Tyne and Wear HER(12210): Whickham, Church of St. Mary, grave slabs - Details
Whickham, Church of St. Mary, grave slabs
Religious Ritual and Funerary
1) Upper part of a slab of coarse yellow-grey sandstone, 0.94m x 0.52m. Its right edge has been partly broken away. A bracelet cross in relief design, within a circle with a ring overlying the bracelets (like an example from St. Mary's Church at Barnard Castle). On the left side of the cross shaft are a fleur-de-lys and leaf above what look like the handles of a pair of scissors. On the right side of the shaft is a fragment of the left quillon of a sword (according to C.C. Hodges and Fyson). Early to mid C13. 2) The upper part of a slab of coarse brown sandstone, 0.79m x 0.50m. The cross head is carved in relief within a sunken circle, a ring of eight bracelets around an 8-spoked centre. A few letters remain of a marginal inscription in Lombardic style. The name appears to have begun with the letters WIL and was thus probably William. Perhaps mid C13. The two slabs lay in the garden of the old rectory to the west of the church in 1922, but are now built into the internal face of the west wall of the south porch. A third slab described as being on the north side of the path to the south of the church has not been located.
Peter F. Ryder, 1985, The Medieval Cross Slab Grave Cover in County Durham, Architectural and Archaeological Society of Durham and Northumberland Research Report No. 1, p 118; A. Hamilton Thompson, 1922, Notes on Whickham Church, Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle upon Tyne, 3rd Series, Vol. 10, pp 44-45; Mrs D.R. Fyson, 1957, A note of the work of the late C.C. Hodges with a selection of his unpublished drawings, Archaeologia Aeliana, 4th Series, Vol. 35, pp. 129-136 (No. 136)