Monday, 25 August 2014

Kencot, Oxfordshire

This is the excellent Norman tympanum over the doorway at St George's in Kencot. You don't expect to come across an astrological symbol on a church. I don't really understand what it's doing there. But then so many of the symbols seem quite obscure. I like Arthur Collins' 1914 Symbolism of animals and birds represented in English church architecture. But even he doesn't make any particularly convincing suggestion. He does say that Virgil had centaurs at the gates of hell. But to be honest they were probably on the side of the baddies, not there to put arrows down the devil's mouth, as the carving below suggests. And an archer is mentioned in Revelation 6:1-2. But he was sitting on a white horse, rather that being half man half horse. So I still have no idea. But I like the carving anyway and I liked the style of the lettering (and we haven't often seen writing at all).

I was quite pleased with this effort. In fact I sent it off with some others to be printed on postcards. I did notice 'Sagitarius' wasn't spelt right but I thought it was ok because that's How It Was. I'd stood there and copied the style of the writing really carefully.

Actually that's How It Wasn't. I just didn't notice there was another T between the centaur's head and the bow. My sister enjoyed pointing it out to me. This is a bit of a shame.

Images © Rhiannon 2014

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