as A.D.
1077. But the presence of the pointed arch proves nothing as to date,
for we see it long before this in S. Front, at Périgueux; and in every
other respect there is no doubt that S. Amable presents every evidence
of being older than Notre-Dame-du-Port, and others of these churches,
in which none but round arches occur.

On either side of Auvergne there are other churches, of precisely the
same character as to plan and mode of construction, the dates of which
are pretty certain. One is S. Étienne, at Nevers, which was commenced
in A.D. 1063, and completed and consecrated on the 13th December 1097.
The plan of this church is similar in nearly every respect to that of
the Auvergne churches. But, so far as one may judge of date from style,
I should have no hesitation in saying that this church must be older
than either Issoire or Notre-Dame-du-Port. It is ruder in character,
there is very little sculpture on the capitals, which are mostly a sort
of rude imitation of Doric, and in the transepts there are not only
round arches, but also some straight-sided.

At Conques, south of Auvergne, is another church on the same plan as
S. Étienne, Nevers, in almost every respect, which there is little
doubt was completed in the first half of the eleventh century, by the
founder Abbot Odalric. Then again to the west there is the church
of Moustier-neuf, Poitiers, commenced in A.D. 1069, and consecrated
in A.D. 1096, which has a _chevet_ evidently formed upon the same
type as Conques; and at S. Hilaire, in the same city, consecrated in
A.D. 1069, whilst the ground-plan of the chevet is just the same as
that of Conques, the nave columns are analogous, there, to the half
barrel-vaults of the triforium in Auvergne. Now none of these churches
is earlier than the beginning of the eleventh century, and yet it is
hardly credible that a province shut in as Auvergne was should have
received a perfect and complete new style, or invented one and carried
it to the degree of finish and perfection at which it had arrived
when Notre-Dame-du-Port was erected, without our being able to trace,
somewhere, the source from which it was developed. I believe, however,
that its origin may be traced if we examine carefully the architecture
of the church of S. Front at Périgueux, commenced in A.D. 984 and
completed in A.D. 1047. This church, founded on the same type as,
if not copied from St. Mark’s, Venice,[58] exercised a vast direct
influence on the architecture of the day. It is seen most clearly in
churches which are, like itself, cruciform, without aisles, and covered
with domes. The churches of Auvergne, and those other examples to which
I have referred, seem to me to be clearly derived from S. Front, or
from the Eastern models on which it too was founded. The east end of
St. Mark’s presents a circular wall, with a succession of semicircular
recesses or apses in its thickness. S. Sophia contains the same
feature, though differently treated. The Roman circular buildings which
have so much in common with early Byzantine architecture have the same
feature; and S. Vitale, Ravenna, whether it is Romanesque or Byzantine
in its origin, is planned in a similar way. The architect of S. Front
evidently copied his apses from these models, only converting the
recesses of St. Mark’s into chapels projecting from the walls.[59] The
Auvergne architects attempted to combine the plan of the basilica, with
its nave and aisles, with the features which were seen at S. Front.
They retained its external wall and projecting chapels, therefore, but
placed within them the cluster of columns round the apse forming an
aisle between the chapels and the choir. By this simple and natural
modification of the S. Front plan to meet the necessities of their
triple-aisled churches they at once invented, one may almost say, the
perfect French chevet. I know no other churches in France of the same
age which appear to have suggested so much in this respect; and you
will realize it if you compare their plans with, among others, those
of Bourges cathedral, S. Pierre at Bourges, S. Martin at Étampes,
Chartres cathedral, the destroyed church of S. Martin at Tours, and
finally what is, I think, almost the best complete Gothic plan, that
of Rouen cathedral. In every one of these we see the surrounding aisle
lighted by windows between the chapels, and the chapels are distinct
and well-separated on the exterior, precisely as in these older
churches in Auvergne. These buildings, therefore, have great value,
not only as illustrating a chapter of the history of our art, but
because the chapter which they do illustrate is just one of the most
interesting I can conceive; being that which explains how and by what
steps Gothic architecture, of which, as our national style, we are so
justly proud, was developed from the noble architecture of the old
Romans and Greeks, an architecture to which we owe, among other things,
this great debt of gratitude, that it naturally led up to, and rendered
possible, a Westminster, a Chartres, an Amiens, and all the other
glories of our Christian architecture.

You will have gathered that there are many similar features in the
churches of the two provinces which I have been describing. They are
shortly these: vaults and quasi-domes alike, and carried on the same
kind of squinches or pendentives; the decoration with mosaics and
its detail; the design and treatment of doors, either sculptured or
inlaid; the form of trefoil cusping of arches, character of mouldings,
sculpture, and decoration with painting, all of these are the same
throughout both districts. The only marked difference, and it is
important, is in the ground-plan, the cathedral of Le Puy having no
chevet, but an east end derived from Romanesque rather than Byzantine
precedents; and the other churches in its neighbourhood are generally
similar in their plan.

There are two important heads of my subject to be shortly discussed
before I conclude. One of them refers to roofing; the other to coloured
decoration. First, as to roofing. I have already explained how this was
executed; let us now consider why the modes which we see were adopted.
At S. Front the experiment was tried of covering a nave and transepts
with a succession of domes resting on pendentives, and supported on
pointed arches spanning the nave. These domes were the only covering of
the church, and were visible on the outside as well as on the inside.
At Conques, the architect, unable to carry domes on the comparatively
delicate piers which were all that were required for the division of
a nave from its aisles, contrived a barrel-vault for his nave, the
thrust of which was resisted by the half barrel-vault of the triforium;
a device not improbably obtained from Byzantine churches: for if we
compare the section of S. Sophia with that of the crossing and central
dome of Notre-Dame-du-Port, we shall find the semi-domes affording
abutments for the great domes in the former, absolutely identical in
their section with the half barrel-vault, which forms the abutment
on the north and south sides of the central dome of the latter.[60]
But it was impossible to obtain any light for a clerestory roofed
and supported in this fashion, and one is rather disposed to wonder
how it was that so many churches should have been built on the same
gloomy scheme. It was, no doubt, because in that part of France wooden
roofs were thought to be undesirable, and no other economical way was
seen of combining the nave and aisles with what was intended to be an
indestructible stone roof. I need hardly say that at the same period,
in the north of France, in Normandy, and in England, the nave was
seldom, if ever, roofed with anything but timber, and the aisles only
were vaulted in stone.

At Tournus, on the Saône, another device was adopted to serve the same
end as the Auvergne roof, but admitting of a clerestory: this was
the covering of the nave with a succession of barrel-vaults at right
angles to the length of the church, and supported on bold transverse
arches. But I doubt whether it was ever repeated on a nave, though
there are several examples of aisles thus roofed;[61] and it was, no
doubt, ugly and ungainly. The Le Puy architect devised yet another
plan, which combined to some extent all the others, and this was, as
I have explained, a succession of domical vaults, which, while it was
much lighter and more practicable (owing in part to the difference of
scale) than the S. Front plan of a series of genuine cupolas, achieved,
nevertheless, much of the effect that was there gained. A very small
portion only of the weight of the vault exerted a direct lateral
thrust, and it was possible, therefore, to erect such a roof upon a
clerestory; and though the transverse arches limit the height of the
building in one respect, in another there is no question that the
height is apparently much increased; for in looking down the interior
it is impossible ever to see the apex of any of the domes, and the
vault lost behind the transverse arches gains immensely in mystery and
infinity, so as to produce the effect of a larger and loftier building
than the reality. But, on the other hand, the disadvantages were great:
the piers between the nave and its aisles were so large as to render
the aisles nearly useless; and I can hardly wonder, therefore, that the
example set here was not generally, if, indeed, at all followed.

It is doubtful where the kind of vault used at Le Puy was first
devised. The central dome of S. Michel de l’Aiguille is, perhaps, the
oldest of all, and this is, in fact, a square dome, if one may use the
expression. The octagonal dome-vaults of the cathedral are probably
a little later, but that over the crossing of the church of Ainay at
Lyon may possibly be older. A comparison will make it evident that one
is copied from the other; and if the Le Puy vault was derived from
Lyon, it becomes possible to make the important inference that it was
an Eastern influence travelling up the Rhone and distinct from that
which is seen at Périgueux, to which we owe this kind of domed roof.
Further evidence of this is found in the pendentives of the dome at
Brioude,[62] which are identical in intention with the plan of the
church of SS. Sergius and Bacchus, at Constantinople, and yet quite
unlike the kind of pendentive common in churches of the S. Front type.
They are, in fact, the Le Puy and Ainay pendentive reduced to the very
simplest conditions. The invention of the flying buttress adumbrated
in, and possibly suggested by, the quadrant vaults of Auvergne, finally
stopped these various endeavors after new forms of roofs, and set men
to work to see how it might most readily be made to serve the boldest
and most airy system of design and construction; and in the rage for
these, that old system of roofing with domes, which had been, so far
as is known,[63] first tried in France at Périgueux, and had afterward
spread with such rapidity over a very large district, though with many
modifications and variations, was entirely ignored or forgotten. Is it
well that we too should ignore it? It is clear that the disciples of
the Gothic school may claim it as their own with just as much truth
as any other school can; and in some form or other it is often so
attractive, so majestic on a large scale, so impressive even on a small
scale, that few of us who have much work to do should altogether eschew
all use of it, or treat it as though it were the exclusive property of
the architects of Classic and Renaissance buildings. I do not feel,
however, as most who write on the subject seem to do, that our domes
must invariably be supported on what are called true pendentives. I
think they are not beautiful, and I do not see that they are especially
scientific. The S. Front pendentives are mere corbellings out of the
wall, and in truth only imitations of pendentives. At S. Mark’s they
are formed with a succession of arches of brick work across the angle
of the dome, though this construction is not visible, and these, I
suppose, are all wrong; but they are very similar in their intention
to the kind of pendentive which I have had to illustrate to-night, and
which is in truth much more Gothic and picturesque in its character
than the true pendentive, for it admits of any amount of decorative
sculpture, and is really precisely similar in its object to the
squinches under our own English spires.[64]


I will add but a few words as to the constructional polychromy
which distinguishes the exterior of the churches throughout this
volcanic district. So far as I have seen, it was never, save in Le
Puy cathedral, admitted into the interior,[65] and this is much to be
regretted, because it seems that the vaults of their naves, the domes
of their crossings, and the semi-domes of their sanctuaries, would
have afforded most admirable fields for this kind of decoration. As
I have stated, the walls were once covered with painting, and as long
as this existed a mosaic of black and white and dull red would have
been valueless; but now that the iconoclast, the whitewasher, and the
restorer have done their worst, the want of some decoration on the
otherwise bald surface of the vaults is painfully felt everywhere.
Externally the coloured materials are used in two ways; sometimes the
whole of the wall is built of the dark volcanic products, and patterns
are obtained by the occasional use of white stone or by alternate
courses of this and the darkest scoriae that can be found. Or else the
walls generally are built of stone, and the patterns only formed with
the dark material. Here, too, as is the case in all old examples of
coloured constructions with which I have ever met, the colours follow
the natural course of the construction. At Le Puy, for instance, the
courses are alternately light and dark, producing bold horizontal
bands of colour. The arch stones are continued generally in one line
of colour all across an arch, even when it consists of several orders,
and from the arch on into the wall. The bands of ornament are similarly
arranged in horizontal stripes, generally placed where they will
dignify and give value to some very prominent architectural member.
They never occur below the line of the springing of an arcade, and are
richest under cornices and between their corbels. And when we consider
the date at which this inlaid work was executed, and compare it with
what we know of our own art at the same period, or, indeed, with that
of any other portion of the country which is now France, we cannot too
highly extol its delicacy and grace and its carefulness of design and
execution. I believe that we may regard the whole of the work in Velay
and Auvergne as that of native artists. The detail of sculpture is,
when compared with such work as is to be found in Provence, exceedingly
rude. It is vigorous, indeed, but wanting in that extreme delicacy and
refinement which marks the work of the early Provençal artists.

Were I to attempt to say anything about the buildings of a later date,
it would be impossible to do more than give a catalogue, which would be
as unintelligible as it would be tedious. I will only say, therefore,
on this head, that Clermont cathedral well deserves careful study, and
is rich in very fine glass; that at Montferrand may be seen as large
a collection of mediaeval houses of all dates as in almost any small
town that I know; that Riom possesses a fine S. Chapelle; and that in
the abbey of La Chaise-Dieu is still preserved a very rare and complete
series of tapestries of the sixteenth century. Besides these, a large
number of articles of church-plate are to be found scattered up and
down in the village churches, and all this goodly store of antiquities
is set before you in a province whose physical features are so full of
interest and beauty as in themselves to make a journey through Velay
and Auvergne one which none will repent having undertaken.


   I. _S. Mary’s, Stone_
  II. _Churches in Northern Germany_

        I. _Lübeck_
       II. _Naumburg_
      III. _Erfurt and Marburg_
       IV. _Münster and Soest_
        V. _German Pointed Architecture_



(_From the papers of the Kent Archæological Society, in Archæologia
Cantiana, 1860_)

Having given these preliminary notes, illustrative of the history
of the church, it will be well now to give a detailed architectural
description of the fabric, illustrated, as far as may be, by the
discoveries which have been made in the course of its restoration.[66]

The church appears to have consisted at first of a chancel, nave with
north and south aisles, western tower with the aisles prolonged on
either side of it, and western porch. The only subsequent additions
were, in the fourteenth century, a small vestry on the north side of
the east bay of the chancel, and in the sixteenth century the Wilshyre
chantry, in the space between the vestry and the east wall of the north
aisle. In the fourteenth century (probably during the bishopric of
Haymo de Hethe) the windows at the west end of the nave and aisles, and
that in the west bay of the south wall, were inserted; and at the same
time the tower-piers were altered. Probably they were, like the other
piers throughout the church, exceedingly delicate, and were thought
to be not sufficiently solid to carry the weight of the steeple; but
at any rate it is clear that the piers, with their capitals, are
not earlier than _circa_ A.D. 1350, whilst the arches have earlier
mouldings, and are of the same character as the rest of the church. It
was at the same time that additional support was given to the eastern
piers of the tower, by the addition of bold flying buttresses, spanning
the aisles, and visible only on the inside of the church. The staircase
to the tower, placed against the south-west angle, appears to me to
have been added at the same time; whilst the upper part of the tower
retains nothing but poor fifteenth-century work, and was probably
entirely rebuilt at that time, if, indeed, it is not a work of the
seventeenth century, undertaken after the fire which melted the bells,
in A.D. 1638.

No other alteration was made in the church before the Reformation,
and in 1638 the church suffered from the fire caused by lightning,
mentioned by Hasted and in the Petitions to Parliament. The roofs
throughout must have been burned, and, covered as they were with
shingle,[67] it is not surprising that when once set on fire no part
of them was saved. Traces of the fire are very evident, particularly
on the stones of the tower arches, which are reddened by its action.
We found also in the upper part of the aisle walls portions of molten
lead, which had run into the interstices of the stone work at the time
of the fire. The Petitions of the Parishioners of Stone give most
exact information as to what happened before and after the fire; from
them we learn (1) that before the fire the stone groined roof existed
on the chancel, but was much dilapidated, and that the glass in the
chancel-windows was in a sad state of decay: (2) “that the chauncell
received little damage by the late fire,” yet that a very large part of
the brief-money, raised for the repair of the church, was “uncessantly
wasted and bestowed on the same, soe that the church is like to remayne
unfynished.” This was in A.D. 1640, and I think we may gather from it
the exact date of the alterations in the chancel. Its groined roof was
taken down, its walls lowered some five feet, the tracery of the window
in the north wall of the chancel partly destroyed in order to lower
the walls, and the window then built up; the east window and probably
one in the south wall destroyed, and imitations of perpendicular
windows--poor in character, but nevertheless very good for their
date--inserted in the place of the original windows in the north,
east, and south walls of the chancel. The wall was rebuilt on either
side of these windows with numerous fragments of the old groining
ribs, thus affording the final proof that the windows were inserted
and the groining taken down at the same time. This discovery was most
grateful to me, inasmuch as it had been objected to the restoration of
the original windows in the chancel, that those which we had to remove
were fair examples of perpendicular work, and valuable in their way: in
truth, they were examples of Gothic work in the years 1638–40, of no
value at all in relation to the architecture of the rest of the church,
though undoubtedly affording very interesting evidence of the undying
love of Gothic architecture in this country, and of a not unsuccessful
attempt at its revival.[68]

I have been unable to learn the exact date of the repair and re-roofing
of the remainder of the church. The living was sequestered in A.D.
1650, and Mr. Chase must, I should think, in the ten years between the
petitions and this date, have put his church into tenantable condition.
The nave roof appears to be of about this date, and is framed with
tie-beams, queen-posts, and purlines, with arched braces above the
collars, and, though not very ornamental, has been re-opened, with the
very best result on the general effect of the church. Subsequently to
the erection of the new roofs, they had been churchwardenized, in the
usual way, by the addition of plaster ceilings,[69] and in a less usual
way, by the addition of a second roof over the other, and supported by
it to the serious damage of the walls and piers.[70] The vestry seems
never to have been repaired after the fire, and the Wilshyre chantry
was roofed with a steep lean-to against the north wall of the chancel,
and ceiled with a flat ceiling, for which I cannot be too grateful,
as it made it impossible to insert a new window at this place in the
A.D. 1640 restoration, and afforded me the only chance of discovering
and restoring the original chancel windows. Knowing this before making
my plans, I cut into the wall at this point, and was rewarded, even
beyond my greatest expectations, by the discovery of the window-jamb,
the monials, and a sufficient portion of the tracery to enable me to
restore it exactly to its original design in every respect.

Having thus completed the notice of the alterations in the fabric,
it is time to give a proper account of all its architectural
peculiarities. The church is internally a rare example of a building as
nearly as possible in the same state as when it was first built. For
a village church its character is unusually sumptuous and ornate; and
perhaps there is no example of any first-pointed building in England
in which the grace and delicacy which characterize the style have been
carried to greater perfection. It is impossible, indeed, to speak too
highly of the workmanship or of the design of every part, and close as
is its similarity in many points to our glorious abbey at Westminster,
it is a remarkable fact, that in care and beauty of workmanship the
little village church is undoubtedly superior to the minster. This
might well be, for with all its beauty, and with all its vigour, the
mere execution of much of the work at Westminster is not first-rate,
and hardly such as one might expect in so important a position.

The exterior of the church is exceedingly simple. There are doors at
the west end and in the west bay of the north aisle. In front of the
former there was a groined porch, of which a small portion of the
springer for the groining on one side only remains; this was brought
to light by the removal of a brick porch which had been erected in its
place. The string-course above the door is of the thirteenth century,
but the window above it of three lights, and three other windows of
two lights in the western bays of the aisles, are of the fourteenth
century, and the work, probably, of Bishop Haymo de Hethe. The north
aisle door is remarkable for its rich detail and peculiar character.
One of the orders is adorned with a chevron on one face and with
dogteeth on the other, and the inner order is enriched with a rose. The
dogteeth and the carving of the rose are quite consistent in character
with the date of the church, and the chevron is no doubt a curious
instance of imitation of earlier work, rather than evidence of the
doorway itself being earlier than the rest of the church. The dogteeth
are well developed, and the roses are similar in character to those in
the internal jambs and arches of the transept doors at Westminster. The
windows in the side walls of the aisles are all alike on the exterior,
simply chamfered with labels over them, save the western window of the
south aisle, where there is no label. Those at the east ends of the
aisles are more important; that to the east of the north aisle being
of four lights, and that to the east of the south aisle of two lights.
The buttresses are very simple, of two stages in height, with plain
weatherings. The north chancel aisle is the Wilshyre chantry, a late
third-pointed work, with a battlemented parapet. The erection of this
chapel involved the removal of one of the chancel buttresses, and in
place of it a very bold flying buttress was erected, which spans the
roof of the chapel, and adds much to the picturesque effect of this
side of the church. Its erection in the fifteenth century was good
proof, in the absence of any other, that at that time at any rate the
groined roof of the chancel was standing, for otherwise its erection
would never have been required. The removal of the high, tiled, lean-to
roof of the Wilshyre chantry has exposed the flying buttress, the fine
east window of the north aisle, and the still finer window in the
north wall, restored, as I have said, in exact accordance with the
window which I was so happy as to find there. The vestry, which forms
a continuation of the north chancel aisle, is lighted with two small
windows, with ogee trefoiled heads. It was a roofless ruin, but now
it has been re-roofed, and, as well as the chantry, is covered with a
lead flat roof, which seems to have been the original covering, and
has the advantage of not concealing any portion of the chancel. The
east window is new, of three lights, corresponding in all respects with
the restored north window, save in its dimensions, which are rather
larger. So much of the east wall had been taken down and rebuilt,
that it was impossible to decide exactly whether the east window was
originally of three or four lights. I am rather inclined to believe
that it was of four lights, for towards the end of the thirteenth
century it is not at all unusual to find windows of an even number of
lights in the east end; and the arcade below the window inside is of
four divisions. Still, as there was no evidence whatever that this was
the case, I thought it, on the whole, safer to repeat simply that in
which I was certainly following the old architect, and the grandeur of
the two restored windows is so remarkable that one need not wish them
to be other than they are. In the south wall of the chancel one of the
windows inserted _circa_ A.D. 1640 still remains; it is of some value
to the antiquary, and the contrast between it and the new windows, I
hope, will amply justify the course I have adopted, in removing its
two companions. The chancel buttresses are of great projection, but
all their weatherings and finishings are modern, and for lack of funds
remain for the present unaltered. The chancel is of two bays in length,
and between its western buttress and the south wall of the nave is a
space of six feet, through which, on the south, there appears to have
been a doorway.[71] This would have opened into the western portion of
the chancel, close to the chancel arch, and serves to prove that the
chancel was not originally intended to be filled with wooden stalls.

Before the restoration of the church, the roof over the nave was
steep, and flatter in its pitch over the aisles; and the chancel roof
presented two gables towards the east, and had a gutter over the
centre of the ceiling from end to end. All this is now altered. The
nave roof has returned to its one uniform slope, simple and dignified
in its effect; and the chancel walls, raised to their old height, so
as to admit of the restoration of the groining, and surmounted by a
high-pitched roof, finished with gable-copings and crosses, presents
again the outline which no doubt it presented before the fire in A.D.
1638. The chancel roof is now much higher than that of the nave, but
I hope some day to remedy whatever defect there is in the external
proportions of the building, by the removal of the poor modern
battlements, and the erection of a wooden spire, shingled after the
common Kentish fashion. The roof of the steeple was burnt in A.D. 1638,
and the heat having been so great that the bells melted, it is fair to
assume that the roof so burnt was rather a spire than a flat roof, and,
indeed, Hasted’s expression that the “steeple” was burnt, refers, it
can hardly be doubted, to a timber spire.

I will now proceed to give a detailed description of the interior.
The nave is entered by the west door, under the tower. The piers of
the tower arches were re-cased in the fourteenth century, and the
capitals, carved with poor stiff foliage at the same time, afford a
marked contrast to the workmanship and design of the earlier capitals.
The three arches under the north, south, and east walls of the tower
are unaltered, of the same character as the arches in the nave, and
evidently earlier than the piers which support them. The nave and
aisles consist, in addition to the engaged western steeple, of three
bays. The most remarkable feature in the design of this interior is the
way in which the whole of the work gradually increases in richness of
detail and in beauty from west to east. This will be seen immediately
on an examination of the building itself. It is a very charming
feature, and though one might have supposed that it would not be so
very uncommon, suggested as it seems to be naturally by the respect
which in almost all ages has been paid to the altar end of the church,
I believe I may affirm that Stone church is unique in the studied way
in which it has been done. At the risk of being very tedious, I give a
detailed description of the interior, which will explain the variation
of the design to which I have referred:

_Western Bay_ (_north side_).--The window is of two lancets, with
quatrefoil above: the inside arch chamfered, with a simple label
returned, without any carving at bottom. The jambs are simply splayed:
arches between nave and aisles moulded.

_Middle Bay._--Windows of same shape, but the inside arch and the
quatrefoil are richly moulded, and the internal jambs are finished with
a moulding and stone shaft, with moulded base and carved capital. The
label is enriched with dogteeth (it is the only label in the church
in which they occur), and is terminated with heads of a queen on the
right, and a king on the left, the latter much defaced.

The arches between the nave and aisles are moulded, but more richly
than those in the western bay.

_Eastern Bay._--Tracery of windows as before; the quatrefoil is not
moulded. Jambs have two shafts (one stone and one marble) on each side,
and a detached marble shaft in the centre. From these a richly-moulded
rear-arch springs, with tracery of two lights corresponding with that
of the windows. The whole composition of this window is of extreme

The arches between aisles and nave in this bay are richly moulded, and
the centre of the soffit is enriched with a large dogtooth, making it
much more ornate in character than the other arches.

The windows in the south wall correspond generally with those in the
north, and exhibit the same graduation of enrichment. In the window
in the eastern bay there are two circular bosses of foliage in the
spandrels of the internal tracery;[72] in the opposite window these
circles are plain sunk circles without any sculpture: and it appears
that the architect, wishing to avoid the expense of sinking the whole
surface of the stone, so as to leave the sculpture in advance of it,
let in his bosses into a rebate in the stone work. This is a very rare
mode of construction, but appears to be perfectly lawful.

The east window of the north aisle is richer than any of the others in
the nave. It is of four lights, with two marble shafts in each jamb,
and one in the centre monial. The tracery has quatrefoiled circles over
the side-lights, under enclosing arches, and a large cusped circle in
the head: the arch is extremely pointed. The mouldings throughout are
more delicate than anywhere else in the church, and the large circle
has a dogtooth enrichment. Externally this window is exceedingly
simple: the rich mouldings of the interior being changed to a plain
chamfer and broad flat tracery bars, very peculiar in their effect.
This window was entirely blocked up, the cusping in the tracery
concealed, and a four-centred brick arch under it connected the aisle
with the Wilshyre chantry. We have taken away this brick arch, restored
the old jambs and sill, and supported them on a flat stone arch. The
flat roof of the chantry crosses the window just below the springing,
and the portion above is to be glazed with stained glass, whilst that
below is open through to the chantry. This was the best arrangement
that could be made with the double object of preserving the old window
in all its integrity and yet making the chantry available for use by
the congregation.

The east window of the south aisle is much less magnificent than
that last described: it is of two lights, with two marble shafts in
each jamb, and an engaged stone shaft in the monial. Externally this
window is remarkable for the curious freak by which the outer chamfer
is gathered in with a curve some six inches on each side just at the

The chancel arch is more richly moulded on the west face than any of
the others, and has a band of foliage enrichments of very magnificent
character, very elaborate developments of the dogtooth; each being the
general shape of a dogtooth, but filled up with intricate and beautiful
foliage. Above the chancel arch on either side are two quatrefoils,
within which are carved exquisite compositions of foliage, arranged in
the form of a cross. Brilliant traces of red colour remain on these
carvings. These quatrefoils were completely concealed by plaster before
the restoration, and their re-opening has amazingly improved the effect
of the wall above the chancel arch. The side walls of the nave are
finished at the top with a moulded string-course, which is returned for
about a foot on either side at the east, and was probably continued all
round the church.[73]

The whole body of the church was covered with a coat of plaster. Most
fortunately this had been put up by some pious plasterer, who, though
he loved plaster well, loved the church better, and had no heart
for hacking holes in its walls to afford a key for his plaster. The
consequence was, that in an hour or two the whole of the walls were
stripped of their covering, and displayed their old masonry fortunately
intact. The walls above the arcades are faced with chalk, regularly
squared and coursed on the side towards the nave, and built roughly on
the sides toward the aisles, and are finished with a course of Gatton
stone below the string-course at the top. The aisle walls are built
of rough flint at their base; above this a course of squared chalk
below the principal string-course, and on this there are traces of a
thirteenth century pattern, painted in red. Above the string-course the
walls are built entirely with coursed chalk, with quoins and dressings
of Gatton stone.

The removal of the plaster between the two eastern windows in the
south wall disclosed a portion of an arcade. This seems never to have
been completed, for whilst the lower stone has the dogtooth enrichment
of the arch finished, the upper stone has it simply blocked out in
the square: we found a corresponding fragment of arcading built into
the upper part of the chancel wall, and whilst that which exists in
the south wall appears to have been always in the same place, it
seems pretty clear that the other piece was never fixed near it. The
conclusion at which I arrive is, therefore, that these are fragments of
a work commenced but abandoned for another scheme at the very time the
work was going on.

Before going to the chancel a note should be added here, as to the
painted decorations which have been discovered. A portion of these
are architectural in their character, the rest pictorial. Among the
former, is the running pattern forming a border under the string-course
in the south aisle. This I hope to continue all along the wall, it
being sufficiently clear in the one place where it occurs to warrant
restoration; and I have no doubt of the importance attached by the
old architect to decoration on a line so marked as that of the
principal string-course. There is also a faint border round the chancel
arch, painted in red, but rather later in its character than the
string-course. The pictorial decorations are all on the north aisle
wall. Between the first and second windows is a large sitting figure
of the Blessed Virgin Mary nursing our Lord: S. Mary has a veil, and
is not crowned, and has a red robe and a blue cloak. She is seated on
a throne with shafts at the angles, and the canopy is a gabled trefoil
with triple pinnacles on either side. As far as I can judge, this work
appears to be very late thirteenth century or early fourteenth century
work, and was evidently rich in colour. The painting between the two
next windows is so damaged that I have been unable to decide what it
represents. On the wall east of the eastern window is another figure
of the Blessed Virgin Mary, also nursing our Lord, and seated under a
trefoiled canopy. No other traces of painting remain, save the colour,
already mentioned, on the sculptured crosses over the chancel arch, and
some painted crosses on the east wall of the chancel.

From this description it will be seen how systematically all this
portion of the work has been designed: subject to the carrying out of
the general scheme there are, however, some small peculiarities which
may point, either to the Gothic love of variety on the part of the
architect, or (and as I think, more probably) to the fact that portions
of the work may have been special offerings or donations from different
persons. Certainly I see no other way of accounting for the repetition
within a few years of two copies of the same painted subject on the
north aisle wall.

It is to be noticed that there is no sign of a piscina in either of the
aisles. I thought it possible at first that the arcade we discovered in
the south aisle might have formed a portion of the sedilia for an altar
in the aisle, but I hardly think now that this could have been the case.

The chancel consists of a western bay of seven feet in depth, from
east to west, and east of this of two bays each 21 ft. 2 in. wide and
16 ft. 3 in. long, from centre to centre of the groining shafts. The
west bay has no windows, but there is, as I have said, a trace of a
doorway in the south wall. The other bays have each three divisions of
wall arcading on marble shafts, and the east wall has four divisions
of the same arcade. The spandrels of these arcades are filled in with
sculptured foliage, so beautiful and delicate in its execution, and
so nervous and vigorous in its design, that I believe it may safely be
pronounced to be among the very best sculpture of the age that we have
in this country. I shall have to enter again upon the subject of this
portion of the work, in comparing it to the sculpture at Westminster.
The work at Stone appears to me to be all by one man, and he seems to
have been, if not the best of the Westminster sculptors, at any rate
equal to the best.

There are in this chancel twenty-one of these spandrels, all different
in design, but all nearly equal in merit. The aggregate amount of work
bestowed here is as nothing compared with that which has been lavished
in scores of cases on sculpture in our new churches: yet is there any
one modern work which possesses a tithe of the value of this work? And
would it not be far better to limit our nineteenth century carvers of
foliage to work rather less in amount, and considerably more in merit,
than that which they are wont to give us? The sculpture at Stone was
no contract work: no exhibition of the greatest skill in covering the
largest possible number of stones with the greatest possible quantity
of carving: and it was executed with a delicacy of hand, a fineness
of eye, a nervous sensibility so soft, that no perfunctory imitation
can ever be in the least degree likely to rival its beauty. The small
bosses of foliage which adorn the smaller spandrels in this arcade are
very well carved; and it is worthy of remark that the same design is
repeated several times. No. 1 is repeated four times, No. 2 six times,
and No. 3 seven times; besides which the same design is used, simply
reversed. It looks as though a model had been cut, and then copies made
of it.

The walls of the chancel are only 2 ft. 3½ in. thick, but the great
size of the buttresses amply compensated for this, and preserved
them from suffering at all by the thrust of the groining. Before
the restoration the state of the chancel was a sad falling off from
its old state. The arcade at the base of the walls was perfect all
round. The lower part of the groining-shafts remained, as also did the
whole of a cluster of shafts on each side between the short western
bay already mentioned and the next. The groining was all destroyed,
but marks of it remained against the wall, and it was easy therefore
to obtain its exact section. The treatment of the western bay was
peculiar. It was clearly never covered, as the rest of the chancel
was, with a quadripartite vault. The mark of a vault remained against
the wall above the chancel arch, whilst the side walls showed that a
barrel-vault had sprung from them. The cluster of three shafts between
this bay and the next remained to be explained. One of them only was
the groining-shaft answering to the others; but upon a very close
examination of a fragment of the wall above them and of the marks on
the caps themselves, I was able to ascertain beyond doubt that the two
other shafts had carried an arch moulded on the east face, the soffit
of which, continued westward, formed the pointed barrel-vault over the
western bay. This has now been all restored, and with so much certainty
as to all its parts, that I trust it will not be opened to the
criticisms to which too many restorations are liable, of being rather
ingenious than true. I should mention that the new groining-ribs are
of the same section as the old. The window in the north wall has been
exactly restored after the old remains, some of which have indeed been
incorporated with the new work. It is of three uncusped lights, with
tracery composed of three cusped circles. The cusping was let into a
groove, and a sufficient number of fragments remained to give the exact
number of cusps, etc. On the exterior the jamb has two engaged shafts,
with caps and bases, and on the inside the monials are well moulded
and have each a detached marble shaft, whilst the jambs have two
marble shafts and are richly moulded. Internally the arch and tracery
mouldings are very delicate, whilst externally they consist of bold
chamfers and hollows only. The detail of the sculpture of the capitals
of the monials was managed with rare skill, as seen by a fragment
found in the north wall. This window is now treated in the same way as
that at the east end of the north aisle, being partly below the roof
of the Wilshyre chantry. An old arch existed behind the arcade under
it, and this has been replaced by one of stone, so that the chantry
is now sufficiently open to the chancel for the purpose of use by the

On the south wall of the chancel is the old piscina, under one of the
divisions of the arcading. The arcade is continued across the east wall
of the chancel, in four divisions; and treated exactly in the same way
as at the sides; it is pretty clear, therefore, that it can never have
been intended to place the altar against the wall, and it was no doubt
brought forward a few feet (with perhaps a low wall or reredos behind
it) in the way so common in the case of apsidal chancels, and of which
we have examples at Arundel and at Warfield in the case of square-ended
chancels. In the two divisions of the arcade we found, on removing
the whitewash and plaster, a painted cross pattee, enclosed within a
circle: it was red on a white ground, and outlined with black. Whether
this was a dedication cross, or only painted in connection with the
altar, it is impossible to say.[74]

In the chancel floor are some ancient grave-stones, among which
those of John Lumbarde, Rector, a fine brass cross of the fourteenth
century, and the little brass of Sir John Dew, are well known, and of
much value. They have been carefully relaid in connection with a new
pavement round the altar. The altar-rail has also been brought forward;
the altar set on a footpace about three feet from the east wall, with a
low stone perpeyn wall at its back, capped with marble, and showing the
old arcade above it.

It remains to mention a few ancient fragments which have been
discovered during the progress of the works.

They are:

1. A fragment of very richly cusped thirteenth-century tracery, very
delicately moulded. This has not formed part of a window, and perhaps
belonged to the reredos, if there was one.

2. A fine head of a monk (small).

3. A half-destroyed carved capital of a large shaft clustered of three:
it looks like the capital of a groining-shaft, but agrees with nothing
in the church.

4. One moulded marble capital, and two fragments of a marble monial,
with engaged shaft inside and out. There is no existing marble monial
in the church, and the only suggestion I can make is, that possibly the
same increase of enrichment that I have noticed was carried on to the
east end, and the east window executed with monials entirely of marble;
but on the other hand, this monial, though of marble, is not so rich in
detail and moulding as the stone monial, with its detached marble shaft
in the north window of the chancel.

5. A portion of the lower part of a sitting figure of our Lord. This
figure is that of a man about four feet six inches in height. The feet
are naked and pierced with the wounds. There is no sign of any place
from which such a figure could have been moved. Its date is about that
of the church.

6. A spandrel of an arcade, sculptured with a portion of the
resurrection of the dead. It very nearly fits the spandrel of the
arcade discovered in the south wall of the south aisle, and, in order
that it may be preserved, I have had it placed there. The treatment of
the bodies coming out of the coffins is good, and the work is about the
date of the church.

7. A large number of fragments of the groining-ribs of the chancel, of
the windows, etc. etc., were also found. The bulk of all these were
built into the upper part of the chancel walls, and into the gable wall
above the chancel arch, and were no doubt placed there at the time of
the alterations of the building, after the fire in the seventeenth

Of the works recently executed in the church, it will be sufficient to
say, that the nave has been re-seated with open seats, and paved with
the best red, black and buff tiles. The eastern part of the chancel
floor has been repaved with marble and encaustic tiles, and want of the
necessary funds alone has prevented the re-laying of the remainder of
the chancel floor and the completion of the seats. The lectern for the
Bible is of oak. The whole of the chancel has been groined in stone
and chalk: the groining-ribs being of Caen stone, and the filling in
of the vault of chalk. I have been unable, on account of the cost, to
introduce any bosses at the intersection of the groining-ribs; we found
no remains of any, but as they were used in the groining at Westminster
Abbey, I should have preferred their introduction. On the same account
the wall-ribs are chamfered, not moulded. The other ribs are exactly
copied from the old fragments found in the chancel wall, and I was
also able to obtain the exact height of the vault, and as nearly as
possible the mouldings of the bold arch on the eastern face of the
waggon-vault at the entrance of the chancel. The east and north windows
of the chancel are both new, and copied from the old fragments found by
me in the north wall. A pulpit of stone, alabaster and marble, carved
by Mr. Earp, and the gift of the family of the late Archdeacon King,
is placed in the north-east angle of the nave. The window in the east
bay of the north aisle is filled with stained glass, and is to form
one of a series, those in the north aisle illustrating the miracles of
our Lord, and those in the south aisle the parables. This window is
the gift of Mrs. Cooper, and is executed (as are the others) by Mr.
Wailes, of Newcastle. The east window of the north aisle is a memorial
window to the late Archdeacon King, erected by his parishioners: and
the subject is, our Lord in Majesty, with angels on either side. The
east window of the chancel is also a memorial to the Archdeacon, and
erected by his family; it contains a long series of subjects from the
life of our Lord, in medallions, and is richly treated in Mr. Wailes’s
usual style; and it is only to be regretted that in brilliancy of
colour and nervousness of drawing he does not yet by any means equal
the old school of painters on glass. The altar-cloth is of red velvet,
embroidered in the old manner by Mrs. G. Murray.

I referred, in the earlier part of this paper, to the similarity
between the detail of the work at Stone and that of the earlier
portions of Westminster Abbey; and before I conclude I will, as well
as I can, explain the extent of this similarity. Few subjects are of
more interest to me, and I suppose to all students of our ancient
architecture, than this of the extent to which the work of the same
artist may be traced in different buildings. I have been able, in a
considerable number of cases, to prove pretty clearly what I now wish
to prove about Stone and Westminster;[75] but I need hardly say that
the evidence is always of a kind which it is extremely difficult to
give in writing; though it is difficult to resist its force if the two
works are examined one after the other, and their special peculiarities
carefully noted. I will endeavour however to show the existence of
something more than the ordinary likeness of all works of the same date
and style, between Westminster Abbey and some portions of Stone church.

I. _The Arcades round the Chapels_ of the choir at Westminster are
almost identical in shape and design with that round the chancel at
Stone. The proportions of their trefoil cusps are very peculiar, and
as nearly as possible the same. The spandrels are filled with foliage
carved exactly in the same spirit. The labels are terminated upon
small corbels level with the capitals: a very unusual arrangement. The
arcades rest upon a stone chamfered seat; and the arch-moulds, though
not the same, are of the same character, and both of them undercut at
the back.

II. _Window Tracery._--The original window tracery at Westminster is
the same as at Stone. The windows in the south triforium of the nave
(four eastern bays) are of precisely the same character as the window
discovered in the chancel at Stone. The latter are remarkable for the
great width of the light (3 ft. 1 in. and 3 ft. 10 in. in the clear),
and this is very characteristic of the Westminster windows. The Stone
windows are remarkable also for very broad chamfered tracery-bars on
the outside, corresponding with very rich mouldings on the inside. The
triforium openings at Westminster are treated just in the same way on
the side next the triforium, and a comparison of the triforium of the
choir and north transept there with the east window of the north aisle
at Stone would well illustrate the identity of character. The stone
cusping in both is let into grooves in the way common in early tracery.

III. _The Sculpture of Foliage_ is very similar in both churches. The
spandrels of arcades are treated just in the same way: at Westminster
sculptures of subjects are introduced here and there in place of
foliage; at Stone all the spandrels are filled with sculpture of
foliage; but we found in the thickness of the wall one spandrel
sculptured with figures, which appears never to have been used.[76]
The foliage of capitals is generally similar, and the very remarkable
bosses of foliage in the chancel arch at Stone, arranged in something
of the outline of an enormous dogtooth, are all but repetitions of the
similar archivolt enrichments in the triforium of the north transept at
Westminster. The roses round the archivolt of the south door at Stone
are of the same kind as those round the inside arches of the north
transept doorways at Westminster.

The foliage carved in the form of crosses in the quatrefoils over the
chancel arch at Stone are repeated in a quatrefoil over the door in
the cloister at Westminster, leading to the private apartments of the
abbat. The crosses are, of course, not identical in their treatment;
but the idea is the same, and one of rare occurrence.

IV. _The Materials_ used in the Abbey and at Stone are as nearly as
possible the same. The wrought stone work is executed in Caen stone and
Gatton stone, and a great deal of chalk is used for wall-lining and
groining, and all the shafts are of marble.

V. Finally, the same general system of proportion is observed in the
minster and the village church. In both, the width from the aisle walls
to the centre of the columns is equal to half the width of the nave. At
Westminster the height is given by three equilateral triangles, whose
base-line is the width across the nave from centre to centre of the
columns; and two of these triangles give the height for the springing
of the groining, and the third the height of the groining to its apex.
At Stone, if we erect triangles on the same base-line, the first gives
the top of the capitals of the nave arcade; the second, within very
little, the height of the top of the wall; and the third may very well
be supposed to have marked the height of the ridge of the timber roof.
The width of the bays in the nave of Stone is equal to the diagonal of
half the width of the nave; and the width of the bays in the chancel is
equal to the diagonal from the centre of one column to the centre of
the nave or aisle opposite the next column; whilst the height of the
chancel is given by two triangles similar to those in the nave, whose
base is the width from centre to centre of the groining-shafts.

I do not wish to lay too much stress on any one of these points of
resemblance: it is not to be expected that two churches, built by the
same architect, so unlike in size, in position, and in dignity, should
show anything more than some general resemblance of character; but
I cannot help thinking, that when I have pointed to such a general
agreement in the proportions, the materials, the sculpture, and the
details, as we find at Stone and Westminster, it would be almost enough
to decide the question, even without the final and (as it appears to
me) conclusive evidence afforded by the all but exact identity of the
cusping and the general similarity of design in the wall-arcades in the
two churches, which must either have been copied one from the other, or
designed by the same architect.



(_From the Ecclesiologist, 1854–1857_)



Three old cities far apart, across the whole breadth of a continent,
enable us to form a fair judgement of what the whole of Europe may have
been in the palmy days of the Middle Ages. They are Lübeck, Nuremberg,
and Verona; each telling its own tale, each marked with the impress
of national peculiarity, and each remarkable, among other things, the
one as the city of brick work, the next as that of stone, and the
last as that of marble. In Lübeck nothing but brick was ever seen; in
Nuremberg, stone was used with an excellence seldom rivalled; whilst
in Verona, though brick was most beautifully used, the great aim of
its architects was ever to introduce the marbles in which the district
around it is so rich. Each of these cities deserves a full and ample
study, for each teaches its own lesson, and that a lesson scarcely to
be learnt elsewhere; and if this evening I give you such notes as I was
able to make in the course of a short sojourn last autumn in Lübeck,
it is not because I do not value Nuremberg and Verona much more, but
because it would seem that if one were to write of all three, this
is the one with which one should commence, as nearest to and most
connected with our own country and style of architecture, and because
its features of interest are in some degree less remarkable than those
of the others, and one would wish to reserve the best for the last.

In one respect, moreover, two of these cities may well teach us a
lesson. Nuremberg and Lübeck were to the world in the Middle Ages what
London, Liverpool, and Manchester are to the world in this age: the
very centres of all commerce for all Europe; and we may surely not
do amiss if we take to ourselves, and ponder well upon, the lesson
which the singular difference between their earnestness in matters
of religion and ours ought to teach us. There was in these two old
cities such an appreciation of the value of religious ordinances, and
evidently so very great a readiness to provide places for their
due celebration, that one cannot without a blush think upon the vast
difference which such a city as Manchester displays, with its almost
countless thousands of poor wretches uncared for and unthought of, and
without any power of putting foot even in the sanctuaries of their God.


In the great Middle Age cities this never could have been the case, for
apart from the fact that their churches stood with their doors ever
open, while ours are ever jealously kept shut, they were so vast and
spacious, and so crowded together, as it seems to us, that there never
could have been a real difficulty in finding some home for the feet of
the weary, how poor and how miserable soever they might be!

And Lübeck still shows this most grandly: you approach by a railway
through an uninteresting country, passing one of those lakes which give
much of its character to this dreary part of Germany, and suddenly
dashing through a cutting, and under the shade of fine patriarchal
trees which adorn on all sides the outskirts of the old city, you find
yourself in such a presence of towers and spires as can scarce be seen
elsewhere in Christendom. A succession of great churches standing up
high and grand above the picturesque tall old houses which fringe the
margin of the Trave, two of them presenting to us their immense west
fronts of pure red brick, each finished with two great towers and
spires, whilst others on either side rear their single spires and their
turrets high against the sky, and here and there detached turrets mark
where stands some other old building soon to be made acquaintance with;
and all of these forming the background, as you first see it, to the
most picturesque and grand old gateway--I am bold to say--in Europe,
gives one a wonderful impression, vivid but dreamlike, and reminding
one of those lovely cities with which Memling and his contemporary
painters so often delight our eyes.

The plan of the city is simple enough. One great street runs the whole
length of the peninsula on which it stands, from north to south,
finished by the Burg-Thor, a fine old gateway, on the north, and by
the cathedral and its close to the south. Right and left of this main
street are a multitude of streets descending to the water which almost
surrounds the whole town, and on the other side of the water are
immense earth-works, rising really into respectable hills, and said to
be the largest earth-works known; happily these great mounds--no longer
useful for purposes of defence--are eminently so for ornament, and
planted with great trees and laid out with walks and gardens form one
of the most pleasant features of the place; on the outer side of those
earth-works another line of water gives one certainly a very watery
impression of the whole city.

The main features of interest to an architect are in the principal
street. Beginning at the extreme south is the cathedral with its two
towers and spires standing alone and forlorn in the most deserted
part of the town, and even in the busiest days of Lübeck scarcely so
near to the bulk of the people as a cathedral should ever be; then on
either side we pass the churches of S. Giles and S. Peter, and going
along under the walls of the picturesque old Rathhaus find ourselves
close to the east end of the Marien-Kirche--a cathedral in dignity of
proportions and outline, and here superior to the cathedral in its
central position and in its greater height and general magnificence;
next, the Katerinen-Kirche is left a few steps to the right, then S.
James’s is passed, another tall spire, and then the west front of the
very interesting Heiligen Geist Hospital; and a hundred yards further
on we are in front of the relics of the Burg-Kloster, and close to
this find ourselves at the Burg-Thor, a picturesque gateway second
only in effect to the Holsteiner gate which I have before mentioned as
terminating one of the cross streets which lead to the railway. The
Burg-Thor stands just at the neck of the peninsula, and beyond it is
the Burg-Feld, a wood intersected with paths, and looking rather like
the Thier-Garten outside the Brandenburg gate at Berlin.

And now to describe the architectural beauties of the town we must go
back to the cathedral, and as in duty bound begin with what is at once
the oldest and the chief in rank of the ecclesiastical buildings.

The tradition is that this church, dedicated in honour of SS. John
Baptist and Nicolas, is built on the spot where Henry the Lion, when
engaged in the chase, fell in with a stag having a cross growing
between its horns and a collar of jewels round its neck, with the
produce of which the church was first in part built. There is some
account of a church older than this, and octangular in form, having
existed near the cathedral about the middle of the seventeenth century;
it cannot however have been older by many years than some parts of the
cathedral, as the first foundation of the present city seems to have
been laid in the middle of the eleventh century, and the cathedral
was consecrated in A.D. 1170 by Henry, the third Bishop of Lübeck,
having been founded by Henry the Lion, who in A.D. 1154 translated
Gerold, Bishop of Oldenburg, and made him the first Bishop of Lübeck;
possibly the destroyed octangular church may have been the baptistery
of the cathedral, as at this date baptisteries of this shape are not
unfrequently met (e.g. at Cremona and Pisa), and I know of but one case
of a church of such a plan.

Of the present cathedral, the most ancient portions appear to be the
lower part of the steeples and the main arcades throughout. These are
all Romanesque, though under the original arches pointed arches have
been since inserted. The piers are heavy and square, and the whole
effect is poor and ungainly.

Next in date is a magnificent porch on the north side of the north
transept, which is altogether about the best piece of architecture in
Lübeck, and remarkable as showing much more freedom in the use of stone
than is found elsewhere. The shafts are of marble, and the arches and
groining-ribs are all of stone, and, on the exterior, stone capitals
and shafts are also used, whilst the brick work is far superior to that
in any of the later examples. I fear I must say that this one remnant
of the art of the thirteenth century is by far the most beautiful thing
now left in the city. The sculpture on the inner door is very masterly
in its character, but unfortunately the whole porch is now most
neglected and uncared for.

Besides this porch there is little to notice in the exterior, save that
the brick work of the transept front over the porch savours of the
Italian mode of treating gables with deep cornices and traceries, and
that the two great brick steeples at the west end are fine examples
of a kind of steeple of which the city possesses however others much
finer. The spires are not ancient; the whole exterior is of red brick.

In the interior of the church the most interesting features are
the choir-screen and loft, and the rood. The screen stands at the
east side of the transept crossing, whilst the rood is supported on
an elaborately carved beam, which spans the _western_ arch of the
crossing, and the effect is most singular and certainly very piquant;
the whole being in a very late but good style, with figures remarkably
well sculptured. Under the screen is an altar, and on either side still
remains another. They are of stone supported on brick work, and there
is no mark of piscina, or of lockers, or places for relics in them. The
rood, and the figures of SS. Mary and John, are on a very large scale,
so that altogether, with their supports, they reach nearly the whole
height of the arch under which they stand.

There are also throughout the nave of the cathedral a number of very
curious seats; they vary a good deal in detail, but their outline is
similar, and their effect rather striking; I confess, however, that I
was sorry to see examples of fixed seats of such a date in a cathedral
church. In the nave there are some pendents for candles; one an angel
holding a light, and strongly reminding one of those beautiful angels
with candles above the stalls in the choir of S. Laurence at Nuremberg;
and the other, a much more elaborate composition, and coloured
richly in gold, red, and blue; it has two sitting figures of Bishops
under canopies, and bears three very large candles. One of the great
treasures of this church is the magnificent brass to Bishop Johann von
Mull, and Bishop Burchard von Serken, who deceased in 1350 and 1317. I
was unable to make so careful a rubbing of this magnificent brass as
I could have wished, but I have done enough to show how grand it is,
and how very similar in its details to the famous Flemish brasses which
remain at Lynn, S. Albans, North Mymms, Wensley, and Newark. Like two
of these, of which we fortunately possess rubbings, it is remarkable
for being one great engraved plate, and not, as was the English custom,
a plate cut out to the shape of the figure, and then inserted in an
incised slab; and compared with the S. Albans brass, which hangs by its
side, it will be seen that the detail is so exactly similar, that there
can scarcely be a shadow of a doubt that they were both engraved by the
same man. It is perhaps altogether the finest of the whole, and if so,
perhaps the finest brass in Europe. It is appreciated by the sacristan,
who demands a fee for lifting up a cover which he keeps on it, and
whose temper was of so difficult a kind that I almost despaired being
allowed to rub it. However, by persevering, I at last succeeded.

Lastly, there is in a chapel on the north side of the nave a most
magnificent triptych by Memling, almost unequalled by any work of
his I have ever seen. It has double shutters; on the outer, figures
of SS. Blaise, Giles, John, and Jerome, and inside are painted the
Crucifixion, and a number of subjects from the Passion of our Lord,
all worked together into one grand picture in a manner favourite with
painters of Memling’s time, and not to be contemned because no longer
the custom of our artists, inasmuch as Memling, Van Eyck, Giotto, and
their contemporaries all did it, and what they did we may well believe
not to have been done without good reason. The expression of all the
faces is most careful, and the skill with which portraits are preserved
throughout all the subjects, as e.g. of S. Peter, of Judas, and of
our Lord, is very marvellous. They were obviously painted from actual
faces, and not imagined. The colour of the whole is generally very
rich and deep, the drawing very vigorous, and the whole forms one of
the most magnificent specimens it is possible to imagine of the early
German school.

I have forgotten to say that the font in the cathedral is of metal. It
is a bowl arcaded and supported on four figures of angels; but it is
not very good in its character; perhaps we might think much of it here,
but in northern Germany, where I had just been seeing the wonderful
fonts at Münster, Brunswick, and above all at Hildesheim, the metal
fonts at Lübeck struck me as looking very poor.

I happened to come in for the end of a week-day sermon here, and
was rather amused, after it was finished, to find the _Prediger_
descending from the pulpit, and directing his steps towards me, whilst
the people went on singing: however, he turned into a great sort of
glazed pew in the choir-aisle, and there, having shut himself in, he
enthroned himself in a comfortable chair, waited for about ten minutes
until the sound of singing and music had died away, and then stole
back and out of the church at the west. It is curious, in northern
Germany, to observe how entirely, in public ministrations, the Lutheran
ministers seem to consider preaching their only work; going in after
the preparatory hymn is sung, and going away as soon as their sermon
is finished, without regard to the hymn which always winds up their
functions. In Lübeck there was a curious madness about preaching: every
morning, between eight and nine, there seemed to be sermons going on;
and as the congregations are infinitesimal, they do all they can to
keep a stray listener, when they can have him within their walls, by
locking the doors. Happily, I escaped, by judicious management, the sad
fate of listening to a sermon from any of these divines in black cloaks
and immense white frills, who look like so many repetitions of their
great prototype, Luther.

And now I must leave the cathedral, and getting over the difficulties
of the horrible pavement which distinguishes this end of the city as
well as may be, take you to the Marien-Kirche; the church which, in
one’s first view of Lübeck, one naturally takes for the cathedral, from
its central position and general grandeur. The whole church is built
of red brick, though unfortunately, internally, it has been daubed all
over with a succession of coats of whitewash. I was able to measure
the ground-plan, which may be taken as a type of the ground-plan most
in favour in Lübeck, and indeed generally in this part of Germany. All
the columns, arches, groining-ribs, and even the window tracery, are
built of moulded bricks; and, as will be seen from the detail, the
piers and arches are particularly well moulded and good. Not so the
window tracery, which is very plain, and like all brick window tracery,
most unsatisfactory, consisting as it does of three arched heads
within the window arch, without cusping or ornament of any kind to
relieve its baldness. The transepts hardly show on the ground-plan, and
externally they are finished with two gables instead of one, and are
so insignificant, consequently, as hardly to deserve notice. Between
the buttresses all round is a row of chapels, their external walls
being flush with the face of the buttresses. Among other good features
in this church are the Lady-chapel to the east of the main apse, and
the late turret over the intersection of nave and choir; and lastly,
the two grand steeples at the west end. This kind of steeple was not
an invention peculiar to Lübeck, but is a kind of which one finds many
examples throughout northern Germany. The earliest with which I am
acquainted are at Soest and Paderborn cathedrals, both of them very
fine, and much earlier in date than the Lübeck examples; and these
clearly have some affinity to the Lombard churches on the Rhine, save
that the continual repetition of stage above stage, exactly alike, is
a feature of their own, and one which the builders of the great brick
steeples in the fourteenth century always had before them. Certainly,
the two western steeples of the Marien-Kirche are very noble, and make
one admire immensely this kind of spire, which, as you will see, rises
from the angles of the tower and the points of the gables, which are
so great a feature as a finish to each face of the tower. These great
gables are generally filled in with tracery, without much regard to
uniformity or symmetry, but sometimes, as in the noble steeple of S.
John, Lüneburg, most effective: the spires in this case, and indeed
almost always, are of timber covered with copper.

It will be seen from the plan that the dimensions of this church are
very grand. The length is 280 English feet; height to vault, 108 ft.;
height of aisles, 59 ft.; the spires, 344 ft.

The church was founded circa A.D. 1276, the north-west tower in 1304,
and the south-west in 1310; and the whole may, I think, from its
mouldings, etc., be taken as an example of Lübeck middle-pointed.

In the interior arrangement there is no very distinct triforium, though
the clerestory windows have their inside arches lengthened down to
a string-course above the main arcade, and in the choir there is a
pierced parapet above this string.

The east window of the main apse, and the east windows of the eastern
chapel, are filled with exceedingly brilliant stained glass, said to be
the work of an Italian; it was brought in 1818 from the Burg-Kloster
church, which was destroyed at that time, and which, judging from what
still remains, and from the relics of its art treasures, preserved here
and elsewhere, must have been one of the most interesting churches in
the city. The three windows contain the legend of S. Jerome, the legend
of the finding of the Cross, and the legend of S. Peter. They are
said to have been done by the son of Dominic Livi, of Ghambasso, near
Florence, who, after he had learnt his art and long practised it in
Lübeck, went back in 1436 to Florence, where he executed the celebrated
windows in the Duomo. I have never seen these Florentine windows, but,
judging from my knowledge of the very mediocre character of Italian
glass generally, I should say that there could be no improbability on
the face of a story which would account for really beautiful glass
being done at Florence. Certainly, this Lübeck glass is very good and
brilliant, and valuable, as being, with a little still preserved in one
of the windows of the Katerinen-Kirche, the only old glass preserved in
any of the churches in Lübeck.

The nave of S. Mary is pewed throughout, and encumbered at the west
end with a prodigious organ; but the choir is fairly perfect. It is
screened in on all sides; to the west by means of a rood-screen,
similar in plan to that at the cathedral, but of earlier date, and at
the sides with screens mainly composed of brass. These screens are very
common in all the churches here, but these are the best I have seen:
they are very late in date, not at all satisfactory in their design,
and in all cases the cornices and the lower part of the screens are of
oak, the brass-work being confined to the uprights and the tracery, if
tracery it can be called.

In the choir there is a magnificent metal _Sakraments-Haus_, very
elaborate, and full of most delicate work; it has been shamefully
damaged, but enough remains to make one class it with the best of
these often beautiful pieces of church furniture. About twenty feet in
height, it stands on lions’ backs, and finishes at the top with the

One of the relics still preserved in this church is a Dance of Death,
in a series of twenty-five paintings round the walls of a chapel which
forms part of the north transept; it is a very complete painting,
and its date, which is said to be A.D. 1463, makes it one of the
earliest paintings of this very curious subject. Mr. Douce, in his
treatise on the Dance of Death, mentions older examples at Minden,
in the churchyard of the Innocents at Paris, in the cloister of the
S. Chapelle at Dijon, and that at Basle, which is the most famous
of all. Most, if not all of these, are, however, now destroyed, and
the interest of this painting becomes therefore the greater. It is
certainly very valuable; if for no other reason, for the variety of
costume, of every rank and order of men, which it contains, beginning
with the pope, the emperor, empress, cardinal, king, bishop, duke,
abbat, and so on to the young woman and the little child.

Besides these paintings are two by Overbeck: one in the Lady-chapel,
finished in 1824, of our Lord’s entry into Jerusalem, is certainly
very beautiful, in its calm simplicity and purity of colour, reminding
one much of Raffaelle’s early style, or of some work of that great
Christian artist, Perugino; and therefore most grateful to me, and
far more pleasing than the other, which is a Pietà, painted in 1847,
and in a thoroughly different and much more naturalistic style. In
the first painting the Lübeck people recognise and point out, with no
little pride, Overbeck’s father, mother, and sisters, all of them--as
also the great artist himself--natives of Lübeck, and perhaps fairly
enough introduced in this his offering to his native town. A lion of
the Marien-Kirche is the clock--one of those clumsy pieces of ingenuity
which so often annoy one on the Continent. There is also a metal font,
said to have been made in 1337 by one Hans Apengeter; but like that at
the cathedral, not very satisfactory.

After these two great churches, certainly by far the most interesting
church is that of the Minorite convent, S. Katharine, which is in many
ways so remarkable, as to leave perhaps a stronger impression on one’s
mind than anything else in the city. It is a desecrated church, but
desecrated happily in a quiet way; unused, and not much cared for, but
as yet not destroyed, and serving now only as a kind of museum of old
church furniture, great store of which, from the Burg-Kloster church
and elsewhere, is accumulated in its choir.

The date of the foundation of this church is given on an inscription
near the door as A.D. 1335, and its founder Bishop Henry Bockholt; but
an old chronicler, Reimar Cock, says that the guardian of the church,
Brother Emeke, pulled down the church in 1351, and rebuilt it in three
years more beautifully than before, with the alms which, during the
time of the plague, were given to the monks.

I have drawn out the plan of this church, and, with the help of my
sketches, this may, I trust, explain its extraordinary arrangement.
This consists in the elevation of the choir, with a kind of crypt
below it, above the floor of the rest of the church; the floor of the
crypt being level with that of the nave, and divided into three widths
with slender shafts, the whole groined, and when seen from the nave,
presenting certainly one of the most striking and curious interiors
I have ever met with. The west end of the under church opens to the
nave with three arches, looking just like the ordinary arrangement of
rood-screens in Lübeck; and this is just what it is: the whole choir
is simply a prolongation eastwards of the rood-loft, and at the west
end there is a raised screen surmounting the three arches, out of which
rises a most magnificent and perfect rood, with SS. Mary and John on
either side. The entire absence of seats in the nave, the great height
of the church, the darkness of the long vista of arch and column under
the choir, and the magnificence of the rood, make this interior one
of the most satisfactory and least altered things I know; and if its
arrangement is not absolutely unique, it is certainly not far from
being so. In England I know nothing at all like it, unless such an
example as the little church at Compton, near Guildford, be taken, in
which there are indeed some points of similarity--the low sanctuary,
with its groined roof, and the chapel above opening to the church, and
fenced in with its low Romanesque screen-work; all this, though on
a far smaller scale, certainly tallies curiously with this Minorite
church at Lübeck.[77]

An iron grill shuts off the chapels at the east end of the under
church, and in the centre of these is a fine brass, of which I obtained
a rubbing. It is to a member of the Lüneburg family, and contains
the figure of the burgomaster John Lüneburg, who died in the last
quarter of the fifteenth century. The inscriptions are curious, the
name, etc., all in Latin, ending with “Bidde God vor em”; and another
ending “Orate: ah werlt du hest mi bedragen!” It will be seen from
the drawing of the interior that the whole detail is of a very severe
kind,--all brick, and alas! all whitewashed. The access to the choir
is by a staircase in the south aisle, which did not appear to me to
be old. There is a space of some ten or twelve feet between the west
side of the rood-loft and the choir-stalls, which are returned; and
into this space the staircase leads. The stalls are old, and very good;
and the whole pavement of the upper choir is of tiles, of a peculiar
and interesting kind, if only for its novelty. The only pattern tiles
are in the borders, the remainder are green, black, red, and light
red, made in various shapes, and very good in their effect. One of the
chapels in the Marien-Kirche is similarly paved, but not on so grand a
scale, or with so many patterns. The only pavements at all approaching
to the same kind which at the present moment I can call to mind, are
that which has been so strangely--as it were providentially--preserved
in the footpace on which once stood the high altar at Fountains Abbey,
perfect and untouched, where all else is ruin and desolation;--and in
those most lovely marble pavements in S. Anastasia, at Verona. Some of
the arrangements of the patterns approach very near to these, but how
much more beautiful the marble of Verona is than the tiles of Lübeck
one can hardly say.

And with this ends all that one knows as positively belonging to S.
Katharine; for in this unused choir is now a store of triptychs of
that kind which, after some acquaintance with German churches, one
learns to tire of, covered with carving, quaint, and richly coloured,
or painted in Scripture story or strange legend, well enough in their
proper place, and giving once doubtless great dignity to the altars
they adorned, but here--collected and set out for view as a gallery of
paintings--if not worthless, at best very unsatisfactory. But besides
all these triptychs, there is a large aumbrye, with its old iron gates
and locks still perfect, in which is a large collection of portions
of monstrances, chalices, crosses, and the like: many of them very
beautiful, but all damaged and in fragments. Among other things I saw
a curious leather bag for carrying books, with an ingenious pocket for
money contrived in its folds and very securely fastened.

But what is most rare and curious is a collection of ancient linen
altar-cloths, which I had great trouble in getting a sight of, and
which I could not draw, as the curator of the museum insisted on
showing them himself, and when I wished to draw them, told me that he
had already himself drawn them: this, as may be imagined, was a very
poor source of comfort to me.

There was a corporal about 2 feet square, and fringed; along the edge
of which was worked an arcade with figures of saints, the dresses
stitched in a regular pattern all over, and the folds left plain:
the date of this was about A.D. 1280. There was another embroidered
corporal which I managed to get a drawing of: this was 2 feet square,
with a large cross in the centre and four smaller crosses in the
corners; the whole worked in a cross-stitch with blue and red on the
white linen. Date, I think, about 1450.

Then there were two linen cloths for the altar: one, 14 ft. long by 3
ft. 10 in. wide, with a great number of figures of prophets surrounded
with branching foliage; from the character of the figures, I date this
at about A.D. 1400. All the outlines of the figures, leaves, etc. were
marked with coloured ink borders on the linen before the work was done:
the hair and points of the dresses here and there were marked with
bright colour, but generally the work was all in white thread,--the
stitches rather long, and arranged in regular patterns and diapers.

Another linen cloth of the same size has the whole history of Reynard
the Fox: a curious subject, it may be thought, for an altar-cloth; but
I may remark that I found the same subject in the bosses of the under

Besides this there was a magnificent linen dalmatic with apparels
beautifully worked and fringed with white, red, white, blue,
alternately. The orphreys had been taken off. The apparels of the
sleeves were a succession of medallions, six to each sleeve, containing
the Twelve Apostles, and the apparel at the bottom of the dalmatic had
in front our Lord and two saints, and at the back S. Mary the Virgin,
SS. Peter and Paul. The work was most beautiful, and, I have no doubt
of the end of the thirteenth century.

I believe there were other things of the same kind, but I fear my
curiosity rather disgusted the curator, who was not very anxious to let
me see very much of these precious and invaluable relics.

The exterior of S. Katharine will be best understood by my sketches.
The most noticeable fact is that some of the tracery in the eastern
part is of stone enclosed within a brick arch, and exceedingly good
in its effect; proving satisfactorily that this is the real way to use
brick and stone together. There is no comparison between these windows
and all the other windows in Lübeck. The rest are all ugly: these quite

The transept has a double gable, as in the Marien-Kirche, and
internally is arranged like an aisle rather than a transept. The west
front is curious and indescribable: an irregular assemblage of arcades
and windows without order or definiteness, but withal very effective.
And as will be seen from the ground-plan, the north aisle being much
narrower than the south produces of necessity a great irregularity in
the whole elevation, and this irregularity is so carefully managed as
really completely to conceal the awkwardness which would otherwise be
very apparent. There is no tower, only a turret on the roof, at the
intersection of nave, choir, and transept roofs.

In buildings connected with the church is a large library, some
cartoons of Overbeck’s, and some work of Godfrey Kneller’s, he, as well
as Overbeck, having been born here.

The other churches are not very remarkable. S. Peter’s has a good
steeple with metal turrets at the base of the spire, and I believe
there is a fine brass there, but I failed to see it.

S. James has a very plain brick tower, and a good triapsidal east end,
very much like that of S. Katharine. The steeple is crowned with a
modern spire: inside there is a late metal font, of the kind popular in
Lübeck--a large vat-like vessel standing on the backs of four kneeling
angels, and covered with small and ineffective arcading with figures
and subjects. There is a large organ of rather early date, and two
curious standard lanterns for carrying lights in procession: they are
of very late date, but still so rare as to be worth notice.

S. Giles has no one feature of interest, save its very fine tower and

Of the hospitals the most curious is the Heiligen-Geist-Spital: the
ground-plan and general arrangement of which are most remarkable. The
chapel is the oblong building at the west end, only two bays in length,
but of great width: against its east wall is a rood-screen and loft,
under which is the altar, and, on either side of the altar, doors
which admit every one under the loft into the hospital. This, like
many of our old hospitals (S. Mary’s, Chichester, and Higham Ferrers,
are cases in point) is one immense hall, 250 ft. long by 40 ft. wide,
and has down its length two passages, and four rows of cubicles for
the inmates, and accommodates no less than 150 poor people: truly a
most royal provision for the poor. There is an entrance at the sides,
but the main entrance is through the chapel, through which there is a
constant passing, and it is therefore more like a great hall than a
chapel. How much better is the ordinary English arrangement (of which
I saw a grand example at Lüneburg), in which the chapel is at the east
end of the hall. There the chapel sanctifies the whole, instead of
being itself profaned, as is the case at Lübeck.

The hospital was founded by one Bertram Mornewech, in A.D. 1286, and is
similar in plan, I believe, to the great Gothic Hospital della Scala at

In the chapel are some brass screens like those in the Marien-Kirche,
but inferior to them. The west front is remarkable and certainly very
picturesque, with its three gables and its multitude of turrets.

The most interesting building left to be described is the ruin of the
Burg-Kloster. This was a Dominican convent, and at the Reformation
was converted into a hospital for the poor. In 1818, a portion of
the vaulting of the church fell in, and then they pulled down the
rest of the church, sending their stained glass and the organ to
the Marien-Kirche, and their triptychs and altar furniture to the
Katerinen-Kirche. The north wall only of the church now remains, but
this shows traces of stone windows enclosed within brick arches, like
those in the apse of S. Katharine, and its destruction is therefore
specially to be deplored. The foundation dates from A.D. 1229. The rest
of the conventual buildings still in great part remain, but so mixed
up with other and modern erections, that it is rather difficult to
understand them.

There is, however, a fair cloister on the north side of the church,
groined throughout and tolerably perfect: out of this, on one side,
is a kind of open groined stall, which looks something like the
ambulatories which are so beautiful a feature of our own abbeys; and
out of this ambulatory, one enters a large hall once apparently divided
by a row of columns down the centre. North of these buildings is a
room which seems to have been part of the refectory, remarkable for an
exquisite pavement of small tiles--red, black, and white--arranged in
an ingenious and intricate pattern, of which I made a careful drawing.
My drawing shows the entire remaining portion of this pavement which,
it will be seen, continued on beyond the present partition-wall. A
central shaft is still left, with an old oak sideboard framed round its
base in a most effective manner. In another part of the Burg-Kloster
there is a small fragment of similar pavement, which looks as if it had
been the hearth under a fire.

Near S. Giles’s church there is another ruined conventual building, S.
Anne’s Kloster. This was originally a nunnery of “Clarissernonnen” (I
suppose these were nuns of S. Clare, an order who had a few houses in
England), but has been converted into a workhouse. Unfortunately a
great fire in 1843 consumed the church, and left nothing but the outer
walls standing, and when I was there it was used as a place for the
workhouse men to break stones or the roads. The church is said to have
been designed and built by one Synsingus Hesse of Brunswick, who came
to Lübeck in 1502 with five assistants, and completed the work in 1510.
With this date the work tallies very well, though I confess there is no
mark of the peculiarities of a Brunswick architect, which, as must be
known to any who have ever seen that very remarkable city, are decided
enough. Part of the west front of the church of S. Anne was built with
courses of stone and brick, a most unusual arrangement in Germany,
though common enough in Italian pointed, and always very striking in
its effect; the domestic buildings retain a good many groined rooms,
and a simple cloister in very perfect condition.

We come now to the Rathhaus, whose long line of picturesque front is so
great a feature in the principal street of the city. Its history is so
confusing and its style so peculiar, that it is very difficult indeed
to affix any certain date to its various portions. It was burnt down
in A.D. 1276, and there was another fire in A.D. 1358. In A.D. 1389
there were considerable works executed, including the famous cellars,
whose still more famous wine was all cleared out by the French, when
they sacked the good city in A.D. 1806. The portion of the Rathhaus to
the south of the market-place seems to have been built in 1442–44, and
the alterations of the Börse towards the street in 1570 and 1673; so
that we may well expect a confusing and picturesque mixture of works of
various dates. The earliest external portion appears to me to be the
screen on the north side in front of the two gabled roofs; and this
and the other great screens or parapets towards the market-place and
towards the street are the most picturesque portions of the building.
They are entirely executed in red and black brick, the cusping being
all done in moulded brick. As a rich piece of colour this work is
very valuable, but architecturally its sole merit is a kind of
picturesqueness, which it certainly has in great force.

The fact is that in northern Germany all the domestic architecture
was very full of faults; the fronts of the buildings were very seldom
at all ruled by the roof line, and their stepped gables, traceried,
mullioned, and pinnacled, had no reference to anything save a desire
to look well; and so here some of the most striking portions of the
old Rathhaus are done without any regard to constructional wants, and
simply as masks of the construction; the fronts are built up to conceal
the roofs, arcaded and pinnacled without meaning, and in a style very
elaborate as compared with the other brick work throughout the city.

A sketch of perhaps the most magnificent example remaining of north
German domestic architecture--the Rathhaus at Münster--will show
you how, even with the most beautiful detail and the best possible
sculpture, this faulty mode of designing was always persisted in; from
Münster in the fourteenth century one may trace it going into the brick
districts to the north and--as at Lüneburg--filling entire towns with
its extravagancies, and then settling down, as we find it at Lübeck,
into a regular system of stepped gables and panelled façades, beyond
which the dream of house-builders never went. I confess to having
been sorely disappointed in the street architecture of Lübeck. In
the first place everything except the churches, hospitals, Rathhaus,
and gateways, is painted white, or whitewashed in the most ruthless
manner, and the architectural merit of the houses before they were
whitewashed must have been very small. The houses at the side of the
Heiligen-Geist-Spital are the best specimens of the kind of elevation
most in favour, and will, I think, quite justify my strictures, though
they are less objectionable than most, in that the gables follow the
roof line instead of being sham.

I have left until the last the town gateways, which are certainly two
of the most effective I have ever seen. The Holsteiner-Thor has two
spire-like roofs at its extremities, which are very effective, and its
front towards the town is really a magnificent specimen of the good
effect of a great quantity of arcading. The outer front of the gate is
much less ornamental. In the string-courses there is a great deal of
inlaid terra-cotta ornament. The date of this gateway is about A.D.
1477. The Burg-Thor and the buildings on the town side form about as
picturesque a group as can well be imagined. It has all been lately
restored, and, I fear, _painted:_ the colour of the red and black
bricks savouring to my eye uncommonly of artificial colour; but one
can scarce imagine anything more strikingly picturesque than the whole
group. The other side of the gate is almost exactly the same; but
standing by itself, without the picturesque buildings on either side,
is not nearly so effective.

All that I had heard of Lübeck made me promise myself a great treat in
the study of the old brick buildings and the old treatment of brick.
I must confess, however, that this was not so good or so satisfactory
as I had expected, and that it is certainly very inferior to the
Italian brick work. It is generally coarsely done, and there is but
little attempted in the way of tracery, and that little is never very
effective. I saw nothing, for instance, at all comparable to such
brick work as one sees at Verona, Mantua, and Cremona; and I doubt
much whether Germany produces any which can be compared to it. Except
in one instance, and then only to a very slight extent, there is no
attempt at all at mixing stone with brick, save at the quoins of the
towers, where there are always immense blocks of stone, intended for
strength, but contributing, I suspect, to the weakness which is quite
a characteristic of all the churches in Lübeck, Hamburg, Lüneburg,
and generally throughout this brick district. The brick churches of
Italy are remarkable in that they owe much of their beautiful effect
either to the mixture of stone with brick, or to the exquisite moulding
of the brick, and the care and delicacy with which it was built; and
one observes that whilst in Italy all the buildings have an air of
refinement, in northern Germany they have an air of great coarseness,
to which, perhaps, the entire absence of what can fairly be called
window tracery in a great degree conduces.

Something may, however, be learnt even from the failure of other men,
and so some points may well be attended to in this German brick work.
And first it teaches us, distinctly and unmistakably, that brick is
no material for window traceries; the necessity of using it ends
either in the repetition of very simple and ugly windows, such as are
almost universal in Lübeck; or, as in the Stadt-Haus, and again in
the very remarkable church of S. Katharine, at Brandenburg, in the
eternal repetition of the same small piece of moulded tracery, which,
of necessity not very good in itself, becomes, by much repetition,
quite hateful. And the effect is painful in the extreme upon the whole
practice of art: in all cases, without any exception, I believe, where
men have condescended to attempt to execute traceries or carvings in
brick moulded in this way, the tendency has been, naturally enough, to
repeat for ever things which by repetition become cheap. _One_ moulded
piece of brick tracery would be dearer than one like it in stone; but
multiply it a hundred or a thousand times, and it becomes infinitely
cheaper, but who can say by how much more infinitely tedious and
unartistic! So at Brandenburg, crockets, crocketed gablets, component
parts of tracery, and the like, are repeated over and over again, in a
manner which is really marvellous; and because it was necessary to do
this, immense sham fronts, sham parapets, and the like, must be raised,
in order to display all the resources which were at their command.
Now this is very poor architecture, very vile art; and it requires no
argument to prove that it is only the natural and certain result of
the attempt to use materials out of their proper place, and in a way
in which it was never intended they should be used. Far worse would
be an attempt to mould clay, so that it should counterfeit the work
of nature; and so, in addition to the destruction of all art by its
endless repetitions, insult God’s handiwork by counterfeiting stone
quarried from the bowels of the earth.

The Lübeck churches show us, however, in other respects, what great
things may really be done, and done well and naturally, in brick. You
may form mouldings to any extent, because each moulded brick tells its
own tale, does its own work; and mouldings, so far from not bearing
repetition, gain by it. All the windows in a noble church require
varied traceries, but it were as well that no two of them should vary
in their mouldings. Here, therefore, the reproductive power of the
moulder is most valuable; so, too, is it in all forms of ornament
(as, e.g., the billet, chevron, and the like) which become ornamental
only by repetition, and not in any way by reason of art or skill in
the man who works them. These are absolutely better in brick than in
stone, because, as no thought and no taste are necessary in the man who
carves them, it were better the human intellect should be as little as
possible deadened by working upon them. The windows of S. Katharine,
Lübeck, show how these moulded bricks may be used in conjunction with
stone traceries, and with admirable effect, when compared with the
attempts at tracery in brick which this and other churches here exhibit.

But one of the most important facts which we can learn here is, that
brick is not only good outside, but just as much inside a church. All
the Lübeck churches are built, inside and out, with red brick; most
unfortunately, this has all been whitewashed, but I think we may have
faith enough in the men who built them to be sure that they would not
have been built with brick had not the effect been good. For myself,
I am persuaded that they were right in so doing; because I have seen
in Italy the wonderfully solemn effect produced in this way, and have
since tested it myself. In truth, no red brick building should ever be
plastered inside, save where it is intended to introduce paintings of
some kind more brilliant than the colour of the bricks.

On the whole, therefore, though the brick work of Lübeck is far
inferior, in delicacy and beauty, to that which I have seen in Italy,
there is much to be learnt from it, and much proof to be obtained, if
proof be needed, that brick is really a most noble and serviceable
material, and one which, wherever it is the material of the district,
ought invariably and unhesitatingly to be used.

But I feel that, in criticising its brick work, I have been led
into abusing old Lübeck almost too much. Perhaps I ought only to
express my grateful recollection of all the treasures which she
still possesses,--of her screens, her church furniture, her spacious
interiors, and her many picturesque features of antiquarian and
ecclesiological interest, her triptychs, her brasses, and her
gateways,--rather than attempt to draw a parallel between her and
Italy; between the stern ruggedness of the north, and the sunny
softness and delicacy of the south; between, moreover, a city built
as it were in a day,--for Lübeck’s rise was sudden almost beyond all
precedent, without a history, and without older days to teach and to
correct her,--and a land whose memories of the past and associations
with old art were, even in the Middle Ages, well nigh as great, and as
valuable in their influence on the mind of her people, as they can be
even at the present day. More just it is, perhaps, only to be thankful
for all the pleasures with which my three days’ sojourn in this noble
old city was full even to overflowing; and (forgetful of the faults of
her architects) to dwell more upon the lessons which their works cannot
fail to teach us, if we will only lovingly and patiently study and
examine them.



I reached Naumburg late at night in a tremendous storm; but the sun
rose cheeringly, and I started early for the cathedral fearful of
disappointment, as I had spent half the previous day in a mistaken
attempt to find something interesting at Merseburg,--a place against
which it is only right to warn all ecclesiologists. At Naumburg my
fate was happier. The first view of the exterior is not very striking.
A fair apsidal choir with a tower rising on either side, Romanesque
at the base, and finished in late third-pointed, does not rise above
the picturesque, and gives but small promise of the excessive interest
of the interior. The plan is curious. A late Romanesque, or very
early-pointed nave finished with eastern and western apsidal choirs,
and separated from both of them by rood-screens; that to the eastern
choir Romanesque, that to the western of most exquisite early pointed,
and both of them coeval with the portions of the main fabric to which
they belong. The eastern choir extends across the transepts, and is
raised considerably above them, with solid stone parcloses, arcaded on
the faces towards the transepts with semicircular arches, a kind of
parclose not uncommon in the churches in this part of Germany.

Under the whole of the choir is a crypt entered from the transept,
and in the angles between the transepts and the choir are towers, the
lower stages of which are open to the transepts and form chapels,
whose altars stand in small apsidal projections on the east face of
the tower. A door on either side of the sanctuary leads by a staircase
in the thickness of the wall to rooms above the chapels in the tower.
The entrance to the choir is through the old rood-screen by doors
on either side of the altar, and by doors in the parcloses, reached
by long flights of steps in the transepts. The nave is divided into
three groining bays, each bay subdivided and having two arches into
the aisles. The western choir has one bay and a five-sided apse. On
either side of it is a narrow passage leading to staircases which lead
to rooms above some chapels, which have now to be mentioned. They
form the base of towers at the west end of the aisles, but project
considerably beyond them: only one of these towers has been built;
the other is carried up and finished externally as though it was a
transept, and produces at first some confusion when seen from the
exterior. These tower chapels are very curious. That on the south side
has a circular central shaft, decreasing in size to the capital, and
the vaulting has four ribs springing from corbels in the angles of
the chapel in a semicircular arch to the cap of the column, and there
are no other ribs. In the _east_ wall is a small semicircular recess,
in which still stands the original altar with a double footpace.
The north tower chapel is almost exactly like the other, save that
it has a polygonal central shaft, and the recess for the altar is
rectangular. Both chapels are lighted with small round-headed windows
in their western faces. From this description it will be seen that the
ground-plan of this church is so curiously alike at its eastern and
western ends, as to be somewhat confusing at first.

And now to describe this most interesting church in detail. The eastern
choir-screen is most remarkable. It has admirably carved capitals, and
its three western arches (which are semicircular) rest on delicate
clusters of shafts. The original doorways still remain, and in front
of them steps, arranged in semicircles radiating from the centre of
the door, which lead up into the choir. No doubt an altar once stood
under this screen, but this has been destroyed in order to convert
it into a pew! The front of the screen too is so much obscured by a
modern gallery, and by the reredos of the Lutheran altar, that it
is impossible to say how it was finished: there seemed to be traces
of a vesica with sculpture just over the centre arch. Entering the
choir by this screen, one finds all the old arrangements undisturbed.
Between the two western doors there are three stalls with canopies,
and on either side against the stone parcloses eleven stalls and ten
subsellae. In the midst stand three ancient, heavy square desks for
office books, and upon these five most magnificent books, well bound
and of astonishing size, still maintain their old place. They are all
manuscript on vellum, and two of them have very large illuminations of
subjects, and foliage of very admirable and bold character. I never
saw such magnificent books on their own proper desks,--never, I think
any of such grand size anywhere. The stalls are not particularly
good, and are of late date, with immense finials, of a kind I had met
before at Halberstadt. A rise of several steps divides the choir from
the first bay of the sanctuary, which is long and without furniture,
save some late stalls, which do not seem to have any business where
they are placed. This bay of the choir terminates the transitional
work, which is carried throughout the whole church, with the exception
of the eastern apse and the western choir. It is of the earliest
pointed, very simple and bold in all its details; the piers looking
rather like Romanesque in their section and capitals, carved in the
most admirable manner. The foliage is all disposed in circles, being
regular and geometrical and invariably kept severely and carefully to a
regular outline; it is an example of the very perfection of that kind
of conventional foliage, of which some of the early capitals at Venice
are such admirable specimens, and I think in no way inferior to them.
The groining throughout is very simple, with diagonal and transverse
ribs. The eastern apse is an addition in most admirable middle-pointed,
and (save the upper stages of the towers) the latest work in the whole
fabric. The section of the groining shafts is particularly elaborate
and good; corbels of foliage inferior to the rest of the carving
throughout the church supported figures under canopies at a height of
about eight feet from the floor, but the figures are all gone. A very
bold string runs round the apse at this point under a passage-way in
the wall, which is reached by a staircase between the choir and the
tower-chapel apses. The windows are of three lights, and have good
geometrical tracery, and the apse is well groined with boldly moulded
ribs, the boss in the centre being four ivy leaves. In the sanctuary
stand four oak sedilia of the thirteenth century, with open arcaded
backs and carved ends, the carving peculiar, but the whole a very
remarkable work and very perfect. The chapels in the towers on either
side of the choir are not in the old state, one being used for rubbish,
and the other as a vestry: above the former a room in the tower is used
as a receptacle for hardware! Perhaps the _Prediger_ deals in it! The
crypt under the choir is very perfect and fine. We had an illumination
of it, and consequently a careful examination. The capitals are all
carved, and the arches all semicircular. It is divided by shafts, some
of which are clustered, into three spaces in width, and in the length
there are two bays under the choir, then a solid wall with a doorway,
and then five bays, and an apse of three bays. The old altar still

In the transepts there is little to notice, save that there is an old
altar in each. The well-like effect of these German transepts, in which
the choir is continued across with heavy stone parcloses of great
height, is most unpleasant. In this case the parcloses are no less than
16 feet high from the floor of the transept; and, owing to the great
elevation of the choir, the floor of the crypt is only 4 ft. 6 in.
lower than the transept floor.

No one, going into the nave of the church as now arranged, would
believe that he was in a church of more than very mediocre interest.
Between all the columns are small tenements, painted white, carefully
roofed in and glazed, and papered with whatever paper the fancy and
good taste of their several proprietors suggest. In front of these
are rows of pews, arranged longitudinally, and all painted white;
and as the aisles are by this arrangement practically lost to the
church, galleries are built in them, to supply the created want.[78]
A white wooden screen behind the Lutheran altar conceals the eastern
rood-screen; whilst another white wooden partition, out of the centre
of which projects the pulpit, serves also to conceal the rood-screen of
the western choir. The whole arrangement is, in short, just the most
judicious that could possibly be imagined for the entire annihilation
of the architectural effect of the interior.

This western choir-screen is certainly the most striking I have ever
seen even in this land of screens. No description can, however, do
justice to its exquisite beauty, dependent as this is, to a great
extent, on the exceeding originality and beauty of the foliage, which
is all varied, and all executed from natural models. The doorway is
double, and rather narrow; the doors of iron, cross-framed; and they
form the only openings in the screen, the rest being quite solid,
arcaded on the eastern side, and on the western (that is, on the
inside, or choir side), remarkable chiefly for the exquisite open
staircases on each side of the door leading to the loft. On the eastern
side, against the doorway, are a Crucifix and SS. Mary and John; but
these seemed to be of later date than the door. The figure of our
Lord seated in the tympanum above is no doubt original; it is very
curious, being partly painted, partly carved, and reminded me of an
early picture, managed in the same way, which I saw in the gallery
at Berlin. Above the arcading, on either side of the doorway, are a
series of subjects, the execution of which (with the exception of the
two last, which are not original) is marvellously good. They are,
beginning at the south--the Last Supper, the Betrayal, ditto (S. Peter
smiting Malchus), the Denial of S. Peter, our Lord before Pilate,
the Scourging, Bearing the Cross. The open staircases on the western
side of the screen are remarkable for the beauty of the succession of
detached shafts, with finely carved capitals, which support them.

There are no fittings in this western choir save the altar, the mensa
of which is 8 ft. 5 in. long, by 5 ft. 11 in. wide, and 3 ft. 8 in.
high; and this faces west, as all the altars throughout the church
do: so showing its back (in the centre of which is the usual closet)
to any one entering through the door of the screen from the nave. It
has a double footpace. The detail of this choir is earlier and bolder
than that of the eastern choir; the windows of two lights, with very
bold monials, and circles sexfoiled, with soffit cusping in the head.
The groining-shafts are good; and, as in the other choir, there is a
very bold string under a passage-way in front of the windows, at about
8 feet from the floor. The windows do not fill up the whole width of
the bays, and on each side have small open arches, which add very
much to the richness of the whole effect. Against the groining-shafts
are figures, very well sculptured, and standing under canopies of
very varied design, finished at the top with what seem like models of
churches. Some of the windows retain some exquisite stained glass. The
mouldings throughout this apse are exactly like those of the screen,
and the foliage was evidently carved by the same hand,--that of as
great a master in his day as was the artist who carved the early
capitals in the nave. I think I have now described the whole of the

On the exterior there is a large cloister (partly ruined) on the south
of the nave; half of this is pointed, the other half late Romanesque.
It opens into the church with a small round-arched door, in the
third bay from the west; and on its east side into a large kind of
porch or narthex, south of the south transept, from which there is a
particularly grand doorway, with five shafts in each jamb, into the
transept. This porch is groined in two bays, and communicates with
other buildings to the south, one of which seems, by its apse and
pointed windows, to have been a chapel. These old buildings group
picturesquely with the east end of the church. The southern was not,
however, the only cloister; the good men of Naumburg seem to have
been specially fond of duplicates, and as they had two choirs, two
rood-screens, and two towers at each end, so they thought right to have
two cloisters. The northern cloister seems to have tallied in size with
the southern; but all that now remains of it are the groining-ribs
against the north wall, and the springers of the groining throughout.
The base-mould of the western tower is continued all along this north
wall, and the groining springs from corbels; all which makes it look as
though it were a subsequent addition: but its arches are nevertheless
round, whilst, as we have seen, pointed arches are used throughout the
main arcade. There are two doors from this destroyed cloister into the
church--one into the north aisle, the other into the north transept.

The western apse is remarkable, on the exterior, for the excessively
beautiful carving of its cornices; these are varied in every bay,
and, I think, the best I have ever seen. They are of that exquisite
imitation of natural foliage, springing upwards, and filling a large
hollow with its ramifications, which commends itself to my mind as
the most perfect type of cornice foliage. There is a somewhat similar
carved string under the windows, equally good, but much more simple.
The buttresses finish at the top with delicate pinnacles.

At the east end the detail is also good, the windows being well
moulded, and the buttresses finished with good simple niches and
figures. The apsidal projections on the eastern face of the towers
finish with pyramidal stone roofs against the towers, at a low

The north-west tower is late, and has open turrets at its angles,
beginning at the second stage; it is picturesque, but not very good.
The upper stages of the eastern towers are also octangular, but without
pinnacles; and what ornament they have is of a very late kind, and not

Such is the cathedral of Naumburg--little known to, and scarce ever
visited by, English tourists; and yet undoubtedly one of the most
interesting and least altered churches in Germany: its two rood-screens
would be alone sufficient to give it high claims upon our admiration,
since they are, so far as I know, the two earliest examples remaining,
and certainly older than any quoted by Mr. Pugin in his work on
Screens. Besides this, the architectural value of some parts of the
building is so pre-eminent, as in itself to repay a long journey.



At Naumburg there was little, save the cathedral, to detain an
ecclesiologist. The Stadt-Kirche deserved little more than a hurried
visit, though the singularity of its plan deserves a note. It has an
immense apsidal west end, a vast semicircle on the plan, embracing both
nave and aisles, and its choir is also terminated with an apse. Beyond
this the only remarkable features are the large multifoiled arches
which occupy the space between the windows and the plinth in each bay
of the eastern apse.

From the railway station one obtains a good view of the cathedral
steeples over the vine-clad hills on which Naumburg stands--refreshing
sight after the dreariness of the country generally in which I had
been journeying. From Naumburg to Erfurt the railway runs through a
really pretty, often very picturesque, country, with hills and rocks
by the river-side, ever and anon capped by those feudal keeps in which
all German rivers seem to be so rich; as picturesque now as they were
formerly advantageous to their predatory chiefs. I had but two or
three hours at Erfurt, but this was enough to show me that much was
to be seen. The Barfüsser-Kirche was the first that I saw--one of
those immensely long churches of which Germans were rather fond; a
nave and aisles, and an apsidal choir, all groined at the same height,
with windows of the same size and character throughout, and the whole
“restored” in that peculiarly chilling fashion, which Lutherans are
so singularly successful in achieving, which makes one’s recollection
of such a church not very grateful. There is, however, some old glass
in the choir windows, and a most prodigious carved and painted reredos
behind the altar, which, though apparently to some extent modern, is
nevertheless striking in its effect. The entrance to this church is by
double doors on the south side which run up into and form part of the
windows, the same jamb mould being continued all round.

I had some difficulty in finding my way to the cathedral--strangely
enough too, for when at last I reached the Dom-Platz, there, rising
high into the air, and approached by an almost endless flight of
steps, stood the magnificent choir of the cathedral, surmounted by
its singular triple arrangement of central steeples, and by its side,
and on the same high plateau, the church of S. Severus emulating, I
should almost say, aping, the cathedral both in height and design very
curiously. The east end of the cathedral, built on the precipitous edge
of a rock, has been under-built with a terrace supported upon arches,
which, concealing the natural rock, gives it an effect of extraordinary
height. These arches have been all modernized, but there are traces
here and there which prove the arrangement to be original.

Let us mount the flight of steps which lead by the entire length of
the north side of the choir to the porch, and we shall see reason to
class one at least of the architects of Erfurt, with the greatest
of his race. No position can be conceived which would present more
difficulty to one who wished to show the doors of his church to the
people who might gather in crowds in the Dom-Platz, and seeing nothing
but the tall east end of their church and the sharp perspective of
its side, shrink from the attempt to find a door at the end of the
long flight of steps before them. Every one must have felt how those
great foreign doorways call upon all to enter; they are always open,
guarded on either side by kings, and saints, and martyrs, and revealing
glimpses, precious because vague, of glorious interiors and worshippers
within on their knees. They call upon all to enter, and who can refuse?
At Erfurt, however, one might have deemed it impossible that people
should be made to feel this, but yet it has been done, and done nobly
and magnificently. There are no transepts, and so against the eastern
bay of the north aisle of the nave is set a triangular porch of grand
size and lovely design and detail. Its base rests against the church,
and its two sides, jutting out at angles of sixty degrees from the
wall, show both from the west and from the east the whole width of
its two glorious doorways. So, as one gazes up from the Dom-Platz,
and wonders at the singularity of the position of the church and the
beauty of the choir, one’s eye follows up the track of those who
ascend the toilsome flight of steps till it rests upon the doorway
at their summit, and one is led at once to find one’s way through its
great opening into the nave of the church. Sad to say, wanton havoc
has destroyed much of the more delicate ornaments of this most noble
piece of early fourteenth century architecture. Of the nave little can
be said, save that it is entirely unworthy and unsatisfactory; between
it and the choir is a great mass of wall, pierced only by a narrow
arch opening into the choir, and supporting a curious combination of
towers--a central tower rising from between one on either side--in a
singular and rather picturesque fashion of which I recollect no other
examples than the imitation of it here in S. Severus, and the cathedral
at Constance. The interior of the choir is very noble; its elevation
very great, and its windows of rather late middle-pointed, full without
exception of brilliant though late glass; too rich in colour however
for the traceries, which it quite conceals, giving a useful warning to
architects in dealing with stained glass.

The only piece of old furniture in this choir of which I made a note,
is a curious figure in brass, supporting three branches for lights, one
in either hand, and one growing out of his back. The effect of this is
not at all satisfactory.

This cathedral is Catholic, as also is S. Severus and some of the other
churches, the Lutherans holding about an equal number.

S. Severus imitates the cathedral very curiously; it is within some
thirty or forty feet of its northern side, and has in the same
transeptal position a great mass of tower, the outer flanks of which
are crowned with tall spires, whilst from the intermediate wall, and
raised above the others, rises the central spire; the mass of tower
is smaller, but nevertheless by dint of its slated spires, S. Severus
manages to rise higher than the cathedral. As may be imagined, the
whole group is one of most picturesque character. S. Severus has some
very good middle-pointed detail, especially in its window traceries.

It was late in the evening when I left the Dom-Platz, but I saw
hurriedly the exteriors of some eight or ten pointed churches. They
were mostly of the same date, _circa_ 1320 to 1400, and of very
various degrees of merit. One--the Prediger-Kirche is the not pleasant
dedication by which it is now known--is of enormous length as compared
to its width and height: fifteen bays to a church consisting of a not
very lofty nave with narrow aisles is an excess of this proportion;
its length cannot be less than about 225 feet. Near it, but apparently
having no connection with it, is a detached campanile.

In one of Erfurt’s many squares or market-places, is a good pointed
house, with a large bay window, and three traceried windows, one on
either side, and one above it in its gable end.

In another Platz is a church with two western steeples, one with
a spire rising from the gabled sides of the tower. Another church
occupies a triangular piece of ground, the tower being at the western
angle, between two streets. It is desecrated, and I could not get into
it, but its internal arrangement must be most singular.

These hurried notes are all that I could make. I was homeward bound,
and obliged to travel all night to Marburg. So I did what a pilgrim to
the shrine of S. Elizabeth of Hungary ought, I suppose, not to have
done--I slept as the train passed Eisenach, and neglected therefore,
even to get a glance through the starlight of the castle on the
Wartburg, her residence and the scene of most of the beautiful story of
her life.

It was early morning when Marburg was reached. Under high hills,
covered with vine and picturesque in their outline, stands the noble
church, conspicuous as one first sees it by its two completed and
nearly similar towers and spires rising in all the beauty of their
deep-coloured stonework against the green hillside which rises so
precipitously close behind them. On the summit of the hill are the
tall walls of the fine old castle, and to the left of the church and
below the castle the town covers the hillside with the ramifications
of its old steep and narrow streets. The church is perhaps rather too
much outside the town for the use of the townspeople; but then it was
not built for them, and in the general view it certainly gains much by
being placed where it is.

And now, before I say anything about the church, two or three dates,
which seem to be settled beyond dispute, may as well be mentioned.

S. Elizabeth of Hungary was born, then, in the year 1207, was married
when but fifteen years old, and ere she was twenty left a widow, her
husband having laid down his life in the third Crusade: three years and
a half of widowed life were all she saw before an early grave received
her; and from thence forward year after year saw fresh fervour excited
by the contemplation of her virtues, and fresh enthusiasm awakened
about the old city of Marburg, in which the last years of her life had
been spent in the practice of austerity and self-denial such as the
world has seldom seen. She was canonized in A.D. 1235; and in the same
year the church as we now see it was commenced, and completed by about
A.D. 1283.

More I need not say; for the life of her whose memory gave rise to
this grand architectural effort is foreign to my present purpose, and
moreover is too well known to need repetition.

Judging by the evidence of style--which is not however very strong,
as the whole work has been completed carefully upon a uniform plan--I
should say that the work commenced at the east, and was continued on
westward, so that the west front, with its two towers and spires, was
the latest portion of the work. I am inclined to think, too, that the
sacristy, a large building of two stories in height, filling the angle
between the north transept and the northern side of the choir, is an
addition to the original fabric, but probably earlier than the steeples.

The plan shows a very regular cruciform church, the choir and transepts
all having apsidal ends, a large sacristy, and two western steeples;
the whole very regular and similar in character throughout.

The exterior of the church is perhaps, with the exception of its west
front, more curious than really beautiful. Throughout its whole extent
every bay is similar, and consists of two stages, the upper an exact
repetition of the one below, each lighted with a simple two-light
window with a circle in the head, and divided by a great projecting
cornice, the top of which is on a level with the bottom of the upper
windows. The nave and aisles are all groined at one height without
triforium or clerestory; and the outer walls are, therefore, the full
height of the groining of the nave. Now this endless repetition of the
same windows in a manner so apparently unnecessary was at first most
perplexing to me, inconsistent as it seemed with the delicate taste
exhibited elsewhere by the architect; but I was not long perplexed.
The cornice between the windows was, in fact, a passage-way extending
all round the church in front of the windows and, by openings, through
all the buttresses: whilst in front of the lower windows a similar
passage, not corbelled out, but formed by a thinning of the wall from
this point upwards, again encircles the church. The sacristy is the
only portion of the building not so treated. The church has not and
never had cloister, chapter-house, or any of the ordinary domestic
buildings of a religious house, attached to it; it stood on a new piece
of ground, away from houses, and with an open thoroughfare all round,
and all this helps in the solution of its singular arrangements. We
have but to recall to mind that the relics of S. Elizabeth were visited
by more pilgrims for some two or three centuries than any other shrine
almost all Europe could boast of, to see the difficulty accounted for.
It was built from the first to be a pilgrimage church, and carefully
planned with an especial view to this. No doubt it was a great shrine,
round which thousands of pilgrims congregated in the open air, to watch
as processions passed with the relics they came from so far to see,
passing by these ingeniously contrived passages round the entire church
again and again, seen by all, but unencumbered by the pressure of the

The whole arrangement is so curious that I have dwelt at some length
upon it, feeling that it certainly shows well how boldly a thirteenth
century architect ventured to depart from precedent when he found a new
want to be provided for, and when a before unthought of necessity had
arisen. I need hardly say, that the effect of the corbelled-out passage
is to divide the height distinctly into two parts, a division perhaps
more difficult of satisfactory treatment than any other that one can
imagine. The only variety in the tracery of the windows throughout
the body of the church is, that the centre window of each apse has a
sexfoil in the circle in its head, none of the other windows having any
cusping whatever. The moulding of the windows is very simple,--a very
bold roll and chamfer; and it is noticeable that in the tracery the
roll-moulding does not mitre with the same moulding in the arch, but is
just separated from it, an ungraceful peculiarity; the roll-moulding
of the tracery is treated as a shaft in the monial and jambs, and has
corbelled bases, the effect of which is not at all good. The buttresses
run up to the eaves, but finish abruptly without pinnacles, nor is
there any parapet. It seems probable that something must have been
intended, but possibly never done; and I confess I should shrink from
venturing now upon the introduction of either pinnacles or parapet,
and I cannot but trust that in the extensive repairs now in progress,
restorations of this conjectural kind will not be attempted. Better,
in such a case, let well alone, rather than run the risk of destroying
everything by some monstrous mistakes!

The west front is quite a thing to be considered apart from the rest of
the church, later in character, and the work, I am inclined to think,
of another man, who did not only this but all, or nearly all, the
magnificent fittings of the interior. The first man worked under the
trammels of a transitional style, endeavouring after yet not achieving
the beauties which the second man was able, in all that he did at a
more advanced day, so completely to realize.

The west door at once fixes one’s attention. It is very lovely: the
jamb perhaps too plain, and lacking mouldings between its shafts,
but the arch absolutely perfect; it has two rows of the freshest and
brightest stone foliage ever seen, and the tympanum--diapered over one
half with a trailing rose, and on the other with a vine, both creeping
naturally upwards with exquisite curve and undulation, regular in their
irregularity,--is certainly of a degree of exquisite and simple beauty
such as I have never seen surpassed. In the midst of this bower stands
a fine figure of S. Mary with our Lord in her arms, and on either
side an angel censing. As one looks at the carving, one thinks of the
prettiest perhaps of all the legends of S. Elizabeth, and it may be
that the sculptor, as he struck out the bold and beautiful work, which
even now surprises by its beauty and its sharpness, thought of those
roses of paradise with which S. Elizabeth in the legend surprised her
doubting husband.

Above this doorway a pierced parapet carries a passage in front of the
fine and thoroughly geometrical west window of six lights. Another
parapet, and then a row of traceries and canopies which mask the roof
gable. On either side the great buttresses of the steeples give an air
of solidity and plainness to the whole elevation, which I think very
satisfactory. A two-light window on the same level as the great west
window, and very long narrow belfry windows, also of two lights, are
the only openings in the towers. The buttresses finish with pinnacles,
and the towers with pierced parapets, above which, on the cardinal
sides, are gables with windows, and at their summit an octangular open
parapet, from which the spires then rise without further break or
ornament. The composition is unusual and very good.

Besides these western steeples there is a turret of poor and modern
character over the intersection of the transept and other roofs.

And now let us enter, and we shall find ourselves in what seems like
a very lantern; windows everywhere, tier above tier, and admitting a
flood of light which is bearable only when--as happily still in the
choir--all the windows are filled with the richest stained glass.

The architectural peculiarities of the exterior are as marked
but not as intelligible in the interior; and one cannot cease to
regret the effect of the reiteration of the same window everywhere:
otherwise, however, the interior is full of beauty; the nave piers
very simple--large circles with four engaged shafts--very lofty and
with finely carved capitals. The transept piers are clustered, and the
groining throughout is very simple, but of exquisite proportions.

And now I must go on to describe the fittings and arrangements of
this interior, which are so perfect as to make it, perhaps, the most
interesting and complete church in Germany.

The choir extends to the western side of the transepts, and is finished
towards the nave with a high stone screen, against the western side of
which is a large people’s altar. The screen is traceried and panelled
over its whole western surface, and surmounted by a delicate open
arcade finished with pinnacles and gablets; the portion over the altar
being elaborated so as to form a reredos rather than a screen. The only
openings in this screen are a row of small windows (as one may almost
call them), opening just above the backs of the stalls, which in the
choir are continued not only on the north and south sides, but quite
across the west side also. The only entrance to the choir, therefore,
is on either side from the transepts to the east of the stalls. On
the eastern face of the screen, a kind of large ambon is corbelled
forward in the centre, just the width of the people’s altar; and above
this rose--I say “rose,” for when I was there, it was lying on the
floor, as a first step to “restoration,” which may not, I trust, mean
“destruction,”--a grand trefoiled arch of timber, covered with very
boldly carved natural foliage, and flanked by two massive pinnacles.
All trace of the figures is gone, but there can be no doubt that this
arch and the pinnacles bore on their summits the Crucifix with the
figures of S. Mary and S. John; and, indeed, the marks of their having
once been affixed still remain.

In the choir there is a double row of stalls round three sides, the
subsellae having low original desks in front of them. These are perfect
all round, and, as I need hardly say, valuable for their rarity. The
stalls are finely treated, and the upper row is well raised. The effect
of the whole is most singular and very new to an English eye, for
though, as I had occasion to show at Naumburg, and as I saw elsewhere
in the same part of Germany, stalls against the centre of the eastern
side of a screen are not uncommon, I have nowhere else seen such a
complete shutting-off of the choir from the church as has from the very
first existed here. There is a space between the back of the stalls and
the rood-screen, in which probably an entrance was originally contrived
to the ambo under the rood, though of this no trace now remains.

There are no parcloses between the choir and the transepts, whilst
between the latter and the aisles of the nave there are only rude and
modern screens, without any trace of the original arrangement.

And now that we are in the choir, the most noticeable feature is the
altar with its reredos, and its great standard candles on either
side.[79] The reredos is elaborately decorated with colour, and
consists of three very fine trefoiled arches with crocketed gables
above, and elaborate and lofty pinnacles between them. The spaces
within the three arches are much recessed, and ornamented at the back
with sculpture of figures in niches, and tracery; the whole very full
of delicate taste in its execution. The altar is perfectly plain and
solid, with a moulded mensa, and footpace of three steps in front
and at the ends. It stands, of course, on the chord of the apse. The
arrangement at the back of the reredos is most singular: there are
two lockers on either side, and in the centre a doorway, which when
opened discloses steps leading down to the space under, and enclosed
by, the altar. In this space there are five square recesses below the
level of the floor: three on the west side, and one at each end; the
dimensions of this chamber are 8 ft. by 3 ft. 6 in., and 7 ft. 3 in. to
the under side of the mensa of the altar; the recesses in it are 1 ft.
8¾ in. wide by 1 ft. 7 in. deep. But one of the most singular features
in it is, that there were evidently originally sliding shutters in
front of each of the three recessed niches which form the front of the
reredos. These are all gone, but the grooves remain both above and
below, and leave not a shadow of doubt as to their former existence.
There are two grooves in front of each division, and of course there
are corresponding openings in the mensa of the altar. The arrangement
is so new to me, that it is difficult to say exactly for what specific
purpose it may have been made; but it seems obvious that it might allow
of great variety of decoration or illustration of subjects suited
to the varying seasons of the Christian year, supposing the sliding
shutters to have been decorated with paintings.

To the south of the altar are oak sedilia--a long seat undivided, but
with five canopies above: the work all good, but defective in not
having its divisions marked through the whole height.

The windows in the choir are, as I have before observed, full of fine
stained glass, some of which is of very early character. The lower tier
of windows is filled with subjects in medallions, the upper with two
rows of figures and canopies--a satisfactory and common arrangement in
old work.

Some old lockers in the walls, and banners suspended round the apse,
serve to complete a most striking and long-to-be-remembered _tout

Unfortunately there are no signs of any ancient pavement, unless we
take for old the wretched gravestones of the Landgraves of Hesse
and their family, which almost cover the floor. They are effigies
of recumbent figures in not very low relief, but partly sunk below
the proper level of the floor and partly raised. One stumbles over
these wretched man-traps at every step, and wishes heartily that such
a device for damaging ankles had never been invented. In the south
transept there are a number of high tombs with recumbent effigies,
beginning with one of early date and fine character.

The north transept, however, contains something better than these
monuments, and one of the greatest curiosities of the church--the
chapel, as they call it, of S. Elizabeth. It never had an altar, and
was not a chapel, but simply a very beautiful kind of tabernacle,
within which was deposited the marvellously beautiful shrine in which
were preserved the relics of the saint, and which--now removed to the
sacristy--is still the great treasure of the church. The relics were
all dispersed, I believe, at the time of the Reformation, though the
church is still held by the Catholics. This tabernacle, if I may so
call it, is a rectangular erection, narrow at the east and west, and
with its principal front towards the south. A trefoiled arch on each
face, supported upon clusters of shafts at the four angles, forms the
design, the arches inclosed within a square projecting moulding, with
their spandrels not carved but bearing marks of painting. The great
beauty of the work is the exquisite foliage which is carved in such
masses all round the arches and elsewhere as quite to take the place of
mouldings. All this foliage is natural, much varied, and undercut with
such boldness as to stand out in very great relief. I would that every
carver in England could have the opportunity to study this exquisite
work, and still more, the sense to profit by it. All the openings are
filled in with iron grilles; and the whole is just large enough to
contain and protect the shrine. It stands upon double steps, which are
prolonged to form a footpace for an altar which has been built against
its west side, and which, on the south, are worn into hollows by the
knees of pilgrims.

Above the stone work is an open wooden railing, apparently of the same
date; and this incloses a space which is reached by a staircase from
behind. In the reredos of the altar erected against the shrine are
some sculptures from the life of the saint, her death, her burial,
and the exaltation of her relics after canonization, etc., whilst on
the shutters are paintings representing some of the more remarkable
subjects in her story.

The shrine has been removed for safety to the sacristy, and is
carefully guarded and fenced about with ironwork, as well it may be.
It is an exquisite work of the best period--_circa_ 1280–1300--covered
with the most delicate work in silver-gilt and adorned profusely with
jewels and enamels, and on the whole I think the finest shrine I have
ever seen.

The doors in the sacristy and elsewhere throughout the church are of
deal, and were originally covered with linen or leather, which as
far as I could make out was always coloured a bright red; it is a
most curious evidence of the extent to which colour was introduced
everywhere, and must have been most effective. It is not, however, the
only instance with which I have met; and I may mention the magnificent
north transept doors of the cathedral at Halberstadt as examples of the
same thing.

Between the north transept and the sacristy is a passage, which leads
to the external passages which I have already described as surrounding
the whole exterior of the church.

My notice of Marburg has already extended far beyond what I purposed,
though not beyond its deserts; and yet I cannot conclude without saying
a few words about the castle, which so grandly towers over the old
tower and church.

The climb up to it is really a serious business; and when I reached the
summit I had to exhibit no little adroitness in passing a sentinel who
obstinately wanted to send me back, in order that I might ascend by
some more tortuous and more legal path than I had chosen.

I went first into the chapel. This is raised to a considerable height
upon other buildings, and approached by a newel staircase. It is a very
curious and very satisfactory little building, its entire length 39
ft., and its width 18 ft. 6 in. There is a three-sided apse at either
end, and one bay only between them; this central bay has projections on
either side, which inside have the effect of very small transepts, and
externally are treated as bay windows. The windows are all geometrical,
of two lights, and very good detail. Externally, there are buttresses
at the angles of the apse, which rise out of the much thicker walls of
the rooms below the chapel, and do not go down to the ground. In the
eastern apse there are a piscina and a locker. The old pavement still
remains; it is all of red tile, arranged in large circles, with tiles
generally triangular in shape and of various sizes. Unfortunately, this
little chapel is full of galleries and pews.

From hence I ascended to the Ritter-Saal, a fine large groined hall,
somewhat like the well known hall in the Stadt-Haus at Aix-la-Chapelle.
It is divided by a row of columns down the centre, from which the
groining-ribs spring, and is about 100 feet long by 42 feet wide.
Each bay has a very fine four-light transomed window, and the whole
is of early date. Below it, on the ground floor, is a smaller hall,
the groining of which springs from a central shaft, and the windows
in which are of three and five transomed lights, and of very early

The interest of both these halls is very great, as they are quite
untouched, and of a rare date for domestic work on such a scale.
The exterior of this portion of the buildings is very fine, boldly
buttressed, with great angle turrets, and occupying just the edge of
the cliff.

The castle stands upon a narrow prong of hill, very precipitous on
three sides, and all around its base the town clusters; on one side
is the grand church of S. Elizabeth, looking most admirable in this
capital bird’s-eye view, and on the other a long flight of steps
leads to a church which from above looks very well, but which did
not repay examination, its only interesting feature being an old

I walked back from the castle by a roundabout path all through the old
town, and reached my inn too late to get on to Frankfort by the train I
had fixed on; but I was not sorry, as I had an excuse for getting some
more sketches of the exterior of the cathedral, and had all the more
pleasant thoughts wherewith to solace myself as I travelled through the
dark night to Frankfort.

I think I have said enough to show that ecclesiologists may depend
upon pleasure of no ordinary kind in visiting such churches as those
of Naumburg, Erfurt, and Marburg. They are remarkable, not only for
their generally fine character, but more especially for their exquisite
sculpture and for the extent to which they have preserved almost
untouched and undamaged their extraordinarily beautiful furniture and
fittings; and are, therefore, of especial value to us, who have so
little of the same kind of thing left in our own churches.



In the course of the autumn of last year, I spent a short holiday,
not unprofitably, I hope, in the examination of some of the old towns
in the north of Germany; and, as the interest of the architectural
remains in this district is very great, and our acquaintance with
them too slight, I cannot help thinking that a mere transcript of my
diary during the time that I was examining them may be of some use
and interest. I have already printed notices, drawn up from the same
journal, of the churches of Lübeck, and the cathedral at Marburg; and
I shall now employ myself in giving shorter descriptions of the other
chief features of this journey.

Crossing by Calais, and taking hurried glances only at S. Omer, with
its noble cathedral, and the fine relic of the abbey of S. Bertin,
remarkable among great French churches for its _single_ western tower,
I went on to Lille,--a town whose interest to architects just now is
rather in the future than in the past, but whose church of S. Maurice
is a striking example of the difference in the conception of a town
church on the Continent and in this country in the Middle Ages. It
has two aisles on each side of the nave and choir, and is groined
throughout. Here we should look on such a church almost in the light of
a cathedral; there, on the contrary, it is a not very remarkable parish
church. Some old brick work at the back of the Hotel de Ville is the
only other old feature which I remember in Lille; but its streets and
market-place are busy and picturesque.

From Lille, passing by Courtrai, I reached Ypres in time to spend
the afternoon in sketching and studying what is perhaps the noblest
example of the domestic work of Germany. Les Halles, as this great
pile of building is called, seems to have been a great covered mart,
rather than a mere town hall; and when I was there, a fair was being
held within its walls, and, filled with picturesque groups of people,
and stalls for the sale of every conceivable kind of merchandise, the
grandeur of its size and design was well seen. The main portion of the
building is of uniform early middle-pointed date, and forms an immense
and rather irregular parallelogram, enclosing some long and narrow
courts. The principal front towards the market place is, by a rough
measurement which I made, about 375 feet in length; very uniform in
its design, but broken in the centre by a fine lofty engaged tower,
surmounted with a spire, finishing in a sort of louvre, of modern
character. The whole effect of the building is inconceivably grand,
leaving behind it in point of general effect even (I am bold in saying
it) the Ducal Palace at Venice. In elevation the main building is
divided into three stages. The ground stage consists of a succession
of openings with square heads, trefoiled; the next of a long series
of two-light windows with quatrefoils in the head, the openings in
which are square, the tracery not being pierced; and the third stage
has again an immense succession of traceried openings alternately
glazed and blank. The whole is surmounted by a lofty traceried parapet
corbelled out, and the steep and original timber roof is surmounted
with a ridge-crest of stone, of more delicate character than I have
ever seen elsewhere. The front is finished at the angles with immense
octangular pinnacles, corbelling out at their base from the wall,
and the tower, which rises two stages above the ridge of the roof,
has also at its angles similar pinnacles. The general _motif_ of the
entire front is continued happily in the steeple, the faces of which
are occupied with rows of lofty windows of two lights. From the belfry,
and from within another corbelled parapet, springs the spire, which, at
first square, becomes, below the tourelle on its summit, an octagon.

Immediately behind Les Halles, stands the cathedral. This has a fine
western tower, built _circa_ A.D. 1380, and remarkable for the triple
buttresses at its angles. The west door is double, and set within an
enclosing arch with the west window, in a common German fashion. The
interior is lofty and spacious, with cylindrical shafts, whose capitals
have simple foliage of the thirteenth century. The triforium is good,
and some of the clerestory (e.g. that in the south transept) is also
early and good; but the whole church is not by any means of the first
order. The south transept has recently been very creditably restored,
the new carving being executed with much spirit. The east end is
remarkable externally for its tall buttresses, without weatherings, and
for the deep arches under which the windows are set, and which give
the building too much of a skeleton effect to be pleasing. A rather
graceful turret (of Renaissance character) surmounts the crossing.

The cathedral and Les Halles, though close together, are not absolutely
parallel, but the combination of the two buildings, with their towers
and turrets, and two other towers, is very good, and gives an imposing
effect to the general views of the old city.

It is to be observed, that though in Les Halles the pointed arch
and the very best window-tracery are everywhere used, there is no
possibility of mistaking it for a church, or even for a religious

There are many old houses in the town, generally of the sixteenth
century, with stepped gables, and four-centred window-heads with carved
tympana; but their effect generally is not satisfactory.

Between Ypres and Courtrai (whither I next journeyed) are some large
churches, of which that at Comines would, I think, repay examination.
Courtrai has not much to call for remark; though its market place is
quaint, picturesque, and irregularly grouped, with a clock-tower,
turreted at the angles and with a spire-like capping, rising suddenly
out from among its houses, out of whose windows sound forth constantly
those cheery chimes which give so much colour to the recollection of
all the towns in this chime-loving part of the world. At the back of
the market place a fine middle-pointed church tower rises, capped with
a most picturesque slated tourelle. The church to which it is attached
is the largest in Courtrai, but not remarkable. It has an apsidal
projecting chapel in the second bay from the west, noticeable in that
the axis of the apse is north and south. The other churches are of
little value, and much mutilated. Notre Dame has a western tower, and a
chapel added on the south side of the choir which has pinnacles, and a
bell-turret on the gable, of very good character.

Perhaps the most interesting building in the town is the town hall.
It is of late date, and the tracery of the windows, and the figures
which once adorned the front between the windows, are all destroyed.
The doors are original, and an old staircase with panelled sides, and
partly old metal balustrade, leads to the hall on the first floor.
This has a fine simple open roof of timber, with double collar-beams
and arched braces: this, I fear, is no longer visible, as, when I was
there, workmen were just about to begin the erection of a ceiling under
it, to make the room fit for the reception of the King of the Belgians.
In two side rooms there are very remarkable fireplaces, one of which
is well known by Haghe’s drawing. The finer of the two is adorned with
a profusion of sculptures representing the Vices and Virtues and very
striking in their treatment.

From Courtrai, a short journey by railway brought me to Tournai--a
town not, I think, so well known as it ought to be for its magnificent
cathedral--doubtless the finest, by very far, in Belgium. The nave
and transepts are Romanesque. In the former, there is that quadruple
division in height so frequent in the thirteenth century churches in
the neighbouring part of France. The transepts are very noble, and
ended with grand apses, and both they and the choir are very much
more lofty than the nave. They owe much of their grandeur to the
number of detached shafts of great size, and to the fact that the
aisle, triforium, and clerestory, are all carried round the apses.
The choir is all of the thirteenth century, and very lofty and light
in its proportions. The windows are being carefully restored; but
some bad stained glass has been recently put up. In the sacristy there
is a little old plate, of which I may mention a fine monstrance, and
two shrines; one of which, of the thirteenth century, is one of the
most exquisite I have ever seen, being adorned with a great deal of
enamelling and silversmith’s work, of most delicate character. There is
also here a fine cope-chest; but I found only one old vestment,--the
orphrey of a chasuble, with figures of saints; date about A.D. 1450;
the rest were modern, and generally very tawdry. But they possess here,
in addition to these vestments, an altar frontal, of great interest;
it is embroidered on a white silk ground, with a tree of Jesse: the
figures are well executed in high relief, and the effect of the whole,
with the stiff conventional arms of the tree encircling the figures, is
very striking. The embroidery is executed in the same way as our old
English work; but I never saw any figures worked with so much spirit or
so much character in their faces. The old fringe of red silk over gold
thread remains.

The external view of the cathedral presents one of the most singular,
and, at the same time, most grand assemblages of steeples I have ever
seen. There are two tall towers, richly arcaded and capped with square
slated spires, to each transept, and over the crossing a much lower
though larger lantern also capped with a spire. These five spires are
well seen from the market place, and with a tall campanile at its upper
end, of the thirteenth century, combine in a very grand group. I should
have mentioned that the central spire is octagonal with four square
slated turrets at the angles. The east end of the cathedral deserves
notice; its scale is great, and its flying buttresses and detail
generally very good. Chapels are formed between the buttresses and
roofed with gables running back to the aisle walls.

The Maison de Ville was formerly a convent and still retains a few old
portions built up in the more modern additions.

In the market place is a small church, the entrance to which is at
the east, and the altar at the west end. Over the east door are two
triplets, quite first-pointed in their character. There are round
turrets at the west angles and to the transepts, and a picturesque
slated spire over the crossing; the whole is groined, and reminded me
of the style of the transepts of the cathedral, though it is not very

Another church on the way to the railway station has an eastern
apse, and a tower and slated spire over the crossing. The nave has
a continuous clerestory, with two or three windows in each bay; the
effect of which is satisfactory. Across the nave, one bay west of the
choir, there is an arch with a kind of triforium gallery across it,
pierced on each side, and serving apparently for a passage-way only. It
is not continued up to the groining.


Nearer the railway there is another large church with a continuous
clerestory and large unfinished-looking tower at the south-west angle.

There are some other churches, but not, I think, of great interest.
This, however, is amply afforded by the magnificent cathedral towering
so grandly over the town, whose only defect in the distant view is the
low height of the nave as compared with the choir and transepts.

A sluggish train took me in five or six hours to Namur to sleep, and
thence early the next morning by a strikingly beautiful line of railway
along the banks of the Meuse; and passing by the picturesque old town
of Huy, with its fine church and castle, I found my way to Liège.

The churches here are really too often visited and too well known to
require any description from me. I think the little church of S. Croix,
with its gabled aisles (the gables running back into the main roof),
pleased me as much as anything; it is just the kind of special town
church which we want to see more in fashion in our own large towns,
adapting itself boldly to every variation in the boundary of the land
on which it is built, and giving a very considerable effect of height
without extravagant expense.

The metal font in the church of S. Bartholomew is a very admirable work
of art, and most interesting in every way.

In the cathedral is a new pulpit, by Geefs, much praised in guide
books, but not a favourable specimen of his powers, I trust.

S. Jacques, S. Martin, and other churches in Liège are remarkable for
the richness of their internal polychromatic decorations. They are
all, however, of very late date, quite Renaissance in their design and
colouring, and very tawdry in effect and in detail. The east end of S.
Jacques is, however, very impressive owing to the rich colour of the
glass in the windows, which carries the decoration down from the roof
to the floor, whilst elsewhere, the roof only being painted, and the
whole of the walls left in the coldest white, the effect is heavy and
unsatisfactory. We have, in short, here a good practical proof--worth
a thousand arguments--that colour to be successful must be generally
diffused and not confined to one part of a building.

From Liège to Aix-la-Chapelle, of which too I shall say but little.
The choir of the cathedral, which had been entirely despoiled of its
tracery, is being gradually and well restored. It is both a noble and a
very peculiar church, and perhaps the best view of it is to be obtained
from the staircase in the old Rathhaus. How striking is the immense
height of the choir as compared to its length, and how thoroughly
fine and picturesque is the kind of dome, surrounded at its base with
gables, which crowns the polygonal nave.

No one who visits Aix should omit to see the treasures in the sacristy
of the cathedral. I have never seen anywhere so fine a gathering of
mediaeval goldsmith’s work, and a little study of these old remains
would immensely improve the work of the few men who are attempting to
revive the old glory of their craft.

The Rathhaus contains in its upper stage a fine large groined hall,
called the Kaiser-Saal, divided down the centre by columns and arches;
it is approached by a good groined staircase, and is now being restored
and decorated in fresco, by a Düsseldorf artist, with subjects from the
life of Charlemagne.

Near the cathedral is a valuable remnant of good domestic work; it has
windows with plate tracery, and above them a row of niches or arcading,
the divisions of the arcade being filled in with figures of kings
in a very effective manner. It reminded me of the famous Maison des
Musiciens, at Rheims.

At Aix I was too near Cologne to omit the pleasure of spending another
day among its crowd of architectural treasures, and so, instead of
going to Düsseldorf direct, I gave myself a holyday, and renewed all my
old recollections of its many glories.

I cannot think that the new works at the cathedral are so satisfactory
as they are generally said to be. When I was there the scaffolding had
just been removed from the south transept, and the effect was very far
from good; there was a degree of poverty in the execution which is not
felt in the old work; it looks thin, “liney” and attenuated, and makes
me doubt very much, first, whether it is a fair reproduction of the old
design; and next, whether the following out of an old design drawn to a
small scale is possible without very great powers of designing. So much
depends upon detail.

I believe that the building in Cologne which above all others ought
most to be studied, is that wonderful church of S. Gereon, the interior
of which is so fine, and so unlike what we ever think of doing in our
new work. Its nave consists of an irregular decagon, entered from a
western narthex, and surrounded by chapels, from the east of which
runs a long and spacious choir, approached by a great flight of steps.
This nave is about 65 feet from east to west, and slightly more from
north to south; forming a very grand unbroken area, all within easy
reach of any one voice, and, from its height and rich character, very
impressive. The choir is of considerable length, and raised on a crypt.
A large modern altar placed on the steps leading to it from the nave,
completely conceals it in the general view, and much mars the whole

The filth of the church when I was there was extreme, and the noble
crypt which extends under the whole length of the choir was thoroughly
desecrated. I noticed an original altar in a side chapel in the crypt,
used as a receptacle for candle-ends! The sacristy of S. Gereon is a
noble middle-pointed addition, fitted with old presses, and with some
very beautiful glass in the windows. This, in the tracery, is very
light in colour, spotted with ruby.

Next in grandeur, perhaps, to this church, is the east end of S.
Martin’s. Seen from the street below the east end, its great height,
and the combination of the apsidal transepts and choir with the fine
central steeple produce very great effect. It is worthy of notice, how
completely similar all these apsidal terminations are in Cologne, and
how like those of the same date in the north of Italy. The apses here,
for instance, are almost exactly like that of the choir of S. Maria
Maggiore at Bergamo.

Cologne is rich in metal-work and early stalls. In S. Cunibert is a
fine brass standard for lights, with a crucifix; in the choirs of S.
Pantaleon and S. Andrew, some good thirteenth century stalls; S. Gereon
has also some old candlesticks, and some woodwork worth notice, as also
have some of the other churches.

Perhaps the best example of later work in the city is the fine church
of the Minorites, a good fourteenth century building, with a lofty and
elegant lead turret rising out of the centre of the roof.

I found in several of the Cologne churches services in the morning,
attended exclusively by children. They had no seats, but a succession
of boards, with small kneeling-stools at regular intervals, were
provided for them. The singing was uncommonly good and hearty, and
after one of the services (at S. Maria in Capitolio), I asked the
children about it, and they told me that they went every day before
school. I looked at some of their school-books, and found that they
had a rather full Scripture history abridgment; and among other books
one full of songs and hymns, which seemed to be particularly good
and spirited--hearty, merry songs, which would be sure to take with
children. We should do well if we could have such a service and such
books for our English children.

There was an exhibition of early German pictures of considerable
interest in the old hall called the Gurzenich. I found that it was
organized by a Christian Art Society, which has a large number of
members, and seems to be very actively at work. In the great hall of
the Gurzenich is a magnificent fire-place, of late middle-pointed
date, and much like the Courtrai fire-place in general idea; there
are some very spirited figures in armour in its niches. This building
is well known on the exterior by its general ancient character, and
particularly by the lead canopies over the figures in its lowest stage.

But Cologne is too well known to make any more of my notes (which might
be extended to tenfold length) palatable; and I shall, therefore, hurry
on to what is, I believe, newer ground to most ecclesiologists than
are its time-honoured and well known buildings.

From Deutz (the bridge to which place from Cologne affords the best
general view of the city) a few hours of railway took me to Hamm, and
thence by a branch I reached Münster. The country here is cheerful and
English-looking; though rather flat, it is woody and well cultivated,
and thickly populated,--at least, so I gathered by the multitude of
passengers who swarmed at every station, all in blue smocks, and all
smoking vehemently.

The churches and domestic buildings at Münster are almost equally
interesting. Of the latter, the Rathhaus is the most remarkable. It
is very elaborate and beautiful in all its details, but (like most
of the house-fronts here) boasts of a regular show front. The ground
stage consists of four open arches; the next, of four richly-traceried
windows, divided by figures in niches, carved with great spirit; and
above this is an immense stepped gable-end, divided into seven panels
in width, and rising to about twice the height of the real roof. It is
pinnacled, and filled with open traceries, which, being pierced above
the roof, show the sky through their openings. The lower part of the
building is of the best middle-pointed, but in the gable some of the
tracery is ogee and poor.

This front was followed in Münster throughout the rest of the Middle
Ages, as also by the Renaissance school, so that the whole town is
full of arcaded streets, like an Italian town, and all the houses have
more or less exaggerated fronts, stepped and pinnacled high above the
roof-line. The _tout ensemble_ of such a town, it may be imagined, is
picturesque in the extreme, though not so valuable as at first sight
it seems likely to prove to the architectural traveller. The endless
repetition of the same--and that a bad--idea, is very tiresome, and so,
beautiful as is the Rathhaus in some of its detail, and striking as it
certainly is in its general effect, I have not forgiven it as being the
first example with which I am acquainted of a long series of barbarisms.

The only old apartment in this building, so far as I could discover, is
a room called the Frieden-Saal. It is a low council-chamber, of late
date, which has been most elaborately restored, and renovated with much
rich colour. There are some very good hinges and locks on a series of
closets here.

Of the churches, there are some five or six old, besides some modern.
The cathedral is very curious. Its plan shows two western towers,
then a transept; a nave of two (!) very wide bays; transept again;
and an apsidal choir, with several apsidal chapels round its aisle.
The internal effect of the nave is singular. It is very simple, but
from the great width of the bays rather bold-looking. The most notable
things here are,--a very noble brass font; a brass corona in the
choir; a stand for eleven candles, also in the choir; a magnificent
stone rood-screen of late date; a very good _Sakraments-Häuslein_, and
some niches for relics, etc., with their old doors; another stand for
lights, something like that at S. Cunibert, Cologne; and some stalls of
the seventeenth century, founded very closely upon mediaeval examples.
The brass font is circular, supported upon five lions, the two eastern
of which are standing, the others recumbent. The stem is covered with
tracery and moulding, and the bowl has five large quatrefoiled circles,
the eastern containing the Baptism of our Lord, and the other four the
emblems of the four Evangelists, with scrolls and inscriptions in red
letters; above them, a trefoiled arcade contains half-figures of the
twelve Apostles. The corona is large, containing fifty candles in one
row; but it is of late date, and frittered away in elaborate tracery
and crocketing. The rood-screen has two doorways--one on each side of
an altar in the centre of its west front. This altar still remains,
with a sculpture of the Crucifixion at its back, but is not used now,
a modern altar having been put up in front of it. Two very light open
staircases on the eastern side of the screen lead to the Gospel and
Epistle sides of the loft. There is also a very fine and large crucifix
against one of the nave piers.

The main entrance to the cathedral is through a sort of Galilee of
Romanesque date adorned with a number of fine statues; this is at
the south-west of the church, whilst on its north side are some fair
middle-pointed cloisters.

Next to the cathedral in importance is the Oberwasser-Kirche, a late
middle-pointed building; it has a large south-west tower very much of
the same type as the great tower at Ypres, having four windows of two
lights in each stage, and four stages all exactly alike, and above them
an octagonal belfry stage of later date. The first example of this
kind of design is seen in the four belfry windows of the cathedral at
Soest, and still more remarkably in the steeple of Paderborn cathedral,
but here it is developed into even greater regularity. This design,
however, is poor in kind, and only respectable when characterized as
at Soest and Paderborn by massive simplicity. The south door of the
Oberwasser-Kirche is good, being double with square openings within
an arched head. Internally the church is very lofty and light, but of
no great length, and has an eastern apse, and some traces of old wall
painting. A very good brass water vat hung from a small crane by the
north door and served as a stoup for holy water; this is a common plan
in the Münster churches.[80]

This church was being scraped of paint and whitewash; so also in the
cathedral they were removing some trumpery work of the last century,
and indeed generally in this district a good deal is being done to the
finer churches, and in most of them a box is provided for offerings for
the restoration of the fabric: in most, I should say, which are not
“evangelical”:--for in these, save where the government is repairing
the stone work, they seem to be satisfied to put up pews and galleries,
to keep the doors well locked, and to make their interiors look as
cold, miserable, and repulsive as possible. Happily, however, the
“evangelical” church is not very actively mischievous in architectural
matters, and so one sees altars and reredoses still standing with
candles and crucifixes, and curtains of white muslin or silk on each
side, sometimes, as in the Petri-Kirche at Soest, double, first, on
each side of the altar, and then the same height as the altar, and
coming forward the full width of the footpace![81] In the old altars,
there are always arrangements for closets--generally at one end--whilst
in the middle of the back of the altar is often an opening, which I
fancied might have been made for the reception of relics, but which
seldom seems carefully enough fastened; the ends of the super-altars
have also, very frequently, closets; generally speaking, the altars in
this district are solid masses of masonry with a projecting and moulded
mensa. This, however, is a digression, and I must now say somewhat of
the Lamberti-Kirche, which is next to the cathedral the best church
in Münster. Externally it has a western tower[82] of considerable
dimensions dwarfed in appearance by the immense size of the roof
which covers both nave and aisles; this is a not uncommon arrangement
in this district, and has a parallel, as will be remembered, in the
noble choir of S. Laurence at Nuremberg. Its main result is the great
internal effect of height in the aisles and the opportunity it affords
of obtaining what Germans were so fond of--an immense length of window
opening. The entrance to S. Lambert on the south side is by a very
beautiful doorway; the doorway itself is not very large but its jamb
mould runs up to a great height and encloses a fine sculptured tree
of Jesse; the branches of the tree form a series of medallions, in
each of which is a half figure; the whole is very rich in its effect,
and the sculpture quite exquisite. Internally the only remarkable
piece of furniture I noted was a very fine rood. The proportions and
arrangements of the church are very similar to those of the famous
Wiesen-Kirche, at Soest, which I shall have presently to describe, and
mainly noticeable for the great effect of unbroken space, owing to the
large span and great height of the arches, and the small number of
piers supporting the roof.

Two other churches near this afforded little worth notice. One of
them was Protestant, and as a consequence, was elaborately pewed
and galleried; it was seven or eight bays in length, and groined
throughout, and entered by a good double door. The other was very
similar, and had a curious kind of narthex under the western tower.

The Ludgeri-Kirche is of more interest, having a fine octagonal belfry
of late date; this was undergoing repair, as was also the church, whose
nave is of simple Romanesque with a good middle-pointed apse. There
is another church of small size with an eastern apse, and a very low
gabled tower at the north-west angle. This is near the railway station.

For two things besides her domestic buildings Münster is certainly to
be remembered: these are the brass work and the sculpture; the latter
is generally remarkably good, and I think I have seldom seen more
spirited figures than I saw there.

In a silversmith’s shop, opposite the Lamberti-Kirche, I found a
magnificent old monstrance, of the fourteenth century, and of very
elaborate detail; it belonged to a church some miles distant, the name
of which I have forgotten; this man was making church plate in very
fair fashion, copying old examples with some care and with a good deal
of feeling and enthusiasm; I need hardly say that such men are as rare
on the Continent as they are here.

From Münster I returned to Hamm, and thence by another branch railway
to Soest, travelling through a country without any feature by which to
remember it save its interminable rows of poplars.

The first view of Soest from the railway is striking; several steeples,
of which that of the cathedral is the grandest, stand up well behind a
bank of trees, and a great extent of picturesque and half-ruined old
town walls.

The town itself is very curious, much more like some large Swiss
village, such as one remembers in the Upper Valais or the Hasli-Thal,
than any other cathedral town that I know in northern Europe. The
streets are all absurdly irregular, bending and twisting about in
every possible direction, and full of half-timbered houses, which
are all corbelled forward and seem generally to be very ancient. I
think, indeed, that I have never seen more picturesque grouping of old
buildings, but it is difficult to imagine how they can have preserved
their old character so intact; there is absolutely, I believe, not one
shop with a shop front or display of its wares of any kind, and hardly
more than one modernized house, and this is a smart little inn with a
nice garden, and a large Speise-Saal whose walls were literally covered
with English prints, many of them old and very good. The population of
the place consists nevertheless of some seven or eight thousand persons.

The churches have some very remarkable features, of which the most
singular is a kind of narthex at the west end, not forming part of the
fabric, but built within the churches, the main groining extending on
over it to the west end, and a large gallery being formed above it.
The best example of this is in S. Peter’s, and I shall leave, for the
present, a detailed description of it.

The cathedral is a great, rude, desolate-looking church with but few
remains of any interest, save at the west end, out of the centre
of which rises a fine simple Romanesque steeple. This has five
single-light windows in the stage above the roof, and four three-light
windows above them. Then above this belfry stage is on each face a
steep gable, filled in with openings of varied shapes--on one side,
a large circular window, with three other small openings, and on
another side three large windows of three lights, and a very small
circular window. These gables are not the full width of the tower, and
from the angles between them rise four tall and massive pinnacles,
slightly ornamented with corbel tables under the eaves, and covered
with steep pyramidal metal roofs. The spire is of metal, octagonal in
section,--the angles of the octagon springing from the apices of the
four gables, and from the internal angles of the four pinnacles. The
size and solidity of this remarkable tower give great grandeur to it,
and whilst in the treatment of its lower part we see the type of so
many of the towers of later date in this district, in that of the spire
we see the precursor of those noble spires rising from simple gabled
towers which are the glory of Lüneburg and Lübeck.

In addition to an internal narthex, the cathedral has, in front of
its tower, another groined sort of passage-way, opening to the west
with six arches, and to the north and south with one arch. There is a
second stage above these arches, and then from behind this mass rises
the steeple. The whole of this part of the building is Romanesque,
as, indeed, is the substance of the entire church though it has been
much mutilated by modern additions and alterations. The interior is
painfully neglected and dirty, though it is, I believe, the only
Catholic church in the place. The eastern apse has upon its groining
some painting, which seems to be ancient and very good, having figures
of saints etc., on a large scale, but it is very much hidden by an
odious modern reredos. There is a good wooden crucifix against one of
the piers, and some fine very early glass in the transepts windows.
Early in the morning, when I went again into the cathedral I found it
full of people singing well and very heartily.

The church of S. Peter stands close to the cathedral; and its choir and
aisles, ending with three apses and steep slated roofs, its windows
filled with middle-pointed traceries, with the old steeple at the west
end capped with a modern bulbous spire, group very picturesquely with
the stern and grand steeple of the cathedral. In plan it consists of
a nave and aisles, of four primary bays (each bay being subdivided
by two arches opening into the aisles), transepts, choir and apsidal
choir-aisles, opening into the transepts. The two western bays of the
nave are again subdivided into three divisions north and south, and
four divisions east and west; all this space being groined over at
a low level, and having a floor above, forming a gallery level with
the triforium, which also is large and spacious. The internal effect
of this low, dark entrance-way is most peculiar. In S. Peter’s, its
length from east to west is nearly 46 feet--just half the whole length
of the nave! The architecture of the church generally is not otherwise
very interesting; though the east end is good, and has some fragments
of fair glass still remaining. I have already mentioned the curious
arrangement of the curtains on each side of the Lutheran altar here.

S. Paul’s is another church of precisely the same type. It has a good
western steeple, with a very steep square roof, or rather, I should
say, a low spire. The stages of the tower are repetitions of each
other. Both this church and S. Peter’s are disfigured by a wonderful
accumulation of pews and galleries; there is still, however, in the
sacristy, a very good press, of three divisions in width and two in

I come, last, to the Wiesen-Kirche, a most remarkable building, of
whose history, I am sorry to say, I know absolutely nothing. It
appears, however, to have been all erected at one period--in the first
half of the fourteenth century,--and its scale is so fine, and its
character throughout so good, that it is certainly one of the most
noticeable churches in the north of Germany. Moreover, in internal
effect, I think I know no church of the same size which can vie with it
for exquisite grace and elegance and, at the same time, boldness and
grandeur of conception.

The plan may be described as a nave and aisles, of only three bays in
length, about 76 feet in width, and 100 feet in length; the nave and
aisles each terminating in an apse at the east, whilst at the west
end there is an unfinished front, which seems to have been intended
to have two towers. It is difficult to conceive how such a west front
could ever have been suitable for a building which was in no other
respect more than a mere chapel. It was never, however, at all nearly
completed; and now a tall slated spire finishes one of the stunted
towers in a fashion which is picturesque in the distant view, but
very unsatisfactory when seen close at hand. The nave and aisles are
covered with one great roof, and groined at the same level. The four
nave columns are very lofty, and without any capitals; the mouldings
being continuous to the groining; there being no more than four points
of support in a square of about 76 by 120 feet, it may be imagined that
from every point the whole interior is visible. The windows are of
immense height, but judiciously treated, as in the clerestory windows
at Cologne, by the arrangement of colour in the glass; besides which,
a kind of transom of quatrefoils runs through all the windows at about
one-fourth of the whole height. Below this transom, the glass is very
rich and dark in colour; above the transom, for about half its height,
there are figures under canopies, also dark with colour, and then a
long sweep of beautiful grisaille runs up to the head of the windows,
the patterns being all geometrical, and defined by delicate lines
of colour: the whole is very jewelly and brilliant, and fortunately
a good deal remains. This is, indeed, just one of those buildings
which depends very much for its proper effect upon all its windows
being filled with coloured glass. All the old altars remain, though
the church is Protestant. There is one in each apse, and one against
the west side of the two easternmost of the nave columns. All the
altars have closets in their ends, and the one against the south-east
column of the nave has a portion of a very good middle-pointed stone
reredos and is itself richly panelled below the mensa. Behind another
altar in the north-eastern apse, there is the remnant of a very fine
middle-pointed rood of wood, which is now nailed up behind a late
triptych. There is a very good early _Sakraments-Häuslein_ in the
north wall, and a good locker in the south wall of the principal apse,
both with old iron doors. On two side altars in the nave, there have
been erected some very fine pieces of late tabernacle-work. They have
been brought from elsewhere; and I saw no place in the church from
which they can have been taken. Another similar piece of stone work
has been set up in the midst of the choir, and a door pierced through
it leads into a pulpit, which grows out of and rests on the Lutheran
altar! The north and south doorways are very fine; the latter having
a window above it within the same arch, in the common German fashion.
The whole church has an open parapet and lofty buttresses, with rather
small pinnacles. The view from the east is certainly very striking;
and though the idea is completely that of a chapel, rather than of a
more ambitious church, it is certainly one of the finest chapels of its
size that I have ever seen. The whole building is being restored at
the expense of the King of Prussia, and at, I should think, very great
cost, as it had suffered much from decay.



Some apology is necessary for venturing to attempt to grapple with so
large a subject as is that of pointed architecture in Germany. My only
excuse for making such an attempt must be the vivid recollection of the
journeys I have at different times made in that country, and the desire
to help cordially in explaining to those who have still the journey
before them, the features which characterize its architecture.

I have unfortunately been unable to hear what Mr. Parker has told you
of pointed architecture in France; but no doubt he has dilated with
sufficient enthusiasm upon the exquisite art there seen, upon the skill
in the disposition of the ground plans--never equalled elsewhere--upon
the beauty and vigour of the sculpture, and upon the nervous manliness
and at the same time delicacy of the art in nearly all the buildings
of the best period, at least in the old Île-de-France, in Picardy,
and in Normandy. I grieve to say that I shall be able to give no such
commendation to German architecture, and that, delightful as the
recollections of what I have seen there are, I cannot nevertheless shut
my eyes to the fact that in most respects it is entirely inferior to
the development of the same style in France and England.

There are at the same time some peculiarities in the dates of old
German work which are rather striking in comparison with English and
French works.

You have, then, first of all, a few buildings, such as the convent at
Lörsch, which are said to be and perhaps are of Roman design. Then
next there is an immense group of churches of which those of Cologne
and the Rhineland are the most distinguished examples, which, whilst
it is entirely unlike anything in the rest of northern Europe, has a
most remarkable affinity to the Lombard churches in the north of Italy,
at Pavia, Bergamo, and elsewhere. These churches date from the early
part or the middle of the twelfth century and continue with but little
alteration of importance down to the end of the thirteenth, when the
strange spectacle is seen of a style almost completely Romanesque in
its character suddenly supplanted by another style which, so far as I
can see, in no way grew out of it, and which is distinguished from the
first by peculiarities of a most marked kind, and by the perfect and
complete form which it at once assumed. Then after this style, which
again in its turn retained its hold longer than our styles ever did,
and which to a late period is altered only slightly in its detail,
you will find another essentially German style answering in point of
date to our later third-pointed and to French flamboyant. The Germans
have therefore less natural growth to show in their architecture
than we have. Instead of our beautiful gradations from Romanesque to
third-pointed in which the germ of each development is to be discovered
in the antecedent work, you have there a series of breaks or gaps in
the chain which it is very difficult to account for, and which make the
study of the style highly interesting, and at the same time somewhat

The question seems naturally to arise whether each of these new styles,
thus wanting in evidence of natural growth one out of the other, is to
be looked at as a German invention in the true sense of the word, or
as the result of the sudden conversion of a slow and sluggish people
to the beauties of foreign work, and then their resolute and hearty
earnestness in the attempt to make the style their own by some infusion
of national peculiarities.

I incline to this last opinion because I believe that no style was ever
invented. Architecture has always grown gradually and systematically,
and it is quite possible to imagine that Germany may have refused to
follow the lead of France and England in art until their superiority
was so great as to make it an absolute matter of necessity, and that
then an attempt would be made to give a national character to what they
had in the first place borrowed.

A slight comparison of dates of a few buildings will explain my grounds
for speaking as I do of German architecture.

Of the Rhine churches the most remarkable are the work of the
thirteenth century. S. Gereon at Cologne was commenced A.D. 1200 and
vaulted in A.D. 1227. S. Cunibert was in building from A.D. 1205 to
A.D. 1248, when it was consecrated. Naumburg has a nave of A.D. 1200.
Limburg is early in the thirteenth century; and Bamberg the same;
whilst Gelnhausen was in building from A.D. 1250 to A.D. 1370. Now
all these churches are of such a character that were we to see them
in France we should at once put them down as the work of the end of
the twelfth century, and we should look for another class to fill up
the period between A.D. 1200 and A.D. 1270, when Cologne was commenced
or the nave of Strasburg completed. You will see how important these
dates are when you consider that at the same time that S. Gereon and
S. Cunibert at Cologne, the choir of Magdeburg, and Gelnhausen, were
being built, Amiens cathedral, S. Denis and other churches of the same
kind were rising throughout France, whilst in England Westminster and
a host of other churches of late first-pointed were built at the same
time. I do not mean to say absolutely that no transitional buildings
are to be found, but only that they were of extraordinary rarity and do
not afford the same evidence of natural growth that our own do.

Of work really similar to our own first-pointed I can hardly give you
more than one example, and that at Lübeck in the north porch of the
cathedral, where--to say the least--the paternity of the work may well
be doubtful. Of a later style and almost unique in its character,
is the fine church of S. Elizabeth, at Marburg, a church whose date
is well known (A.D. 1235 to A.D. 1283), and which affords us one of
the few German examples of a style intermediate between the work at
S. Gereon and that of Cologne cathedral. This will be seen by the
sketches[83] which I have here, in which, however, it is to be observed
that the design of the nave and apsidal terminations of the choir and
transepts are the early portions of the work, and that the fittings and
west front date nearer the end of the century. In the still beautiful
reredos I think we may see the traces of an incipient departure from
the style of the earlier work, and an approach to identity with what I
must consider as the inferior art of the thorough German Gothic, as it
is seen in its perfection in the cathedral at Cologne.

The aisles of the nave of Magdeburg cathedral seem also to me to be
vastly superior to any other German work of the date that I know,
whilst the western rood-screen and some of the details of the western
choir at Naumburg are also of a degree of beauty which it would be very
difficult to surpass elsewhere. The aisles of Paderborn cathedral, too,
are of a peculiar but exceedingly good character. But these are, as I
think, only exceptions which serve to prove the rule, and cannot in
any degree be taken as evidence of the same kind of growth and gradual
development that we trace with so much interest in every church and
building of the Middle Ages in England. It was an architecture of fits
and starts and conceits, not of growth, and full therefore of the
contradictions and eccentricities which such a condition necessarily
involves. And now having so far paved the way by a short statement of
what is really the great peculiarity of German architecture, I will go
on to consider and describe the several varieties of the style rather
more in detail.

And first of all, as to the ground-plan. It is a curious fact, that
each national style of pointed architecture has been distinguished by
its adherence to some peculiarity of ground-plan, as well as by other
distinctive features. In England, we all know how great was the love
for the square east end, and how strong the desire to extend the length
of the nave to a sometimes almost unreasonable extent. In France, you
know how steadily the apsidal termination was adhered to, and how
completely it was the rule to have an aisle and chapels round the apse,
making, in some of the finer French churches, an approach to absolute
perfection of effect. You know, too, how very rare the square east end
was in France, and yet how equally rare was any but a square end to the
transepts. In Italy, again, there are peculiarities. Either you have
immense halls, wide and long beyond all other examples, and borrowed,
no doubt, from the ancient basilica; or apsidal churches, in which the
aisles do not extend round the apse, and a series of apsidal chapels
are sometimes added to the east of the transepts.

In Germany, as I shall show, we have an equally distinct class of
ground-plans. The apsidal termination, though most general, does not
altogether supplant the square end; but it is remarkable, that unlike
the beautiful chevets of the French churches, the German apses are
rarely surrounded with aisles or chapels. They are either simply
apsidal, or parallel triapsidal, or transverse triapsidal, and the
main difference between early and late examples, is to be found in
the introduction of that angularity which gradually became the great
feature of all German work. The early apsidal terminations were all
circular: as, for instance, in the Apostles’ church, at Cologne; whilst
in Marburg, and later, in the little chapel of S. Werner, at Bacharach,
though the transverse triapsidal plan is identical in other respects,
it differs in that the apses are polygonal, instead of circular. At
Bonn, the eastern apse is circular, the transeptal apse polygonal; and
you may always take this as one of the certain evidences of later date,
in works which may otherwise very nearly correspond.

Of parallel triapsidal churches, the church at Laach, and S. James at
Ratisbon, are early examples; whilst Ratisbon cathedral, S. Catherine,
Lübeck, the Marien-Kirche at Muhlhausen, and the Wiesen-Kirche at
Soest, are examples of the same plan angularized at a later day. And
you should note, that this parallel triapsidal plan is by far the most
common of German plans in all ages, and is, moreover, one of which
scarcely any examples exist out of Germany.[84]

Sometimes, as in S. Nicholas, Lemgo, whilst the choir is apsidal,
the east end of the aisles is square; but this is a rather rare and
very bad plan. In all these varieties of arrangement, there is no
comparison for a minute with the beauty of the French chevet; but it
is right to observe, that there are some examples of imitation of this
better type.

One of the earliest and most interesting, is the church of S. Godehard,
at Hildesheim, in which we have the aisle round the apse, with three
apsidal chapels, as well as apsidal chapels east of the transepts.
This plan was imitated in the grand parish church of S. James, also
at Hildesheim, at a much later date. The apse of Magdeburg cathedral
is very much like that of S. Godehard, but of rather later date, and
remarkable for the profusion of dogtooth in its cornices. In both,
it is to be observed that the small chapels round the apse are mere
excrescences, and finish with stone roofs below the parapet of the
aisle. The Marien-Kirche at Lübeck is a later example of a chevet,
whilst at Cologne cathedral, in emulation of Amiens, a plan of the
best kind was adopted, and again wrought out on a smaller scale at
Altenberg. There can be little doubt that it was not only in emulation
but also in imitation of a French church, that this plan was designed.
Scarcely another German church is at all like it, whereas its plan was
the common one in France. In the Marien-Kirche at Lübeck, where there
is an aisle round the apse, it is formed in the most clumsy manner,
by enlarging the chapels; whilst S. Giles, at Brunswick, illustrates
another and unsuccessful plan, viz., an apse, with the surrounding
aisle, but no chapels.

I believe one of the reasons for this difference between French and
German plans is to be found in the very remarkable objection which the
Germans always exhibited to any departure from correct orientation of
any of their altars. In the French chevet, it is impossible to attend
to this; and hence, in a country where the feeling was strong on the
point, it would be felt to be an unsuitable form. I believe that it was
so felt in England, where, to the present day, the prejudice in favour
of strict orientation is stronger than in any other country in Europe.

In Germany, we have most remarkable evidence of the feeling. At
Magdeburg, for example, the altars in the apse of the cathedral are
all placed with their fronts facing due west, and cutting, therefore,
in the strangest way across all the main architectural lines of the
building. It was for this reason that the parallel triapsidal plan was
so popular.

But there is another most curious arrangement of plan, to which I
must refer; that, namely, of which Laach, Bamberg, Worms, Mayence, S.
Sebald, Nuremberg, and Naumburg, are remarkable examples, in which both
east and west ends have apsidal choirs. The object of these western
choirs is not very intelligible; but in that at Naumburg, we have most
curious evidence of what I have before referred to: for the original
altar in the western apse faces west, and has its back, therefore,
towards the nave, so that the face of the priest at the altar would be
seen by the congregation in the nave.

I ought to have observed, in speaking of some examples of apses with
aisles, that even in these, the treatment was essentially German.
The two churches at Nuremberg are examples which, as the aisles are
of the same height as the choir, and the whole roofed over with one
immense roof, present the appearance on the exterior of immense apses
without aisles. And certainly there is great grandeur of effect in
such a termination, though less structural truth, and less internal
variety and beauty. Still, they are admirable departures from ordinary
rules. The churches at Münster, S. Stephen at Vienna, Munich cathedral,
Landshut, and the Wiesen-Kirche at Soest, are examples of the same kind
of design. They have a very fine effect of simple unbroken height, but
the absence of the triforium and clerestory is not forgiven, whilst the
plan helped to develop that German extravagance of proportion in the
length of the window monials which we so often have to deplore.

And here I must not forget to tell you of the cathedral at
Aix-la-Chapelle, and the church of S. Gereon, at Cologne, in which the
naves are circular and decagonal, of great size and grand effect, with
long choirs running out to the east.

In the earlier churches western transepts are also not uncommon, as at
S. Cunibert, S. Andrew, and S. Pantaleon at Cologne, S. Paul at Worms,
Mayence, and many other examples; whilst towers of small size were
commonly placed in the re-entering angles, between the nave, and choir,
and transepts, as well as over their intersections.

Lastly, there is a plan of common occurrence, especially among
smaller churches, in which the main building is a large and lofty
parallelogram, with a small apse tacked on at the end, without any
regard to proportion. There are two or three of these churches in
Nuremberg, and many elsewhere.

I have detained you for a long time on the subject of ground-plans,
but it is one of importance to the right understanding of any style of
church architecture, and it was not possible therefore to pass it over.

I will now ask you to consider, a little in detail, the characteristics
of the early German work. I do not intend to go thoroughly into the
question of pure Romanesque work, for which I have no time. I am
dealing with pointed architecture, and must confine myself as much as
possible to it only. We may take the early churches at Cologne, and
along the banks of the Rhine, as examples of the kind of work which
is perhaps the most interesting, and very thoroughly German in all
its characteristics. It was derived, as I have no doubt, from the
churches in Lombardy, with which it has very many features absolutely
identical. The churches at Pavia are beyond all question the prototypes
of those at Cologne; but it is to be observed that their scale is
smaller, and, their effect certainly not so fine.

S. Castor at Coblentz, at the end of the twelfth century, Andernach
a little later, Zinzig, S. Gereon and S. Cunibert, Cologne, at the
beginning of the thirteenth century, give us a fairly complete
evidence of the succession of styles. After these we have Limburg and
Gelnhausen, taking us on to the time at which the German complete
Gothic was in other places in full perfection.

In the early churches there are many features worthy of remark:--

First, the curiously early development of a kind of heavy cusping, of
which Worms, Zinzig, Boppart, Andernach, and S. Gereon at Cologne, are
good examples. It is essentially German, and I know nothing like it out
of the Rhine district.

Secondly, the treatment of the apsidal terminations is very remarkable.
S. Castor at Coblentz, e.g., at the end of the twelfth century, has
three stages in its apse, whereof that next the ground has a trefoiled
arcade, the next is pierced with round-headed windows, whilst under
the eaves is a recessed arcade and a cornice, which, in one form or
other, was almost the invariable finish of these early apses. Zinzig
has the same kind of apse, but it is polygonal, and each side is
gabled. The eaves-cornice has a row of square sunk panels below it; and
this singular feature we see reproduced very often, as at S. Gereon.
The apse at Andernach is nearly identical with that at Coblentz, as
also is that of Bonn. The fine cathedral at Worms has a very singular
arrangement. The apse is polygonal, with the eaves-cornice and ground
arcade as at Coblentz, but in the intermediate stage it has circular
windows, filled in with quatrefoils and sexfoils. The apse and steeple
of S. Martin, at Cologne, are extremely noble examples of these
portions of the early German churches. Generally speaking, these early
apsidal terminations are most remarkable for their similarity of
design, but their external effect is, nevertheless, always striking.

The third and chief feature of the early German churches is the
treatment of their steeples. They are square or octangular in plan,
without buttresses, arcaded or pierced with windows pretty regularly
all over their surface, and roofed in the most varied manner. You are
all, no doubt, familiar with some examples of these really striking
towers, and you will feel, I think, that in their whole composition
they generally look too much like turrets, and are often too uniform
in their height to be perfectly satisfactory. The towers were often
gabled, and had square spires rising from the points of the gables;
or, as in the fine example at Soest, they had octagonal spires. This
Soest example has great interest: it is the first perfect example,
so far as I know, of a long series of very remarkable steeples. At
Paderborn, indeed, there is no doubt that the tower had a spire; but it
is destroyed, and Soest is therefore the more interesting. At a later
date, this kind of steeple was reproduced at Lüneburg and Lübeck, in
the steeples which adorn their churches.

The variety of ornamental moulding is less, I think, in Germany than in
either England or France; but there are some fine examples of carving
in capitals and string-courses of early date at Naumburg and Magdeburg.

The groining of early German churches is generally simple. The
lanterns, where central, are covered in with a plain kind of domical
vault; and the apses have generally hemispherical groining, sometimes
marked with ribs. The vaulting is first of all plain waggon-vaulting,
then simple quadripartite, and sometimes--especially where (as is often
the case in Germany) one bay of the groining covers two bays of the
nave--it is sexpartite, and generally then very much raised in the

Doorways are almost invariably square-headed, under pointed arches. In
the north porch of Lübeck cathedral, as also at Andernach, and at S.
Cunibert, and again at S. Gereon, Cologne, is a very peculiar doorhead,
formed by two straight lines sloping to the centre at a very obtuse

The windows are generally of a very simple and rude kind. There was
no approach in their treatment to that delicacy which is such an
especial characteristic of our English first-pointed; and this mainly
because the science of mouldings was never worked out thoroughly by the
early German school. It is true that no school of architects has ever
rivalled the English in this particular; and one reason, perhaps, for
this is to be found in the resolute way in which foreigners resisted
any modification of the square abacus, whose only fault was, no doubt,
the limitation it imposed upon the outline of mouldings.

One other feature of these churches must not be forgotten, viz.,
the great size of their triforia. This was usual all over Europe in
Romanesque buildings; but in Germany in this, as in other things, the
early tradition was long adhered to, and you have nowhere else such
elaborate constructional galleries as theirs. Even in works of the
latest date they are found,--as, for instance, in the curious church
of S. Andrew, at Frankfort, where the outer aisles are galleried all
round with a triforium, the arches in front of which are about twice
the height of the main arches below them. The interior of Andernach
cathedral will explain how grand the treatment of this feature was in
the earliest buildings.

I trust I have said enough now to show you, at any rate, the general
characteristics of early German work. Its great marks of distinction
from French and English work are to be seen mainly in its planning, the
treatment and number of its towers and spires, and in the peculiarly
Italian character of its apsidal terminations; and, as I have said,
this style prevailed, with but little modification, up to the very
time at which the completely developed German middle-pointed made its

I suppose the characteristics of this later work must be known to most
of you. Cologne cathedral is in fact so completely an embodiment of
nearly all the essential features of the style, and is so well known to
most people that I suspect less description is required of it than of
any other foreign style. It has been often said--and that by no mean
authorities--that the German middle-pointed was identical with our own,
and indeed that this one style prevailed for a time all over Europe.
The theory would be pretty if it were true: the gradual working up
to the same point in various ways, and the gradual divergence of art
again in different directions, would certainly be a strong ground for
giving in our adhesion to this one perfect and universal style. But I
confess that though there is something of a _similarity_, I have not
been able to trace anything like an identity between German and French
and English work at any time. I am thankful for this because, with all
its beauty, the best German middle-pointed style is not a great style,
and has many and obvious defects. From the very first is conspicuous
that _love of lines_ which is so marked and so unpleasant a peculiarity
in German art, and that desire to play with geometrical figures--I know
not how else to express what I mean--which in time degenerated into
work as pitiful and contemptible as any of which mediaeval architects
were ever guilty.

I have here a large collection (which should have been larger had I
had time to select all the examples which I have scattered through my
sketch-books) of German window traceries, which will enable you to
judge whether I am too severe in my opinion of their demerits. And you
may observe, by the way, that whilst in the earlier styles we have
very many points for consideration in studying the characteristics of
the style, in this work there is a sacrifice of almost everything else
to the desire to introduce in every direction specimens of new and
ingenious combinations of tracery. The windows at Paderborn are some
of the finest and purest examples of early tracery. They are genuine
and noble examples, and quite free from any tinge of the faults of
later examples, and worthy of comparison with the best of our own early
traceries. The mouldings of these windows are simple, but composed
mainly of a succession of bold rolls, and so entirely free from any
_lininess_. In the cupola of S. Gereon at Cologne, and a little later
in its sacristy are also some good early traceries, whilst most of the
windows at Marburg are also examples of the same character. So too
are the traceries in one of the Brunswick west fronts, and in the apse
of the church of S. Giles in the same city. From these look to the
windows of S. Mary, Lemgo, and you have the commencement of the new
style, though these are fine windows, boldly and simply conceived and
carried out. Next to these come the marvellous series of traceries in
Minden cathedral; a series, I suppose, quite unmatched for variety, and
indeed, I must own, for a certain grandeur of effect, by those in any
church in Europe. You will be struck, I think, by the curious desire
for variety of arrangement which these traceries evidence. They are
a series of aisle windows, placed side by side in a cathedral church
of very modest pretensions. S. Martin in the same town has a great
variety of traceries of a later type--good examples of the kind of
tracery which henceforward is to be found for a long time predominant
throughout nearly the whole of Germany, in which, whilst one admires
and wonders at the ingenuity which has devised so many combinations
of spherical triangles and circles, one is tempted to think that
the men who excelled in this sort of work would have been admirably
fitted for designing children’s toys and puzzles, but had much better
have been kept away from church windows. Among the other sketches of
traceries, those from Ratisbon are of the best kind, whilst those
from the cloister at Constance (essentially German work) are almost
as interesting as the Paderborn examples in their ingenious variety
of form. They show too, occasionally, a tendency to ogee lines in
the tracery, which leads me to say a few words on the curious fact,
that whereas in England the ogee line was always seen in the later
middle-pointed work, this was by no means the case in Germany. The
tracery in the staircase to the Rathhaus at Ratisbon, though of late
date, is noticeable for the almost entire absence of any but pure
geometrical figures, but then these are thrown about in a confused and
irregular manner, and are entirely wanting in due subordination of
parts. When, however, the ogee line does show itself in German work, it
is always a certain evidence of debasement.

But to leave the question of traceries and to justify my denial of the
virtues of German pointed architecture, let me ask you to compare the
effect of French and German work side by side in some of these most
valuable evidences of facts which photography so liberally affords us.
You have here side by side a west door from Amiens and from Cologne;
and again here, some door-jamb sculpture from Amiens between similar
works from Strasburg. Now striking as these German examples are, do you
not see how entirely the Germans sacrifice all nobility and simplicity
of expression, all that we call repose, to the vain desire to arrest
attention by some tricky arrangement of a drapery and some quaint
speckiness or lininess of detail?

The German love of tracery is evidenced by the fondness for such spires
as that of Freiburg, which, striking as it is, is not altogether a
legitimate kind of thing, and is certainly inferior in its effect to
the much simpler spires of which we are so justly proud.

I can only say a few words as to the plans of German complete Gothic,
and this only to repeat what I have before said as to the extent to
which they contrived to build on the same plans as in earlier days. The
parallel and transverse triapsidal plans were as popular in Germany in
the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries as they were in the twelfth and
thirteenth, of which the little chapel in the castle at Marburg is a
curious example. It is apsidal at the east and west ends, and the bay
between has the window-splay so contrived as to make another apse north
and south. It was in detail more than in plan that the later architects

But I feel that time will not allow me to go into the features of the
style with more minuteness, or to do more than direct your attention
to the strange eccentricity which characterizes the last phase of
German Gothic, of which the design for the spire of Ulm (never carried
out) is one of the most curious examples. In the short time that still
remains to me, I would rather prefer to call your attention to the
local peculiarities which you will meet with in different districts of
this great country--a part of my subject which would, if I had time for
it, be of more value perhaps to those who are going to explore German
churches for themselves than any other.

I have said so much about the churches of Cologne and the Rhine, that
I need say no more than that they are very much a class by themselves.
You have there the best specimens of early churches; whilst in Cologne
cathedral, in Altenberg abbey, in the church of the Minorites at
Cologne--an admirable example--in the very interesting church at
Oberwesel, and in S. Werner at Bacharach, a church at Andernach, and
Frankfort cathedral, you have a series of examples within a short
distance of each other of the best complete German Gothic.

Then leaving this district and going in a north-easterly direction, you
will find a series of towns full of local peculiarities, quite unlike
those of the Rhine:--Münster, for instance, with its churches of great
height and without distinction between nave and aisles; or Soest, where
the beautiful Wiesen-Kirche affords one of the finest evidences of what
Germans could do in their palmiest days: whilst in the other churches
in the same little known city you would see examples of Romanesque of
the most grand kind in the remarkable steeple of the cathedral, and
of a very curious kind in the low groined entrances which support a
continuation of the triforia round the west end of the naves. In towns
like these, and Paderborn, Lemgo, Herford, Minden, and Hildesheim, you
will find a rich store of architectural matter; and then if you will
venture so far, you will find at Lüneburg, and Lübeck, and Ratzeburg,
abundant examples (as I have once before explained in this room) of
the German mode of building in brick developed in a group of churches
quite unlike any others in Germany, and most interesting in every point
of view. Then again there are those curious churches at Brunswick
and Halberstadt, Magdeburg and Burg, whose west fronts, contrived
apparently solely for the sake of obtaining space for the display of
immense window traceries, are so completely local and so thoroughly,
I suppose I may say, an invention! Here too you will see the churches
almost invariably with gabled aisles,--sometimes, as in the cathedral
at Lemgo, so gabled at the sides that one doubts which is the side and
which the end, and sometimes, as in a church at Brunswick, filled with
tracery and panelling of extreme beauty. Then again at Halberstadt,
Erfurt, Naumburg, and Marburg, you may see some of the most excellent
work in all Germany of the best period. And if you go further south, to
where Nuremberg takes you back in almost all externals to the sixteenth
century, or where Ratisbon to the thirteenth, you will find yourselves
again in the neighbourhood of brick churches, at Landshut and Munich:
and lastly at Freiburg you may see one of the very best of German
churches, eclipsed though it undoubtedly is by the unequalled (in
Germany) nave of the thoroughly German cathedral of Strasburg.

I can but give you a hurried list of names, but not without a warm
recommendation to you to go and see for yourselves how very much is to
be learnt in all these churches, not only in architectural matters, but
even much more in ecclesiological. Germany is the one part of Europe
in which the furniture of the Middle Ages still remains. There where
in Protestant Nuremberg every altar still stands with its white cloth,
and candles, and crucifix; where the great rood still hangs aloft in
the churches; where in one church, as at Brandenburg, one may see
some thirty or forty mediaeval vestments still hanging untouched in
their old presses; where you may see screens of every date, from early
Romanesque to the latest pointed; where coronae, and all kinds of metal
furniture and ancient work of a date far earlier than any other country
in Europe can show are still preserved; where, as in the choirs of
Halberstadt and Hildesheim, the old illuminated office books still rest
upon the old choir desk; where hangings of quaint and gorgeous patterns
still hang round the choirs, and where triptychs and carved retables
are so common that one forgets to take note of them;--there it is, I
say, that you must go if you would wish to study and to understand
fully the ecclesiology of the Middle Ages. It is indeed a country full
of the most wonderful interest to the ecclesiologist in all ways, and
I am anxious to say that though I have been asked by your committee to
give a second paper on Italian architecture, I feel very strongly that
I should be doing their work much better by telling you somewhat of all
those things to which I have just referred. In the first place, I have
said my say on Italy, and have nothing new to tell you; and secondly, I
have been obliged to avoid saying one word either on the furniture or
glass of German churches, or on the domestic architecture in which the
country is so rich,--and on all these points I should be only too glad
at some future day to give you some notes of what I have seen.


  Abbeville, 33.

  Abbot Odalric of Conques, 242.

  Abbot Peter de Wesencourt of S. Germer, 156.

  _Abécédaire_, 155, 158, 220.

  acanthus, 95.

  Aesthetic Movement, 13, 32.

  Agnolino of Orvieto, 94.

  Ainay, church of, 35, 39, 207, 228, 247;
    _v._ Lyon.

  Aix-la-Chapelle, 302, 307, 322.

  _Album Photographique de l’Archéologie Réligeuse_, 215, 223, 224.

  Alcalá, 43.

  Alençon, 33.

  All Saints, Clifton, 30.

  Alps, 36, 49, 65, 89.

  Altamira, Rafael, 48.

  Altenberg, 321, 327.

  Amalfi, 51, 53.

  American attitude, 32, 33.

  Amiens, 16, 32, 33, 129, 131, 151, 158, 163, 195, 206, 318, 321, 326.

  Ancona, 50.

  Andalusia, 42.

  Andernach, 175, 323, 324, 327.

  Angelico, Fra, 8, 9, 52.

  Angers, 134.

  Angevine type, 45, 128.

  Angoulême, 231, 236.

  Anjou, 128, 129.

  _Antiquité Expliquée, L’_, 223.

  Apengeter, Hans, of Lübeck, 277.

  Apennines, 76, 82, 86.

  apsidal choirs, 19, 89, 137, 176, 320, 325.

  Aragon, kings of, 42.

  Arbellot, Abbé, cited, 211.

  _Archæologia Cantiana_, 255.

  Archbishop Maurice of Rouen, 133, 135.

  architect, the same, at Ainay and Le Puy, 207 sqq.;
    Bayeux and Norrey, 123;
    Châlons-sur-Marne and Rouen, 193;
    Orcival and Issoire and Brioude, 240;
    Rouen and Genoa, 133;
    S. Germer and Paris, 156;
    S. Mary Stone, and Westminster, 255, 264, 267;
    Soissons and Noyon, 165.

  architects, mediaeval, 23, 32, 73, 131, 136, 149, 151, 293, 296, 297.

  architects, modern, 21, 26, 28, 40, 41, 54, 57, 100, 294, 303.

  architecture, the experience, 28, 29;
    growth slow, 318;
    regular, 40;
    height first requisite, 18, 142;
    mouldings the test, 99;
    sculpture, 99, 264.

  _Architecture Civile et Domestique_, 161, 184.

  Arezzo, 76, 80.

  Arles, 128.

  Arnold, Matthew, 8, 49.

  _Arts Somptuaires, Les_, 153.

  Arundel church, 158, 265.

  Assisi, 51, 76, 77 sqq., 224.

  Asti, 51, 65.

  Astorga, 44.

  Asturias, 42.

  Athens, 249.

  Auvergne, dates, 241;
    type, 39, 201, 211, 231 sqq., 238, 244.

  _Auvergne au Moyen Age, L’_, 205, 232.

  Auxerre, 34, 35, 249.

  Avranche, 124.

  Avila, 44, 45, 46.

  Aymard, M., cited, 215, 223, 224, 225, 226, 230.

  Bacharach, 320, 327.

  Baedecker, 37.

  Bamberg, 175, 318, 321.

  baptistery, 210, 272;
    at Cremona, 272;
    Pisa, 66, 272;
    Pistoja, 84;
    Siena, 72.

  Barcelona, 38, 43, 44.

  Bardonnecchia, 90.

  Barnstaple, 4.

  Basle, 277.

  Bayeux, 43, 122, 163.

  Bayonne, 43, 44.

  Beauvais, cathedral, 16, 17, 33, 131, 144, 150 sqq.;
    S. Étienne, 152 sq.;
    bishop’s palace, 153;
    Bishop F. de la Rochefoucauld, 152.

  Belgian towns, 34, 48, 303–307.

  Bell Scott, William, 57.

  Benavente, 40, 44.

  Bénévent, 231.

  Benevento, 50.

  Bergamo, 309, 317.

  Berlin, 48, 290.

  Bernese Oberland, 39, 48.

  Bertaux, Émile, 51.

  Bideford, 4.

  Bingen, John and Nicholas of, 222.

  Biscay, Bay of, 42.

  Biscovey, 6.

  Bishop Arnaud of Périgueux, 211.

  Bishop Burchard von Serken of Lübeck, 273.

  Bishop Evodius of Le Puy, 203.

  Bishop F. de la Rochefoucauld of Beauvais, 152.

  Bishop Garnier of Laon, 181.

  Bishop Gerald of Poitiers, 211.

  Bishop Gerold of Oldenburg, 272.

  Bishop Guy II of Le Puy, 228.

  Bishop Henry of Lübeck, 272.

  Bishop Henry Bockholt of Lübeck, 278.

  Bishop Hughes de la Tour of Clermont, 231.

  Bishop Jean de Bourbon of Le Puy, 214, 215.

  Bishop Johan von Mull of Lübeck, 273.

  Bishop Namacius of Clermont, 232.

  Bishop Peter of Le Puy, 220.

  Bishop Stephen II of Le Puy, 220.

  Bishop Théodulf of Orleans, 224.

  Bishop of Beauvais, 161.

  Bishop of Gibraltar, 96.

  Bishop of Oxford, 7, 23.

  _Boletin de la Sociedad Castellana de Excursiones_, 47.

  Bologna, 86;
    S. Petronio, 86 sq., 230;
    S. Francesco, 87.

  Bonn, 320, 323.

  Bonport, 138.

  Boppart, 323.

  Botticelli, 29.

  Bourges, cathedral, 137, 163, 176, 201, 212, 244;
    S. Pierre, 244.

  Bourgtheroulde, 118.

  Boyce, George, 57.

  Branche, Dominique, cited, 205, 232.

  Brandenburg, 285, 328.

  brasses, 6, 38, 274.

  Brenner, 51.

  Bretteville l’Orgueilleuse, 120.

  Breuzeville, 131.

  brick building, 30, 37, 38, 46, 72, 86, 270, 284, 285, 286, 328.

  _Brick and Marble in the Middle Ages_, 21, 27, 32, 34, 36, 46,
           49 sq., 88.

  Brioude, 39, 201, 212, 215, 231, 234, 235, 237, 238, 240, 247.

  Bristol cathedral, 27, 30.

  Brown, Madox, 57.

  Browning, Robert, 2, 52.

  Brunswick, 274, 283, 321, 326, 328.

  Buckinghamshire, 25.

  _Bulletin Archéologique_, 223.

  _Bulletin de la Société Archéologique et Historique du Limousin_, 211.

  _Bulletin Monumental_, 207, 220, 230.

  Burg, 327.

  Burgos, 43, 44, 118.

  Burgundian March, 34;
    style, 128.

  Burne-Jones, Edward, 13–18, 33, 57.

  Burne-Jones, Lady, 14, 17.

  Butler, Dr., 7.

  Butterfield, 15, 28.

  Byzantine influences, 84, 132, 135, 194, 202, 243, 245.

  Caen, 33, 119 sqq.;
    Abbaye aux Hommes, 246;
    S. Pierre, 119, 120, 121.

  Calvados, 16.

  Cambridgeshire, 5.

  campanile at Assisi, 80;
    Bologna, 87;
    Erfurt, 294;
    Florence, 82;
    Lucca, 70;
    Pistoja, 83;
    Siena, 72;
    Siena cathedral, 73;
    Susa, 64;
    Verona, 72.

  Carlisle, 54, 55.

  carvers, 132, 135, 168, 300–01.

  carvings, 186, 199, 303, 313, 317.

  Castile, 42.

  Castilian, 47.

  Catalonia, 30, 45, 47.

  Caudebec, 16.

  Caumont, de, cited, _Abécédaire_, 155, 158, 220;
    _Bulletin Monumental_, 207.

  Cavallini, 78.

  Chaise-Dieu, La, 251.

  Châlons-sur-Marne, Notre Dame, 134, 175, 188, 190;
    cathedral, 190, 194;
    S. Alpin, 195;
    the curé, 144, 191.

  Chalvour, 171.

  Chamallières, 220.

  Chambéry, 50, 63, 89.

  Champagne, style, 188.

  Champagne, village on the Oise, 144–5.

  Champenois, M., 191.

  Chantilly, 100, 149.

  Chartres, cathedral, 16, 19, 29, 33, 52, 114, 129, 130, 134, 163,
          176, 185, 195, 212, 244.

  Les Chases, S. Marie, 205, 227.

  Chauriat, 231.

  Chichester, 5, 281.

  Chinon, 220.

  _Christian Year, The_, 20, 31.

  Church of England, 1, 11, 21.

  Church of Rome, 11, 21.

  _Churches in Kent, Surrey, and Sussex, Some_, 268.

  _Churches in Northern Germany_, 270.

  _Churches of Lübeck, The_, 270.

  _Churches of Velay, The_, 39, 201.

  Cimabue, 78, 79.

  Cino da Pistoja, 83.

  Clermont-Ferrand, 39, 128, 201;
    cathedral, 231, 251;
    Notre-Dame-du-Port, 212, 217, 231, 233–242 _passim_, 245, 249;
    Bishop Hughes de la Tour, 231;
    Bishop Namacius, 232.

  Clifford, W. K., 49.

  Clovelly, 5.

  Cluny, 45, 231.

  Coblentz, 175, 323.

  Cock, Reimar, 278.

  Cologne, 34, 151, 308, sqq., 319, 322, 327;
    cathedral, 173, 197 sqq., 316, 321, 326, 327;
    SS. Apostles, 320;
    S. Cunibert, 309, 311, 318, 323;
    S. Gereon, 308, 318 sq., 323, 324, 325;
    S. Martin, 309, 323;
    S. Mary in the Capitol, 309;
    others, 322.

  Como, lake of, 36.

  Compiègne, 159;
    S. Antoine, 160;
    cloister, 159;
    Hôtel-Dieu, 161;
    Hôtel de Ville, 161.

  Compostela, Santiago de, 43, 44, 45.

  Compton, near Guildford, 278.

  Conques, 231, 242, 245;
    Abbot Odalric, 242.

  Constance, 33, 294, 326;
    lake of, 36.

  Constantinople, 30;
    Crimean Memorial, 22;
    S. Sophia, 243, 245;
    SS. Sergius and Bacchus, 247.

  Corneto, 94.

  Cornwall, 6, 79, 128, 268.

  Cortona, 75.

  Coruña, La, 44.

  Coucy-le-Château, 162, 171.

  de Coucy, Robert, 58, 184, 188.

  Coudray, 158.

  Courtrai, 303, 305 sqq.

  Coutances, 124, 163.

  Cram, R. A., cited, 28.

  Cremona, 38, 272, 284.

  Crépy, 107.

  Crimean Memorial, 22, 30.

  Cuddesden, 7, 21, 22.

  Cuenca, 42.

  Culoz, 62, 89.

  Dalmatia, 32.

  Dance of Death, 277.

  Dante, 3, 83.

  Devonshire, 128.

  _Dictionnaire de l’Architecture_, 174, 212, 231.

  Didron, cited, 229, 233.

  Dijon, 34, 88, 277.

  _Divine Comedy_, 3.

  domestic architecture, 105, 106, 107, 110, 119, 124, 138, 158, 170,
    Romanesque, 124, 153, 228;
    Gothic, 92, 96, 139, 153, 167, 170, 181, 186, 190, 230;
    north German, 281, 283, 294, 308, 310;
    _v._ also Gothic, domestic.

  Donatello, 52, 87.

  Dorat, 231.

  Douce, Francis, cited, 277.

  Dresden, 48.

  Dublin, 27.

  Duguesclin, 230.

  Durham, 5.

  East Grinstead, 22.

  East Meon, 160.

  Eastern influence, 212, 220, 223, 243, 247;
    course along the Rhone, 247;
    _v._ also Byzantine.

  _Ecclesiologist, The_, 32, 37, 38, 127, 268.

  Edinburgh, 54.

  Egypt, 58.

  Elizabeth of Hungary, S., 295.

  embroidery and vestments, 6, 8, 152, 220, 280, 306, 328–9.

  Emperor of the French restoring, 143, 145.

  Empoli, 91.

  Engadine, 48.

  England, 3, 10, 32, 42, 55.

  English, 1, 10, 11, 21, 32, 45, 54;
    influence, 128, 130, 136;
    stone, 30;
    work, 122.

  Enlart, Camille, 41.

  Ennezat, 230, 238.

  entasis at Pisa, 67;
    at Le Puy, 213.

  Erfurt, 292, 328;
    architects, 293;
    Barfüsser-Kirche, 292;
    cathedral, 293;
    Prediger-Kirche, 294;
    Stadt-Kirche, 292;
    S. Severus, 294;
    others, 295.

  _Erfurt and Marburg_, 292.

  de la Escosura, Patricio, 46.

  _España Artistica y Monumental_, 46.

  _Essai sur les Églises Romanes et Romano-Byzantines du département
          du Puy-de-Dôme_, 241.

  _Estoire de S. Eduard le Rey_, 204.

  Estella, 206.

  Estremadura, 42.

  Étampes, 244.

  Eunate, 229.

  Evreux, cathedral, 116;
    S. Taurin, 116.

  Exeter, 4, 12.

  Fergusson, J., cited, 245.

  Fiesole, 82.

  Florence, 51, 52, 82, 83, 276;
    Or S. Michele, 52, 83;
    S. Miniato, 84.

  Foggia, 50.

  Fontevrault, 231.

  Fonthill, 151.

  fonts, 84, 161, 274, 276, 277, 281, 310.

  Ford, Richard, 41.

  fortified churches, 215.

  Fountains Abbey, 32, 279.

  France, 3, 30;
    landscape and architecture, 88;
    Spain’s debt to, 47;
    Italy’s, 51;
    _v._ also Gothic, French, and painting, early French.

  Francia, 52.

  Francis of Assisi, S., 76.

  Franco-Prussian war, 21, 48, 120.

  Frankfort, 33, 324, 327.

  Freiburg, 33, 328.

  French towns, 33, 34, 39, 131;
    cathedrals, 163.

  Furka pass, 36.

  Galicia, 40, 42.

  Gassiecourt, 142.

  Gaulfredus, 220.

  Gelnhausen, 318, 323.

  Geneva, 89.

  Genoa, 65, 67, 76, 90, 91, 133 sq., 200, 220;
    English church, 30, 90.

  German Gothic, 174, 175, 190, 192, 196, 199, 200, 283, 326;
    influence, 128, 174, 182, 192, sqq., 195, 196;
    _v._ also Gothic, German; Painting, early German.

  _German Pointed Architecture_, 317.

  Germer, S., legend, 158.

  Gerona, 43.

  Gimbert, François, 225.

  Giotto, 52, 78, 83, 274.

  Giulianuova, 51.

  glass, early, 79, 94, 101, 109, 116, 139, 142, 152, 180, 195, 196,
          251, 276, 291, 293, 294, 298, 300, 309, 314, 315, 329.

  Glastonbury, 154.

  Gloucester, 55.

  Gothic, 46, 176;
    revival of, 1, 13, 28, 31, 248;
    study of, 6, 37, 244;
    lectures on, 27, 201, 317;
    power of, 3, 4, 23, 55;
    modern, 8, 13, 22, 54, 55.

  Gothic, domestic, 139, 183, 283, 303;
    at Aix, 308;
    at Beauvais, 153;
    in Belgium, 303 sqq.;
    at Erfurt, 294;
    at Genoa, 91;
    at Laon, 112;
    at Lisieux, 119;
    at Meaux, 115;
    at Montferrand, 251;
    at Münster, 310;
    at Pisa, 68;
    at Le Puy, 230;
    at Rheims, 190;
    at Siena, 68, 72;
    at Trèves, 197;
    at Ypres, 305.

  Gothic, English, 3, 21, 130, 131, 160, 255, 320, 324;
    styles, 45, 128;
    comparison with, 122, 128, 129, 159, 165.

  Gothic, French, 18, 21, 30, 32, 45, 47, 51, 79, 127, 176, 192, 244;
    styles, 39, 40, 128, 167, 231 sqq.;
    sources, 202, 244;
    in Italy, 77–8.

  Gothic, German, 32, 174, 190, 195 sq., 200, 270 sqq., 289, 292, 304,
          317, 319, 323;
    influence of, 128, 174, 175, 182, 194, 195;
    judgement on, 196, 199, 200, 317, 319.

  Gothic, Italian, 30, 32, 51, 66, 70, 72, 78, 91, 207, 309, 320;
    influence of, 131, 133, 175;
    characteristic plan, 207, 309;
    Lombard, 32, 275, 322.

  Gothic, Savoyard, 63, 65.

  Gothic, Spanish, 32, 37, 39, 40, 43, 46 sqq., 320;
    in Catalonia, 38, 45.

  Government restoring, 143, 145, 312, 316.

  Granson, on Lake of Neufchâtel, 245.

  Grauenfels, 36.

  Greece, 32.

  Gregorian music, 18, 119.

  Gregory of Tours, cited, 232.

  Grisons, the, 36.

  groining, 74, 130, 222.

  ground-plans, 130, 136, 195, 205, 207, 229, 230, 244, 309, 317,
          319, 327.

  Guadalajara, 44.

  _Guardian, The_, 129.

  Guercino, 52.

  Guido da Como, 84.

  Halberstadt, 278, 288, 301, 328.

  Hamburg, 33.

  Hambye, 124.

  Hanover, 48.

  Havre, 16.

  Heidelberg, 33.

  height an element of Gothic, 18, 142, 150, 197.

  _Heir of Redclyffe, The_, 13.

  Henry the Lion, 272.

  Herford, 328.

  Hesse, Synsingus, 283.

  Hewlett, Maurice, 45, 83.

  Higham Ferrers, 281.

  Hildesheim, 274, 278, 321, 328.

  _Histoire de l’Église Angélique de Notre Dame du Puy_, 228.

  _Historia de la Arquitectura Española Cristiana_, 41.

  Holland, Jessie, (Mrs. G. E. Street), 10, 53, 57, 88.

  Holmbury S. Mary, 28, 30, 55.

  Homer, 3.

  Howells, William Dean, 49.

  Hucher, M., cited, 220.

  Hueffer, Ford Madox, 57.

  Huelgas, Las, 45, 118.

  Huesca, 44.

  Hunt, Holman, 46, 57.

  Hutton, Edward, 45, 49.

  Huxley, Thomas, 23.

  Huy, 307.

  Iffley, 32.

  Île-de-France, 45, 128, 194, 317.

  _Iliad_, 3.

  Inchbold, J. W., 57.

  _Inland Voyage, An_, 39.

  l’Isle Adam, 144.

  Issoire, 201, 217, 231, 233, 235, 236, 237, 238, 240.

  Italian influence, 131, 133, 175, 230;
    arcades, 310;
    gables, 273;
    workman, 276.

  Italy, 22, 34, 38, 48, 49, 50, 51, 65, 80, 89, 176.

  Jaca, 42.

  Jean and Nicholas of Bingen, 222.

  Jervaulx, 5.

  Joanna the Mad, 46.

  Keats, John, 2.

  Keble, John, 13, 31.

  Kent, 255, 260, 268.

  Kneller, Sir Godfrey, 281.

  Laach, 197, 320, 321.

  Lagny, 113.

  Lake Country, 5.

  Landshut, 322, 328.

  Lanercost, 20, 52, 142.

  Lampérez y Romea, Vicente, 40 sqq., 48.

  Laon, 38, 108 sqq., 129, 131, 162, 163, 172 sqq., 186, 188;
    S. Martin, 112, 172, 182;
    Templars’ church, 183, 229;
    Bishop Garnier, 181.

  Latin-Byzantine style, 42.

  Lausanne, Anglican church, 30.

  Lavoulte-Chilhac, 220.

  Law Courts, London, 27, 46, 55.

  lay vocation, 2;
    fraternity, 12, 15.

  Lemgo, 320, 326, 328.

  Leon, 42, 44.

  Leonardo, 29.

  Lérida, 43, 44.

  Liberal Arts, 39, 216.

  Liège, 307.

  Lille, 21, 38, 112, 303.

  Limay, 142.

  Limburg, 318, 323.

  Limoges, 206, 211, 231, 248.

  Lincoln, 31, 129, 172, 189.

  Lincolnshire, 5.

  Lisieux, 118; S. Jacques, 119.

  Livi, Dominic, of Ghambasso, his son, 276.

  Lombard churches, in Italy, 317;
    on the Rhine, 275, 322.

  Lombardy, 32.

  London, 2, 5, 6, 17, 21, 24, 26, 27, 54, 67.

  Longpont, 162, 170.

  Lons-le-Bourg, 64, 90.

  Louis IX, S., 170, 206.

  Louis XI, 216, 217, 225.

  Louviers, 117.

  Lörsh, 317.

  Lübeck, 37, 38, 270, 286, 314, 319, 324;
    Burg-Kloster, 272, 276, 278, 280;
    cathedral, 272;
    S. Giles, 272, 281;
    S. James, 272, 281;
    S. Katharine, 272, 276, 278;
    S. Mary, 275, 321;
    S. Peter, 272, 281;
    Burg-Thor, 271, 272;
    Heiligen-Geist-Spital, 272, 281;
    Holsteiner-Thor, 271, 272, 284;
    Rathhaus, 283;
    Bishop Burchard von Serken, 273;
    Bishop Johann von Mull, 273;
    Bishop Henry, 272;
    Bishop Henry Bockholt, 278;
    Hans Apengeter, 277.

  Luca della Robbia, 85.

  Lucca, 69, 76;
    campanile, 70;
    cathedral 69;
    S. Giovanni, 71;
    S. Maria della Rosa, 71;
    S. Michele, 69.

  Lucera, 50.

  Lucerne, lake of, 36.

  Lugo, 44.

  Lüneburg, S. John, 276, 314, 324, 328.

  Luther, 275.

  Lynn, 274.

  Lyon, 201, 212;
    S. Martin d’Ainay, 207, 228, 247;
    Manécanterie, 228.

  Mâcon, 62, 88.

  Madrid, 43.

  Magdeburg, 318, 319, 321, 324, 328.

  Maggiore, lake, 36.

  Magione, 76.

  Mallay, M., cited, 218, 228, 239–41.

  Mancha, La, 42.

  Manresa, 44.

  Mans, Le, 220.

  Mantes, 131, 134, 137, 139 sqq., 147, 149.

  Mantua, 284.

  Marburg, S. Elizabeth, 38, 169, 296, 319, 320, 328;
    castle, 302, 327.

  masons, mediaeval, 32, 240.

  Mayence, 33, 321, 322.

  Meaux, 115, 131, 162, 163, 165.

  mediaeval architects, 32, 131, 136, 151, 293, 296, 297.

  mediaeval workmen, 58, 156, 220, 222, 225, 234, 240, 276, 277, 308.

  Memling, 274.

  _Memoir_ by A. E. Street, 6, 10, 24, 27, 30, 37, 50, 56, 57, 58.

  Menat, 215, 231.

  Merdogne, 228.

  Meredith, George, 49.

  Mérimée, Prosper, cited, 210, 212, 214, 222, 229, 232, 239.

  Merseburg, 287.

  Metz, 195;
    cathedral, 196;
    S. Vincent, 196;
    Templars’ church, 229.

  _Middle-Pointed Churches in Cornwall, On the_, 268.

  Minden, 277, 326, 328.

  Miranda, 44.

  _Modern Painters_, 36.

  Mohammedan, 42.

  Monestier, 220, 230.

  Monistrol, 39, 201, 230.

  Montéreau, Pierre de, 58, 156.

  Montfaucon, cited, 223.

  Montierender, 165.

  Montmajour, 229.

  Moorish, 42.

  Morris, William, 3, 13–17, 21, 31, 38, 57;
    first abroad, 16;
    work under G. E. S., 17.

  Moûtier, Le, near Thiers, 231.

  Moustier-neuf, Poitiers, 231, 242.

  Mozat, 231, 239.

  Mudejar, 42, 46.

  Muhlhausen, 320.

  Munich, 33, 48, 322, 328.

  Münster, 37, 274, 310, 312, 327;
    cathedral 310, Oberwasser-Kirche, 311;
    S. Lambert, 312;
    S. Lüdger, 313;
    Rathaus, 284, 310.

  _Münster and Soest_, 303.

  Murray, 34, 41, 49;
    guide, 91, 125.

  Mürren, 30.

  Naples, 53.

  Narbonne, 231.

  National Gallery, 46, 48, 54.

  Naumburg, 287 sqq., 299, 318, 319, 321, 324, 328.

  _Naumburg Cathedral_, 287.

  Navarre, 42, 206, 229.

  Neale, John Mason, 13.

  Nevers, 35, 39, 201, 231, 241, 242, 249.

  Newark, 274.

  Newman, 3.

  Norfolk, 5, 45, 128;
    middle-pointed, 45.

  Normandy, 38, 128, 130, 317.

  Norrey, 120, 121.

  Northampton, 5.

  North Mymms, 274.

  northern race, 1, 10.

  notebooks of G. E. S., 5, 20, 22, 32, 34, 38, 50, 53, 96.

  _Notes d’un Voyage en Auvergne_, 210, 214.

  _Notes of a Tour in Central Italy_, 59.

  _Notes on French Churches_, 97.

  Notre Dame de la Treille, 112.

  Notre Dame du Puy, 206.

  Noyon, 105, 109, 114, 131, 162, 163, 164 sqq.

  Nuremberg, 33, 270, 322, 328;
    S. Laurence, 273, 312;
    S. Sebald, 321.

  Odalric, Abbot of Conques, 242.

  Odo de Gissey, cited, 228.

  Oldenburg, Bishop Gerold of, 272.

  Orcagna, 66.

  Orcival, 231, 238, 240.

  Orders, Holy, 2.

  Order of Sir Galahad, 15.

  Orense, 42.

  Orleans, Théodulf, Bishop of, 224.

  Or S. Michele, 52, 83.

  Orvieto, 51, 73, 91, 92.

  Ourscamp, 162.

  Overbeck, 277, 281.

  Oxford, 2, 13, 14, 18, 57, 58;
    Union, 14;
    Merton college, 15;
    New college, 15.

  _Oxford and Cambridge Magazine, The_, 16.

  Oxford Movement, 7, 13, 14, 31.

  Paderborn, 275, 311, 319, 324, 327.

  Padua, 224.

  Paestum, 95.

  painting, early English, 262, 263.

  painting, early French, 39, 126, 136, 158, 189, 215, 216, 223 sq.,
          227, 234.

  painting, early German, 274, 277, 279, 290, 299, 301, 309.

  painting, early Italian, 53, 67, 70, 74, 78, 91, 94.

  paintings, by G. E. S., 4, 8, 37.

  Palencia, 43.

  Palestrina, 9.

  Palladio, 49.

  Pamplona, 44.

  Paris, 16, 33, 61;
    American church, 28, 30;
    Cluny, 33, 157;
    Louvre, 33;
    Notre Dame, 4, 33, 116, 131, 134, 137, 141, 149, 163, 200;
    S. Chapelle, 116, 156;
    S. Germain-des-Prés, 58, 156, 231.

  _Passion according to S. Matthew, The_, 28.

  Pater, 29.

  Pavia, 317, 323.

  Pébrac, 220.

  Pennell, Joseph, 49.

  Père Hyacinth, 95.

  Périgueux, 212, 231, 241, 243, 245, 246, 248, 249;
    Bishop Arnaud, 211.

  Perpignan, 43.

  Perugia, 76, 80, 133, 176.

  Perugino, 28, 52, 277.

  photography in architecture, 35.

  Picardy, 317.

  Pierre de Montéreau, 58, 156.

  Pierrefonds, 162.

  Pisa, 66, 76, 77, 272;
    style of, 85, 93;
    baptistery, 66, 84;
    Campo Santo, 66–7;
    cathedral, 67, 69;
    domestic Gothic, 68;
    Spina chapel, 71.

  Pisano, Giovanni, 68.

  Pistoja, 83, 85;
    baptistery, 84;
    cathedral, 83;
    S. Bartolomeo, 84;
    S. Giovanni Evangelista, 84.

  plain-song, 24, 119.

  Poblet, 42, 126.

  _Pointed Architecture in Germany_, 317.

  Poitiers, 176;
    Moustier-neuf, 231, 242;
    S. Hilaire, 231, 236, 242;
    S. Radegonde, 231;
    Bishop Gerald, 211.

  Poitou, 129.

  Polignac, 230.

  Pont de l’Arche, 139.

  Porretta, La, 86.

  Port Vendres, 44.

  Prague, 48.

  Prémontré, 171.

  Pre-Raphaelite Movement, 13, 32, 46, 135.

  Priests in England, mediaeval, 20;
    in France, modern, 121, 143, 144, 191.

  Proctor, Marquita (Mrs. G. E. Street), 7, 10, 12, 13, 21, 26, 38,
          45, 51, 57.

  proportion in architecture, 168, 240, 269.

  Provence, 251.

  Prynne, Mr., 6.

  Pugin, A. W. N., 292.

  Pusey, Edward, 13.

  Pustertal, 36.

  Le Puy, 39, 201, 202 sqq., 212, 221, 246;
    cathedral, 205 sqq., 239;
    chapel, 229;
    S. Laurent, 230;
    S. Michel, 203, 226 sqq., 247;
    paintings, 216;
    Bishop Evodius, 203;
    Bishop Guy, 228;
    Bishop Jean de Bourbon, 214–16;
    Bishop Peter, 220;
    Bishop Stephen, 220;
    François Gimbert, 225.

  Quakers, 11.

  Raphael, 28, 277.

  Ratisbon, 33, 320, 326, 328.

  Ratzebourg, 328.

  Ravello, 51.

  Ravenna, 220, 243.

  Rayham abbey, 125.

  Recanati, 51.

  religious feeling, 11, 12, 19, 20, 21, 24, 49, 54, 114.

  Renaissance, 42, 49, 52, 68, 71, 73, 76, 95, 187, 216, 307.

  Reni, Guido, 52.

  restoration, 21, 30, 51, 54, 66, 121, 129, 140, 191, 208, 255,
          265, 298;
    his own, 30 sq., 54.

  Rheims, 58, 108, 113, 129, 131, 162, 163, 184;
    cathedral, 113, 184;
    S. Jacques, 186, 189;
    S. Maurice, 189;
    S. Remi, 134, 170, 187;
    archbishop’s palace, 186;
    Maison des Musiciens, 190, 308.

  Rhineland, 36, 38, 174, 176, 275, 317, 318, 322, 323, 327.

  ringhiera, 86.

  Riom, 231, 238, 241, 251.

  Ripoll, 42.

  Ripon, 55.

  Robert de Coucy, 58,184.

  Robinson, H. Crabbe, 26.

  Romanesque, 42, 45, 67, 70, 88, 103, 176, 187, 202, 222, 244, 245,
          317, 322.

  Rome, 51, 53, 95;
    American church, 30;
    English church, 30.

  Rossetti, 14, 16, 46, 57.

  Rouen, 16, 33, 114, 117, 132, 135, 163, 193, 209, 244;
    S. Ouen, 117, 173;
    Archbishop Maurice, 133, 135.

  Royal Academy, 27, 57.

  Royal Institute of British Architects, 27;
    _Transactions of_, 27, 201, 243.

  Royat, 215, 231.

  Ruskin, 36.

  Russia, 32.

  S. Albans, 54, 274.

  S. Croix, Montmajour, 229.

  S. Denis, 318.

  S. Georges de Boscherville, 134 137 sq., 156.

  S. Gemignano, 91, 92.

  S. Genés, 231.

  S. Germer, 131, 134, 154 sqq.;
    Abbot Peter de Wesencourt, 156.

  S. Gervais, 58.

  S. Gothard, 36.

  S. James the Less, Westminster, 28.

  S. Jean de Maurienne, 64.

  S. Leu d’Esserent, 102, 104, 131, 141, 146 sqq.

  S. Lô, 124.

  S. Loup, 124.

  S. Margaret, Liverpool, 30.

  S. Mary, Stone, 255 sqq.

  S. Médard, 170.

  S. Nectaire, 231, 233, 238.

  S. Nicodime, Athens, 249.

  S. Omer, abbey of S. Bertin, 99, 303;
    Notre Dame, 100 sqq., 137, 303.

  S. Quentin, 106, 107, 131, 162, 188.

  S. Saturnin, 231, 236, 238.

  S. Sophia, 243, 245.

  Saarburg, 197.

  Saintes, 231.

  Sakraments-Haus, 277, 302, 311, 316.

  Salamanca, 44.

  Salerno, 51.

  Salisbury, 55, 128, 181, 189.

  San Sebastian, 44.

  Saragossa, 38, 44, 46.

  Savona, 91.

  Scala, 51.

  Scott, Gilbert G., 5, 28, 31;
    Scott and Moffatt, 6, 59.

  Scott, G., 54.

  Sedding, Edmund, 21.

  Séez, 163.

  Segovia, 44.

  Senlis, 102, sqq., 108, 116, 131, 147, 149;
    cathedral, 103;
    S. Frambourg, 104;
    S. Pierre, 102.

  Sens, 34.

  Shelley, 28, 52.

  shrines, 158, 239, 306;
    of S. Taurin at Evreux, 116;
    of S. Elizabeth at Marburg, 300.

  Siena, 11, 51, 71 sqq., 76, 176;
    Academy, 74;
    baptistery, 72;
    campanile, 72;
    _Campo_, 72;
    cathedral, 73;
    hospital, 282.

  Sierck, 197.

  Sierra Morena, 42.

  Sigüenza, 44.

  Soest, 37, 275, 311, 313, 314, 323, 327;
    cathedral, 314;
    S. Paul’s, 315;
    S. Peter’s, 312, 315;
    Wiesen-Kirche, 312, 315 sqq., 320, 322.

  Soissonnais, 38, 162, 169.

  Soissons, 131, 162, 163 sqq., 188;
    cathedral, 164;
    S. Jean des Vignes, 163, 166;
    S. Léger, 168;
    S. Pierre, 169.

  _Some Account of Gothic Architecture in Spain_, 27, 32, 37, 39, 40,
          41 sqq., 46, 51, 320.

  _Some Account of the Church of S. Mary, Stone, near Dartford_, 255.

  _Some Churches in Kent, Surrey, and Sussex_, 268.

  _Some Churches of Le Puy en Velay, and Auvergne_, 201.

  du Sommerard, cited, 173, 179.

  Soria, 42.

  Southampton, 160.

  Southwell, 54.

  Spain, 41, 42, 43, 47, 48, 118, 206, 229.

  Spain’s debt to G. E. S., 45;
    to France, 47.

  Spanish towns, 42, 44;
    travel, 45.

  Splügen, 36.

  Spoleto, 51.

  square east ends, 137, 173, 176, 265, 320.

  Stephen, Leslie, 49;
    Sir James Fitz-James, 49.

  Stevenson, 39.

  Stone Church, 255 sqq.

  Strasburg, 33, 162, 318, 326.

  Street, Arthur Edmund, 6, 24, 57.

  Street, George Edmund, life:
    born, 2;
    goes to London, 5;
    again, 21;
    to Wantage, 7;
    to Oxford, 13;
    abroad, 21;
    to Italy, 34;
    to Spain, 41;
    married, 13, 57;
    died, 27;
    buried, 27, 57.
    London, 21, 24, 26;
    competitions, 21, 22, 46, 54;
    controversies, 54 sq.;
    commissions, 6, 7, 21, 22, 27;
    appointments, 7, 55;
    honours, 27;
    books, 27, 34, 41 sq., 49 sq.;
    papers, 32, 37, 39, 201, 268.
    His buildings, 28, 30;
    drawings, 35;
    note-books, 34;
    travel, 21, 27, 31, 32;
    way of life, 24;
    knowledge, 31, 37, 40;
    character, 3, 23, 25, 26;
    energy, 3, 8, 9, 23;
    enthusiasm, 13, 25;
    wit, 25;
    genius, 13, 26, 35, 41;
    religion, 1, 9, 24, 53, 54, 114;
    affections of the hearth, 9, 12, 57;
    friends, 26, 52, 57;
    relation to other architects, 10, 24, 26, 27;
    eye for landscape and the picturesque, 36, 62, 65, 75, 86, 88,
          90, 92, 94, 108, 137, 171, 172, 292, 295, 307, 313.
      his father, 2;
      mother, 9;
      sister, 6;
      brother, 4, 5, 6;
      son, 6, 24, 57;
      first wife, 7, 38, 45, 124;
      second wife, 10, 53, 57;
      father-in-law, 10, 51.

  Street, Thomas, the elder, 2.

  Street, Thomas, the younger, 4, 5, 6.

  Suffolk, 128.

  Surrey, 268.

  Susa, 64, 90.

  Sussex, 5, 268.

  Swinburne, A. C. S., 48.

  Switzerland, 36, 37, 39, 48, 245, 313.

  Tarragona, 44.

  Tarrazona, 44.

  Templars, at Eunate, 229;
    at Laon, 183, 229;
    at Metz, 229;
    at Le Puy, 229;
    at Segovia, 229.

  Thames, 7, 21, 58.

  Théodore, Brother, cited, 228.

  Thrasimene, 74.

  Timbered houses, 118, 119, 154, 313;
    roofs, 118, 160, 246, 305.

  _tissus_, 220, 224.

  Toledo, 43, 45, 92.

  Torcello, 226.

  Toro, 42.

  Torrington, 5.

  Tortoir, 193.

  Toscanella, 94.

  Toul, 195;
    cathedral, 195;
    S. Gengoult, 195–6.

  Toulouse, 38, 231.

  Touraine, 129.

  Tournai, 175, 305.

  Tournus, 62, 246.

  Tours, S. Martin, 244.

  _Transactions_, 32;
    of the R. I. B. A., 39, 201, 243;
    of the Exeter Architectural Society, 268;
    of the Kent Archæological Society, 255.

  tree of Jesse, 139, 225.

  Trèves, 175, 195, 196, 197, 221.

  tribunes, 165.

  Trinidad, 30.

  Troyes, 34, 131.

  Tudela, 44.

  Turin, 65, 89–90.

  Tuy, 42.

  Tyndall, 49.

  Tyrol, 36, 48.

  Ulm, 33, 327.

  Umbria, 51, 53, 75–81.

  University, 2, 7.

  Urgell, Seo de, 43.

  Val d’Aosta, 48.

  Val di Chiana, 75.

  Valencia, 43, 44.

  Valladolid, 43, 47.

  Van Eyck, 274.

  Vauclair, 183.

  Vaux-sous-Laon, 183.

  Velay, le, 39, 201, 202;
    _États de_, 214;
    archives of, 215.

  Vendôme, 148.

  Venice, 133, 194, 224, 248, 289, 304;
    S. Marco, 4, 27, 212, 242 sq., 249.

  Verdier, cited, 161, 184.

  Vergato, 86.

  Verneilh, cited, 248.

  Verona, 71, 133, 270, 279, 284.

  Vevey, English church, 30.

  Vézelay, 35.

  Vienna, 48, 322.

  Vienne, 212.

  village churches, 22;
    French, 131, 143, 145;
    English, 257.

  Viollet-le-Duc, cited, 144, 150, 156, 162, 173, 184, 211, 215, 231.

  Viterbo, 94.

  Vitoria, 43, 44.

  Volvic, 231.

  Vosges, 36.

  Wales, 1.

  Wallenstadt, lake of, 36.

  Wantage, 7.

  Warfield, 265.

  Webbe, the elder, 13.

  Webbe, Philip, 21.

  Wellington, Duke of, 41.

  Wells, 128.

  Wensley, 274.

  Westminster Abbey, 27, 32, 58, 204, 244, 255, 258, 318.

  West of England, 4.

  wheel of Fortune, 153.

  Wilars de Honecort, 184.

  Wilberforce, Samuel, 13.

  Wimbourne, 279.

  Winchester, 5, 9, 12, 55;
    font, 160.

  Worcester, 2.

  Wordsworth, 4.

  workmen, mediaeval:
    masons, 240;
    sculptor, Gaulfredus, 220, another (Robert), 234;
    architects, Pierre de Montéreau, 58, 156;
    Robert de Coucy, 58, 184;
    metal-workers, 274, Hans Apengeter, 277, John and Nicholas of
          Bingen, 222;
    silversmith, 225, François Gimbert, 234;
    glass painter, Dominic Livi, 276.

  Worms, 249, 321, 322.

  Wurtzburg, 33.

  York, 27, 32, 55.

  Yorkshire, 4, 128.

  Ypres, 303 sq., 311.

  Zamora, 44, 46.

  Zaragoza, 44, 46,
    _v._ Saragossa.

  Zinzig, 323.

  Zurich, lake of, 36.


[1] Since these words were written that country has seen another
harvest time; the fields have been ploughed with the trenches of armies
and harrowed by the bomb and bullet: Street’s record of what men saw
fifty years ago has grown precious for us who shall never see it more.

[2] Your man of genius has run ahead of fashion by forty years. This
description reads like the account of a house finished last week
somewhere up the River or on the Main Line.

[3] Note from the sketch-book: Tournus has a fine Romanesque church
with one complete and one unfinished steeple at the west end and
another complete steeple on the north side in about the position (I
think) of a transept. These two steeples have two arcaded stages of
about equal height above the roof and are finished with square tiled
spires in a very characteristic manner. (These square spires seem to
be of very frequent occurrence in this district.) Just in front of the
church are two round towers which seem to form a gateway and the space
between the western steeples of the church is finished horizontally
with a crenelated parapet on a machicoulis--the battlements pierced
with openings of this kind ✠--the whole looks as though done with a
view to defence.

[4] General de Boigne, d. 1830.--G. G. K.

[5] These must be those now given to Cavallini and his school; and
Street’s taste comes out right where knowledge was a-wanting.--G. G. K.

[6] If Street did not know the name, how should the editor?--G. G. K.

[7] This will be Messer Cino--of Dante and Mr. Hewlett.--G. G. K.

[8] Eastern? queries Street in pencil.

[9] Attributed to Jacopo della Quercia; it is not hard to divine why,
when Donatello had failed to satisfy, Jacopo should offend.--G. G. K.

[10] Qy.: S. Vincent?--G. G. K.

[11] The same ornamentation appears in the doorways opening out of the
Great Cloister at Las Huelgas (province of Burgos, Spain).--G. G. K.

[12] The plan of six-foot cubicles, open above, with separate windows
but a single lofty roof, carried on immense stone arches spanning the
vast hall, is that of the great dormitory at the Cistercian abbey of
Poblet, in Cataluña.--G. G. K.

[13] Our ancient sculpture is therefore of inexpressible value to
us; and it is to be hoped that we shall hear less and less of that
destructive and dangerous process called “restoration” in connection
with it. The _Guardian_ lately contained a paragraph stating that
a London carver is employed on the restoration of the ancient
figure-sculpture at Lincoln. I shudder to think of the havoc which (if
I may judge of him by the former performances of his class) he must be
making. If the Dean and Chapter of Lincoln possessed a picture by an
old master, would they employ a painter to touch up the noses and put
in new heads where the old painting was defective? Assuredly not. And
can they not feel that any sculpture is just as much a work of art,
owing all its interest to the genius of the artist, as any painting can
be, and as far beyond restoration therefore?

[14] I am, of course, aware that some of these churches are not
locally situated within the Île de France, and one of them--Rouen
Cathedral--might have been expected to be purely Norman in its
character. To my mind, however, it represents a fusion between the
Norman and the real French style, affected, moreover, at first to some
extent by Italian influences. And Rouen, as well as most of these
churches, was comprised within the _Domaine Royale_ before the death of
Philip Augustus.

[15] The plan of an aisle or “procession-path” without chapels is, in
execution, the only form of apse, the effect of which is decidedly
inferior to our English square ends. It is on the exterior that its
deformity is most conspicuous.

[16] The chapels round the apse of Senlis Cathedral form an
intermediate link between the two plans at S. Leu. They form exactly
half a circle on plan, and have only two bays, one of which is lighted
with a window. Externally they have stone roofs, finishing under the
triforium windows. These two churches should be studied and compared

[17] No one who visits S. Leu should omit to go also to Senlis. He will
find a tower and spire of unusual--if not unique--beauty and elegance.
There are two fine desecrated churches, and other remains which, with
the charming cathedral, make a _tout ensemble_ not easily forgotten. It
is a walk of about six miles only from S. Leu--passing by Chantilly.

[18] I copied the following from the “Tariff” of the seats in S.

     “Une stalle haute par année, 8 fr.
      Une stalle basse par année, 5 fr.
      Les deux premiers bancs à chaque côté du chœur, 8 fr.
      Les deux centres bancs derrière l’autel, 7 fr. 50 c.”

[19] See the Illustration of a Wheel of Fortune in _Les Arts
Somptuaires_, Vol. II., taken from a MS. in the _Bibl. Imp._, No. 6877.

[20] This work recalls to mind the work of the same character at

[21] It is sometimes called also the “_Sainte Chapelle_” of S. Germer:
I know not, however, on what grounds. M. Viollet-le-Duc does not
mention it in his list of S. Chapelles.

[22] There is some reason for believing that the Lady-chapel of S.
Germain-des-Prés was groined with sexpartite vaulting: if so, it
differed from the other chapels in this respect.

[23] P. 365.

[24] These groined triforia are called tribunes by the French
antiquaries. At Montierender, where both occur, the upper stage is more
than usually similar to our English triforia; and in all these cases
it would perhaps be best to accept the French terminology as being
substantially correct. The tribune is, in fact, a second stage of the

[25] The abbey church of Longpont was dedicated in A.D. 1227, in
the presence of S. Louis. Its value as a dated example is therefore
considerable, independent of its high architectural interest.

[26] _Dictionnaire_, Vol. II. p. 309.

[27] The arrangement of these gables recalls to mind the very similar
arrangement at Salisbury and Lincoln.

[28] The autumn of 1860. The original paper, which has undergone
considerable revision since it was read on 7th January, 1861,
will be found in the First Series of _Transactions_, 1860–61, pp.
97–119.--A. E. S.

[29] I give an extract from “La Estoire de Seint Edward le Rei,” MS.
Bibl., Publ. Cambridge. Ee iii. 59:

       “Seint Pere, du ciel claver,
        Va sa iglise dedier,
        Des angeles mut grant partie
        Li funt servise e grant aie.
        Li angele chantent au servise,
        La nuit quant dedient l’iglise
        Tant ja du ciel luur
        Ke vis est au peschur,
        Ke li solailz e la lune
        Lur clarté tute i preste e dune.”

This is the rubric descriptive of the illustration, whilst in the poem
itself is the following passage:

       “E cist si tost cum arive
        Entrez est en sun muster;
        Li airs devint lusanz e clers,
        N’out en muster tenegre ne umbre;
        Atant des angres grant numbre,
        Ki s’en venent a sum servise
        A dedier cele iglise.
        Tant ja partut odur,
        Ke vis est a cel pescur
        Ke li solailz la lune
        Sa clarté tute preste u dune
        Angles pu cel avaler
        Regarde e puis remunter;
        Teu joie a, ke li est vis
        Ke raviz est en Parais,
        Pur l’avisium k’apert.”

[30] _L’Auvergne au Moyen Age_, by M. Dominique Branche.
Clermont-Ferrand, 1842.

[31] The steps are arranged in successive groups of eleven, with
platforms between them.

[32] As evidence of the popularity of Notre Dame du Puy this may
suffice:--in Amiens cathedral, until A.D. 1820, there existed a
series of pictures given by the “Confrèrie de Notre Dame du Puy.” A
similar confrèrie existed at Limoges.--G. E. S. There is an image and
a devotion of N. D. du Puy at Estella in Navarre, carried thither by
French pilgrims.--G. G. K.

[33] The passage to the right is evidently modern, that to the left
looks as though it were ancient, but a protest against the removal of
some ancient work, in the course of constructing it, which I have found
in the _Bulletin Monumental_ [A. de Caumont], seems to show that it is
not so.

[34] S. Martin d’Ainay, at Lyon, is a parallel triapsidal church, with
a central dome, and a western tower of unusual and picturesque outline,
adorned largely with inlaid tiles and bricks.

[35] At present the exterior of the lantern is covered with a domical
roof; but an illustration that I have seen shows it finished with a
low-pitched tile roof, and without any of the inlaid mosaic which is
now upon it.

[36] The division of the building into work done at various epochs is
beyond question, though there may be some question as to the date I

[37] Mérimée, _Notes d’un Voyage en Auvergne_, p. 226.

[38] See Viollet-le-Duc (_Dictionnaire_, art. “_Clocher_,” pp. 312–18)
for a reference to this influence of the Rhine churches.

[39] M. Viollet-le-Duc considers the earliest part of the cloister to
date from the tenth century; M. Mérimée thinks the eleventh century
more likely.

[40] The _Maîtrise_ was, I believe, the school attached to the

[41] Mérimée, _Notes d’un Voyage en Auvergne_, p. 232.

[42] It is very difficult to understand precisely where these hangings
were found. M. Aymard, a distinguished antiquary at Le Puy, in the
_Album Photographique d’Archéologie Religieuse_, speaks of the painting
on the wall of the _Salle des États_, and then, in another place, says
that the tapestries given by Jean de Bourbon served to decorate the
_Salle des États_ of Velay, and after the regrettable destruction of
that hall the remains of them were preserved part in the cathedral and
part in the museum. Possibly he refers to the removal of the floor
below the _Salle des États_, for the hall itself has not been destroyed.

[43] M. Mallay, of Clermont, says that the mosaic work of the church of
Notre-Dame-du-Port, Clermont, was all set in red mortar originally.

[44] See further observations on this subject, page 223.

[45] The predecessor in the See, Stephen II., uncle of Bishop Peter I.,
was buried at Lavoulte-Chilhac.

[46] A diploma of A.D. 1146 is dated from the “Ville d’Anis” (i.e.
Le Puy) and fixes the date at which this “cité” received the name of

[47] See M. Aymard’s _Album Photographique d’Archéologie Religieuse_,
and a communication from the same gentleman in the _Bulletin Archéol._
vol. ii. p. 645. M. Aymard mentions one other example, a diptych,
figured in Montfaucon (_L’Antiquité Expliquée_) vol. iii. p. 89, which
dates from about A.D. 900. The hand at Le Puy is larger than life,
and has a double nimbus round it, the inner yellow, the outer dark
red; the hand is white and the ground within the nimbus dark blue. The
Secretary of the Comité Historique des Arts et Monuments considers that
this representation of the Greek mode of giving the benediction makes
it certain that the work at Le Puy is Byzantine in its origin. But one
may, I think, be allowed to doubt whether this conclusion is to be
absolutely depended on.

[48] M. Aymard. See footnote on preceding page.

[49] The spire-lights in the cathedral steeple are very similar, and
the same form is seen in the steeple of the church of S. Marie des
Chases, in Auvergne.

[50] Also the octagonal church, surrounded by an octagonal cloister,
of the Templars at Eunate in Navarre, and the church of Vera Cruz at
Segovia.--G. G. K.

[51] The elevation of one bay of the nave of this church is almost
exactly the same as that of S. Petronio, Bologna, though of course
on a very reduced scale. The plan is Italian also, the nave
groining-compartments being square, whilst those of the aisles are
very oblong; the contrary arrangement is, as I need hardly say, almost
invariable in northern Gothic plans.

[52] The cathedral of Clermont-Ferrand, a fine fourteenth-century
church, is said to have been originally on the same plan as
Notre-Dame-du-Port; excavations have proved this to have been the case.
The present cathedral is almost precisely similar in plan to those of
Narbonne and Limoges (see Viollet-le-Duc, _Dictionnaire_), and is said
to have been commenced in A.D. 1248 by Bishop Hugues de la Tour.

[53] I give a list of some of the churches which either belong to
or illustrate the Auvergnat type, with their dates, as nearly as I
can ascertain them:--Conques, completed by A.D. 1060. S. Étienne,
Nevers, commenced A.D. 1063, consecrated A.D. 1097. S. Eutrope,
Saintes, consecrated in A.D. 1096. S. Genés, A.D. 1016-A.D. 1120. S.
Front, Périgueux, A.D. 984 to A.D. 1047. Angoulême, A.D. 1109–1136.
Fontevrault, A.D. 1100. S. Hilaire, Poitiers, A.D. 1049; Moustier-neuf,
ditto, A.D. 1069–1096; S. Radegonde, ditto, A.D. 1099. Riom (S.
Amable), A.D. 1077–1120. S. Sernin, Toulouse, _circa_ A.D. 1150. Cluny,
commenced A.D. 1089; consecrated A.D. 1131. Dorat (Hte. Vienne) and
Bénévent (Creuse), _circa_ A.D. 1150–1200. S. Germain-des-Prés, Paris,
consecrated A.D. 1163. Le-Moûtier (suburb of Thiers), A.D. 1016. S.
Saturnin, Volvic, Issoire, S. Nectaire, N.-D.-du-Port, Clermont,
_circa_ A.D. 1080–1160. Brioude, _circa_ A.D. 1200. Orcival.

[54] St. Gregory of Tours (Hist. Francorum) says that in A.D. 440 a
church was erected in Clermont by the Bishop Namacius, 150 feet in
length, 60 feet wide, 50 feet high from the seat of the bishop to the
vault; a circular gallery surrounded the choir, and on each side were
two aisles elegantly constructed. The church was in the form of a
cross, had 42 windows, 70 columns, and 8 doors.--_L’Auvergne au Moyen

[55] S. Hilaire at Poitiers and Angoulême cathedral have only four

[56] At Mozat is a magnificent shrine of copper, enamelled, and at S.
Nectaire a variety of precious relics, crosses, reliquaries, and the
like, of which M. Mérimée has given a list.

[57] See M. Mallay’s _Essai sur les Églises Romanes et
Romano-Byzantines du département du Puy-de-Dôme_. Moulins, 1838.

[58] St. Mark’s, Venice, was commenced in A.D. 977.

[59] Plans (to a uniform scale) of S. Mark’s Venice, and of S. Front,
Périgueux, are given in _Transactions_, Vol. IV. n.s. Illustn. xxviii.,
pp. 172–173.

[60] Mr. Fergusson gives a section of a church at Granson on the Lake
of Neufchâtel, in which the aisles and nave are roofed in the same way
as at Conques and in the Auvergne churches. He says that the date of
this church is the end of the eighth or beginning of the ninth century,
but I do not know what his authority for this very early date is.

[61] The Abbaye-aux-Hommes, Caen, has its aisles roofed with transverse

[62] I ought to mention that this dome and the western part of S.
Julien at Brioude are much older than the choir, to which I have before
referred in speaking of the date of the church.

[63] This qualification is necessary, for the curious evidence which M.
Verneilh has given of the existence in the tenth century of a Venetian
colony at Limoges would be enough to make it probable that, though S.
Front is the earliest complete example extant of a French domed church,
others may have been built before it and that some of those which M.
Verneilh supposes to have been derived from S. Front may really have
been derived more directly from the East.

[64] There is no end to the diversity of the countries in which they
are found. In the cathedral at Worms there are squinches formed by
semi-domes. In S. Nicodime at Athens they are identical with those of
S. Étienne at Nevers, and the same form is repeated in the domical
vault of the steeple at Auxerre cathedral. At Notre-Dame-du-Port,
Clermont, the dome is circular, but the squinches below are octagonal
in plan, and the circle (which is not, however, a true circle) is set
upon the octagon.

[65] This statement must of course be made with caution, inasmuch as
the invariable whitewashing of the interior makes it very difficult to
say what was the exact nature of the decorations with which they were

[66] The subject of this paper, the probable identity of the architect
of S. Mary’s with that of Westminster, interested Street greatly,
and he refers to it often. The careful description of conscientious
restoration has an interest for us as well. I have therefore reprinted
the greater part of it without troubling the reader by indicating the
trifling omissions.

[67] Will of John Bokeland, p. 10.

[68] One of these windows is still left in the south wall of the

[69] It appears from a note by Mr. Heathcote, a former Rector, in the
parish book, that the church and chancel were ceiled in the year 1777.
This is the only note in these books which refers to the building, if I
except an entry in regard to the erection of a western gallery, which
has been removed in the course of restoring the church. The old parish
books are all destroyed, and no record exists earlier than the end of
the last century.

[70] “Less usual,” but not unique. The church at East Barnet afforded
another example of the same mode of spending money in the palmy days of
ample church-rates and irresponsible church-wardens.

[71] John Bokeland, in his will, talks of the chancel door: I believe
he means the door in the Rood-screen, from the nave into the chancel.

[72] The central shaft and part of the internal tracery of this window
are destroyed, and we have been unable yet to restore them.

[73] I see no evidence of the existence of a clerestory; and the
columns are so delicate that I think it is impossible that it can ever
have been intended to erect one.

[74] I cannot express my vexation at finding that in spite of my
earnest injunctions to the workmen to be careful, this painted cross
was destroyed. It is often absolutely impossible for an architect to
stop wilful destruction of this kind. I have sometimes thought that it
might be a good plan to draw up a contract for church restorations,
inflicting a heavy fine on the contractor for any such destruction of
any old feature.

[75] See particularly papers by me on _Some Churches in Kent,
Surrey, and Sussex_, in the _Ecclesiologist_ of 1850, and _On the
Middle-Pointed Churches of Cornwall_, in the _Transactions_ of the
Exeter Architectural Society, vol. iv.

[76] There are one or two points which appear to me to make it possible
that the sculpture of foliage was not done at Stone, but wrought
elsewhere and sent there to be fixed. The northernmost spandrel in the
east wall should be examined with a view to this point.

[77] I need not say, to those who know the north of Germany, that the
arrangement of this church is, after all, only an exaggeration of a
not uncommon plan. The cathedrals at Hildesheim and Naumburg, the
Liebfrauen-Kirche at Halberstadt, and many others, have crypts, whose
floor is but little lower than the floor of the church, whilst the
floors of their choirs are raised immensely, and so shut in with solid
stone screens and parcloses, that little can be seen of them from the
naves. The crypt at Wimborne Minster is a rare instance of the same
kind of thing in England; but this is a middle-pointed contrivance for
_creating_ a crypt in a first-pointed church, which was never intended
to have anything of the kind.

[78] It is owing to this arrangement of the nave, and the consequent
uselessness of the aisles, that several of the old altars still remain,
one in each bay, against the north aisle wall, and one or two against
the south aisle wall.

[79] I have given a drawing of these candlesticks for the _Instrumenta
Ecclesiastica_. They are not movable candlesticks, but regular fixtures
to the pavement, and made in some kind of white metal.

[80] I have given a drawing of this vat in the _Instrumenta

[81] It must be understood that these are not the original curtains;
but that the Lutherans have here preserved an old arrangement is very

[82] On the south side of this steeple still hang the iron cages in
which John of Leyden and his confrères were suspended before their

[83] This paper was read before the Oxford Architectural Society, in
1857.--G. G. K.

[84] Street was not yet familiar with the Spanish churches, in which it
is the dominant native form. Cf. _Gothic Architecture in Spain_, new
edition, I, 58.--G. G. K.

Transcriber’s Notes

Punctuation and spelling were made consistent when a predominant
preference was found in this book; otherwise they were not changed.
Inconsistencies between the Index and the text it referenced were
resolved by changing the Index to match the text.

Simple typographical errors were corrected; occasional unbalanced
quotation marks retained.

Ambiguous hyphens at the ends of lines were retained; occurrences of
inconsistent hyphenation have not been changed.

Index not checked for proper alphabetization or correct page references.

In Footnote 3, the symbol following “openings of this kind” is a
Maltese Cross.

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