Going West – The Kilpeck Corbels

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Kilpeck’s bellcote reminded me of the first church we had visited, where our adventures had begun, though this one is a nineteenth century addition, carved and decorated in keeping with the rest of the building; restorations have been gentle here. But it was a small carving we had mainly come to see, one of the corbels… and probably one of the most famous and photographed corbels on any church. But first, we had to find it. You wouldn’t think that finding a corbel would be all that difficult… they support the roof, so you know where to look… but…

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…where on earth do you start with the corbels at Kilpeck church? Like the fabulous door, they have survived almost entirely intact. Originally, there were ninety-one of them, holding up the carved and decorated eaves of the roof. Now there are fewer… a ‘mere’ eighty-four survive after nearly nine hundred years. Plus the heads that flank the windows. And the great dragons or serpents that watch over the west end of the church. And… well, it just goes on and on…

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If we needed any reminder of how much of the visual language of such carvings we have lost over the centuries, Kilpeck would do the trick. There are birds, fish and beasts… an entire bestiary of them… but closer inspection reveals they are not all quite what they first appear to be. Many of the designs seem to contain human heads.

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About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She writes alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. Find out more at France and Vincent. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at scvincent.com and on Twitter @SCVincent. Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email: findme@scvincent.com.
This entry was posted in Ancient Egypt, Ancient sites, Art, Churches, Don and Wen, Goddess, Grief, History, mystery, Photography, Sacred sites, Wales and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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