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Tony Grist

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Roman And Romanesque [Jun. 5th, 2015|10:01 am]
Tony Grist
Yesterday- after lunching and going through the Perry exhibition- we went to Richborough. The Romans built a fort there that became a seaport town- Rutupiae Portus- the gateway to Britannia and famous for its oysters. Once upon a time there was a 80 foot triumphal arch in the centre of the settlement, but a later generation of Romano-Brits took it down and used the bits to plug up the city walls. The walls still stand in part- great cliffs of cobble and brick- more impressive than anything along Hadrian's Wall. The gouges in them were made by quarrymen.

The sea- as is customary in those parts has retreated-  leaving Rutupiae as high and dry as Rye and Winchelsea and Sandwich. Where the boats tied up is where the railway runs- and whatever archaeology there may have been got taken away in barrows by Victorian navvies.

On the way home I mandated a brief diversion to Patrixbourne- where they have the third best Romanesque doorway in Kent. It might have ranked higher only IS Cromwell's men bashed it up a bit in passing.


St Mary, Patrixbourne- the west door 

[User Picture]From: shewhomust
2015-06-05 09:26 am (UTC)
That Roman masonry looks more like geology than architecture!
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2015-06-05 09:39 am (UTC)
I think half the beauty of any very old building has to do with the way it has eroded and weathered and been repaired.
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From: cmcmck
2015-06-05 10:42 am (UTC)
Two of my favourite places! :o)
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2015-06-05 11:09 am (UTC)
I can see why.
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[User Picture]From: puddleshark
2015-06-05 01:13 pm (UTC)
Oh, I wished I lived a bit nearer the east coast... Such stonework!

Thank you.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2015-06-05 03:33 pm (UTC)
I, for my part, wish it was easier to get to Dorset- and all stations west....
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[User Picture]From: pondhopper
2015-06-05 02:08 pm (UTC)
The portico is magnificent! That is truly ornate Romanesque....the best of its kind.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2015-06-05 03:27 pm (UTC)
Sadly bashed about, though. The figures on the tympanum have been reduced to featureless lumps.
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[User Picture]From: sovay
2015-06-05 09:14 pm (UTC)
The gouges in them were made by quarrymen.

I love the idea of quarrying the walls. That's post-apocalyptic.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2015-06-06 08:33 am (UTC)
I suppose the withdrawal of the Roman army from Britain did create something like a post-apocalyptic scenario.

Roman buildings were quarried for building materials right up into the modern era.
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