Looking at Buildings

, printed from the Looking at Buildings website on Wednesday 26th February 2020

Furnishings

baseGlossary Term [1] new work on admired examples in other churches. The team responsible for St Martin's fittings were three joiners called Athew, Draper and Poulden, and two carvers, one Cooper and William Newman.

The altar or communion tableGlossary Term [2] is just that: a well-made table, with spiral legs and ball-shaped feet. It was a mark of the Protestant religion to use tables of wood rather than the stone altars of the Middle Ages. Railings stand in front, making an enclosure that protected the altar from disrespectful treatment. The railings also marked where the congregation approached the altar during services of Holy Communion, when they would take bread and wine from the clergyman. The type of baluster used in the rails is similar to that of the communion tableGlossary Term [3] itself.

reredosGlossary Term [5], which forms a kind of backing for the altar. It is treated like a big piece of architecture, with pilasters and a pedimentGlossary Term [6] on top. The pilasters enclose the panels on which the Decalogue (the Ten Commandments), Creed and Lord's Prayer are written up, as was customary by the 17th century. In this instance a fifth, smaller inscription sits above, with the name of God in Greek and Latin. The cherub heads, palm fronds and urns are more typical ornaments of the period.

communion tableGlossary Term [7] is just that: a well-made table, with spiral legs and ball-shaped feet. It was a mark of the Protestant religion to use tables of wood rather than the stone altars of the Middle Ages. Railings stand in front, making an enclosure that protected the altar from disrespectful treatment. The railings also marked where the congregation approached the altar during services of Holy Communion, when they would take bread and wine from the clergyman. The type of baluster used in the rails is similar to that of the communion tableGlossary Term [8] itself.

Last updated: Monday, 26th January 2009