In July Vic Hughes was welcomed back to East Markham WI to continue his ‘History of Lincoln Cathedral’. Vic said to fully understand its history, it was necessary to envisage life as it would have been at the time the cathedral was built and how life and worship took place within the strict authority of the Church.
The word cathedral comes from cathedra, the seat of the Bishop. In a cathedral the nave is the common area with the most holy place being hidden from general view behind a screen. The seats for the Bishop, the clergy and a choir are usually behind this screen. In Lincoln the area immediately behind the Rood Screen is St Hugh’s Choir, named after the first Bishop and it is here that the Bishop has his throne. This throne is named in Latin, as are the stalls of its many Canons. The seats for the Canons are hinged and have a decoration and a small ledge underneath. When the seats are lifted the ledge provides a perch on which the Canons can rest during the long periods of standing required during services.
The choir, which is behind the magnificent Rood Screen, is named after St Hugh, the first Bishop and is highly decorative in exquisitely carved wood. The beautiful shrine to St Hugh is in the Angel Choir found at the east end of the cathedral. No history of Lincoln Cathedral can be told without mention of the Lincoln Imp. This figure is carved high up on one of the columns in the Angel Choir and there are a number of stories as to how and why it is there. Representations of the Imp are popular items of memorabilia in the cathedral shop and their sale helps raise much needed funds for the cathedral’s maintenance.
Throughout his very informative and illustrated talk Vic told many stories and anecdotes about life and events at the cathedral which brought its history to life. The vote of thanks made reference to a link between East Markham’s Church and the cathedral, through a stained-glass window, depicting St Hugh and a swan, which is said to have been his faithful companion.
Tuesday 15th October will see Stephen Jon show the making and use of ‘Masks in Theatre, Carnival and Art’. All meetings take place at East Markham Village Hall, NG22 0SS starting at 7.15pm. Visitors and new members are always welcome. Contact 01777 871706 for further information.