Atlantis Online
July 21, 2019, 09:47:51 am
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: Satellite images 'show Atlantis'
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/3766863.stm
 
  Home Help Arcade Gallery Links Staff List Calendar Login Register  

Mazes and Labyrinths

Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 [8] 9 10 11 12   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Mazes and Labyrinths  (Read 1883 times)
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #105 on: April 04, 2009, 11:31:22 pm »

much worn when described by Wallet and has possibly been replaced by now.

A queer type of labyrinth was formerly represented in the Cathedral of Poitiers. It perished long ago, but for some time subsequently there remained on the wall of the north aisle a sketch of it (Fig. 55), which, however, gave no clue to the dimensions of the original. It will be seen that the construction is such that he who traces the path eventually emerges--like the poet of the "Rubaiyat"--by that same door at which he entered; he will have

p. 65

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #106 on: April 04, 2009, 11:31:35 pm »

encountered no "stops," but he may have "looped the loop" an indefinite number of times.

In the old abbey of Toussaints, Châlons-sur-Marne, which was destroyed in 1544, there was a series of tiles each bearing a small labyrinth of the conventional Cretan type (Fig. 56. See plate, p. 74). Pavement-tiles with labyrinths were also found in the Abbaye de Pont l’Abbé (Finistère).

A pavement labyrinth has been described as existing in the floor of the guard chamber of the Abbey of St. Stephen at Caen. Dawson Turner, in his "Tour in Normandy," thus refers to it: "The floor is laid with tiles, each near five inches square, baked almost to vitrification. Eight rows of these tiles, running east to west, are charged with different coats of arms, said to be those of the families who attended Duke William in his invasion of England. The intervals between these rows are filled up with a kind of tessellated pavement, the middle whereof represents a maze or labyrinth, about ten feet in diameter, and so artfully contrived that, were we to suppose a man following all the intricate meanders of the volutes, he could not travel less than a mile before he got from one end to the other. The remainder of the floor is inlaid with small squares of different colours, placed alternately and formed into draught or chess boards, for the amusement of the soldiers while on guard." The pavement was destroyed in 1802.

It has frequently been stated that a pavement labyrinth existed in a church at Aix near Marseilles, but probably this is due to confusion with the Roman pavement already referred to.

The only examples recorded as having existed in Germany were situated in two churches at Cologne, but these have long since disappeared.

In view of the widespread occurrence of these devices in mediaeval churches it would be surprising if the idea were not sometimes utilised by modern architects

p. 66

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #107 on: April 04, 2009, 11:32:05 pm »

attempting to reproduce the spirit of the old buildings, and in fact this was done in the case of the prize plans submitted 1 by the English architects Clutton and Burges for the Church of Notre-Dame de la Treille at Lille. Burges designed for the nave a "Chemin de Jérusalem" of a wonderful pattern, the topography of "Jerusalem" being based upon the account in the "Ecclesiastical History" of the Venerable Bede (V. ch. 16). A good modern

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #108 on: April 04, 2009, 11:32:34 pm »



FIG. 57.--Labyrinth in Ely Cathedral. (W. H. M.)

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #109 on: April 04, 2009, 11:32:46 pm »

example, 20 ft. square, may be seen in the pavement of Ely Cathedral, near the west door (Fig. 57). It was constructed by Sir Gilbert Scott during his restorations in 18 70. Some other modern specimens will be mentioned presently.

As to the function and meaning of the old church labyrinths, various opinions have been held. Some authorities have thought that they were merely introduced as a


p. 67

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #110 on: April 04, 2009, 11:33:09 pm »

symbol of the perplexities and intricacies which beset the Christian's path. Others considered them to typify the entangling nature of sin or of any deviation from the rectilinear path of Christian duty. It has often been asserted, though on what evidence is not clear, that the larger examples were used for the performance of miniature pilgrimages in substitution for the long and tedious journeys formerly laid upon penitents. Some colour is lent to this supposition by the name "Chemin de Jérusalem." In the days of the first crusades it was a common practice for the confessor to send the peccant members of his flock either to fight against the infidel, or, after the victory of Geoffrey of Bouillon, to visit the Holy Sepulchre. As enthusiasm for the crusades declined, shorter pilgrimages were substituted, usually to the shrine of some saint, such as Our Lady of Loretto, or St. Thomas of Canterbury, and it is quite possible that, at a time when the soul had passed out of the crusades and the Church's authority was on the ebb, a journey on the knees around the labyrinth's sinuosities was prescribed as an alternative to these pilgrimages. Perhaps this type of penance was from the first imposed on those who, through weakness or any other reason, were unable to undertake long travels.

In the case of the wall labyrinths, of course, the journey would be less arduous still, being performed by the index finger.

Whether such practices ever obtained or not, most writers who have had occasion to mention church labyrinths during the past century have adopted, more or less without question, the view that not only were the labyrinths used in this way, but that they were in fact designed for the purpose.

This view seems to rest chiefly on a statement by J. B. F. Géruzez in his "Description of the City of Rheims" (1817), to the effect that the labyrinth which formerly lay in the cathedral was in origin an object of

p. 68

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #111 on: April 04, 2009, 11:33:55 pm »

devotion, being the emblem of the interior of the Temple of Jerusalem, but Géruzez quotes no authority for his assertion. Another explanation, based upon the occurrence of the figures of the architects or founders in certain of the designs, is that the labyrinth was a sort of masonic seal, signifying that the pious aim of the builder had been to raise to the glory of God a structure to vie with the splendours of the traditional Labyrinth. It is also said that in some cases the "Chemins" were used for processional purposes.

Some writers have held that the labyrinth was inserted in the church as typifying the Christian's life or the devious course of those who yield to temptation. Some have thought that it represented the path from the house of Pilate to Calvary, pointing out that Chateaubriand, in his "Itinéraire de Paris à Jérusalem," mentioned two hours as the period which he took to repeat Christ's journey, and that the same time would be taken in traversing the average pavement labyrinth on the knees.

The use of the labyrinth as a simile for the Christian's life is shown in a stone inscription in the Museum at Lyons:


HOC SPECVLO • SPECVLARE LEGENS • QVOD SIS MORITVRVS
QVOD CINIS IMMOLVTVM QVOD VERMIBVS ESCA FVTVRVS
SED TAMEN VT SEMPER VIVAS • MALE VIVERE VITA
XPM QVESO ROGA • SIT VT IN XPO MEA VITA
ME CAPVT APRIL’ • EX HOC RAPVIT LABERINTO
PREBITVM • DOCEO VERSV MĀ FVNERA QN̄TO:
                  STEPHANVS • FECIT OC.

Whether this inscription was ever attached to a labyrinthine design is not known.

p. 69

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #112 on: April 04, 2009, 11:34:24 pm »

It is strange if, amongst all the great mass of mediaeval ecclesiastical literature, there is actually no indication of the use or significance of these monuments in the service of the Church; but no light appears to be forthcoming from this source, and certainly the writings of the chief authorities of these times give no support to any of the theories mentioned above.

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #113 on: April 04, 2009, 11:34:55 pm »



FIG. 58.--Labyrinth in Church at Bourn, Cambs. (W. H. M.)

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #114 on: April 04, 2009, 11:35:07 pm »

It is noteworthy that in none of the known examples do any distinctively Christian emblems occur, and that, amongst all the myriad inscriptions, paintings, and carvings of the early Christians, in the catacombs of Rome and elsewhere, the labyrinth never once figures.

So far as these islands are concerned the practice of placing labyrinths in churches does not seem to have become common.

In the "Architectural Dictionary" (1867) mention is

p. 70

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #115 on: April 04, 2009, 11:35:22 pm »

made of one formerly existing in Canterbury Cathedral, but no particulars are given.

On the floor below the tower of the church at Bourn, Cambridgeshire, is a maze (Fig. 58) worked in black and red tiles, the centre being occupied by the font, the step of which forms the terminus of the path. From the fact that an intermediate portion of the path is concealed beneath the base of the font it is plain that the position of the latter is an after-thought, and from the design of the maze, no less than from the character of the tiles of which it is composed, the work would appear to be of comparatively modern date. The modern specimen at Ely has already been mentioned.

There is also a labyrinth, in this case engraved on the floor of the church porch, at Alkborough, Lincolnshire, but this is a modern replica of the turf maze in the locality--a point which brings us to the subject of our next chapter.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Footnotes
66:1 These plans, although awarded the prize, were not adopted, the designs actually carried out being some by a native architect who obtained tenth place in the competition.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #116 on: April 04, 2009, 11:35:57 pm »

CHAPTER X
TURF LABYRINTHS
WE have just remarked that the custom of placing labyrinth designs in churches does not appear to have become general on this side of the English Channel. We have in England, however, a class of survivals peculiar to this country which may be regarded as the equivalent of the former. These are the turf mazes which are to be found in various counties, usually under some local name, such as "Mizmaze," "Julian's Bower," "Troy Town," or "Shepherd's Race."

One of the best-preserved examples is that at Alkborough, or Aukborough, a pretty village on the east side of the Trent falls, where the Ouse and Trent join to form the Humber. Crowning the hill is a square earth-work called the Countess Close, supposed to be the remains of a Roman Camp, and possibly the site of the ancient Aquis. On the side of the hill is a basin-shaped depression, in the turf of which is cut, to a depth of about 6 in., a labyrinth known as "Julian's Bower," or "Gilling Bore," about 40 ft. in diameter. Our illustration (Fig. 59) is reproduced from a drawing kindly supplied by the Rev. G. Yorke, Vicar of Alkborough. The configuration of the maze is exactly the same as in a figure published about a century ago in a little book called "Terra Incognita of Lincolnshire," by Miss S. Hatfield.

In recent years it has been several times cleared out

p. 72

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #117 on: April 04, 2009, 11:36:10 pm »

and trimmed up at the expense of Mr. J. Goulton Constable, J.P., F.S.A., of Walcot Hall, who is lord of the manor. Mr. Constable also caused the design of the maze to be cut in the stone floor of the church porch, the

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #118 on: April 04, 2009, 11:36:49 pm »



FIG. 59.--''Julian's Bower,'' Alkborough, Lincs. (From a litho. supplied by Rev. G. Yorke.)

Report Spam   Logged
Kabrina Teppe
Superhero Member
******
Posts: 1279



« Reply #119 on: April 04, 2009, 11:37:01 pm »

grooves being filled with cement, when the church was restored in 1887.

In Saxon and Norman times, from about A.D. 1080 to 1220, there was a small monastic grange in the neighbourhood, an offshoot of a Benedictine Monastery at Spalding. Its site is now occupied by a farm-house belonging to Magdalene College, Cambridge. The

p. 73

Report Spam   Logged
Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 [8] 9 10 11 12   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by EzPortal
Bookmark this site! | Upgrade This Forum
SMF For Free - Create your own Forum | Buy traffic for your forum/website
Powered by SMF | SMF © 2016, Simple Machines
Privacy Policy