(4) St. Mary's Abbey (Plates 2–23) lies between
Bootham and the river Ouse immediately outside the
City wall. The existing remains include the foundations
of a church begun in 1089, ruins of the nave and N.
transept of a church begun in 1270 (Plate 4), some fragments of the E. arm of the church and of the entrance
to the Chapter House, part of the enclosing wall with
its towers and gatehouse, and a building known as the
The later history of the abbey is largely recorded in
three documentary sources. The Chronicle of St. Mary's
Abbey (Surtees Society, vol. CXLVIII (1934)) is a detailed
record running from 1258 to 1325 compiled probably
by one of the monks in the dependent cell of St. Bees.
The latter part is contemporary. There is a lacuna
covering the years 1284–92 inclusive together with a
part of 1293. The Chronicle contains details of the great
rebuilding under Abbot Simon de Warwick and his
successors. The Anonimalle Chronicle, running from 1333
to 1381 (ed. V. H. Galbraith, Manchester, 1927), was
compiled at St. Mary's Abbey. It includes four entries
concerning the abbey, only one of which—the fire of
1377—is pertinent to the building history. It is a legitimate deduction that no major new works were undertaken during the period. The Ordinale of St. Mary's
Abbey (Henry Bradshaw Society, vols. LXXIII (1936),
LXXV (1937) and LXXXIV (1951)) records the usage for
the celebration of Divine Office throughout the year.
It was drawn up by a commission appointed in 1390
(Ord. i) and contains no material later than 1398. The
extant MS. is a copy belonging to the Abbot's Chapel.
The Ordinale contains many incidental references to
the church and other buildings of the abbey, from
which it has been possible to deduce something of the
liturgical arrangement of the church, outlined below
after the architectural description, and the uses of the
various claustral buildings. (fn. 1)
St. Mary's Abbey was founded in 1088 by William II.
Earl Siward of Northumbria, who died in 1055, was
buried in the Minster of St. Olaf which he had founded
at Galmanho outside the City of York on the site later
occupied by part of St. Mary's Abbey. The minster
with its possessions was given by Alan, Earl of Richmond (EYC, 1, 265), to monks who had fled first from
Whitby and then from Lastingham because of a quarrel
with William de Percy who had refounded Whitby
Abbey, and with his brother Serlo who had become
Prior of Whitby. King William found Alan's provision
for the monks inadequate and granted them additional
land, and in 1089 laid a foundation stone for a new
abbey church of St. Mary. Of this church the plan (p. xl)
has been recovered by excavations of 1827, 1912 and
later; it was a cruciform building with an aisled nave,
central tower and a short apsidal presbytery flanked by
aisles apsidal internally but square-ended externally; two
apsidal chapels set in echelon projected from each
transept. That this church was nearing completion in
the period 1120–35 is suggested by a gift to the abbey
for the roofing of the church (EYC, XI, 100–1). It is
stated that in 1137 extensive damage was done to the
City and the abbey by a great fire (Trinity College,
Dublin, MS. E 64 (503), f. 130; J. Stowe, Annales (ed.
1631), 144; quoted by J. H. Harvey in YAJ, XLI (1966),
365) and decorative details of mid and late 12th-century
date found on the site show that building work was
going on during the second half of the 12th century;
there are late 12th-century fragments built into the
foundations of the W. wall of the church (YAYAS,
Report 1953–4, 13) but only in the vestibule of the
Chapter House is any work of this period preserved
in situ. Artistically the most important remains from
this period are the great series of sculptures of c. 1200
which were connected with the Chapter House.
In 1270 the rebuilding of the church was begun under
Abbot Simon de Warwick, a new E. arm being the
first work to be undertaken; the Chronicle records that
the foundations reached in places to a depth of 26 ft.
The first stone of the walling was laid in that year and
of the columns of the choir in 1277 (Chron. 15) and the
eastern arm must have been structurally complete by
1283 when Archbishop William Wickwane consecrated
six altars in the new choir on 2 February and on the
following day the altar of St. Catherine in the vestry
(Chron. 22). Demolition of the central tower, which
had been endangered by the carelessness of the masons,
began in 1278 (Chron. 19) and the whole church took
twenty-four years to build (Chron. 65). There is however no record of its completion or dedication in the
Chronicle, which starts again in September 1294 after a
gap of ten years. The monk Hugh de Compton, whose
death is recorded in 1314, apparently acted as master of
the works (Chron. 65). Except for the wall of the S. aisle
against the cloisters, building seems to have proceeded
according to one consistent, uniform design until the
W. end was reached. Breaks in the coursing of the
masonry of the nave suggest that the nave was built in
two stages, and there are some small variations in detail
between the E. and W. parts. Nevertheless the nave
arcades and the N. aisle wall were evidently completed
before the rebuilding of the W. wall was undertaken
and this then followed, to a stylistically more advanced
design. The buttresses to the S. aisle of the nave, with
canted sides, do not match the main part of the church
but appear to have been similar in style to the W. front,
and the greater thickness of this S. wall against the
cloister suggests that the Norman wall may have been
retained and refaced. A new bell was installed in the
tower in 1306 (Chron. 41).
In 1377 the abbey church was struck by lightning and
the central tower and the transept were damaged; fire
spread to the S. choir aisle, the nave and the cloister,
but the choir, the nave of the church and the monastic
buildings were saved (Anonimalle Chronicle, 95).
The cloister lay to the S. of the church and fragments
preserved in the Yorkshire Museum show that the
cloister arcade was built in stone as early as the 12th
century. In the E. range an early chapter house was
converted at the end of the 12th century to form the
vestibule to a new chapter house built wholly to the E.
of the range. This was probably done after the election
to the abbacy of Robert Longchamp, brother of the
Chancellor, in 1198 (Radulfus de Diceto, II, 151, RS,
LXVIII). It is certainly unlikely that the work would
have been started under Abbot Clement (1161–84) who
was described as 'lupus rapax' wasting everything that
others had accumulated. In 1297 Prior William of
Derby had built, partly at his own expense, a hall for
'Wlays' (fn. 2) (strangers), in which Abbot John died in 1313
(Chron. 29, 58). This probably occupied the upper
storey of the W. range. In the following year he began
work on the N. end of the Dormitory in the E. range but
complete rebuilding of the Dormitory followed under
Abbot John de Gilling, 1303–13 (Chron. 36). The provision of a 'long room for the recreation of the brothers'
is recorded in 1314 (Chron. 66) but its position is not
indicated. The illustrations to Wellbeloved's account of
the excavations in 1827–8, combined with the few surviving remains, make it clear that later rebuilding took
place, probably after the fire of 1377, affecting at least
the Inner Parlour and the Chapter House Vestibule in
the E. range, and the E. part of the S. range. In 1455 an
altar was dedicated in a newly constructed chapel in the
Infirmary (Yark Fabric Rolls, SS XXXV (1859), 239–40).
Of the building known as the Hospitium (Plate 15),
between the abbey church and the river, the lower
storey was built in the 14th century and may have
formed the sartrina or tailors' shop of the abbey (Ord. 87;
Chron. 67). The upper storey was built in the 15th
century, when it probably served some other purpose,
and the whole was restored and partly reconstructed in
The Abbey Gatehouse (Plates 18, 19) was built in the
late 12th century and remained fairly complete until
the early 18th century. It stands directly over the line of
a Roman road (York, 1, 2, no. 5). Doorways in the side
walls indicate that there were flanking buildings of the
12th century but these have entirely disappeared and the
buildings now flanking the gatehouse are of c. 1470–80.
A chapel at the gate was built by Hugh de Compton,
who died in 1314, presumably before his appointment
as Prior of St. Bees in 1296 (Chron. 65). Restoration of
the chapel was planned or in progress in 1376 when
indulgences were offered to those contributing to the
work (Papal Letters, IV, 511; Raine, 266–7). The chapel
is described as 'supra portam' (Chron. 65) and 'juxta
portam' (Ord. 319); it probably occupied the upper
floor of the building between the gatehouse itself and
St. Olave's Church (Plate 14).
The earliest mention of the building of a stone wall
around the precinct was during the abbacy of Simon de
Warwick, in October 1260, when an enquiry concluded
that 'to build a stone wall below the abbey of St. Mary
as far as the infirmary of St. Leonard would strengthen
and improve rather than damage the city of York'
(CIM, 1219–1307, 20, no. 255). On 9 December of the
same year the king granted permission to the abbot and
convent to 'construct the said stone wall within their
abbey up to the aforesaid infirmary according as shall
seem most advantageous to them' (Close Rolls 1259–61,
315). The phrase 'up to the ... infirmary' of St.
Leonard's Hospital must mean up to a point outside the
city defences opposite the infirmary, which lay within
the city wall but was probably visible above it. Work
did not, however, start immediately, and in the meantime a dispute between the citizens and the abbey
erupted into violence in August 1262, resulting in the
killing and plundering of some of the abbey's tenants
and the burning of houses in Bootham (Chron. 6).
The stone wall was started in 1266: 'Pridie Kal. Junii
eiusdem anni inceptus est (murus) petrinus circuiens
Abbatiam Sancte Marie Eboracensis, incipiens ab
ecclesia Sancti Olaui et tendens versus portam civitatis
eiusdem loci que vocatur GALMANLITH' (Chron. 8).
The city gate called Galmanlith has been identified as
Bootham Bar. The wall probably started from the gatehouse near St. Olave's church, since at that time the
church, before the widening of the N. aisle, lay entirely
within the precinct. The new wall faced towards Marygate and Bootham. The end of the length of wall
parallel to Bootham has been demolished, but maps of
the King's Manor estate made in 1770 and 1798 (PRO,
MPE, 344, 575) show that it was about 36 ft. S.E. of the
The wall begun in 1266 was simply a boundary to
the precinct and served no defensive function in a
military sense but on 12 July 1318 a licence was granted
to the abbot and convent to crenellate the abbey 'which
is without the city of York, but is contiguous thereto,
provided that the wall to be constructed between the
abbey and the wall of the city shall not exceed 16 feet
in height and shall not be crenellated' (CPR, 1317–21,
190). Crenellation involved the raising of the wall
facing Marygate and Bootham by an additional 5 ft.
to 6 ft.
Fig. 12. St. Mary's Abbey and the King's Manor
On 24 June 1354 an agreement was concluded between the abbey and the city which was intended to
settle their perennial dispute over Bootham. This provided 'that it shall be lawful for the abbot and convent
to scour a dyke extending from the said Ronde Tour at
the end of Seintemariegate towards the gate of the city
called 'Boothumbarre', which dyke is within the said
suburb whenever they please, for the safety of their
wall enclosing their abbey towards the great street of
Bouthum and when the walls of the abbey need repair
they shall have easement in the High Street there by the
dykes and walls which extend from Seintemariegate
to Bouthumbarre, to repair these at their will, and easement also in the place extending from Bouthumbarre
to the Ouse, between the abbey walls and the city dyke,
for such repairs'. The city would not build upon the
abbey ditch along Bootham, and if the abbey did so
'with houses opening on the said street of Bouthum',
the built-up area was to pass into the city's jurisdiction.
Another provision was 'that it shall be lawful for the
abbot and convent to make their wall on the said water
(of Ouse) in the manner in which it has been commenced' (CPR, 1354–8, 84–6).
This river wall, already started in 1354, appears on
maps by Speed (1610), Archer (c. 1682), and Horsley
(1694), but not on that by Cussins (1722), or on subsequent maps. Speed shows it as crenellated, so does
Place in an engraving of c. 1700 (Drake, 331) in which
it is shown as pierced by an archway with a path or
ditch leading to the water's edge. No remains of this
wall survive, nor is its course marked by any features on
the ground. According to Drake 'the foundations of the
wall which faced and ran parallel to the river were of
late years dug up, which I myself saw run very deep in
the ground, and all of Ashlar stone' (ibid., 577). As shown
on the old maps it was close to, but clear of, the Hospitium, and joined the wall in Marygate about 18 ft.
S.W. of Tower A. Wellbeloved claimed that there were
two such walls 'built by Abbot Thomas de Malton in
1534 [sic., 1354 is intended]; the one proceeding from
the tower at the end of the Abbey-wall in Marygate,
along the margin of the river till the Abbey-wall from
near Bootham Bar, and the other parallel to it, near the
Water-gate' (YMH (1854), 20). None of the maps show
a wall immediately by the river bank, although traces
on the Water Tower suggest that a wall may have
abutted against it. A 17th-century drawing shows a
short stump of wall here and a mid 19th-century photograph reveals that rubble core then exposed has since
been replaced by a patch of facing stone; S.E. of the
Water Tower the drawing shows a gently sloping bank
with no trace of a wall in line with the tower (BM
18220.127.116.112 and NMR, CC61/12; cf. Drake 331, after
Place). The abbey used a landing place at the end of
Marygate, N.W. of the Water Tower; there is no record
of quays to the S.E.
In 1497 a postern gate (Plate 23) was made in the
precinct wall near Bootham Bar. This is commonly
called Queen Margaret's Arch, due to an erroneous
belief that it was made for the convenience of Margaret
Tudor, the daughter of Henry VII, who visited York
on 13–15 July 1503 on her way to be married to King
James IV of Scotland. Details of her visit are preserved
in the city records (YCR, II, 184–9). There is, however,
no doubt of the real date of the gateway. William Sever,
Bishop of Carlisle and Abbot of St. Mary's, in a letter
of April 1500 to the Mayor of York during a renewed
dispute over building beside the precinct wall in
Bootham wrote: 'when we brake our walle thre yeres
past to make our postrone... ther was founde at that
tyme no contradiccion by any maner of evidence
shewed ... by the said Mayre ... and then I, with
thadvice of my bredern and our Councell proceded
furthe in makieing of our postrone and the toure ther,
for the ease of us and our monasterye and honour of the
same and for the strenghe and defence of the Citie'
(YCR, II, 149–50). The Mayor's reply reveals that the
reason given by the Abbot at the time of building was
'that the Kyngs good grace then in his noble viage
toward Scotland wuld rest within your monastery and
for his pleasure and passage to the mynster ye wuld
make ye said posterne' (YCA, B8, f. 84v). The date is
further confirmed by the fact that the work occurred
during Thomas Gray's mayoralty (Feb. 1497-Feb. 1498).
There may already have been a postern on this site,
since 'Great Bootham with the curtilages, posterne and
all appurtenances' is mentioned in 1350 (Widdrington,
123; CPR, 1348–50, 550). The new work probably
supplied a need for better access to the abbot's house,
which became the nucleus of the King's Manor. The
postern and adjoining tower still remain in a relatively
unaltered state. The tower is interesting for the use of
brick on the interior faces of the walls.
The Dissolution. The abbey was dissolved in 1539,
pensions being found for the abbot and 49 monks
(L & P Henry VIII, XIV(2), 603; Dugdale, Mon., III, 569).
The bells were taken down in 1541/2 (PRO, SC 6
Henry VIII, 4644). The chapter house and the S.E. part
of the church were taken down or blown up (Harvey
Brook, YMC, III, 164) to make way for improvements
to the Abbot's Lodging which became the palace of the
Council in the North (see The King's Manor (11)). Other
abbey buildings were used on occasions as royal lodgings. An undated report of c. 1545 on the State of the
Palace of York records the walls of the church with
the steeple standing wanting roof in length 333 ft.; the
King's Hall, alias the Frater, all uncovered; the Queen's
Lodging, alias the Dorter, with an upright roof all
uncovered. The Gatehouse was in good state. Some
apartments were occupied. Some barns and outbuildings
were in a fair state. A stable building had been repaired
by order of the Lord President (PRO, E 101/501/17).
After the dissolution of the abbey the precinct walls
probably remained unaltered for some time. The
earliest known plan of the city, made in c. 1545 (PRO,
MPB, 49, 51; cf. YCR, iv, 63; RCHM, City of York, iii,
fig. i, p. xxviii), describes the former abbey as 'The
Kinges Maner of Seynte Marys with oute the Cittie
Walle, Inclosed with his owne Walls' and marks the
main gateway, the postern, and the two round towers
at either end of Marygate. Speed's plan of York of 1610
shows the complete circuit of the wall still standing.
From about 1540 until the siege of 1644 St. Mary's
Tower, then usually described as 'the round tower at
St. Marygate end', was used to hold a large collection of
records of Yorkshire monasteries made by officers of the
Court of Augmentations and with an official keeper,
appointed by the Crown (YAJ, xlii (1968), 198–235;
(1969), 358–86; (1970), 465–518).
During the siege this side of the city was invested by
the forces of the Earl of Manchester, who 'raised a
battery against the mannor wall that lyed to the
orchard; he begins to play with his cannon and throws
down [a] peice of the Wall. We fall to work and make
it up with earth and sods; this happned in the morning'
(Slingsby, Diary, 109). The morning was that of Trinity
Sunday, 16 June 1644, and the length of wall so damaged
was probably near St. Mary's Tower. At noon on the
same day the mine under the tower, on which work had
started at least ten days before, was exploded with
considerable effect. Many civilians were killed and the
records were buried or destroyed (S. Ash and W. Goode,
A Continuation of True Intelligence ... from the 16th of
June, to Wednesday the 10th of July 1644 (1644). For
other references to this episode see YAJ, xlii (1968),
198–9, and L. P. Wenham, The Great and Close Siege of
York 1644 (1970), 57–74). The tower was subsequently
rebuilt on approximately its former lines, using old
materials, and with a conical tiled roof.
Fig. 13. (4) St. Mary's Abbey. Main crossing pier. Plan.
In the first quarter of the 18th century the abbey was
used as a source of stone for the County Gaol, for the
Ouse Bridge, for the reconstruction of St. Olave's
church, and for repairs to Beverley Minster. In 1822
parts of the abbey grounds were granted to the Yorkshire Philosophical Society who erected their museum
on the site of the buildings of the E. cloister range and
carried out the first of several excavations to recover
the plan of the church and other buildings (Plate 3);
further excavations were carried out in 1901, 1912 and
1952. In 1840 St. Mary's Lodge, the building W. of the
abbey gate, was thoroughly renovated for occupation
by John Phillips, keeper of the newly erected Yorkshire
Museum. The precinct walls were restored in 1950–7
and in 1971 the site of the E. part of the abbey church was
levelled, the remains of the church consolidated and the
plan marked out on the ground with new stonework.
Architectural Description. The buildings are all of white
magnesian limestone except for the earliest work, of the late
11th century, which is mostly of brown gritstone. This gritstone is probably all reused material of Roman origin, some
of the blocks showing the marks of Roman tooling and of
The Abbey Church. The plan of the Church of 1089 has
largely been recovered by excavation. The short choir terminated in a semicircular apse projecting beyond the choir
aisles which had small apses finished square externally;
transepts were the same length as those of the later 13th-century
church and had two apsidal chapels of varying projection on
the E. side of each (Fig. 7, p. xl). Some of this arrangement is
displayed on the ground by stonework built up on the original
foundations. At the N.E. corner of the N. transept a few courses
of the original wall remain, partly embedded within later
stonework (Plate 9). The original work at this point is of the
dark brown gritstone, contrasting with the white limestone
of the 13th-century work. Towards the W. end of the nave
excavation has shown that the S. wall of the 13th-century
church stood on the foundations of the original church, the
arcades were built overlapping the earlier foundations but
further N., and the N. wall stands still further to the N. of the
Of the Church of 1270 the Eastern Arm was of nine bays and
is now represented by part of the E. respond of the N. arcade,
the base of part of the E. and N. walls of the N. aisle and the
bases, rebuilt in 1912 and in 1971, of the four western piers of
the S. arcade. The positions of the other piers are outlined in
modern stone built-up on the sleeper walls which survive
The E. respond of the N. arcade consists of five filleted or
keeled roll mouldings separated by hollows (cf. Fig. 16, p. 11).
These mouldings are typical of the main structural members
remaining throughout the church. The N. wall is divided into
equal bays externally by buttresses and internally by triple
engaged shafts rising from a wall-bench. The re-erected lower
courses of the S. arcade piers show an octofoil plan with roll
mouldings alternately keeled and filleted, except on the aisle
side where the S. member consisted of a triple roll matching
the engaged shafts on the wall of the N. aisle opposite.
Of the Crossing, the N.E., S.E. and S.W. piers have been
rebuilt to a maximum height of five courses. The N.W. pier
stands to the springing of the crossing arches (Plate 4). The
piers are of irregular plan with a complex outline of keeled
and filleted rolls (Fig. 13, p. 7); the main members have the
points of the keels or the flat fillets at a position of maximum
projection but in the minor members these are moved round
to the side producing, in the case of adjacent fillets, a composite
moulding presaging a form common in the 14th century.
The bases to the piers are of simple triple-roll form.
The North Transept is in three bays with an aisle on the E.
side. Base courses only remain of the E. wall and to the N. a
fragment of the respond to the arcade. Of the arcade itself the
base of the S. pier remains. In line with this arcade, in the
surviving fragment of the N. wall and partly covered by 13th-century masonry, stonework of the transept of 1089 remains
to a height of some 4 ft. Enough of the 13th-century work
remains to indicate that the N. wall was arcaded to match the
W. wall of the transept and the N. wall of the nave aisle to be
described below. At the N.W. corner of the transept are the
remains of a vice. The W. wall is in three bays, the S. bay
containing the archway opening to the N. nave aisle. The two
N. bays survive in the lower stage only and were arcaded, each
in two bays with labels over the arches, and under each arch
a roundel above two subsidiary arches, moulded and without
cusping, and springing from the moulded, corbelled capitals
of shafts which are now missing but which stood on a stone
wall-bench. In the middle bay the S. jamb of the window in
the upper stage remains, against the N. wall of the nave aisle,
with the springing of the window arch. Externally the arch
moulds die into the aisle wall; internally the window jamb has
engaged shafts with decayed moulded bases and capitals. The
arch to the N. aisle is of three moulded orders, very decayed
but comprising filleted rolls and hollows. Over the haunches
of the arch decayed cone-shaped corbels carry small double and
triple shafts which presumably carried vaulting ribs. Over the
arch is a bay of blind triforium arcading, of four trefoiled
lights with tracery consisting of three quatre-foiled circles, not
now complete. The mullions are treated as shafted piers with
foliated capitals, repeated in the jambs under the inner order
of the window arch; the outer order was carried on freestanding shafts, now missing, in front of hollows with foliated
Fig. 14. (4) St. Mary's Abbey. S. Transept.
Buttress and arcading.
Fig. 15. (4) St. Mary's Abbey. Nave pier. Plan.
The South Transept. Of the E. wall, with its buttresses, only
the base courses survive. The base of the S. wall, partly rebuilt,
appears in the basement of the museum, forming the N. side
of the passage to the cemetery or vestry and continuing E. to
terminate in a mass of masonry representing the bottom of the
The bottom of the W. wall, partly rebuilt, has the E. face
just showing above ground but more is exposed by the lower
ground level to the W. The wall is divided into two bays by
buttresses with triple shafts on the external angles and twin
shafts in the angles with the wall (Plate 9). In each bay is a
recess with moulded jambs and originally arcaded; bases for
the corner shafts remain and in the S. bay rough projections
represent three out of five original intermediate shafts.
The Nave is of eight bays. Of the archway to the crossing the
N. pier stands to the springing of the arch and the bottom of the
S. pier was reconstructed in 1827. Of the S. arcade only the
base of one pier, some rough foundations for a second, and the
W. respond remain; the latter stands to a height of some 18 ft.
The N. arcade has all been removed except for the E. and W.
responds. Over the E. respond the haunch of the first arch of
the arcade remains; it is of three moulded orders with a hood-mould towards the nave. In the angle E. of the hood-mould is
a foliated corbel of conical form carrying a double engaged
shaft which presumably carried the vaulting ribs. Over the
main arcade and below the triforium the spandrel walling is of
plain ashlar. The E. respond of the E. triforium arch remains
with the springing of its arch. A drawing by W. Lodge of
c. 1677 (York Art Gallery) (Plate 2) shows a triforium of semicircular arches each enclosing four arched openings with
tracery of three quatrefoils, the mullions between the openings
being treated as piers, with capitals. The existing respond
has an inner order corresponding to those mullions. The outer
order carrying the main arch had a free-standing shaft, now
missing, with moulded base and foliated capital in front of a
hollow with foliated edges. The spandrel walling above the
triforium is of plain ashlar.
At the W. end nothing remains of the triforium stage and
at neither end is there anything left of a clerestory. The W.
respond to the N. arcade has foliated caps and part of the
springing of the arch remains (Plate 5).
The North Aisle opens into the N. transept by a moulded
archway; the plinths of the responds are cut to take a screen.
Above the archway plain walling rises to a raking stone
weathering, giving the outline of the lean-to roof which
covered the aisle. The N. wall is fairly complete except for
the window tracery, and is divided into two stages by stringcourses inside and out. Externally (Plate 5) there is a bold
plinth and the bays are divided by two-stage buttresses. The
lower stage of the walling is plain, interrupted only in the
seventh bay by a doorway with moulded two-centred head
and a hood-mould with stops, springing from jambs with
alternate attached and detached shafts with decayed capitals.
To each side of the doorway the walling is recessed under a
narrow pointed arch forming, with the outer order of the
doorway, an arcade of three arches. In the upper stage the
wall-face is set back under a triplet of arches in each bay, the
centre arch being wider and open to form a window, and the
flanking arches blind; in the E. bay the E. blind arch is omitted.
The flanking arches are built tight up against the buttresses
so that the labels cannot be carried down to springing level
but stop over the haunches of the arches. The arches were
carried on free-standing shafts, all now missing, and die out
into the buttresses. The capitals to the shafts remain, some
moulded and some foliated; of those that are foliated most are
derived from the 'stiff leaf' of the earlier part of the century
but two are naturalistically treated.
The windows, all of equal size, are alternately of three and
two lights with tracery, now largely missing, of one or three
circles foliated with pointed soffit cusping. Of the spandrels
round the circles, some are pierced, some are blind. The
mullions, where they remain, are moulded as multiple piers
with capitals, now badly decayed.
Internally the wall is divided into bays by triple shafts with
moulded bases and foliated capitals (Plate 6). The bases interrupt a wall-bench below which is a quantity of reused gritstone;
above the bench the lower stage is arcaded, each bay having
three arches each enclosing two subsidiary arches under a
roundel, all without cusping. Shafts to carry the arcading are
missing. In the seventh bay is a stilted segmental-pointed rear-arch to the doorway flanked by narrow pointed arches which
range with the arcading in the other bays. At the W. end is a
plain blocked doorway to a vice.
In the upper stage the design of the exterior is repeated, with
the wall recessed on each side of each window under a narrow
blind arch but where on the outside the arches die into the
buttresses, on the inside they spring from detached shafts (now
missing) with capitals ranging with those of the vaulting shafts
that divide the bays (Plate 9). Shafts are also missing from the
window jambs. The springers of the aisle vaults remain above
the capitals of the wall-shafts. The capitals provide a seating
for the wall-ribs and the transverse ribs but the diagonal ribs
emerge from behind the other ribs with which they mitre
and in some cases interpenetrate (Plate 7).
The South Aisle is represented by the lower part of the wall
of the five eastern bays of which three were reconstructed in
1913 by W. Harvey Brook, 'using new stone only where
absolutely necessary'. To the E. the lowest course visible
externally is largely of dark gritstone. The bays are divided by
buttresses with splayed sides which had engaged trefoil shafts
on the angles. In the E. bay is a doorway of which none of the
facing stone is original. Further W. are fragments indicating
arcading between the buttresses, and internally the wall was
also arcaded between the vaulting shafts that mark the bay
The West Front. The stonework of the W. wall of the nave
and N. aisle is separated by straight joints from the N. wall
and the responds of the arcades. The wall is divided internally
into two stages, of which the lower continues the arcading of
the N. wall across the aisles and part way across the nave, but
flanking the W. doorway are blind arches similar to those on
the outside of the W. front. Reused in the base of the wall are
parts of a Norman gritstone cornice. Externally the W. front
has buttresses with splayed re-entrant angles presumably
designed to support octagonal turrets (Plate 6). The whole of
the W. front is treated with blind arcading, the arches being
trefoiled under crocketed gablets; the arches rise from engaged
trefoil shafts with moulded or foliated capitals and the gablets
are carried on small corbels. In the middle of the nave the
arcading is interrupted by the W. doorway; the jambs had
four free-standing shafts, now missing, and one engaged
multiple shaft, with hollows between them carved with undulating vine-trails (Plate 8). The haunches only of the arch
to the doorway still remain, for a two-centred arch of five
orders, three deeply moulded, one carved, and one now
missing. Above the doorway the N. jamb of the W. window
survives, pierced by a passageway in the thickness of the wall.
The W. window to the N. aisle remains complete except for
jamb-shafts and tracery. The window was of three lights, and
the jambs, pierced by the wall-passage, are richly moulded
with engaged shafts on moulded bases and with capitals carved
with naturalistic foliage which also forms a continuous band
across the thickness of the wall (Plates 7, 8); the whole design
of the window gives a much richer composition than the
windows in the N. wall.
Fig. 16. (4) St. Mary's Abbey. N. aisle. Internal wall-shafts and
arcade shafts. Plan and elevation.
Liturgical Arrangement. Some details of the arrangement
of the church in the late 14th and the 15th centuries can be
deduced from the instructions for the conduct of the daily
ritual of the abbey in the Ordinale, and from the Chronicle,
interpreted in the light of existing remains. At the E. end of the
nave three modern steps represent an original rise of three
steps running the full width of the church. E. of these steps
and under the W. crossing arch was the pulpitum. The crossing
and six bays of the eastern arm were enclosed by screens to
form the monks' choir. Within these screens the monks' stalls
occupied the space under the tower and extended into the two
bays next E. of the crossing, providing room for the 48 monks
recorded in 1284 (Chron. 23–4) or the 49 to whom pensions
were granted in 1539 (Dugdale, Mon., iii, 569). E. of the stalls
was the first of three steps leading up to the high altar and
beyond this step were buried Abbot Simon (ob. 1296) and
Abbot John de Gilling (ob 1313), as builders of the church
(Ord. 71). Abbot Simon's tomb was marked by a slab level
with or only slightly above the floor, since trestles were placed
across the tomb to form a temporary platform for the relics of
St. William which were brought to the abbey in solemn
procession annually on Whit Monday. The second step must
have been in the fourth bay from the W., beyond the choir
altar named in honour of the Holy Trinity (Ord. 70) where the
morning mass was usually celebrated. Between the two lower
steps doorways in the screens led to the N. and S. aisles. The
third step also lay in the fourth bay. The high altar stood
against a screen between the fifth pair of piers, and above it
was a great cross (Ord. 102). To each side of the high altar
was a doorway leading into the chapel of the Holy Trinity
behind the high altar, occupying the sixth bay (Ord. 68).
There were thus two altars dedicated to the Holy Trinity.
The seventh bay formed the ambulatory used by processions
around the choir, with the chapel of Our Lady to the E.,
occupying the eighth and ninth bays. Here was celebrated the
Mass of Our Lady, the monks being accompanied with a
choir of boys from the Almonry. Flanking the Lady Chapel
in the eastern bays of the two aisles were the altars of St. Peter
and St. Stephen; at the latter was said daily the mass for the
dead, for the souls of the founders and all the faithful departed.
In the sacristy which projected southwards was the altar of St.
Catherine which served as an Easter Sepulchre, being dressed
on Maundy Thursday like a tomb to receive the Lord's
The altars of Holy Trinity behind the high altar, St.
Catherine, St. Peter and St. Stephen were the four upper
altars of the church; there were four lower altars in the
chapels in the eastern aisles of the transepts, dedicated to St.
Nicholas, St. Thomas of Canterbury, St. Mary Magdalene
and, probably, St. Benedict. Relics of St. Thomas were
exposed for veneration before his altar on 29 December. Abbot
Benedict of Malton was buried in front of the altar of St.
Benedict, a departure from the normal rule that abbots should
be buried in the Chapter House.
In the nave the eastern bay formed the retrochoir in which
weak or convalescent monks heard the services. On the W. it
was closed by the Rood screen over which stood or hung the
great Crucifix or Rood. Such a screen was usually pierced by
two doors flanking an altar placed against its western face. The
St. Mary's Ordinal does not specifically mention an altar in
this position but the Chronicle speaks of the lighting of a lamp
by the altar of St. Mary in the nave of the church. Westward
a chapel seems to have extended two and a half bays down the
nave to a step which ran the full width of the church, corresponding with the step down in the wall-bench and in the
plinth of the N. wall. As well as the central W. door, there were
doors in the nave aisles, in the seventh bay on the N. side and
in the first and sixth bays on the S.
Claustral Buildings. Of the buildings around the cloister
most are known only from excavation; some stood on the site
now occupied by the Yorkshire Museum where fragments
are preserved in the basements. The uses to which the various
buildings were put can be deduced with some certainty from
On the E. side of the cloister the Dormitory range ran S.
from the end of the transept, extending well beyond the line
of the S. range. Next to the transept is a narrow room with
doorways to E. and W., its N. wall formed by the surviving
base of the wall of the transept, divided into three bays by
attached shafts of c. 1280–90 (Plate 13). The burial of monks in
the abbey cemetery is recorded in the Chronicle (Chron. 54)
and the Ordinal makes it clear that the way to the cemetery
must have been through this room (Ord. 386), the cemetery
lying E. of the cloister. It may also have served as a vestry and
be the room where refreshment was prepared on Whit
Monday for the bearers of the relics of St. William (Ord. 334).
Next southward is the Vestibule to the Chapter House,
which was known as the Galilee (Ord. 22). Before the end of
the 12th century it had probably formed the Chapter House
itself, and it was probably after the election of Robert
Longchamp as abbot in 1198 that a new Chapter House was
built, entirely E. of the range. The foundations of the new
Chapter House were exposed in the excavations of 1827;
Wellbeloved records that only the lowest courses of these
foundations were still in position. The Chapter House
measured 61 ft. by 26 ft. and the buttresses indicate that it was
designed in five bays. The vault to it would thus have twelve
springing points which would accommodate twelve figures
of the apostles, with Old Testament figures and St. John the
Baptist in the vestibule (see pp. xlii–xliv), forming a sequence
leading to a great Christ in Majesty at the E. end (Ord. 75),
comparable perhaps to the Majesty at Worcester in the
Refectory, now the School Hall. Abbots were buried within
the Chapter House (Ord. 275), the floor of which was at two
levels separated by a step (Ord. 22–3). The vestibule was
separated from the cloister walk to the W. by an arcade of
three arches, for which the lower parts of two piers and two
responds of c. 1200 remain; they have water-holding bases
and free-standing shafts (Plate 16, Fig. 5, p. xxxiii). At the E. end
the entrance to the Chapter House remains in part, with some
reconstruction (Plate 13); it comprised a central arched
doorway between flanking arches above dwarf walls. The
piers between the doorway and the flanking arches are cruciform and enriched with chevron mouldings and formal leaf
ornament behind free-standing shafts with water-holding
bases with angle spurs, all of white limestone. The responds to
the flanking arches, less complete, match the piers. A composite
capital, wrongly reset but belonging to this composition,
shows leaf decoration of a heavy fleshy type and also of swirling
'stiff-leaf' type. None of the arches are in situ but one has been
reconstructed (incorrectly) on the ground. The arches were
visually of three orders and very heavily enriched. A number
of voussoirs from vaulting shafts preserved in the museum are
thought to have belonged to the original vault of c. 1200 covering the vestibule; they are of trefoil section with rolls crossed
by a trellis of sunk bands. The dormitory on the first floor
above was rebuilt during the abbacy of John de Gilling, 1303–
1313 (Chron. 36), but the vestibule was remodelled later in the
14th century when it was vaulted in nine compartments, the
lower parts of the E. and W. vaulting shafts and of the four
free-standing piers remaining (Plate 16). The mouldings of this
work may be compared with work being executed in the
second quarter of the 14th century at Exeter and Lichfield
where the work is advanced for its date; they are not so
advanced as work in York Minster of the last quarter of the
century. These comparisons could point to a mid 14th-century
date but had there been any major construction work at that
time it might be expected to be recorded in the Anonimalle
Chronicle which was written at St. Mary's and covers the
years 1333 to 1381. It seems probable that the vaulting of the
vestibule was part of a restoration programme carried out after
the fire of 1377.
S. of the vestibule lay the Inner Parlour where speech was
allowed (Ord. 74), a vaulted room of three bays, of which the
base for a N. vaulting shaft of c. 1310 remains in situ in the
museum (Plate 16). Similar bases to the piers are shown by
Wellbeloved (Plate 3) but the E. wall can be seen from the
plinth to have been refaced, probably after 1377. The W. wall
of the Parlour was of sufficient thickness to include within it
the day stairs to the Dormitory above; the narrowness of the
stair is brought out by the rule that monks descending must
give way to those coming up (Ord. 31). S. of the Inner Parlour
a passage led from the cloisters towards the Abbot's Lodging,
and further S. lay the School (Chron. 85–6) which retained the
traditional name Scola Infantum although after the early 13th
century oblate children were no longer taken; it was of six
bays, and projected beyond the S. range. The plinth to this
part, seen in 1813 (Plate 3), was conformable to a date of c. 1310
and was presumably part of Abbot Gilling's rebuilding.
The S. range, as rebuilt in the late 14th century, contained
at the E. end a passage leading from the cloisters to the courtyard beyond. Against the wall of this passage was built the
fireplace of the Warming House which occupied the first
three bays of the range. Here a fire burnt and conversation was
permitted (Ord. 158). The fireplace is preserved in the museum
basement (Plate 13). Flanking the fireplace are vaulting shafts,
now carried up well beyond their original height, with late
14th-century mouldings matching those of the Vestibule. The
lower part of the N.E. buttress to the Warming House and
part of the adjacent wall are preserved in the Hospitium
(Plate 13). They are finely moulded, of late 14th-century date.
A doorway in the W. wall of the Warming House, not
shown on Wellbeloved's plan but clearly indicated by Ridsdale
Tate, led to a large room of six bays vaulted in three aisles; at
the end of the room the W. door was recessed between
flanking projections, the N. one forming a lobby from which
a circular stair led to the upper floor. This large room may have
been the Common Hall in which the abbot entertained
strangers (Ord. 151), perhaps occupying the site of part of the
'long room for the recreation of the monks' built in 1313
(Chron. 66). A hall in this position would be convenient for the
regulation that those eating not in the refectory but in the
hall or the prior's chamber should await the abbot or the prior
in the Warming House.
On the upper floor of the S. range was the Refectory. It was
reached by a flight of stairs of which the foundations were
uncovered, rising from the S.W. corner of the cloister across
the width of the W. range. At the foot of the stairs and set
against the wall of the S. range opposite the W. walk of the
cloister was the foundation of the lavatory where the monks
washed their hands and combed their hair (Ord. 142). The
Kitchen and Servery were built against the four W. bays of the
S. range, with fireplaces to N. and E.
The W. range comprised a vaulted undercroft forming the
Cellarer's Store, entered from the cloister by a doorway in the
S.E. corner, and the guest house on the first floor, which
included, perhaps, the Hall of the Wlays (fn. 3) built in 1297 by
Prior William de Derby (Chron. 28–9).
The rectangular projection to W. may have contained the
latrine of the guest house or alternatively the Cellarer's
Chequer. The projection into the cloister walk, apparently for
a stair, is unprecedented in monastic planning and must be a
post-Reformation accretion. The N. bay of the lower storey,
against the church, was the Outer Parlour and formed the
entrance through which all visitors to the abbey passed. Here
was the Gate of Tobias, named in allusion to the stranger who
revealed himself as the angel Raphael (Tobit, xii, 15) and here
three poor men were fed each day and other alms and hospitality dispensed (Ord. 136–7).
S. of the Refectory range was an irregular court bounded on
the E. by the Dormitory range and on the W. by the Kitchen.
To the S. it was closed by a long room running E.-W. and
the end of a vaulted room at right angles, with a fireplace in the
E. wall. This was the Prior's Room to which he might invite
senior monks for a drink and for warmth in winter (Ord. 151);
the longer room to the W. would then, by analogy with other
abbeys such as Ely, be the Prior's Hall, but it is not specifically
mentioned in the York texts.
The Infirmary, in which a chapel was referred to as 'newly
built' in 1455 (SS, xxxv, 239–40), lay S. of the monastic
kitchen; part at least was in two storeys with a vaulted undercroft. The chapel was probably on the first floor at the S. end
where there is a small projection to E.
The Hospitium (Plate 15), some 90 yds. W. of the cloister,
is a two-storey building of six bays; a sketch of 1840 shows
most of the two S. bays missing but the lower part of these
had been rebuilt before 1930 when the upper storey was
completed and the roof of the whole building reconstructed
to a steeper pitch than the original. The lower storey is of the
14th century and has walls of ashlar; the upper part is of the
15th century and timber-framed. In the E. wall, in the fifth bay
from the N., is a rebuilt stone arched doorway. Further N. are
windows of two square-headed lights with chamfered jambs
and mullions. The floor of the upper storey is carried on two
rows of octagonal stone columns with moulded bases and
shaped corbels projecting N. and S. under the main beams.
The timber-framed upper storey has a modern N. wall, and
the two S. bays are of 1930–1. The original timber-work is
exposed; the main wall-posts are strutted off sill-plates and
from them curved braces rise to the eaves plates and to the tiebeams. A vertical stud in the middle of each bay is narrowed
in the middle to form the mullion of a two-light window,
but the windows have all been restored. In the E. wall, in the
fourth bay, is a doorway with timber two-centred head. The
main timbers between the third and fourth bays from the N.
show mortices for the rails of a partition.
Adjoining the Hospitium to the S. is a length of walling
containing a Gateway, a smaller doorway, and windows, all of
c. 1500 (Plate 15). The wall stands to a height of one and a half
storeys and is of ashlar with brick backing to the W. above
first-floor level. The gateway and the doorway are both four-centred, of two chamfered orders with a label; the windows
are of one and two arched and trefoiled lights in square heads.
Fig. 17. (4) St. Mary's Abbey. Hospitium.
Timberwork of upper floor.
Chapel of St. Mary at the Gate. Between the gatehouse and
the W. end of St. Olave's church is a space, now roofless,
which must have contained the chapel on the first floor
(Plate 14). On the E. side a lofty recess in the W. wall of the
tower of St. Olave's may have been at the back of the chapel
altar. On the S. side is a thick wall continuous with the S. wall
of the tower and containing a straight staircase in its thickness,
with doorways at the foot of the stairs opening to the undercroft and to the churchyard. Further W. is a ground-floor
window of two cinque-foiled lights. The W. end is enclosed
by the gatehouse, and the N. side by the precinct wall built up
at the E. end to the height of the aisle wall of St. Olave's
church and stepped down westwards, where only the lowest
courses of the wall are mediaeval.
Precinct Wall and Towers. In the following account the
wall is described in a clockwise direction starting at the W.
angle of the precinct beside the river Ouse at Marygate
Landing. Unless otherwise stated, all the masonry is of magnesian limestone.
Water Tower (Plate 17, Fig. 18, p. 15) was built after the
licence to crenellate of 1318, while Stephen de Austewyk was
sacrist. It is circular outside but hexagonal inside and built of
ashlar stone in courses about 1 ft. 4 ins. high. The upper part
of the wall is set back slightly, the change being marked by a
small chamfered weathering. A battered base towards the
river has been concealed by the modern embankment. On the
S.E. in the lower half of the wall are four stones in alternate
courses cut so that they project as if to provide bonding for a
wall running along the bank to the S.E. A patch of renewed
facing stone with very narrow mortar joints has replaced a
former area of rubble core. This wall which abutted on the
tower was about 7 ft. thick, probably with a narrow parapet,
and was possibly the revetment for a quay.
There are six openings in the tower wall, one corresponding
to each side of the interior. Four of these are cruciform arrow
slits with a round oillet to each arm, all in a damaged state;
this form of loop occurs frequently in the early 14th-century
work on the precinct wall. Facing S., directly over the patch
of renewed facing where the river wall abutted the tower, is a
rectangular opening, set a little higher than the arrow slits;
this has a small chamfer all round and square sockets for iron
bars in the jambs and lintel. To the N.E. where the precinct
wall begins is a shoulder-headed doorway with a plain
chamfer all round; this must originally have led to a wallwalk, now destroyed.
Drawings made in the 17th century show that the tower was
then crenellated, but the parapet is now broken down to below
the level of the embrasures and is of irregular height. On the
N.E., directly over the doorway just described, are the remains of a second doorway with chamfered jambs and also
formerly shoulder-headed (Cave, pl. 28); this can only have
been accessible by a staircase from the wall-walk. Two stone
spouts draining the tower roof remain on the S. and E., and
there is a hole for the same purpose on the W.
The inside (Plate 17) had a floor supported on an offset. In
the sides are deep recesses, some not centrally placed, leading
to the six openings. The one leading to the doorway has
splayed sides, but all the others have parallel walls sharply
splayed at the ends. All these recesses have flat lintels carried
on quadrant corbels. The tower was roofed behind the narrow
parapet, leaving space for a walk on top of the wall.
The precinct wall from the Water Tower to St. Mary's
Lodge is about 420 ft. long with three small changes in alignment. In origin this stretch is wholly early 14th-century work
but has been much restored and partly reconstructed. Part of
the wall immediately adjoining the Water Tower was removed in the early 19th century and replaced with a stone
archway to provide access from Marygate to the riverside walk.
This opening has a four-centred arch with a double splay to
The wall as far as Tower A and for about 50 ft. beyond has
been reduced in height and is now only about 7 ft., without
crenellation. The lower part, of ashlar in large courses,
including a few gritstone blocks, is original, but the upper two
or three courses, of much smaller stones, are probably a
replacement. On the inside the ground level within the
Museum Gardens has been raised and only the upper 3 ft. of
the wall is visible, all rebuilt in coarse rubble. There is an
original postern doorway, now blocked, 4 ft. S.W. of Tower
A. This is 2 ft. 8 ins. wide and 5 ft. 10 ins. high with a shouldered head and a small chamfer all round.
Tower A (NG 59775208), 120 ft. from the Water Tower, is
semicircular, 10 ft. in diameter and projecting 5 ft. Outside the
masonry is largely original. The inside is mostly filled with
earth, but where the wall is visible it has been stripped of
facing stone and repaired with rubble.
Tower B (NG 59815214), 215 ft. from Tower A and similar
to it in size and plan, is entirely of new stone of the 19th
century. It appears on Archer's map of c. 1682, but not on
subsequent maps, and there is little doubt that it was wholly or
partly demolished in about 1700 and rebuilt in the late 19th
century, after the houses built up against the outside of the
wall here had been removed.
The rest of the wall up to St. Mary's Lodge stands to the
original height of about 13 ft. It is 1 ft. 8 ins. thick, but 121 ft.
N.E. of Tower A a wall-walk 2 ft. 10 ins. wide begins, supported upon a thickening of the wall beneath. The walk
gradually narrows to 1 ft. 7 ins. at a point 30 ft. S.W. of St.
Mary's Lodge where it ends. Thence the wall has been rebuilt.
The parapet has embrasures, which are mostly restored
except for a few immediately S.W. of Tower B; these have
L-shaped slots on the reveals, intended for housing wooden
shutters, a feature which occurs elsewhere on the wall where
the original embrasures have survived unrestored. (Fig. 19,
The length of wall immediately S.W. of St. Mary's Lodge
was rebuilt when the Lodge was erected, and the moulded
plinth of that building continues for 20 ft. along the outer face
of the wall. There is an inserted 19th-century doorway in this
The Gatehouse (NG 59835216. Plates 18, 19; Figs. 20, 28,
pp. 16, 26). The group of buildings forming the gatehouse
range consists of parts of the side walls of the late 12th-century
gate-hall, joined at the Marygate end by a large contemporary
archway, and of additions on each side of those built in c. 1470,
at the time of the rebuilding of the N. aisle of St. Olave's
church. The addition to the S.W., known as St. Mary's Lodge,
is complete, but that on the N.E., between the original gatehouse and the church, is ruined, only the outer walls of the
ground floor surviving.
The gate hall is 18⅓ ft. wide and was probably a little over
40 ft. long; the wall on the S.W. side, which is the more
complete, survives to this length, though rebuilt at the S.E.
end. At the N.W. end of the passage is a round-headed archway, of three chamfered orders on the front and two on the
rear; the mouldings of the impost caps continue as a string
course along each side of the gate hall. Drawings made before
demolition show that there was a similar archway at the S.E.
end. There was also an intermediate archway, of which part
of the N.E. jamb survives, which could be closed by doors.
The N.W. end of the gate hall beyond the intermediate
archway was vaulted in one bay; springers of the vault survive
in three angles of the bay, from which it appears to have had
diagonal ribs only, and the two in the N.W. angles rose from
vaulting shafts. The rest of the gate hall was vaulted in two
bays, with heavy chamfered springers, probably of the 14th
century, cutting across the moulded strings. Above the string
course on the S.W. side enough of the original wall-facing
survives to show that the transverse vaults were pointed. This
same wall, which continues upwards to form one side of St.
Mary's Lodge, was largely refaced in the 19th century, but the
core is probably that of the original side wall of the late 12th-century gatehouse. At each end of the wall the thickness is
represented by pilaster buttresses at the corners of the Lodge.
The N.E. wall of the gate-hall survives only to a height of
13 ft. and above the string is entirely refaced.
Both side walls are decorated with original blind arcading,
of two round arches in each bay, standing on paired shafts with
moulded caps and bases of attic form. In the inner part of the
gatehouse are two round-arched doorways to the S.W. and
one to the N.E., each of these taking the place of one arched
recess. All three doorways are now blocked with ashlar
masonry, but one recess of the S.W. arcade has been opened up
to make a doorway into the Lodge. An offset in the wall over
the archway at the N.W. end of the gate-hall probably marks
the level of the original upper floor.
St. Mary's Lodge (Plate 18; Fig. 28, p. 26) is a two-storey
building with basement. The walls, except on the N.E. side,
are of ashlar with narrow joints, and the low-pitched roof is
covered with lead and slates. The principal elevations are to
the N.W. and S.E. and have moulded plinths and moulded
strings at the upper floor level. The plinths have a moulding
similar to that on the N. aisle of St. Olave's church. The N.E.
elevation, originally built up against the 12th-century gatehouse, was refaced in the 19th century. The other three elevations are each divided into two bays by narrow buttresses of
deep projection. At the W. angle is a large square buttress,
only the top part of which conforms to the proportions of the
others. The windows, one or two in each bay, are generally
stone-mullioned and of two pointed cinque-foiled lights
contained within a splayed rectangular reveal. They are considerably restored and some on the N.W. side have had the sills
lowered in the 19th century. On the S.E. there are also three
narrow round-headed openings at different levels which
light a staircase in the thickness of the wall. All the basement
windows and all the windows on the S.W. elevation are of
1840. There has been some restoration of the external masonry,
and an inserted chimney, later removed, accounts for a narrow
strip of brickwork up most of the N.W. wall. A low stone
parapet around the whole building was added in 1840. In the
early 19th century there was a hipped tiled roof (Halfpenny,
The interior was modernised in 1840, and all the internal
walls on the ground and first floors are probably of that date.
The only original features visible are a chamfered ceiling beam
in a basement room and the staircase to the first floor contained
in the thickness of the S.E. wall: the latter has stone treads and
an arched stone roof rising with the stair. A short flight of
stairs from the entrance lobby to the inner hall has bulbous
balusters of the late 17th century. The fittings of 1840 are in
the Tudor style. There is a variety of fireplaces, but the doors
are more uniform, and have tall, narrow panels. The ground-floor rooms have ceilings divided into square panels by
moulded wooden ribs with carved bosses.
The building to the N.E. of the original gatehouse stands
between it and St. Olave's church and is joined to both. It was
built at the same time as St. Mary's Lodge, c. 1470, and was
also of two storeys. It still stood intact in the early 18th century
but is now ruined, lacking the walls of the upper storey, and
the interior is partly occupied by modern structures.
The outer walls to the N.W. and S.E. have moulded plinths
like those of St. Mary's Lodge, and on the S.E. side a short
length of matching moulded string course survives. In the
N.W. wall is a tall doorway 4 ft. wide and 9 ft. high with a
two-centred arched head and chamfered jambs. The S.E.
elevation, like that of St. Mary's Lodge, was divided into two
bays by a narrow buttress, now mostly gone. There is one
badly preserved two-light window and a small arched doorway with wave-moulded jambs, perhaps reset 14th-century
work. From just inside the doorway a staircase ascends within
the thickness of the wall; this stair has an arched stone roof
like that in St. Mary's Lodge. No indications remain of the
internal arrangements, but two stone corbels on the S.E. side
mark the original first-floor level.
The N. aisle wall of St. Olave's church probably incorporates
masonry of the precinct wall of 1266. This is visible internally
below the window sills, but the exterior was refaced in c. 1470.
The piece of wall so incorporated is about 30 ft. long.
To the N.E. of the church the circuit of the wall was interrupted by a building 74 ft. long and about 21 ft. wide which lay
entirely on the N.W. side of the general line of the precinct
wall. This building, which has been identified as the Almonry,
probably dates from 1318, and the ground-floor walls of
ashlar masonry survive on the S.W., N.W., and N.E., partly
built over by a late 18th-century house (No. 29 Marygate).
The maximum height of the wall above the pavement of
Marygate is 11¼ ft. at the W. corner. It has a high chamfered
plinth, interrupted on the S.W. by a doorway 3 ft. wide and
6¾ ft. high with a corbelled head. This doorway was defended
by a portcullis, for which the wide slot remains, with rebates
for a door behind; it is now blocked. The N.E. wall has a
similar door, not so well preserved, visible in a cupboard
opening off a ground-floor room in No. 29 Marygate. The
N.W. wall has four tall narrow openings, each 6 ins. wide and
now blocked with brick. In the corner of the S.W. wall
against the church is a blocked window of two lights with
cinque-foiled heads; though 14th-century, it is a later insertion
into the wall of 1318 but antedates the aisle wall of the church,
which is splayed back to clear it. The interior of this building
has been largely filled with earth to form a raised garden for
No. 29 Marygate, but in the S.W. corner is a chamber where
the springers for vaulting ribs are visible, indicating a vault of
at least two bays.
The precinct wall of 1266 forms the core of the S.E. ground-floor wall of No. 29 Marygate. From this house it then runs
N.E. for a distance of about 250 ft. to Tower C and, after a
small change of alignment, continues for a further 200 ft. to
St. Mary's Tower.
The part of the wall up to Tower C has been much restored
and only the last 45 ft. remain largely unaltered, with the wall
of 1266 standing to a height of 11½ ft. and a crenellated parapet
of 1318 superimposed upon it. The rest was extensively
restored with new facing stone on the side towards Marygate,
especially at the S.W. end, after the demolition of the houses
built against it. Parts of the brick walls of these houses still
stand on top of the mediaeval wall. The side towards St.
Mary's Abbey is divided into three sections by straight joints,
signifying rebuilding at various times. The N.E. half, basically
the wall of 1266, has buttresses of two stages with weathered
offsets and unusually placed here both inside and outside.
Tower C (NG 59945228. Plate 20; Fig. 21, p. 18) is rectangular and open at the back. It was originally higher than the
adjacent precinct wall but has now been reduced to a height of
18¾ ft. It had a floor 11 ft. from the ground, supported on an
offset, and a roof supported by a second offset 7 ft. 8 ins. higher.
The walls are of ashlar masonry in courses generally over 1 ft.
high. The four cruciform arrow slits, one each in the N.E. and
S.W. walls and two in the N.W. wall, are of the type found
elsewhere in the work of 1318; internally they have very
widely splayed openings at first-floor level with joggled lintels.
Survey drawings of 1952 show that before the restoration of
that year the tower was a little higher and that the lowest parts
of an upper tier of arrow slits then existed, one in each wall;
these must have opened off the roof platform. In the S.W. wall
of the tower is a blocked doorway, now visible only from the
inside where the opening was 2¾ ft. wide. The outside at this
point has been rebuilt in rubble masonry, but there is a tall
slit, one side of which is possibly a jamb of the doorway. The
precinct wall immediately to the S.W. has been removed for a
modern gateway, but at the S. angle of the tower are bonding
stones for the crenellated parapet of the wall.
The wall between Tower C and St. Mary's Tower is one
of the best preserved parts of the enceinte; in places it has been
carefully restored in recent years. It consists of the original
13th-century wall up to a height of 11 ft. with the crenellated
parapet added in 1318, although the latter has been destroyed
towards the N.E. end. The outer face originally had nine
buttresses, not quite regularly spaced but averaging 22 ft. apart;
they are now mostly robbed, leaving scars on the wall. Tooling
marks are especially well preserved on the masonry of this
stretch of wall. On the inner side are five large buttresses,
irregularly spaced and not bonded into the wall, which were
probably added for stability in the later Middle Ages. One of
the wooden shutters has been restored in the fifth embrasure
N.N.E. of Tower C.
St. Mary's Tower (Plate 21; Fig. 22, p. 19), at the N. angle
of the precinct, was built in c. 1324 as a tall circular tower about
34 ft. in diameter, with thick walls and an octagonal interior
of two storeys; the original height was over 30 ft. It is no doubt
the new tower which the sacrist Stephen de Austewyk caused
to be built. After part destruction in 1644 it was rebuilt, preserving the octagonal interior, but with thinner walls on the
outer side, with the result that the reconstructed portion follows
an irregular curve. When sketched by Place in c. 1715, the
tower had a conical tiled roof resembling the present roof, but
with a central finial. Lean-to brick and timber buildings which
concealed much of the base of the tower were removed in
1896 and 1920.
The original part consists of the whole S. quadrant facing
into the precinct and extends some distance outside the
precinct wall towards Bootham. This original quadrant has a
chamfered plinth and a doorway on the ground floor 4 ft. 8 ins.
wide with a two-centred pointed arch. On the upper floor are
two doorways which originally provided access to the wallwalks along the Bootham and Marygate walls. The one
opening on the Bootham side has a corbelled head and is
placed a little above the level of the wall-walk whence it must
have been reached by a short wooden staircase. The other
doorway appears to have been at about the same level as the
Marygate wall-walk; it has below it an area of rubble masonry
which probably replaces a former corbelled support for the
timber wall-walk. The latter doorway has been altered at the
top, probably from a corbelled head similar to the others which
occur in the 14th-century work on the wall, to a straight
lintel. The part of the wall facing Bootham has a cruciform
arrow slit on the first floor.
The walling of the rebuilt quadrant was clumsily joined to
the original work; on the W. the joint is marked by a strip
several feet wide of exposed rubble core, and on the E. there
is a setback. The masonry, generally of large squared stone, is
of varying quality, a difference being most marked on the
N.E. side where the lower half of the wall is well built, comparable to the work of 1318, but above is poorly laid; this may
perhaps indicate rebuilding in two stages. The new wall is
built of reused masonry, some being from the original tower,
and incorporates on the ground floor a 15th-century window
of two lights with pointed trefoiled heads; the latter probably
comes from elsewhere in the abbey. On the first floor are three
windows facing N.; each one has a single mullion and transom
with ovolo mouldings; these are reused dressings from a large
bay window in the outer S.W. range of the King's Manor
built in c. 1610–20 by the Lord President, Lord Sheffield, which
was also ruined during the siege of 1644. A short length of
fluted frieze and some of the masonry too is from the same
source, all, including the windows, being cut to a sharper
curve than that of the wall of the tower. Facing N. is a partly
restored 17th-century doorway with a four-centred arch with
key-block also perhaps from the King's Manor.
Inside, the octagonal room on the ground floor has in the S.
wall the original doorway with a two-centred pointed rear
arch. The wall in which the doorway is set and the two
adjoining walls are of ashlar stone and original. Two other
sides are partly of stone faced with 17th-century brickwork,
and the rest, wholly rebuilt in the 17th century, are entirely
faced with brick. Access to the first floor is by a 19th-century
cast-iron newel stair.
The first floor, like the ground floor, has three original walls
of stone on the S. and three 17th-century walls faced internally
with brickwork on the N., the other sides being partly of each
period. In each of the original walls is a wide recess, and the
junctions with the rebuilt work show in straight joints which
are the reveals of two other recesses. Each of the eight sides in
the original tower probably had such a recess. Of the three
which survive, two lead to the doorways giving access to the
wall-walks: the one to the Marygate side has a depressed
pointed arch; the other to Bootham was higher, but the arch is
now destroyed and only the springing survives. Leading from
the second recess is a stone staircase rising within the wall
thickness, originally to the parapet walk of the tower. The
third recess has an arrow slit opening from it and contains a
garderobe in one corner; the chute downwards is blocked, but
there is an upward continuation in the wall thickness which
must have been for another garderobe on the parapet walk.
This third recess also lacks its original arch. The three 17th-century windows in the N. side of the tower have stone
frames, but the reveals and sills are of brick. The roof construction is of the 19th century.
The precinct wall continues parallel to Bootham from St.
Mary's Tower to the Postern Tower, a distance of about
435 ft., with a slight change of alignment about 98 ft. S.E. of
St. Mary's Tower and with intermediate Towers D and E at
distances of 147 ft. and 296 ft. respectively. The whole of this
length consists of the wall of 1266 heightened in 1318; Towers
D and E are entirely of the later date. Much of the outer side is
obscured by 18th- and 19th-century houses and shops, facing
Bootham, which have been built up against the wall. One
length of 100 ft. including Tower D was exposed in 1914, but
otherwise only small parts are visible adjoining St. Mary's
Tower and Tower E, uncovered in 1896; the latter tower is
still half obscured. In the parts which are exposed the facing is
poorly preserved and most of the buttresses have been robbed.
The inner face of the wall is visible along the whole of this
length. At a point about 120 ft. S.E. of St. Mary's Tower the
courses in the 1266 work break bond, indicating perhaps a
pause in the building of the wall.
The parapet between St. Mary's Tower and Tower E is
unrestored, though damaged; some merlons have gone completely. In four of the merlons there are cruciform arrow slits
with widely splayed reveals internally. Several embrasures
immediately to the S.E. of Tower E are completely restored;
nearer to the Postern Tower they are original but filled in by
the rear walls of buildings facing Bootham.
Towers D and E were equal in size and identical on plan,
being half-round to the front facing Bootham, semi-octagonal
inside and open at the rear and with two short projecting stub
walls. They were of two storeys, roofed, with an open
crenellated parapet walk. Tower D (NG 60025230. Plate 22)
is the less well preserved, although the curved front has been
cleared of accretions. There are three cruciform arrow slits at
first-floor level, all much damaged, and the parapet and side
walls are greatly broken down. Tower E (NG 60065227.
Plate 22; Fig. 23, below) stands to its full original height, but
the front is partly obscured and only one arrow slit is visible.
The interior walls on the ground floor are plain, although
each of the stub walls is splayed on the inner angle to a height of
5¼ ft. from the base. At first-floor level is an offset to provide
seating for joists. There are three rectangular openings each
for an arrow slit with splayed reveals and set in a shallow recess
with a double-corbelled head. In the other two sides are doorways; these clearly indicate the former presence of timber
wall-walks; they have corbelled heads inside and joggled lintels
externally, and the doors opened outwards from the tower.
On the outside, just below the doorways, are small patches of
brick infilling, probably representing the original sockets for
the timbers of the wall-walk. A second offset supported the
roof. The parapet wall is much thinner than the walls below
and is semicircular on plan internally as well as externally; in
it are three plain embrasures, and on one merlon a very eroded
pinnacle survives. This last is an unusual feature also occurring
at Conway Castle, built in 1283–9.
Postern Tower (Plate 23; Fig. 24, below), built in 1497 together with the adjoining archway, is rectangular, projecting
outside the line of the precinct wall. The walls are of brick faced
with ashlar. Originally two storeys high, the tower was
converted to three storeys, probably in the 17th century, by
the insertion of a floor in the upper part. It stands 26¾ ft. high,
excluding the hipped tiled roof which is probably of 17th-century origin. The N.W. wall is partly masked by a later
The N.E. wall has a moulded plinth, mostly modern restoration, which is continued on the S.E. wall, and a moulded eaves
cornice, which is carried all round the tower. On the ground
floor is a modern N.E. window of three lights, which replaces
an 18th-century bay window shown in views by Price and
Cattle of 1805 and by C. Dillon of c. 1840. Above, on the first
floor, there was formerly a rectangular window of which no
trace remains outside. In the S.E. wall is a doorway, partly
restored since at one time it was partly blocked to form a
window; it has boldly moulded jambs and a four-centred
arched head with sunk spandrels under a moulded label and a
four-centred brick rear arch. In the same wall on the first floor
is a window with a four-centred head, sunk spandrels, and
label, and just below the eaves is a small square window
inserted in the 17th century. In the S.W. wall a doorway
similar to that on the S.E. but with simpler mouldings has been
partly filled in to form a window. Above it are two small
rectangular windows, probably original.
The inside has one room on each floor. Access between them
is by a narrow newel stair in the W. angle, brick-built, vaulted
in brick, and reached through doorways with four-centred
brick arches. In the N.W. wall and now only visible from
inside the tower are blocked cruciform slits with large oillets
at the ends of the arms (Fig. 2, p. xii); they are different in
proportion from the loops in the 14th-century wall. They have
widely splayed reveals and four-centred rear arches. There is a
rear arch, probably for a similar opening, in the N.E. wall at
first-floor level. The inserted second floor is reached by a
modern timber staircase, and here in the S. corner are signs of
an inserted chimney, subsequently removed. Padstones at the
head of the walls no doubt supported beams of the original
The Postern of 1497, popularly known as Queen Margaret's
Arch, consists of a stone archway 10 ft. 7 ins. high with a
segmental head; it is rebated for doors which opened inwards
and is flanked internally by buttresses. Between it and the tower
is a pedestrian way 7 ft. high with a corbelled head, which was
cut through the wall in 1836. The wall above these openings
has a parapet with plain embrasures; one merlon is pierced by a
slit. To the S.E. of the postern is a short length of the wall of
1266 with later heightening and including the remains of an
external buttress. A bronze plaque set up on this wall in 1899
by the Yorkshire Philosophical Society perpetuates the misconception that the archway was made in 1503 for the use of
A length of about 60 ft. of the precinct wall, aligned towards
the S.W., now forming the boundary to a car park beside
No. 6 St. Leonard's Place, begins about 200 ft. S.W. of the
Postern. This wall, originally facing the city defences, retains a
triangular coping 1¾ ft. high and three characteristic 13th-century buttresses on the outer side. It stands to a height of
7¾ ft. The continuation, deflected S., though also in magnesian
limestone, is of 19th-century date. The original line crossed the
lane leading to the Museum Gardens beside the King's Manor,
and two short fragments of the wall, only one course high,
adjoin and are partly overbuilt by the S.E. wall of a wing of
the King's Manor built by Lord Sheffield in c. 1610.
The only other fragment of the abbey wall on this side of the
precinct is in the Museum Gardens, N. of Lendal Tower. It is
about 15 ft. long, 2 ft. 8 ins. thick, and 6 ft. high, although
largely obscured by the raised ground surface around it. There
are no visible remains of the wall on the river side of the abbey
Architectural Fragments and Fittings in The Yorkshire Museum. There is a large collection of carved and
moulded stonework much of which is the product of the
excavations in the Abbey but much of the material has been
brought from elsewhere. A MS. catalogue prepared in 1921–
1933 does not give the provenance of all the exhibits and many
of the numbers by which they were then identified have been
lost. Fragments of the claustral buildings preserved in situ have
already been described above. In the descriptions that follow
only those stones which are believed to be connected with the
Abbey have been included; other sculptures are listed in the
Sectional Preface, p. xliv.
Fragments of the 11th and 12th centuries:
(1) String-course and bay division shafts enriched with
lozenges probably from the abbey church, probably late
(2) String-course with bold hollow mould containing
spherical pellets, probably late 11th-century. Further pieces of
this string are built into the bottom of the N. wall of the abbey
(3) Voussoirs of an arch having, within a hollow, a roll-mould interrupted by circular bands of roll and nailhead
(4) Capitals for shafts and responds including (Plates 27a, c, d,
29): two primitive capitals with corner volute treated as faces,
11th-century; scalloped capitals, early 12th-century; water-leaf and sophisticated acanthus capitals, late 12th-century;
capital elaborately carved with struggles between men and
monsters including an eagle and a fish (Gardner, 93, fig. 158).
(5) Paired capitals and bases for small shafts, from cloister
arcade, late 12th-century (Plate 29d, e).
Fragments from the abbey church of 1271–95 and others later:
(1) Capitals with foliage of developed 'stiff-leaf' form, and
with later, more naturalistic foliage (Plate 10). The provenance
of some of the capitals is not certain.
(2) Fragments of window jambs including carved foliated
capitals, most of a developed 'stiff-leaf' character.
(3) Vaulting springers and ribs including ribs matching the
bosses described below.
(4) Vaulting bosses (Plates 11, 12), of c. 1300 and early 14th-century, mostly found in the Warming House, probably
collected there in the 16th century, include;
5 large bosses 2½ ft. in diameter for the intersection of eight
ribs, carved with foliage, one with Agnus Dei, and one with the
bust of a human figure framed in foliage.
8 bosses for the intersection of four ribs, carved with monsters,
with a monk playing a viol, with birds and figures embowered
in foliage, and with foliage only.
3 bosses for the intersection of three ribs, carved with foliage,
one including a running deer.
Many of the bosses are carved with rather large-scale
undulating formalised foliage but some are more delicately
carved with finely modelled natural forms.
(5) Wall arcading of two-centred arches enclosing trefoil
tracery under cusped gablets enriched with crockets and finials,
and two enriched with naturalistic flowers and foliage (Plate
12). These last are said to have come from the E. cloister walk
and may be dated to the last years of the 13th century. Those of
more formalised design are probably slightly later.
Coffin Lids: (1) coped, broken, inscribed Alanus d.., 13th-century; (2) coped, broken, inscribed Helis persona, 13th-century; (3) coped, broken, inscribed Thomas, 13th-century;
(4) flat, broken, with foliated cross inscribed Ema de Ben ...
perhaps for the widow of Adam de Benfield of Morton in
Cleveland, a benefactress of the abbey, 13th-century; (5) flat,
tapered, inscribed ... dulfus filius Joh.., 13th or 14th-century;
(6) flat, shaped, with moulded under-edge, and indents for
marginal inscriptions, crocketed canopy and figure with
helmet and shield, found in the choir of the abbey over a brick
tomb containing the skeleton of a boy, 15th-century.
Floor-slabs: (1) fragments inscribed H... iac..de..., 13th-century; (2) probably of Thomas Spofford, abbot 1405–22,
bishop of Hereford 1422–48, died at St. Mary's Abbey 1456;
broken and incomplete, retaining parts of marginal inscription
'... [Her]eford sacre p(a)gini p(ro)fessor et quonda(m)
Abba[s] hui[us] ... cuiu(s) a(n)i(m)e p(ro)pic[ietur] ...' with
corner medallion of Lion of St. Mark; within the border
representation of bishop in mass vestments, holding crozier and
book, the head flanked by two doctor's caps; partly incised,
partly in very low relief (Fig. 26. Cp. YPSR for 1902, 75;
Antiquaries Journal xviii (1938), 290); (3) large slab to two
brothers, William Hewick, magister, and dominus John
Hewick, capellanus, with incised cross on octagonal base
drawn in perspective; traces of a kneeling figure each side of
cross; 15th-century; (4) fragment with black-letter inscription
to Frater Thomas, 15th-century; (5–7) three fragments of
slabs with incised crosses, mediaeval.
Mortar (Plate 44), of bronze, with two handles of twisted
form; body decorated with pattern of quatrefoils containing
beasts, between bands at top and bottom; inscribed Mortaria
sci Johis Evangell de Infirmaria be Marie Ebor, Fr Wills de
Towthorp me fecit AD MCCCVIII.
Piscina (Plate 42d), with hexagonal bowl supported by a half-length figure flanked by a smaller figure, 14th-century.
(1) A series of 13 stone statues (Plates 1, 30–37), about life size,
of c. 1200, of which seven were dug up in the S. aisle of the
abbey church from under a layer of broken 13th-century
window tracery, two were recovered from St. Lawrence's
church, one from Clifton Bridge, and two from Cawood
(see p. xlii). The post-mediaeval history of the 13th figure is not
known. The figures from the S. aisle, when first uncovered,
showed considerable remains of colour. Exposure to damp and
flood water in the museum has obliterated almost all traces of
it. These figures are discussed in the Sectional Preface, p. xlii.
i. Moses (Plates 30a, 34). Complete figure with feet damaged,
with forked beard and horned; holding tablets of the Law
and serpent, with bird-like head, coiled around staff.
ii. John the Baptist (Plate 35b). Figure with feet missing and
very weather-worn, bearded, holding roundel with Agnus
iii. Probably St. John the Evangelist (Plates 1, 30b). Figure
of young man, feet missing. Book in left hand, knot of
drapery over right arm.
iv. Apostle (Plates 31b, 33). Complete figure, with forked
beard. Left hand holding drapery and book, open right hand.
v. Apostle (Plates 31a, 32). Complete figure with feet
damaged, bearded, holding book between the two hands.
vi. Apostle (Plate 36b). Figure without head, feet damaged.
Holding drapery and book in left hand, right hand gone;
vii. Figure (Plate 36c), headless, very damaged and decayed,
with rounded back.
viii. Figure (Plate 35a), complete except for hands but very
decayed; holding some object, now shapeless but possibly a
book, in left hand.
Fig. 26. (4) St. Mary's Abbey.
Floor-slab of Thomas Spofford (?).
ix. Figure (Plate 36a), headless, right side of body and right
arm defaced; feet damaged; object held in left hand defaced,
with angled back.
x. Apostle (Plate 37c). Figure complete except for head;
holding book in left hand, right hand with forefinger extended to book, with angled back.
xi. Apostle (Plate 37b). Figure lacking head and lower part
of legs. Holding book in left hand, knot of drapery in
right, from Cawood.
xii. Apostle (Plate 37a). Figure without head or feet, holding
book in left hand and knot of drapery in right.
xiii. Fragment of torso, similar in style and in scale to the
other figures; origin unknown.
xiv. Head, fragment only (Plate 43C).
At the back of each head, where complete, there is a 7 in. shaft
to which the head is attached. The backs of nine figures are
flat, two are angled as for setting in a re-entrant corner, and
one is rounded.
(2) Virgin and Child (Plate 41d). Draped figure of the Virgin,
seated, holding the infant Jesus on her lap. Both figures headless; present height 3 ft. 4 in. The back of the group is rough
and slightly rounded, presumably to be set into a wall. Similar
in style to the thirteen life-size figures described above; recovered from Cawood with two of the figures; c. 1200.
(3) Scenes from the New Testament (Plates 38, 39). Seven
voussoirs from an arch of several orders carved with figures
representing scenes from the New Testament. The figures,
which average 13 in. in height, are carved in a deep hollow
moulding; c. 1200.
i. The Visitation. Two figures, one nimbed but headless, the
ii. The Nativity. The infant Jesus, nimbed, in a cradle or
manger and in the background a figure now headless behind
a barrier with drapery.
iii. The Wise Men before Herod. Three standing figures,
one crowned, one headless, and a seated figure also now
iv. The Epiphany. Seated figure of the Virgin, now headless, holding the Child, and the three Wise Men, one
v. Herod ordering the Massacre of the Innocents. Under two
arches rising from a central column and with crenellated
parapet above, a King crowned and two armed men.
vi. The Marriage at Cana (?). Apostle and two other
figures, a pitcher in the background.
vii. The Raising of Lazarus. Three standing figures, one
headless but with cruciform nimbus, behind a coffin from
which a fourth figure is rising.
(4) Coronation of the Virgin. Fragments of figures, rather
more than life size (Plate 40); late 13th-century.
i. Figure of Christ, broken into three pieces. The middle
part of the figure was found c. 1952 built into the base of one
of the 13th-century buttresses to the S. nave aisle where it had
been used for repairs perhaps after the fire of 1377. The
figure has wavy hair and curly beard, and wears a robe held
by a belt. The head is inclined forward, facing the front; the
right arm is missing. The left hand holds a book.
ii. Head of the Virgin. In Museum basement, with wavy
hair similar to that of the Christ, and wearing a coronet
which is held by a hand which must belong to the missing
right arm of Christ.
iii. Fragment of torso and right arm, probably of the Virgin.
iv. Fragment of legs and feet, probably of the Virgin.
(5) Corbel head (Plate 42a), face disfigured, with wavy hair
restrained by a band, late 13th-century.
(6) Coping stone, carved with large figure of a lizard, late
(7) Coping stone surmounted by figure of man wearing surcoat over chainmail, with sword and shield, possibly from the
abbey defences, late mediaeval.
Tiles include: (1) decorated with bell between sword and
key; (2) with monkeys; (3) with ram and inscription Sol in
Ariete (Figs. 1, p. iv, 27).
Fig. 27. (4) St. Mary's Abbey. Floor-tiles.
(5) Priory of St. Andrew, Fishergate, is now
represented only by some fragments of stone precinct
walling on the N. side of Blue Bridge Lane. The church
of St. Andrew is mentioned in Domesday Book; in 1202
it was given by Hugh Murdac, Archdeacon of Cleveland, to the Gilbertine Canons who built a house there
(6) Church of St. Hilda, Tang Hall, is modern but
contains the following fittings brought from elsewhere:
Chairs, 17th-century, two, from church of St. Mary
Bishophill Senior, York III (9). Font, c. 1850, and fontcover, 1638, from church of St. John the Evangelist,
Micklegate, York III (6). Plate, cup, stand-paten and
alms-dish, all 1839, from Archbishop's Palace, Bishopthorpe; cup, cover-paten and salver, made by John
Langwith in 1703, from 'the chappel in the Castle in
the County of York' and dated 1706. (York II, 81, Pl. 15)
(7) Parish Church of St. Lawrence. The greater
part of the mediaeval church (Plate 48) has been
demolished, leaving only the W. tower standing. It
consisted of a 12th-century aisleless nave with a chancel
probably of later date and lit by 14th-century windows.
The W. tower (Plate 45) was added in the late 12th
century, the two lower storeys being of this date, but the
second storey was partly rebuilt and new windows were
put in in the 13th century. The top storey was added in
the 15th century. The rest of the church was pulled
down after the building of a new church in 1881–3 and
the old 12th-century N. doorway (Plate 46) was re-erected against the tower.
The lower stages are of coursed rubble, the lower part of the
E. wall being part of the W. wall of the earlier nave. A 16th-century window has been inserted in the W. wall cutting
across a small 13th-century light. The top storey is of good
ashlar with two-light 15th-century windows and a parapet
that rises at the corners with open panels surmounted by stone
finials. The doorway has a semicircular arch of four orders: the
inner order has plain voussoirs springing from moulded
imposts over scalloped capitals; the second order has an
interlace above two monsters springing from capitals also
carved with monsters (Plate 47); the two outer orders are
carved with formalised foliage. Behind, a semicircular rear
arch springing from chamfered imposts is probably the original
tower arch of the late 12th century.
Fittings. Bell in belfry of new church, not hung, inscribed
Deo Gloria 1739. Bell-frame in situ, in the old tower, not accessible but partly visible from the ground, of uncertain date.
Font, moulded octagonal bowl with brattishing on rim, small
foliage and grotesque carvings between mouldings, on octagonal stem with moulded foot, c. 1500. Monuments in churchyard include: (1) to four sons and two daughters of John and
Ann Rigg who died in a boating accident, 1830, inscribed
tablet framed by pilasters and entablature set against a brick
wall and overlooking stone-covered grave surrounded by iron
railings, by William A. Plows; (2) to ... Allen, upright stone
cylinder, probably early 19th-century; (3) to Elizabeth White,
1783, headstone. Plate: in new church, cup and cover by
William Busfield, York 1681; cup and cover by Thomas
Mangey, York 1682, with inscription of 1684; paten by Robert
Abercromby, London 1738, with inscription recording the
gift of Ann Yarburgh 1740; brass alms-dish, with temptation of
Adam and Eve, German, 16th-century (Fallow and McCall, 1,
(8) Parish Church of St. Maurice stood at the
junction of Monkgate and Lord Mayor's Walk. A
mediaeval church dating at least from the late 12th
century was taken down in 1875 and a larger structure
erected which was in turn demolished in 1967. The
following architectural fragments and fittings have been
Arch (Plate 49) reconstructed probably from S. doorway,
now of two orders but incorporating voussoirs of three types,
as well as jamb stones reused as voussoirs. Decoration in form
of roll mouldings, rosettes and beak-head ornament. Arch
springs from capitals carved with foliage and (?) interlace.
Third quarter of 12th century. Built into fabric of church of
St. James the Deacon, Acomb Moor.
Window (Plate 48), of two round-headed lights, roll-moulded
heads and parts of jambs. Lights divided by round shaft
attached to rectangular pier. Head pierced by circular hole
forming embryonic plate tracery (J. H. Parker, Introduction to
Gothic Architecture (1861), 52). Late 12th-century. In Yorkshire
Fittings. Bells: (1) inscribed Gloria in Altissimis Deus SS
1665; (2) venite exultemus Domino SS Ebor. Now at church
of St. Hilda, Grangetown, Teesside. Coffin Lid, carved with
raised cross, the head foliated against a plain circular background, 13th-century. At church of St. James the Deacon.
Monuments, in churchyard, headstones of 1781 and later.
Panelling, reset in 19th-century door, four panels carved with
four Evangelists and their symbols, 16th-century. At church of
St. James the Deacon. Plate: cup of 1568, cover-paten by John
Oliver, York 1684, now in the care of St. Michael-le-Belfrey,
York; cup and two patens by Barber and North, York 1842,
now at church of St. Thomas, Lowther Street, York (Fallow
and McCall, 1, 20, 21; cup of 1568 pl. vi). The present whereabouts of a flagon by Robert and David Hennel, London
1797, is not known.
(9) Parish Church of St. Olave, Marygate (Plates
45, 50), has walls of magnesian limestone ashlar, and
roofs covered with tiles and lead. The present church
comprises a N. aisle partly of the 15th century, W. tower
also of the 15th century, nave and S. aisle of the 18th
century, and chancel, vestries etc. added after 1850.
The Anglo Saxon Chronicle records that Siward
Earl of Northumbria died in 1055 and was buried 'in the
minster at Galmanho which he himself had built and
consecrated in the name of God and St. Olaf' (ASC,
Text D); St. Olave was Olaf, king of Norway, who was
killed in 1030 (see Bruce Dickens, Cult of St. Olaf in the
British Isles, Viking Soc. Saga Bk. xii, pt. 2 (1940), 53–
80). The original church must therefore have been built
between 1030 and 1055 but of this building nothing
remains identifiable today. Symeon of Durham speaks
of it as a 'little church' (ecclesiola) which became a noble
monastery (SS, li (1868), 94). After the Conquest Alan,
Count of Brittany, gave the church to Benedictine
monks who came from Whitby and Lastingham. Gifts
from William I and William II (EYC, 1, 265) enabled
these monks to build themselves a new church which
became the great St. Mary's Abbey, the church of St.
Olave remaining within the abbey precinct, appropriated to the monastery and serving the people of
Bootham and Marygate. The abbey, which had acquired
a valuable rectory, maintained that the status of St.
Olave was that of a chapel. In 1313 the sacrist, to whose
office the revenues of the church were allotted, was
ordered to supply fitting furniture for the church and to
provide for its other needs (Raine, 264). Further disputes arose in the course of the later 14th century,
leading to a decision by the archbishop and confirmed
by the pope (Papal Letters 1396–1404, 8) that the
parishioners should repair the church. There is however
no evidence that any work on the fabric was actually
carried out at this time.
Fig. 28. (4) St. Mary's Abbey. Gatehouse. (9) Church of St. Olave.
The original church was no doubt a rectangular
building without aisles but by the end of the 12th
century an aisle had been added to the full length of the
church on the S. side, corresponding in width to the
present S. aisle, and an aisle on the N. side of which the
length is uncertain but it was probably also the full
length of the church. The outer wall of this N. aisle
stood in the position of the present N. arcade. Some of
the stonework in the exposed footings of the E. part of
the S. wall probably belongs to a late 12th-century wall
with shallow pilaster buttresses over which later
buttresses of greater projection were built.
In 1458 Roger Stanes left 6s. 8d. for glazing the
window over the door (Raine, 266); this probably
marks the completion of a new S. aisle. In 1463 Thomas
Hornby, rector of Stokesley, left 5 marks towards the
fabric of the nave provided that the parishioners would
begin it within two years (Testamenta Eboracensia, SS,
xxx (1855), cci, 257) but it appears that nothing was
done, for in 1466 Archbishop George Neville gave
orders for extensive rebuilding of the church (Reg. Geo.
Neville, 86b quoted by Raine, 264); parochial status,
which had been a subject for dispute with the abbey,
was finally granted and the parishioners were ordered
to rebuild and repair much of the church but the monks
were to rebuild the N. side of the nave after the pattern
of the outer wall on the S. side. This instruction reflects
the fact that the church was to be widened northwards
and the new N. wall was to be an adaptation of the
existing precinct wall of the monastery. The N. arcade
was moved to the line of the outer wall of the former
N. aisle, leaving the tower eccentrically placed. Of the
rebuilding that followed, the W. half of the present N.
wall represents the precinct wall reconstructed with
openings to the aisle; a change of direction in the wall
probably indicates the position of a former interval
tower in St. Mary's precinct wall. The lower courses
of the E. part of the wall show original 13th-century
masonry on the inside. The new N. windows were to
copy those on the S. side, two of which are now reset
to form the two eastern windows in the N. side. The
footings of the mediaeval S. wall are now exposed
below the present S. wall and extend the whole length
of the present nave; the spacing of the former buttresses
differs slightly from the present arrangement. The
rebuilding of the body of the church including the
clerestory was probably complete by 1471 when John
Hartyng left 6s. 8d. towards making a Rood (Raine,
266). The rebuilding of the tower followed: in 1478
Robert Plumpton left 40s. towards the tower then being
built; further donations for the tower followed in 1483,
1485 and 1487 (Raine, 265). In 1498 Francis Foster left
6s. 8d. for bells, and in 1501 Christopher Johnson left
6s. 8d. for bells recently bought. The S. wall of the tower
is of one build with the S. wall of the ruined building
immediately W., of which the upper floor probably
formed the chapel of St. Mary at the Gate and which
must have been rebuilt at the same time.
During the Civil War the church suffered damage
when the roof was used as a gun platform (Ward, ii, 218;
Hargrove, 11, pt. ii, 598; Benson, iii, 39) and the church
was repaired in the reign of Charles ii (Sheahan and
Whellan, i, 514). Nevertheless by the opening of the
18th century it became necessary to rebuild most of the
church (YML, Hornby MSS., ii, 231) and stone for the
work was granted from the ruins of the adjacent abbey
(Treasury Papers 1702–7, pt. 1, 134, 297, 358). A drawing
of 1705 by James Poole (Bodleian, MS. Tanner 311,
f. 170) shows that at this time the nave had a clerestory
which was removed in the course of reconstruction. The
main work was carried out 1721–2: the S. wall was
completely rebuilt; both N. and S. arcades were rebuilt
with some re-use of mediaeval stone; and the N. wall
was partly reconstructed, with two 15th-century
windows reused from the S. aisle in the two E. bays
and other 15th-century material reused to give a uniform
appearance to the N. side of the church; towards the
W. a new doorway was made, and a new square-headed window further W. still. Differences between
the two E. columns in each arcade and those to the W.
possibly perpetuate a mediaeval feature, and a discontinuity in the roof suggests that the present nave
represents a mediaeval nave and chancel, the latter
occupying the two E. bays. A W. gallery was inserted
The present chancel was added in 1887–9 to the designs of G. Fowler Jones of Stonegate, York. A vestry
was added in 1898. In 1907 an organ motor chamber
was built to the designs of G. F. Walker over the remains
of a vaulted chamber in the almonry to N.E., and in
1908 the vestry was converted to a S. chapel, a new N.
vestry was added and the chancel was enlarged, all to the
designs of Francis Doyle of Liverpool. At the same time
the W. gallery was removed and the W. pier of each
arcade was rebuilt.
Architectural Description. The Nave (80 ft. by 21 ft.) is of
5½ bays. The chancel arch is modern. The N. and S. arcades
have two-centred arches of two chamfered orders. The two
E. piers in each arcade are octagonal with octagonal bases and
capitals, and there are semi-octagonal responds to match; to the
W. three columns in each arcade are circular with circular
capitals under abaci alternately square and octagonal. The two
W. piers have been rebuilt with modern stonework. Some of
the other piers include reused mediaeval masonry, but the
capitals and bases are all of the early 18th century with quasiclassical mouldings. The tower arch, in the S. part of the W.
wall, is two-centred, with three chamfered orders to the E.
and two to the W., springing from hollow-moulded imposts
above simple splayed jambs. N. of the tower arch is a vertical
straight joint marking the N. corner of the tower structure.
The North Aisle (8 ft.-9 ft. wide) has an E. wall which is
modern above a 15th-century base and contains a modern
opening to the organ chamber. The lower part of the N. wall
is part of the 13th-century precinct wall of the abbey and is
built in two lengths meeting at a slight angle between the
second and third windows; this junction may perhaps represent the position of a mural tower, removed in the 15th
century, since it comes at a distance from Tower B equal to the
distance between Towers A and B on St. Mary's precinct wall.
On the outside a moulded plinth of the 15th century has been
added and between the bays are 15th-century buttresses rising
to gargoyles and crocketed pinnacles. In the two E. bays are
mid 15th-century windows each of three lights with hollow-chamfered jambs and vertical tracery in a four-centred head;
in the third and fourth bays are windows of slightly later date
which are generally similar to the first two but show slight
variations in detail, having three-centred heads and larger foils
in the tracery. In the fifth bay is an 18th-century doorway with
moulded jambs and two-centred head. Further W. is a window
of two lights with a square head. The sixth buttress is further
W. than the W. end of the aisle, opposite the middle of the
tower. The W. wall of the aisle is of plain masonry aligning
with the W. wall of the nave but not of the same build.
The South Aisle (9½ ft.–7¾ ft. wide) was rebuilt in the 18th
century with re-use of mediaeval masonry and a decorative
fragment of early 17th-century work from the King's Manor.
In the E. wall is a modern opening to the N.E. chapel. The S.
wall stands above the footings of an earlier and thicker wall
with buttresses laid out at a spacing different from the present
arrangement. In the first three bays from the E. are 18th-century windows each of three lights with hollow-chamfered
jambs and vertical tracery in a three-centred head. The tracery
and mullions in the second and third windows are entirely
modern. The fourth window has three cinque-foiled lights and
a four-centred head with no tracery. The doorway has chamfered jambs and a two-centred head. The westernmost window
has two cinque-foiled lights and a square head. The W. end
includes the tower staircase.
The West Tower (10½ ft. by 8½ ft.) has a projection for a
staircase on the S. side and another projection, further W., of
irregular rubble masonry, which may represent a buttress of a
12th-century tower. The lower part of the tower, which is
open to the nave, was originally divided into two storeys by a
floor which has been removed. The upper room so formed
must have served as a vestry for the chapel of St. Mary at the
Gate which adjoined to W. It was reached by an external stair
leading to a doorway, now blocked, in the S. wall and from it
another doorway in the W. wall, also blocked, led into the
chapel. In the W. wall of the tower, in the W. face, is a tall
arched recess (Plate 14) which may have accommodated the
altar of the chapel, with the doorway to the vestry beside it.
On the inside of the S. wall of the tower is a recess, rebuilt in
the lower part, which was probably a cupboard to contain the
banners and the dragon (representing the devil) which were
carried by the monks in the Rogationtide processions; these
processions started after a mass in the chapel (Ord. 319). In the
N. wall, above the modern vestry, two projecting stone
corbels suggest that there may once have been a higher roof
built up against the tower on this side. In the W. wall, above
the arched recess, is a window of three cinque-foiled lights with
vertical tracery in a two-centred head, and above again a
small rectangular light. At a corresponding level in the E. wall
is a small doorway which formerly gave access to the nave
roof, before the removal of the clerestorey. The top stage of the
tower, above a weathered string-course, was rebuilt in the 18th
century with an original 15th-century window reused in each
face; these windows have four-centred heads and labels but no
mullions or tracery. The West Vestry is a modern structure; its
E. wall is formed by the W. wall of the nave and N. aisle and
has a 15th-century string-course. The N. wall retains 13th-century masonry of the precinct wall in the lower part and
some 15th-century walling with a moulded string-course
above, but much of the upper part of the wall is modern.
Fittings—Bells: six, all bearing the maker's name 'Dalton
maker York' and dated 1789, inscribed (1) With cheerful voice
O Lord I'll sing to thee, (2) Have faith in Christ and live
eternally, (3) We call, Come ye watch and pray, (4) In praise to
God loudly we unite Halleluiah, (5) In concert I'll Jehovah's
name resound, (6) To Father Son and Holy G'st eternal glory
raise. William Dade, vicar. William Bayldon Christopher
Bearpark William Cuthbert Richard Wood, churchwardens.
Benefactors' Tables: in N. aisle (1) framed by clustered
columns at the sides and moulded arched head, recording
benefactions from 1766 to 1871, early 19th-century, repainted;
in S. aisle (2) in moulded frame with arched head recording
benefactions from 1607 to 1740, 18th-century. Coffin Lid, in
Yorkshire Museum, two fragments with cross bar of cross and
top of panels below carved with interlace finishing in beasts'
heads; found in excavations in front of the Museum and almost
certainly from St. Olave's church; c. 1060 (Plate 25d; see Preface,
p. xlvi). Communion Table, with turned legs, rails enriched with
arabesques, superimposed modern top, 17th-century. Doors:
in N. doorway (1) with arched head, plain panels externally,
with original furniture, 18th-century; in S. doorway (2) with
arched head, panelled both sides, with original furniture, 18th-century. Font, disused in churchyard, moulded octagonal bowl
on octagonal stem with narrow waist, 15th-century very
weather-worn. Glass in E. window, main lights contain
fragments assembled to form five figures with heads representing a king (St. Olaf?) and saints. In tracery, in centre lights, the
Annunciation, incomplete, and above, two kneeling figures,
one with scroll inscribed Ave Maria, 15th-century. Images: in
S. aisle at E. end, (1) Crucifixion in low relief; Christ crucified
between two small figures holding scrolls, stone, badly worn,
15th-century; (2) Madonna and Child, marble, 18th-century
Monuments and Floor-slabs. Monuments: In N. aisle (1) to
David Russell, 1840; (2) to Sarah Eyre, 1825, wall monument
with sarcophagus and urn, shield-of-arms below; (3) to Rev.
Thomas Cripps, 1794, with sarcophagus, cross, and shield-of-arms; (4) to William Cattell, 1830, Sarah Cattell his wife, 1842;
(5) to David Poole, 1830, and two daughters, with sarcophagus,
by M. Taylor, York. In S. aisle (6) to Charles Christopher
Richard Hacket, 1849; (7) to George Hutchinson of Reeth,
1775, and Elizabeth his mother, 1774, erected by Walter Gray,
with Adamesque urn (Plate 51), probably from the same
workshop as (8) below; (8) to Alathea Jordan, 1741, Col. John
Jordan her husband, 1756, and Anne Maria Alathea, their
daughter, widow of James Maude, 1778, by whose will the
monument was erected, with Adamesque urn, by Fishers
(Plate 51); (9) to Frances Worsley, 1837; (10) to Michael
Loftus, 1762, with shield-of-arms; (11) to John Roper, 1826,
and Sarah his widow, 1835, with sarcophagus; (12) to George
Stephenson, 1800, with draped urn; (13) to William Thornton,
joyner and architect, 1721, and Robert his son, 1724 (Plate 51).
In churchyard, S. of church, headstones include (14) to Sarah
wife of John Wolstenholme, carver, 1834; (15) to Thomas
Wolstenholme, sculptor, 1812; (16) to Francis Wolstenholme,
carver, 1833; (17) to George Wolstenholme, 1822; by N. door
of abbey church (18) table tomb to William Etty, R.A., 1849.
Floor-slabs: In nave (1) to Mrs. Anna Burgess, 1792, and
John her husband, 1795; (2) to Robert son of William Thornton
(architect), 1724; (3) to the Rev. Thomas Mosley, early 19th-century; (4) to Elizabeth Mosley, 1787; (5) to Capt. Isaac
Moorsom, 1779; (6) to Rebecca widow of James Legard, 1783;
(7) to Anne Mosley, 1782; (8) to Anthony Thorpe, 1830;
(9) to Frances wife of the Rev. Lamplugh Hird, prebendary of
York cathedral. In N. aisle (10) to Lt. David Naylor (1831).
In Yorkshire Museum (11) two fragments found reused in St.
Mary's Abbey but almost certainly from Earl Siward's church
of St. Olaf and perhaps from Siward's own grave, carved with
a monster with barbed tongue and spiral wing, mid 11th-century.
Niche, externally over N. doorway, with vaulted head,
pinnacles and crockets, 15th-century reset, probably from
Abbey gateway and now containing modern statue. Plate
includes cup with 17th-century bowl mounted on earlier stem
and flat sexfoil foot, 15th- or early 16th-century, cup of 1633
by Thomas Harrington, flagon of 1703 and stand-paten of
1715, both by Seth Lofthouse, paten of 1767 by Butty and
Dumée, and a brass alms-dish embossed with St. George and the
Dragon and, on the rim, remains of inscription recording gift
to church in 1707, almost completely obliterated. Royal Arms,
in N. aisle, of Henry Prince of Wales, died 1612, stone shield
held by a lion, repainted (Plate 51). Stoup, in N. jamb of N.
doorway, round bowl reached from doorway and from aisle,
Miscellanea: under chancel arch, part of base of stone screen
(Plate 52) having, above a base mould and between miniature
buttresses, quatrefoil panels carved in relief with figures of
angels playing musical instruments; 14th-century, found in
excavating for the organ chamber.
(10) Cemetery, with chapel 280 yds. S. of Walmgate
Bar, and lodge to W., was opened in 1837 by the York
Public Cemetery Company. The chapel (Plate 83) is
built of Roche Abbey stone and was designed by J. P.
Pritchett; the lodge was presumably by the same
architect (New Guide (1838), 149; York Courant, 4 Jan.
1838). The cemetery originally comprised some 8 acres
but was subsequently increased to 30 acres. The chapel
is a pleasant example of the Greek Revival style, but in
1972 was standing derelict.
The Chapel is aligned on an E.-W. axis with a tetrastyle
Ionic portico on the N. side. The entablature is continued all
round the building. The E. and W. ends are each divided into
three bays by Ionic half columns between pilasters under a
pediment. On the S. is a small entrance porch over a flight of
steps down to the basement. Windows on E., S. and W. sides
have battered sides, and are enclosed by eared architraves.
The inside of the chapel is divided into seven bays in length
and three in width by wooden pilasters, painted to simulate
marble, above a boarded dado. Above an entablature with
cornice, the ceiling is divided into 21 square compartments;
two cast-iron ceiling roses served as ventilators and points of
suspension for the former gas lights. The chapel was at one time
divided into two parts, one for the Church of England and one
for Nonconformists, but no trace of this division survives.
Below the chapel is a brick-vaulted basement with compartments for burials.
The Lodge is a simple two-storeyed structure, faced with
ashlar, and T-shaped on plan. The two ends of the main range
are each divided into three bays by simple pilasters, and the
entablature above is continued all round the building; the
gable ends are treated as pediments. A single-storey addition
on the N. side replaces an original tetrastyle portico (New
Guide, 151) and the S. wing has been lengthened.
Cross, 50 yds. W. of chapel, of cast iron, stands about 8 ft.
high above an octagonal stone pedestal. It was made by John
Walker of Walmgate, probably in 1837.
Gates and Railings. The entrance, on the W. from Cemetery
Road, has iron gates hung to stone piers with honeysuckle and
Greek fret ornament; it is flanked by lengths of railing terminated by large stone piers, that at the N. end surmounted
by a stone sarcophagus (Plate 81), that at the S. end by a
Fig. 29. (9) St. Olave's. Wall monument.