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This is it! I've given up work -retired from the rat race and am about to start on a 10 year adventure, doing all those things I've been meaning to do but never had the time to do them. I've offloaded my responsibilities and it is now my time. So follow my adventures and see whether I actually manage anything!



Monday, 3 November 2014

York Minster





York Minster is one of the largest Gothic cathedrals in Northern Europe. The present building was begun in 1230 and completed in 1472. The Minster (word developed in Anglo Saxon times for a church established as a missionary teaching church) is 158m long built in the shape of a cross with a central tower and two towers at the West front.




It is built from a light creamy coloured stone and  has a golden glow in the late afternoon sunshine.

There are numerous sculptures of figures and gargoyles decorating the outside of the building. The Minster has its own masons and carvers using the same traditional craft skills that would have been used in medieval times. They are currently replacing 3,500 stones at the East end of the Minster which have been eroded over the centuries. It takes 4 months for one mason to carve one new stone. It is estimated that it will take 10 years to complete the work.

















Inside the cathedral you can see the largest expanse of medieval stained glass in the world in the Great East window which is roughly the same size as a tennis court. It was only when I was close to the window that I realised I was looking at a copy as the window is undergoing major restoration.  In total 311 panels have been removed. Once restored some of the panels are being put on display so that visitors can have a closer view of them before they are put back into the window. In the 1950s the windows were restored but not accurately, so now they are taking out the 50s restoration work and trying to recreate the original colours and glasswork.














This was the panel before conservation. Notice the different colours on the cloak.

This was the panel afterwards. Conservators have restored God's purple cloak to its original colour where the previous restoration had patched it with different shades of red.



West window



The Rose window








This is the Kings'screen surrounding the archway into the organ and Quire.











Below the Quire is the crypt where there are many relics dating back to medieval times. This is the Doomstone.


It shows ' Hell's cauldron'or 'the mouth of Hell'. It is a gruesome scene of lost souls being slowly pushed into a boiling cauldron by demons. More grinning demons stoke the fire under the cauldron.


This is the remains of a hollow core column used in Norman times to support the great weight of the Cathedral.





These 700 year old stones were part of a sequence telling the story of the beginning of the world according to Genesis. They were removed in the 1990s from around the West door of the Minster and are now in the Undercroft. The rest of the stones were either unsafe or beyond repair and new stones have been carved by the Minster masons to replace them.



The York Gospel

This book is 1000 years old and describes the life of Jesus. It is still used in the Minster today.



Adjoining the Minster is the Chapter house.
 Built in the 1280s it is a meeting place for the governing body of the cathedral. Several medieval kings have held parliament here.




Sharing with Our World Tuesday


20 comments:

  1. You have captured so many wonderful details of this amazing place. My favorite is the comparison of the 1950s restoration and the new restoration of the East Window.

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  2. Wow, last time I was there you had to pay to go in, how much is it now. That is one place which is high on my list to go to. Seem to remember one of the gargoyles on the outside came away and fell on some poor soul passing by. Needless to say they did not survive the ordeal. Some great photos you took

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  3. I always wondered where the word "minster" came from. I love this beautiful place and if I ever get a chance to see these wonders up close, I will. But for now, thank you for the lovely tour! :-)

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  4. A wonderful example of British architecture.

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  5. Wow - what an amazing place! Love the church's exterior and that stained glass window. Very interesting post - thanks for sharing.

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  6. Such an amazing place. I appreciate the background you provided. Sigh. Such history.

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  7. truly amazing and real masterpiece...

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  8. I visited there many years ago when we were in York (back before I was really taking pictures). The details in your shots are amazing. Brings back memories.

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  9. A truly magnificent building and it is so interesting that there are still craftsmen capable of using the same techniques to replace worn stones and that magnificent glass. Your photos are beautiful and show great detail. Thanks for sharing.

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  10. What a beautiful cathedral. I love the gargoyles and the stained glass. Beautiful images, thanks for sharing.. Have a happy week!

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  11. A magnificent church indeed. It is amazing how well it has stood the test of time. The stone looks like sandstone, which makes it doubly amazing for it to have worn away so little. I take it there is no heavy polluting industry in York. Lovely shots of this beautiful structure.

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  12. That's an amazing place, and it's wonderful to see it being preserved so well. Great shots!

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  13. Beautiful photos. I visited York and Yorkminster a long time ago and really enjoyed it. It was before my picture taking days though.

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  14. Wow--what a fantastic cathedral... Love it --and you got some great photos. I especially like the stained glass windows and all of the sculptures.
    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  15. Wow - fabulous shots of this Gothic beauty!

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  16. Wow! What an amazing cathedral. The stone carvings and stained windows are fabulous and all so old. The original masons did well without modern technology. I have a photo of my mum and dad on the steps on the day they were married but they weren't married in the cathedral.They were married in a registry office.

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  17. Your photography is really very, very good. Once again you give me reasons to visit York and appreciate the history and architecture.

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  18. Simply lovely photos! I am a huge fan of gargoyles.

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  19. Brings back memories ! It's a very imposing cathedral !

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  20. Wonderful photos of a wonderful place. It brings back many memories as my daughter went to university in York and graduated from the Minster. I loved visiting when she lived there.

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