Archive for the ‘In the church…’ Category


Earlier this summer we took a trip to Buffalo, New York, and stopped by the Allentown Arts Festival. In conjunction with the festival, Trinity Church was opened up for the public to walk through, and I of course went in with my camera. The walls and windows were covered in memorials that I wanted to show.


I took a number of photos of stained glass windows with dedications, and luckily it was an overcast enough day that my photos were not all overexposed. Memorials like those in stained glass represent a kind of common cenotaph in our culture – we may be interred in a cemetery or churchyard (or even have our ashes scattered to the winds or the sea) but those we love put our names somewhere else that more people visit – on the bench at our favorite park, in stained glass at our church, in a memorial brick at our alma mater. People we knew who spent time in those places see our names and remember us, and those who never knew us read our names to themselves and wonder who we were and what we were like.


Usually the stained glass containing names is at the bottom in its own panel – sometimes I could get the whole window, but sometimes the light wasn’t quite right.

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I completely missed last month’s Graveyard Rabbits carnival, which was “how long have they been there?’ The idea was to post the oldest grave/tombstone/memorial that you had photographed in your cemetery explorations. I’ve been uploading my photos to make a photo book because I was given a gift certificate for a rather nice photobook producer. The oldest memorials that I have photographed are not tombstones, but monuments inside Dublin cathedrals.

St. Patrick’s Cathedral holds the tomb of Fulk de Saundford, an Archbishop of Dublin. If I’m reading the inscription correctly, the year is 1261.

St. Patrick's Cathedral


There was another effigy that was either unlabeled or whose label I did not see.


Christ Church Cathedral also had effigies in a similar arrangement.



This one had a plaque with an inscription.


Of course, I utterly failed to get a photograph of the famous Strongbow effigy in Christ Church. Maybe next time.

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Spire of St. Patrick's near sunset

St. Patrick's Cathedral

I’ve written about my whirlwind walking tour of Dublin before. The last place I was able to visit before darkness forced me back to my hotel was St. Patrick’s Cathedral. The sun is already setting in the photographs I am showing here.

Statue of St. Patrick

Carving on St. Patrick's Cathedral showing St. Patrick

St. Patrick’s is named, of course, for the patron saint of Ireland. St. Patrick’s has a more specific claim to the saint, however. In the park just outside the church, you can find this tiny marker.

St. Patrick's Well

It states “Near here is the reputed site of the well where St. Patrick baptised many of the local inhabitants in the Fifth Century A.D.”

Inside, there is not a crypt to visit, but the walls are positively lined with monuments to the well-heeled of Ireland. This one is for an Earl of Cork and his Countess.

Earl and Countess of Cork

William Worth, a Baron of the Exchequer, has a simpler but still fitting monument.

William Worth

Like in Christ Church, there are some medieval burials that are so worn by time as to be unidentifiable without some other sort of records.


Fulk de Sandeford, Archbishop of Dublin many years ago, has a better preserved tomb.

St. Patrick's Cathedral

Robert Sutton has a funeral brass. Monumental brasses are a real challenge to photograph.

Funeral brass at St. Patrick's

I photographed so many memorials in St. Patrick’s that there will definitely be more posts about it.

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As promised in the first post on Christ Church Cathedral, we would visit the crypt. After our little diversion into what you cemetery blogger considers the perhaps overly macabre, here we are.

The lighting consists of spotlights on each monument, which can make even these little cherubs look a little more sinister.


Only a small section of the crypt is actually open, but the monuments are stunning. This one to John, Lord Bowes and Lord Chancellor of Ireland who died in 1767, was erected by his brother.

John, Lord Bowes

Another grief-stricken woman weeps forever over the body of Nathaniel Sneyd.



The tablet at the feet of the marble representation of the deceased recites his virtues.


And Henry Mathias, assistant surgeon, has a marker that tells us not only the date of his death, but the latitude.

Henry Mathias Memorial

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Yesterday, I wrote about Christ Church Cathedral in Dublin, and specifically the monuments in the main cathedral. I cannot write about the dead at Christ Church without writing about perhaps the most famous entombment at all – the cat and the rat. The crypt displays the mummified remains of a cat and rat.   Please do not click below if you think you will find photos of such disturbing. (more…)

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Christchurch Cathedral

One of the most magnificent places I visited in Dublin was Christ Church Cathedral, or the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity. Founded in approximately 1030, the cathedral is the seat of the Anglican – Episcopalian Diocese of Dublin and Glendalough, Church of Ireland. (Despite the fact that the Republic of Ireland is estimated to be over 90% Roman Catholic, both of the cathedrals I visited in Dublin were Anglican.)


Like many European cathedrals, Christ Church has burials underneath the cathedral floor. Some of them are so old and worn by time that the art is difficult to make out.




Sometimes modern signs intrude on any attempt to lose oneself in the age of the cathedral and its monuments.
Thomas Prior

Here is a detail shot of the poem in Latin on Prior’s monument. I can pick out words, but not translate the whole thing.
Thomas Prior

Thomas Abbott, LLD

Thomas Fletcher

Next post on Christ Church – the crypt…

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