Grotesques at Ripon Cathedral

Ripon Cathedral

In the 7th century, St Wilfrid built one of England’s first stone churches in Ripon.
It is hard to show the glory of one of Yorkshires great cathedrals with just photographs so I advocate a trip to Ripon to see or reacquaint yourself with this historic place.

Whilst in Ripon reread the Adventures of Alice in Wonderland which was allegedly inspired by the medieval woodcarvings that decorate the choir stalls in the Cathedral.

Americans take note of the Stars & Stripes in the stained glass windows which were part of the coat of arms of the Washington family.

Is it a Gargoyle or a Grotesques? Well gargoyles are scary and often winged monsters carved in stone which perch on the roofs of cathedrals and serve as water spouts.
Grotesques are ugly faces or monsters carved in stone, placed as decoration on pillars and corbels on the interior of a church. They may have been a warning that evil is never far away or just the stone masons showing off their skills.

The font has a lid with a lock so that people could not steal the holy water it contained and use it for sorcery.

All the above and a place of worship for over 1330 years.
There is a lot more to see and learn at the Cathedral so it makes a central and essential focus for a trip to Ripon. Enjoy.

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