E.J.Wilkins

02 Jun 2008 2,705 views
 
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Winchester


Buttercross

A wider view of the 15th Century (1400s) Buttercross or High Cross which stands in a pedestrianised area of the City of Winchester, tucked into the corner at the junction of The Pentice and the High Street. - Here - It's position marks the centre of the old City.

In 1770 the Cross had fallen into disrepair and was sold to a Mr Dummer, who planned to demolish it and use the stone for building. The citizens showed their objection by petitioning and rioting, they won the day and the monument was saved for the City.

The Cross was restored in 1865, by C. Scott. Some records suggest that this is when some of the figures were added, perhaps replacing those that had become worn. The lower four figures are meant to represent St John the Evangelist, which is inset top left and is the oldest figure. The others are William of Wycombe, King Alfred and Lawrence de Anne although I'm not entirely sure which is which. In niches at the top of the cross are eight figures, representing The Virgin Mary and Saints Bartholomew, John, Lawrence, Maurice, Peter, Swithun and Thomas. These figures can only be seen clearly through either binoculars or a long lens.

The Cross is now cleaned and inspected annually, by the City Council. Any necessary repairs and renovations are carried out by specialist conservators. The monument is a Listed Ancient Monument, Schedule number 303, which puts it quite early in the conservation listing programme and indicates its' importance. A newspaper article about cleaning the monument is - here -

The term "Butter Cross" is quite commonly used for either Market Crosses or High Crosses, but was never the original name of a structure. In Winchester it is where butter and dairy produce were traded - stone stays cool even on the warmest day, which was important in days before refrigeration.
During times of plague merchants would leave goods on the steps early in the morning, returning at the end of the day to collect unsold items and payment - coins were left in vinegar to prevent infection.

It's a popular meeting place even now, something that's hinted in this picture.

For a detailed image of the Cross pinnacle look - here -

.....

Perhaps I should return soon, and earlier in the day too, when there's more likely to be a blue sky, which would not only look nicer but also help bring out the colour of the stonework.
.

Winchester


Buttercross

A wider view of the 15th Century (1400s) Buttercross or High Cross which stands in a pedestrianised area of the City of Winchester, tucked into the corner at the junction of The Pentice and the High Street. - Here - It's position marks the centre of the old City.

In 1770 the Cross had fallen into disrepair and was sold to a Mr Dummer, who planned to demolish it and use the stone for building. The citizens showed their objection by petitioning and rioting, they won the day and the monument was saved for the City.

The Cross was restored in 1865, by C. Scott. Some records suggest that this is when some of the figures were added, perhaps replacing those that had become worn. The lower four figures are meant to represent St John the Evangelist, which is inset top left and is the oldest figure. The others are William of Wycombe, King Alfred and Lawrence de Anne although I'm not entirely sure which is which. In niches at the top of the cross are eight figures, representing The Virgin Mary and Saints Bartholomew, John, Lawrence, Maurice, Peter, Swithun and Thomas. These figures can only be seen clearly through either binoculars or a long lens.

The Cross is now cleaned and inspected annually, by the City Council. Any necessary repairs and renovations are carried out by specialist conservators. The monument is a Listed Ancient Monument, Schedule number 303, which puts it quite early in the conservation listing programme and indicates its' importance. A newspaper article about cleaning the monument is - here -

The term "Butter Cross" is quite commonly used for either Market Crosses or High Crosses, but was never the original name of a structure. In Winchester it is where butter and dairy produce were traded - stone stays cool even on the warmest day, which was important in days before refrigeration.
During times of plague merchants would leave goods on the steps early in the morning, returning at the end of the day to collect unsold items and payment - coins were left in vinegar to prevent infection.

It's a popular meeting place even now, something that's hinted in this picture.

For a detailed image of the Cross pinnacle look - here -

.....

Perhaps I should return soon, and earlier in the day too, when there's more likely to be a blue sky, which would not only look nicer but also help bring out the colour of the stonework.
.

comments (19)

  • Martin
  • United States
  • 2 Jun 2008, 00:10
It really would have been a shame to use this for building materials! Informative and interesting. Thanks for sharing!
EJWilkins: It would, wouldn't it - thank goodness the people of Winchester decided to revolt.
  • Kay
  • United States
  • 2 Jun 2008, 00:35
Ellie, your previous shot incorporated the top part of the statue. I thought it was a tower. Today's picture cleared that up. I stlll say it's beautiful, no matter the weather. I love historical architecture like this...it tells a story. And I like the way you shared it with us. Thank you.
EJWilkins: I thought some people might think it was a tower, that's why I showed the whole structure today.
  • Helen
  • United States
  • 2 Jun 2008, 01:53
Very nice... I kinds of like it against a white back round.
EJWilkins: Thanks, it's a bit postcardish, but I thought it worked too smile
I so appreciate the educational aspect of your blog posts. i'm always assured of learning something new every day on my daily visit here.
EJWilkins: No guarantee that there'll always be something to read Mary, but I'm delighted you enjoy the bits and pieces I do manage to find out. Thanks smile
  • ray
  • Thailand
  • 2 Jun 2008, 02:44
Very fine illustrated history lesson...thanks, Ellie.
EJWilkins: I get torn between showing a picture of a place and assuming everybody will know what it is, because this is a "picture blog site", and actually adding a bit of information as on a 'blog'. As this is my only site I've ended up mixing the two together, and hope nobody minds too much.
Many thanks for the history lesson Ellie. You did a superb collage here!
EJWilkins: Thanks Richard
  • padraig
  • Great Britain (UK)
  • 2 Jun 2008, 09:44
what a nice monument, well done those poeple who saved it, it would have been a huge loss, seems bit of a shame that pasty presto is encroaching on its personal space, but hey, at least its still there. Nice detail Ellie but I agree, a nicer sky would make a difference.
EJWilkins: Ah, you're absolutely right about the way it's hemmed in on two sides, but I think the Pasty Presto building is quite old too, although I'm not quite sure how old, and worth preserving in its' own right. It might be Tudor, might be a bit later - it's got the stepped upper storey.
As for the sky, I've almost forgotten what blue looks like, the weather is dire here.
An interesting piece and montage.
The blue sky would look nice, however, an overcast sky gives soft even lighting.
EJWilkins: A blue sky would be nice, any time, haven't really seen one for weeks and at the moment there's torrential rain out there. Yuk!
  • Aussie
  • Brisbane
  • 2 Jun 2008, 12:24
Lovely collage Ellie.
EJWilkins: Thanks Aussie
  • vintage
  • Australia
  • 2 Jun 2008, 13:33
great collage interesting information.I all way read all of your info Ellie I keep thinking you are going to send us an exam paper.
EJWilkins: grin Absolutely no chance of that. One reason for writing the stuff down along with the pictures is so that I can remember it, and also the sites I've looked at. I enjoy finding out about places, and can't bear to keep it to myself.
Thanks for showing the whole monument Ellie, I suggested it might be surrounded by trafific and I was wrong. Nicely presented collage, I like the corners idea very much.
EJWilkins: The whole of this area is "Conservation Area", and no traffic at all, but the buildings ended up quite close didn't they?
Brilliant stuff Ellie: I'm really enjoying this
EJWilkins: That's good smile Not many more, the light was fading fast as I walked up the High Street. Must go back again!
... and you should have included '' Winchester Cathedral '' the New Vaudeville Band's hit back in the good old days. I'm also echoing Chris's positives.
richard
EJWilkins: You'll have to wait until I get time to visit the Cathedral wink
Great story and a super collage Ellie
EJWilkins: Thanks Bill, more of that trivia - you never know, pub quiz and so on! wink
  • Sheila
  • Spain mostly, England a little
  • 2 Jun 2008, 19:46
This is a great piece of collage work, Ellie, with a great deal of cutting, pasting and stitching. Very well done.

The history is good too.
EJWilkins: Thanks Sheila, I'm glad you're enjoying this little series
Beautiful study Ellie. Lovely work. :o) John
EJWilkins: Thanks John
  • tim
  • leeds uk
  • 2 Jun 2008, 21:03
wonderful collage Ellie with a history lesson thrown in for good measuresmilesmile
EJWilkins: Ah, yes, the history bit, I don't do it as neatly as some, I'll learn one day to make it read a bit better smile
Love your art work as well as the photographs well put together
EJWilkins: Thanks Martin smile
  • kavita
  • Paramaribo
  • 2 Jun 2008, 22:15
Very Beautiful and a great history lesson
EJWilkins: They say nothing's new and we can learn from history, I wonder if it's really true?

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