Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist

A Hurried Visit To Warwick

The wedding was in Southampton, which if you travel in a straight line from here, heading South, is as far as you can go without hiring a boat. We stopped off in Warwick- for no better reason than we'd never been there before- to eat a hurried picnic lunch and (of course) visit the church. Ailz didn't like the church because there was no provision for wheelchair users and there were people on the door intimidating you into making a donation. It's very handsome.  It was partly burned out in the 18th century and- though Christopher Wren submitted a plan- the commission to rebuild went to a man called Wilson who pulled off an eccentric but impressive design that dresses up a wild gothic idea with respectable Graeco-Roman detail. The Eastern part of the church survived the fire and is full of wonderful things- mainly tombs. Fulke Greville- the gay Elizabethan poet who was murdered by his boyfriend/manservant and whose playful spirit haunts the "Ghost Tower" at Warwick Castle- has a great, slabby thing that takes up most of the floor space in the little medieval chapter house and the remarkable Beauchamp Chapel is full of dukes and earls. 

Most notably- or famously- there's Elizabeth I's favourite, Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester- who lies here with Lettice, the wife of his old age, who outlived him by 46 years. 

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