Thursday, 15 October 2009

Elgin Cathedral - 4

Here is another view of the East End of the cathedral. You can see the Chapter House at the North End.

Though much of the nave is reduced to mere foundations, the rest stills stands remarkably complete. Most awe-inspiring of all is the spectacular west front, flanked by two tall towers. In the centre is the processional entrance, dating from about 1270. Eight orders of engaged shafts step diagonally towards the doors, and carry finely-moulded orders of arches. The two doorway arches, with their beguiling oval recess above, once housing a representation of the Holy Trinity, and still flanked by adoring angels, were added in the early 15th century.

The east end of the building is the most complete part of the cathedral to survive. The choir and stunning presbytery, dating from around 1270, are undoubtedly the climax, incorporating window tracery that was ‘state of the art’ in its day. The fine stone-vaulted octagonal chapter house, dating from the 15th century, is the most complete element surviving, evoking a wonderful atmosphere of a bygone age.

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