E.J.Wilkins

08 Jul 2007 2,150 views
 
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photoblog image The Hospital of St Cross, Winchester

The Hospital of St Cross, Winchester


The Hospital of St Cross and Almshouse of Noble Poverty is at Winchester – here –

The Hospital, which is England's oldest charitable institution, maintains the tradition of providing The Wayfarer's Dole to those who ask, this was originally a 'horn of beer and a morsel of bread'. Today's visitors to the Hospital are given, on request, a tot of beer (donated by Fuller's Brewery) and a piece of dry bread, as shown in my picture, and can take their ease in the courtyard.

….

"The Hospital of St Cross" was founded by Henry of Blois (grandson of William the Conqueror) between 1132 and 1136, only three years after he became Bishop of Winchester. The Hospital, in this case meaning hospitality, provided a home for thirteen "Poor men, so frail that they were unable to work" and food for a hundred men at the gates each day.

The thirteen resident men became known as The Brothers of Saint Cross, they were/are not monks. The brothers wear buttoned black gowns bearing a silver cross on the left chest, and black trencher hats. About three hundred years later, in 1445, Cardinal Henry Beaufort founded "The Order of Noble Poverty", providing a home for a further twelve men who wear Cardinal's red robes bearing a gold emblem, and a red trencher hat. Today the men are more often referred to as either the Black Brothers or the Red Brothers 

There are still homes for twenty five brothers, unemployed men over the age of sixty, who live in self contained flats in a building dating back to the fifteenth century.

.....

St Cross is a charitable institution; it receives no support from central government, and depends entirely on day to day donations. If you would like to offer financial support please look here  http://www.stcross.f2s.com/howhelp.htm for more information.

.....
If you would like to see more of my pictures of St Cross please look - here -
If you like what you see, perhaps you would like to donate to the charity. Every penny helps.
.....

The Hospital of St Cross, Winchester


The Hospital of St Cross and Almshouse of Noble Poverty is at Winchester – here –

The Hospital, which is England's oldest charitable institution, maintains the tradition of providing The Wayfarer's Dole to those who ask, this was originally a 'horn of beer and a morsel of bread'. Today's visitors to the Hospital are given, on request, a tot of beer (donated by Fuller's Brewery) and a piece of dry bread, as shown in my picture, and can take their ease in the courtyard.

….

"The Hospital of St Cross" was founded by Henry of Blois (grandson of William the Conqueror) between 1132 and 1136, only three years after he became Bishop of Winchester. The Hospital, in this case meaning hospitality, provided a home for thirteen "Poor men, so frail that they were unable to work" and food for a hundred men at the gates each day.

The thirteen resident men became known as The Brothers of Saint Cross, they were/are not monks. The brothers wear buttoned black gowns bearing a silver cross on the left chest, and black trencher hats. About three hundred years later, in 1445, Cardinal Henry Beaufort founded "The Order of Noble Poverty", providing a home for a further twelve men who wear Cardinal's red robes bearing a gold emblem, and a red trencher hat. Today the men are more often referred to as either the Black Brothers or the Red Brothers 

There are still homes for twenty five brothers, unemployed men over the age of sixty, who live in self contained flats in a building dating back to the fifteenth century.

.....

St Cross is a charitable institution; it receives no support from central government, and depends entirely on day to day donations. If you would like to offer financial support please look here  http://www.stcross.f2s.com/howhelp.htm for more information.

.....
If you would like to see more of my pictures of St Cross please look - here -
If you like what you see, perhaps you would like to donate to the charity. Every penny helps.
.....

comments (17)

Looks sacramental to me.
EJWilkins: I really hadn't thought that when I put the little cup and the bread on the bench, but you're right.
A simple, albeit very well done, photograph so full of meaning. As ever, your text is excellent. I knew nothing about this, and will enjoy reading more about it. (:o)
EJWilkins: Hopefully I'll get all the right information in with the pictures, even though I'm a bit pushed for time just now. Have you ever been to St Cross? If not, when you do manage to get there allow plenty of time to look and think, it's special.
Lovely simple composition, it gives me a kind of peaceful feeling, and a good text to follow
EJWilkins: That's how I felt while I was there, it's an amazingly peaceful place, quiet and gentle too, almost as if it's absorbed the atmosphere of the centuries.
I too, before reading about your image, thought of the sacraments but equally, this is a great image to introduce the black brothers to the wider world. An image full of meaning that can be read across the cultures around the world which is no easy thing to do.
EJWilkins: It didn't cross my mind when I put them on the bench to take the picture, but you're right Jose it does appear sacramental.
  • Ginnie
  • Atlanta, GA, United States
  • 8 Jul 2007, 15:33
It's absolutely sacramental, Ellie, and so simply portrayed. The text is such a wonderful addition! It makes "poverty" in this context FEEL sacramental.
EJWilkins: None of this consciously crossed my mind when I composed the picture, but so many people have said the same thing about the sacrament and you're all right, now I look at the picture again.
Lovely symbolic image Ellie.
EJWilkins: Thanks smile
  • Kay
  • Portland
  • 8 Jul 2007, 17:10
Very meaningful photo and text. I never heard of the black brothers, but now thanks to you, I have. I will visit the web site to learn more.
smile
EJWilkins: The web site is easy to look at, I hope you enjoy reading and learning some more. smile
I learn the most interesting things from you, Ellie.
Your commentary adds depth to my enjoyment of your very fine images.
EJWilkins: Thank you so much. St Cross is one of my special places, I hope you enjoy the other pictures too. smile
I too thought sacremental - what an interesting story and how encouraging that these pockets of "goodness" have stood the test of time. Mike
EJWilkins: It is encouraging, isn't it. St Cross is a good place to visit, they're so welcoming .. the people and the place smile
  • Louis
  • 8 Jul 2007, 21:21
I find stringing the words Noble and Poverty together in the name quite funny. So nobility fell on poor times then smile

Great picture of a very interesting piece of history and I guess culture of the area.
EJWilkins: I don't know enough of the history of the time, but throughout mediaeval times the nobility could be dispossessed at the flick of a quill pen for doing something wrong, or supporting the wrong cause, and their lands and living were given to a favourite. Perhaps this is why, but I don't know. I'll try to find out. smile
  • Les Auld
  • Southport UK
  • 8 Jul 2007, 23:34
Simple image but non the less effective, especially with the narative. Well seen.
EJWilkins: I suppose you could say that this is one of my first "Still Life" pictures, I'm so pleased it's worked well. Thanks Les. )
Hmm, I didn't think sacramental. I thought "bread and water = prison". I suppose poverty can be a prison for some....

It's a lovely, simple photograph, with an excellent bit of history behind it. I can't help thinking I would have liked to see a landscape crop, with more of the bench on the right.
EJWilkins: For the people who were, and are, lucky enough to find a place at St Cross it's a blessing, it's so beautiful and tranquil.
Yes, I thought of the landscape crop, with the beaker on the line marking the 'third', but it didn't work for me so I put the cross closer to the centre.
Lovely Image Ellie.
EJWilkins: Thank you. smile
Simple and beautiful picture : Bravo !!
  • Jimbo
  • 11 Jul 2007, 09:55
This is a stunner, Ellie! Beautiful in its simplicity, and a perfect image to support what the almhouse is about. Ace shot!
Lovely shot. B&W might look even better.
Medieval symbols! A very opportune detail!

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