Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist

Norwich Roof Boss #1

Norwich Cathedral has the largest collection of medieval roof bosses in the world. I had a go at photographing the ones in the nave but they're too high up for a handheld camera to capture without wobble and they defeated me; the ones in the cloister were a different matter.

The Cathedral cloisters were destroyed in the late 13th century in the course of a dispute between town and abbey that escalated into open warfare. The cits installed archers in the tower of the nearby church of St George, Tombland and the archers employed flaming arrows...

Rebuilding began in 1297 and continued until 1430. The bosses therefore span a period of well over a century. The earliest are chiefly decorative, the later ones include various story cycles, including a set of images from the Book of Revelations. There's some freaky stuff in the mix.

I propose to post an image a day until I run out...

Number one is a straightforward green man- except that it isn't. I didn't notice at the time but under the wonderfully fierce character with the branches coming out of his mouth is another male head. Is there a story here? Or was the mason just indulging his fancy?


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