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 St Kentigern, Great Crosthwaite
St Kentigern, Great Crosthwaite: GentsMag 1849 pp255-259
evidence:-   old text:- Gents Mag
source data:-   Magazine, The Gentleman's Magazine or Monthly Intelligencer or Historical Chronicle, published by Edward Cave under the pseudonym Sylvanus Urban, and by other publishers, London, monthly from 1731 to 1922.
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Gentleman's Magazine 1849 part 1 p.255  "As it now stands, the plan of this church consists of a tower; nave, with north and south aisles; a sacristy or vestry taken off the west end of the south aisle; a south porch; a chancel with north and south aisles, that on the south being loftier and wider than the northern aisle; and a chancel door. Viewed on the exterior it presents an embattled square tower, about sixty feet in height, supported by diagonal buttresses at the north-west and south-west angles, of three stages each, which die away into the walls about half-way up the tower. On the north and south side, beneath the battlements, are two rude stone water-spouts. At the south-west corner is the stair turret, which rises a few feet above the roof, and is likewise surmounted with battlements. In this angle a spiral stone staircase, lighted by slits, winds to the leaden roof, from whose lofty summit start into view -"
"A thousand beauties at one charming sight!
No pencil's art can such a landscape feign,
And Nature's self scarce yields the like again;"
"the whole forming a picture replete in every direction with attractions of unequalled beauty."
"... On the western front of the tower, about midway from the ground, is a large window of four lights, whose four upright mullions and embattled transom assign its date to the latter period of the Perpendicular or Tudor style, and on each side of the story above is a small stone-mullioned, circular-headed, belfry window of three lights."
"A handsome south porch, too elaborate, indeed, for the style of the church, occupies the site of the old one. It is built of hammer-dressed dark grey stone, with dressings of reddish-coloured sandstone at the quoins and buttresses, and round the doorway. The gable is terminated by a handsome floriated cross, and the high-pitched roof is supoorted by four small buttresses of one stage each, that rise from plain bases at the corners on each side of the portal, and die under the eaves' courses. The doorway has small clustered columns, from which spring a pointed arch of many mouldings, surmounted by a hood moulding, resting on carved heads. The roof is open to the framing, and the inner doorway has a plain Tudor arch devoid on any ornament. There is likewise a small chancel door, having a flat top and sides, supported by a quarter circle from each side of the jamb, and on the right-hand, outside, is a small niche and mutilated stoup. The doors are all of oak, studded with nail-heads, and have large scroll hinges, or ornamental character and ancient design."
"The church is 47 yards long, and exteriorly consists on the south side of two bays, separated by three graduating buttresses, each of several unequal stages, which all die into the wall below the parapet, one at each end, and one near the centre of the flank wall. In the first bay from the west is the porch, and in the second is the chancel door. The windows of the aisle on this side are six in number, and are all of the same size and form, being of three stone-mullioned, semi-circular-headed lights, each under square-headed frames. At the west end of the south aisle of the nave, under an upright, square-headed frame, is an ogee-arched stone-mullioned, two-light, trefoiled window."
"At the west end of the north aisle, in the re-entering angle formed by the north wall of the tower and the west wall of that aisle, is a plain narrow buttress of one stage only. On the north side are three buttresses of similar form and dimensions to those on the south. They support the flank wall of the north aisle of the chancel only, and, dividing it into two nearly equal-sized bays, die into the wall below the eave course of the roof. On the north side of the north aisles there are eight stone-mullioned windows, set within square-headed frames; three, in the north aisle of the nave, being of two lights each, with trefoiled heads under ogee arches; two, of two lights each, with cinquefoiled heads, under lancet arches; one"
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Gentleman's Magazine 1849 part 1 p.256  "three-light trefoiled window under an ogee arch; and two round-headed windows of two and three lights each; the irregularity of position and variety of form and dimensions observable being the consequence, apparently, of enlargements and alterations which this side of the building has undergone at different periods."
"On the east side two plain, narrow, lofty buttresses, of unequal thickness, but of only one stage each, and which die into the wall under the battlements at the junction of the lean-to roofs of the aisles to the walls of the chancel, divide this end into three bays. In the centre is the large pointed east window of the chancel, which is an exact copy of the old one. It is divided by stone mullions into three lights, the head being filled by plain intersecting tracery, adorned with trefoils, and surmounted by a weather moulding which runs down into carved flowers. The northernmost bay on this side has a heavy stone-mullioned window of two trefoiled lights under ogee arches. It has apparently been of greater size formerly. The south bay contains a square, stone-mullioned window of three round-headed lights."
"The roofs are covered with slate, and those on the nave and chancel on the south and east have an embattled parapet resting upon a plain, slightly projecting cornice. The battlements, which harmonise with those of the tower, are of equal intervals, and the capping runs along the top alone. The finish to the roof of the south aisle is less imposing, there being only a slightly overhanging parapet terminated by a similar capping. The roofs on the north side are also finished in a plainer manner, that of the nave and chancel having merely a stone parapet with the same kind of capping, while the roof of the aisles has only a dripping eave projecting a few inches beyond the wall, and the east end of the roof of that aisle is furnished with a parapet like that on the east end of the south aisle."
"On the north side, placed at nearly equal intervals, are six clerestory, stone-mullioned windows, of three semicircular-headed lights each, and on the south are seven clerestory windows, five of which, over the nave, are of three round-headed lights, while the two eastermost, which are more deeply recessed, are square-headed, and of two lights only."
"The interior consists of a tower, which is open to the nave by a lofty, pointed arch of two chamfered orders, springing from half or engaged octagonal piers, on a line with those that flank the nave. Its soaring apex reaches nearly to the tie-beams of the roof, and its wide span, which is equal to that of the breadth of the nave before the gallery was put up, gave to view the interior of the tower, together with the large window in its eastern front."
"A nave and chancel, which open into their lateral aisles by arches of similar orders and design, rest upon six plain octagonal piers, and two engaged piers at each end. The two westernmost arches are filled with wooden paneling, so as partly to inclose the vestry taken off the south aisle, and the corresponding portion of the north aisle. The bases of the piers are of the plain reversed ogee form, and all have capitals to match."
"The chancel is raised two steps above the floor of the nave, from which it is further distinguished by the reading pew and pulpit, and the high backs of such of the stalls as from their transverse position face twoards the east, and make a marked distinction between these two principal divisions of the church. A wainscot or screen of oak, open on the upper part, which forms the backs of the remainder of the stalls, and is adorned with plain shields in the expanded heads of the rails that support a heavy, embattled cornice, extends between the the first arches from the nave, and, flanking the chancel on the north and south, further indicates the separation of that division of the church from its lateral aisles."
"The windows have been already noticed, and their appearance when viewed from within offers but little that calls for remark, save upon those that are filled with stained glass, which will hereafter be more particularly described."
"The nave, chancel, and aisles were newly flagged, leaving a vacant space of about three feet clear between the flags and the surface of the earth beneath. The piers, bases, and capitals, mouldings of the arches, mullions, and jambs of the windows were chiseled"
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Gentleman's Magazine 1849 part 1 p.257  "anew, and the natural reddish hue of the stone brought to light with warm and becoming effect, to which the plaster on the walls was tinted to harmonize."
"The roofs, which are of low pitch, were entirely reconstructed, the expense of that of the nave, which is open to the ridge, being defrayed at the general cost of the parishioners. It is, together with the wood-work of the whole, save the exceptions already and afterwards mentioned, composed of the best Baltic deal, stained and varished to look like oak. The tie-beams, which are triangular in form, with the point hanging down, have many convex and ogee mouldings; they rest on the walls, where their ends are hidden by projecting architraves or cornices of wood, of similar mouldings, that flank each wall and give an appearance of greater height to the roof. Short curved braces, resting on the tie-beams, support the moulded ribs of the principal rafters, immediately underneath the intersections of the purlins or bars; these, lying horizontally, divide each bay into panels, that are subdivided into narrow longitudinal divisions by the plain inclined rectangular bars forming the common rafters, over which they are boarded."
"The chancel roof presents a continuity of form and design, but the architraves and tie-beams being more massive and ornately moulded, as well as embattled on their upper edges, it offers a bolder and more enriched construction. It is divided into four bays, and the first and last tie-beams partly rest on curved spandrils that die away below into stone corbels, which rest on carved heads that spring from the walls."
"The roofs of the aisles are like that of the nave, except that there are neither tie-beams nor braces, and that the architrave which flanks the top of each wall is of lighter dimensions; they are likewise formed into panels by moulded horizontal purlins, which, at the intersection of the principal rafters, and also at the joining of the rafters to the walls, are tied with ornamental bosses of carved flowers and foliage, mingled with church emblems, and the shields of arms of gentry in the neighbourhood. The roof at the east end of the north aisle of the chancel, over the pew belonging to Ormathwaite Hall, is more elaborately adorned, the architrave on the flank wall of that part of the aisle being deeper and more profusely moulded, and terminated at each end by the graceful figure of an angel, finely carved in wood; such enrichments being intended to replace the ruder style of decoration that formerly distinguished this pew."
"At the western end of the south aisle is the vestry, separated from the aisle by a high, close-paneled wainscot or scrren, of characteristic design, surmounted by a cornice, whose upper edge is likewise embattled."
"The interior was newly seated; the benches in the nave, which are all open except two, have plain, slightly-raised frame-ends, and all but one face to the east."
"The stalls in the chancel are twenty in number; eight of them likewise look towards the east, and the remaineder, together with the open benches in that division of the church, which are further distinguished by high raised ends terminated by carved finials, and those in its aisles which have only slightly rasied ends, face either north or south. The benches in the chancel have carved panels in front, of uniform design, and, with the other seats and fittings-up in this portion of the church and its aisles, are all of oak. The turn of the arms of the stalls, and of the benches in the chancel and its aisles, together with the poppy-heads of the chancel seats, are adorned with carvings of foliage, fruit, and flowers, intermingled with the heads of saints and angels, and mystical devices symbolic of Scriptural subjects, finely and even delicately executed, the whole thus preserving an agreeable unity of style with the architectural and ornamental embellishments throughout the church.The Lord's table, chairs, and rails, are carved in a corresponding pattern, and the cloth and cushions on the table and around the rails are of murrey-coloured velvet, the former being edged with gold-lace and fringe. The area within the rails is boarded, and covered with a carpet of the same colour; and in the south wall, near the angle formed with the east endwall, is a plain and perfect piscina with a segmental head. The screen or"
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Gentleman's Magazine 1849 part 1 p.258  "wainscot behind the altar extends across the entire width of the chancel; it is divided into nine narrow, upright, square-headed panels, containing cinquefoiled arches, with trefoils in the corners, and is surmounted by an architrave embattled on its upper edge. The middle panel, which is of a purple diapered ground, bordered by a broad illuminated edging of oak and vine leaves, following the course of the arch, contains a cross flory, highly emblazoned in gold and colours, within whose radiated centre is displayed the sacred monogram, I.H.S. surrounded by a white and gold circle, on which is painted in black and rubricated letters this sentence, "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the Sin of the World." The two next panels on each side, within similar enriched borders surrounding white grounds, contain the Lord's Prayer, the Creed, and the Commandments in black letters, with rubricated illuminated capitals and other illuminations. The remaining compartments are without ornament."
"The pulpit and reading pew are features of the interior which add much to its general effect, and cannot but of themselves attract admiration."
"The latter is a little elevated, and placed near the north pier, at the junction of nave and chancel. It is an irregular pentagon of handsome Gothic design. Light pillars, which rise from an appropriate base, support cinquefoil arches, that form small open panels; above which the book-board rests: and beneath, springing from the west, south-west, and south sides, are the half-length figures and heads of the four Evangelists, each holding before it a shield, on which is carved the emblem symbolic of the holy man. The other sides of the pew are void of adornment."
"The pulpit, which is hexagonal, is of good shape and expression. It stands near the south pier, at the separation of the nave and chancel, and on a line with the reading pew, thus keeping up architectural symmetry. It terminates in a single pedestal of similar form, that rests upon a plinth of the same design. The sides are paneled, and enriched with sunken pointed cinquefoil arches, that rise from small circular pillars; and above them the shelf or book-board supports an eagle with expanded wiings. The cushions and draperies, like those in the reading pew, are of murrey-coloured velvet."
"The organ, which was likewise the gift of Mr. Stanger, and the singers' gallery, occupy the west end of the nave, and conceal the west window and lofty arch, which opens from the tower into the nave, thus giving occasion for regret that the ancient arrangement of leaving the entire space of the tower, nave, and chancel clear to the view has not been adhered to. Was this beautiful arch restored and thrown open, the whole character of the interior would be greatly improved; and, though in this particular case the obstructions have been made as inoffensive as could possibly be, yet it might have been more desirable, with due regard to architectonic expression and effect, not to have closed up the arch, or admitted a gallery before it at all."
"The font, displaced from its ancient symbolical position near the door, stands a little towards the north side of the west end of the nave, and immediately below the gallery. It is of stone, about four feet high, and has a pyramidal cover of deal, painted to look like oak. Through the efflux of time and much rough usage it is partially defaced, and further disfigured by continuous applications of lime and white paint. The head, which is octagonal, rests upon a stem, whose lower portion is of similar shape, though the upper part is quadrangular, and it rises from an incline placed upon a square base. The four sides of the incline have each had carving of some grotesque figure, now all but obliterated; and beneath the head are four other sculptures, all likewise so much mutilated as not to be defined, but whose position, exactly over the sculptures at the base, cause them to be regarded as having been the capitals of four small columns, that afforded further ornamental support to the overhaninging head. Seven of the faces of the lower part of the stem are ornamented in high relief with carvings of windows of the Decorated period of architecture, of three lights each; and the remaining face is carved in the same bold manner, top represent a window"
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Gentleman's Magazine 1849 part 1 p.259  "of the like number of lights, but of Early Perpendicular style. Above the upper set of sculptures are inscriptions in Latin in old characters, that extend round the bottom of the bowl. They have been deeply cut; but so few of the letters are now legible that nothing can be learnt from them, though probably they had reference to the subjects rudely sculptured in raised figures on each of the compartments or faces in the head. On the first of these faces is a representation of the tree of life. The second, upon a triangular shield, displays the emblems of the crucifixion. The third face represnts the wod proceeding out of the mouth of the Almighty to all parts of the world. The fourth symbolizes the Trinity. The fifth is difficult to decypher, but some appearances like vine leaves may be traced. The sixth, within a triangular shield, has Aaron's rod, and in the corners are smaller shields of the same shape, that on the dexter base of the larger shield being charged with the armorial bearings of the Multons, lords of Egremont and Cockermouth; but the one next the sinister base is not to be deciphered with precision. The seventh face represents the tree of knowledge of good and evil, with the tempter of mankind in the form of a dragon passing through the trunk, the meaning of which rudely executed symbols are by the intelligent sexton of the church quaintly construed to be, "the effects of a good sermon cut through, and rendered to no avail, by the Devil." On the eighth face, within an escutcheon of triangular form, are the royal arms of England as borne by Edward III.; and in the corners are two smaller shields, that next the dexter base of the royal achievement being charged with the armorial coat of Gilbert Umfreville, Earl of Angus; while the other, next the sinister base, shows the arms of the Lucys, successors to the Multons in the lordships above named. From these various architectural and heraldic devices it has been inferred that the font is as old as the reign of the chivalric sovereign above named, and that it was given to the church by the Earl of Angus and his wife Maud, the lineal descendant of Alice de Romeli, and sister and sole heiress of Anthony Lucy, feudal lord of the barony of Egremont and seignory of Cockermouth."
"(To be continued.)"

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