Thursday, 22 March 2012

St Edward, Cambridge

St Edward is a little gem and one of my favourite Cambridge churches but I can't quite put my finger on why. I think it's a combination of location and interior.

Pevsner: The lower part of the W tower is c. 1200 (see the low tower arch inside and a deeply splayed S Window), the rest of the church essentially of c. 1400. Nave with four narrow little arcades with pretty piers and two-centred arches. The piers have thin semi-octagonal shafts with concave sides and with capitals and in the diagonals hollows which run uninterrupted into the arches. The arcades of the chancel lower than those of the nave and later in the design of piers and arches. These chancel aisles were added in 1446 to offer chapel space to Clare College and Trinity Hall. Both colleges had until then worshipped in St John Zachary, which church was pulled down to make way for the new King’s College. The windows were re-done in 1858 and again in 1946 (by Professor Richardson). The W door and Vestry are also c 19. - Good original chancel roof. - FONT. Perp, octagonal, With quatrefoils in circles on the sides of the bowl. The angles are carried by demi-figures of deacons. Shaft with blank tracery panels. - Pulpit. c. 1510, with linenfold panelling. - BRASSES. Heads of Knight and Lady, part of a large brass of c. 1400 - Woman in a shroud, c 17.

Either these two brasses are now gone or I missed them - Mee doesn't mention them so I assume they're 'lost'.

Owen Mayfield 1685 (2)

William Becke 1614 (6)


Three martyrs of the Reformation (Thomas Bilney, Robert Barnes, and Hugh Latimer), preached in the church of St Edward the King in the heart of the town, hemmed round with old houses and small shops. The plastered tower of diminishing stages is chiefly 13th century, with older masonry in the base. The nave and its aisles, divided by slender arches, and the pleasing chancel up three steps, are 14th century; the chancel aisles are 15th, and keep their old roofs. The tilting chancel arch is held by an iron bar. The old font has rich carving of tracery and flowers, with angels round the base. There is a fine bronze portrait plaque of Frederick Denison Maurice, vicar here for a short time till his death in 1872.

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