The Quiver, 11/1899 online

. (page 7 of 12)
Online LibraryAnonymousThe Quiver, 11/1899 → online text (page 7 of 12)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

he is expressing his own spirit also. The author enters into him
and he throws himself into the author; his reading, therefore, is
the union, the marriage, the interpenetration and expression of two
spirits - the author's and his own. However interesting, therefore,
and delightful it may be to hear an author read his own works,
yet is there always lacking the dash and force and suggestiveness
produced when a great author is interpreted by a great reader. The
author merely reproduces his original meaning in what he wrote;
the reader, through the agency of his own independent personality,
idealises and diversifies that meaning.

Idealisation is one of the most beautiful effects of the fine art of
reading. The most ordinary poem or piece of prose, when idealised
by an accomplished artist in reading, grows lovely and sweet. And
one way of learning to read well ourselves is to sit at the feet of
some of these great masters of reading. Until we have heard a great
reader read it is next to impossible to conceive what a fine and
noble art true reading is. On the other hand, we can never become
good readers by merely listening to others, any more than we can
become good musicians by hearing others play.

In the art of reading, others may be our models; none but ourselves
can be our makers. Listening to others may show us how the thing
can best be done, but without doing the thing ourselves the thing
can never be truly learned by us. Sometimes, indeed, listening to
others has an effect quite the opposite of a model for imitation.
"Pausanias tells us of an ancient player on the harp who was wont to
make his scholars go to hear one who played badly that they might
learn to hate his discords and false measures." In like manner, one
way of learning to read well is to hear others read badly.

The art of reading aloud culminates in the expression of the
spiritual through the medium of the physical. As sculpture aspires
to express its ideals in stone, and painting in colour, and music
in sound, so reading embodies its ideals in uttered words. A
well-trained voice, clearness of enunciation, rhythm and flexibility
of articulation - these are the physical framework of the art of
reading aloud. Without first acquiring these the reader is as
impotent as the painter without colour or the sculptor without
stone. But the physics of reading are nothing more than its material
framework. Unless the reader is inspired with ideals, reading will
never rise to the dignity and glory of an art with him. He may be
as a house-painter with his brush, or a mason with his stone - an
industrious and useful artificer, but not an artist in his work.


By J. A. Reid.

The subject of church architecture is ever a fascinating one.
Millions of money and an immense amount of time and labour have been
spent in erecting places of worship, some of which are magnificent
structures capable of seating several thousands. On the other hand,
small, humble edifices sometimes suffice to meet the requirements of
the worshippers; and it is with these that we here propose to deal.

Which of the midget churches is the smallest it is somewhat
difficult to say; but it is believed that the smallest church in
England is the truly miniature church of Lullington, in Sussex.
It is a primitive and quaint building, constructed of flint with
stone quoins, with a roof of red tiles. It can boast of a little
weather-boarded turret at its west end; but its bell does not toll
now, and the birds of the air have long since found the turret a
convenient nesting-place. The church is but sixteen feet square. The
pulpit is a pew, with panelled sides and door, and the furniture is
of the plainest. Five, narrow, diamond-paned windows throw a scanty
light upon the interior, in which there is accommodation for thirty
persons - quite sufficient for the population of the village.

[Illustration: (_Photo: H. J. Unwin, Hailsham._)


(_Sixteen feet square._)]

A somewhat larger edifice is the very interesting church of
Wythburn, in Cumberland, the dimensions of which are - nave (length),
thirty-nine feet; height of walls, ten feet; and width, fifteen
feet. This was the original church, erected about one hundred and
sixty years ago, and is of the simplest description. The roof is
constructed of old ships' timber, and the windows are square holes
with wooden frames. The chancel is eighteen feet long by fifteen
feet by ten feet. The beautiful little east window is by Henry
Holiday, and was put in to the memory of the late vicar. What
a magnificent site for a church! The poets have thus expressed
themselves with regard to this humble but beautifully situated
church: -

Canon H. D. Rawnsley wrote:

"We cannot stay - for life is but an Inn,
A halfway house - and, lo! the graves how near!
Yet mighty minds have hither come for cheer
Before the upward path they dared begin.
Here Gray the pilgrim rested pale and thin,
Here Wilson laughed, and Wordsworth murmured here.
Here Coleridge mused, and ere he crossed the mere
Hence Arnold viewed the Goal he hoped to win.
And we who would Helvellyn's height essay,
Or climb towards the gateway of the mound
Where Dunmail died because his realm was fair,
May join their gracious company who found
Earth's beauty made Life's Inn a House of Prayer,
And speed, refreshed of soul, upon our way."

[Illustration: _Wythburn Church as compared with St. Paul's

(_Photo: T. Dumble, Keswick._)


(_Thirteen yards long, five yards wide._)]

Wordsworth, too, said:

"If Wythburn's modest House of Prayer,
As lowly as the lowliest dwelling,
Had, with its belfry's humble stock,
A little pair that hang in air,
Been mistress also of a clock
(And one, too, not hung in crazy plight),
Twelve strokes that clock would have been telling
Under the brow of old Helvellyn."

And H. Coleridge:

"Humble it is, and meek, and very low,
And speaks its purpose by a single bell:
But God Himself, and He alone, can know
If spiry temples please Him half so well."

We have given two instances of very small churches: let us now refer
to a midget chapel. At Crawshawbooth, a village near Burnley, there
is an extremely interesting diminutive place of worship known as
the Friends' Meeting-House, an old-fashioned building covered with
ivy, and environed by a well-cared-for burial ground. It contains
half a dozen oak benches, on which the worshippers sit. Though these
benches are sufficient to provide seating accommodation for about
sixty, the attendance is rarely more than six. John Bright once
worshipped here, walking from Rochdale, a distance of twelve miles.
This quaint little place is naturally regarded with much interest by

It is interesting to point out that there is another Quaker
meeting-house in the hamlet of Jordans, in Buckinghamshire, which
is, if anything, smaller than that already referred to. It has been
called the Shrine of Quakerism, for early in June every year a
gathering of Quakers takes place. Here lie the remains of William
Penn, one of the greatest of Quakers. At a cottage in the vicinity
Milton wrote his "Paradise Lost."

[Illustration: (_Photo: R. W. Lord, Little Lever, near Bolton._)


(_Containing six oak benches to accommodate sixty worshippers._)]

To revert to churches, Kilpeck Church is well worth referring to as
being a lovely little place of worship. The nave is thirty-six feet
by twenty, and the chancel seventeen by sixteen feet ten inches,
the total length being sixty-eight feet and the average breadth
about sixteen feet. It is built upon a Saxon foundation, and Saxon
remains are still to be seen - notably, a "holy-water" stoup that
must be one thousand or eleven hundred years old. It is not possible
to do justice to this beautiful church in a few words, but the
accompanying photograph will give an idea of the quaintness and
beauty of the structure. The sculpture is remarkably interesting.

[Illustration: (_Photo: Poulton and Sons, Lee._)


(_Nave thirty-six feet by twenty._)]

An article on midget places of worship would be incomplete without a
reference to the little lath-and-plaster church of Essex, consisting
of nave, chancel, and a small turret. Hazeleigh Church, as it is
named, stands in the near vicinity of Hazeleigh Hall - once the
home of the Essex family of the Alleynes, one of whom founded the
College of God's Gift at Dulwich. This little church has thus been
described by the Rev. H. R. Wadmore, sometime curate: -

"... A little church beside a wood
Securely sheltered from the sweeping blast;
So quiet, so secure, it seems to be
A very type of rest and all that's still."

[Illustration: (_Photo: R. D. Barrett._)


(_Twelve yards long._)]

This little church of Hazeleigh, owing to its simple character,
differs but slightly from the roadside cottages. It has been styled
"the meanest church in Essex," owing to its unpretentious character.

[Illustration: (_Photo: Cassell and Co., Ltd._)


(_The most primitive church in the kingdom._)]

A pleasing little church is that of Chilcombe, near Bridport,
Dorsetshire. Chilcombe is mentioned in the Doomsday Book, and at one
time was the property of the Knight Hospitallers of St. John. The
existing church dates from the thirteenth century. It is in the
Roman style, and possesses a good Norman font. The length of the
nave is twenty-two by fourteen feet, the chancel being thirteen by
eleven feet. The owner of the parish and the patron of the living is
Admiral the Hon. M. H. Nelson.


(_Capable of seating fifty people._)]

Another remarkably small church is that of St. Peter, on the Castle
Rise, at Cambridge, its dimensions being twenty-five by sixteen
feet. It is of Norman architecture.

England by no means possesses all the diminutive churches and
chapels, and a very quaint and interesting church is that of Ledaig,
near Oban. It is unsectarian, and its congregation numbers, on the
average, twenty-five. It was founded by John Campbell, who was more
familiarly known as "The Bard of Benderlock." He converted a natural
cavern in the cliffs of Ledaig into a place of worship. A portion
of a trunk of a tree, on which Robert Bruce is said to have rested,
serves as a table and reading-desk. Trunks of trees around the sides
of the cavern serve as seats for the worshippers. Mr. Campbell
officiated as minister for many years to a band of faithful Highland
worshippers in this curious church. Mr. Campbell was a remarkable
personality. He was postmaster of Ledaig, and he also gained a
considerable reputation as a poet. He was a much respected man, and
his memory is dear to many.

[Illustration: (_Photo: A. A. Inglis, Edinburgh._)


(_For some time used as a powder magazine._)]

I would like to refer to a very interesting midget church at
Grove, near Leighton Buzzard, which I had the pleasure of visiting
recently. It is the smallest in the county, and is a gable-roofed,
barn-like fabric, with a door on the north side. In 1883 the little
church was restored throughout, the fine old-fashioned square
pews being replaced by open wooden seats, and it is now capable
of seating about fifty people. Formerly the edifice contained a
"three-decker" - clerk's desk, reading-desk, and pulpit combined. The
churchyard contains many graves, but only one tombstone (eighteenth
century). The dimensions of the church are - length, twenty-nine and
a half feet; width, eighteen feet; height, about forty feet; in
all probability, the church was formerly larger than at present.
Grove is generally considered to be one of the smallest parishes in
England, and one could hardly conceive of a smaller. It consists
practically of a farmhouse and a lock-keeper's cottage.


(_Showing figure of a Knight Templar cut in the rock._)

(_Photo: G. E. Arnold, Knaresborough._)]

We must not forget that at the top of Edinburgh Castle is the
historical diminutive chapel of St. Margaret's, which was the
private chapel of the pious Margaret, Queen of Malcolm III., during
her residence in the castle. Until very recently it had been quite
lost sight of, having been converted into a powder magazine and
fallen into disrepair. In 1853, however, it was "discovered" and
put into an efficient state of repair. It is considered to be
the oldest and smallest chapel in Scotland, its dimensions being
sixteen feet six inches by ten feet sixteen inches. The semicircular
chancel is separated from the nave by a well-carved double-round
arch, decorated with Norman zigzag mouldings. It is too small to be
made available for divine service for the troops quartered in the
castle, and the only use that it is now put to is for occasional
baptisms and morning Communion.

[Illustration: (_Photo: Cassell and Co., Ltd._)


(_Believed to include the only remaining portion of a Saxon wooden

There are several very small places of worship which are now, alas!
in ruins. At Iona, for instance, on the west coast of Scotland,
are the remains of an extremely small chapel, known as St. Oran's
Chapel. It is very near Iona Cathedral. It is constructed of red
granite, and its external measurements are sixty feet by twenty-two
feet. It is now roofless, and is very old. This little chapel
is believed to have been built by Queen Margaret in 1080. Its
architecture is Romanesque, and it has one low entrance. This humble
edifice is interesting inasmuch as within its walls is the tomb of
Sir Walter Scott's "Lord of the Isles," the friend of Bruce.

[Illustration: (_Photo: Cassell and Co., Ltd._)


(_Containing an organ made by the pastor._)]

There is another tiny barn-like edifice at Greenloaning, near
Dunblane. The little church is situated adjacent to a farmhouse, and
seems to have been erected for the benefit of the farm-workers. It
is remarkably small. The scenery in the vicinity is magnificent, and
the church is regarded with much interest by tourists.

St. Anthony's Chapel is another small building also in ruins. It is
interesting owing to its historic surroundings, being in the near
vicinity of Holyrood Palace. It comprises a hermitage, sixteen feet
long, twelve feet wide, and eight feet high, and a Gothic chapel
forty-three feet long, eighteen feet broad, and eighteen feet high.

One of the most remarkable of these little churches is that at
Knaresborough, in Yorkshire, which is a very queer little chapel
elegantly hewn out of the solid rock, the roof being beautifully
ribbed and groined in the Gothic style. At the back of the altar is
a large niche, where an image used to stand, and on one side of it
is a place for the "holy-water" basin. There are also figures of
three heads - designed, it is believed, for an emblematical allusion
to the order of the monks at the once neighbouring priory. Possibly
they were cut by some of the monks. The order was known as Sanctæ
Trinitatis. A few yards away there is another head. It has been
surmised that this is a representation of St. John the Baptist, to
whom the chapel is supposed to be dedicated. There is a cavity in
the floor, in which some ancient relic was rested. The chapel is
ten feet six inches long, nine feet wide, and seven and a half feet
high. Near the entrance is the following inscription: -

"Beneath yon ivy's spreading shade,
For lonely contemplation made,
An ancient chapel stands complete,
Once the hermit's calm retreat
From worldly pomp and sordid care,
To humble penitence and prayer;
The sight is pleasing, all agree -
Do, gentle stranger, turn and see."

The chapel is known as St. Robert's Chapel. St. Robert, the hermit
who used it for devotions, was born about 1160, and was the son
of Sir Toke Flouris, who was mayor of the city of York. In his
youth he was noted for his piety, and he entered the Cistercian
Abbey of Newminster in Northumberland. He was only there eighteen
weeks, however, removing to York, and then to Knaresborough, where
he retired from the world to live a life of contemplation in this
restful spot. He died in the September of 1218. On one side of the
entrance to the chapel, under the ivy, is the figure of a Knight
Templar, cut in the rock, in the act of drawing his sword to defend
the place from the violence of intruders. This is a queer and
remarkable building, and, though not now used as a place of worship,
the reference here made to it may prove interesting.

[Illustration: (_Photo: Cassell and Co., Ltd._)


The cathedral of St. Asaph, in Flintshire, might be mentioned in
this category as being the smallest cathedral in the country. It
is in the shape of a simple cross in plan, consisting of a choir
transept, nave, with five bays with aisles, and a central tower
forty feet square and one hundred feet high. The choir was built in
1867-68 from the designs of the late Sir Gilbert Scott, R.A., and is
of Early English architecture.

Passing references might also be made to the diminutive church of
Warlingham, in Surrey, which runs the midget church of Wotton in
that county very close; and to Grosmont Church, Monmouth, erected
by Eleanor of Provence, a quaint little structure with an octagonal
tower. There used to be a church known as St. Mildred in the
Poultry, which was removed to Lincolnshire. It formerly occupied a
position in the eastern end of Cheapside, and in 1872 it was taken
to pieces and re-erected at Louth. It is generally considered to be
the smallest church designed by Wren.

At St. Andrew, Greensted, near Ongar, there is a very small church,
and it is a curiosity, inasmuch as it is believed to be a relic of
the only church of Saxon origin built of wood remaining.

There is a small chapel at Point in View, near Exmouth. It is
Congregational, and it provides seating accommodation for eighty
persons, and forms one side of a block, the other three sides being
taken up by four little almshouses, each consisting of two rooms
occupied by four elderly maiden ladies. Over the chapel door is this
motto: -

"One Point in View
We all pursue."

The chapel contains a diminutive organ made by the pastor. In the
vicinity there is a peculiar round house, the property of the
Reichel family. It was a member of this family who founded the
chapel and almshouses.

The little church of St. Nicholas at Hulcote should be mentioned.
It is near Woburn, the seat of the Duke of Bedford. It is rather
difficult to find, at any rate when the foliage is on the trees,
so surrounded is it by them. It was built about the year 1610 by
Richard Chernocke. Its measurements are: length, from the tower to
the chancel step, thirty-nine and a half feet; chancel, eight and a
half feet from step to east; width, sixteen feet three inches. There
are carved oaken panels to many of the seats, and on the north wall,
inside the chancel rails, are some valuable old monuments in memory
of the Chernocke family. It is now between fifteen and twenty years
since the church was used for divine service, but it is still used
for funerals.

There is a little church, near London, known as Perivale. Although
so near to the great metropolis, it is situated in a peculiarly
lonely district. It lies in the valley of the Brent amid expansive
meadows and hay farms. In 1871 there were only seven houses and
thirty-three inhabitants in the parish. The midget church is
situated at the end of a field near a low, semi-Gothic half-timber
parsonage and a farmhouse. Although somewhat desolate, the spot is
a restful one, and the hill and spire of Harrow in the distance
make the scene pleasing to the eye. The little church is in the
Early Perpendicular style, and consists of a nave, a narrow chancel,
a rough wooden tower with short, pyramidal spire at the west,
and porch on the south-west. The interior presents a well-kept
appearance. The church was restored in 1875. In the windows is some
late fifteenth-century glass containing figures of St. John the
Baptist and St. Matthew, in fairly good condition, and of Mary and
Joseph, which are not so well preserved.

The prettily situated ivy-clad church of St. Lawrence, Ventnor,
Isle of Wight, is another edifice which might well be described as
a midget church, although some years ago it was found necessary to
enlarge it. The church originally was thirty feet eight and a half
inches long, it is now forty feet eight and a half inches; and its
breadth was formerly eleven feet, whereas it is now twenty feet.
The height to the eaves is about six feet. The architecture is Old
English, but not at all striking. The church dates back to about the
year 1190.

[Illustration: (_Photo: F. N. Broderick Hyde._)


We have now exhausted our space, but not our subject. There are
other examples of diminutive churches throughout the country, but we
have made a selection of the more interesting ones. However small
the church, the worshippers have this assurance from the Founder of
the Christian religion: "Where two or three are gathered together in
My name, there am I in the midst of them"; and with that quotation
this little article may fittingly be concluded.

[Illustration: Canon's Daughter]



By E. S. Curry, Author of "One of the Greatest," "Closely Veiled,"



In the Canons' Court, between Mr. Bethune's and the Deanery, lived
Mr. Warde. He was a pleasant man, well off, artistic, musical - and
happy in a life of little work, which left him leisure for his
artistic pursuits. He had a rosy, kind face and plump figure; the
Bethune children, Marjorie included, went to him before anyone else
in times of need. He had often shielded them from offended law.

It was he who set on foot the literary and drawing guilds,
arranged concerts, and was the universal handy man for games and
social festivities to all the county round Norham. He was about
thirty-five, and had a chivalric devotion to Mrs. Bethune and her
children, since, as a young man, he had first come to Norham.

Marjorie was so accustomed to this that she did not see what was
manifest to other eyes, on her return from school in Munich. She
took all his kindness as a matter of course, having no more relation
to herself individually than the Bishop's or the Dean's. Since her
return, he had been sedulously pursuing his courtship in every way
that occurred to him.

This gentleman was standing beside her under the lime-tree at the
top of the garden, where Marjorie could superintend the pursuits of
her two youngest brothers. They were now busily engaged underground.
For a whole week every minute of David's and Sandy's leisure had
been spent in digging a deep hole in the corner of the garden
devoted to their use. Thence, with infinite patience, passages had
been scooped, and the mound of earth thrown up against the wall had
come in useful as a toboggan ground.

The little boys had received strict orders that morning that all
the earth in the passages of the "cave," which, in a frenzy of
labour, the two schoolboys had burrowed out before breakfast, was
to be removed before their return in the afternoon. As it got
deeper, steps had been conveyed from the house for the descent of
the hole. The utility of division of labour had been impressed upon
the children. Orme was to fill the baskets; Ross, being surer of
his equilibrium, was to carry them up and empty them. If the work
was not done, and done properly, the babies would have to play
elsewhere; no longer would their presence be tolerated by their

Marjorie was enjoying a new book, whose alluring cover was fit index
to its contents. Now and then, between the pages, dark eyes looked
at her in a strange and wonderful fashion. When this occurred, she
would lift her own, and gaze dreamily over the currant bushes, her
breath coming quickly, the colour fluctuating in her cheeks. Upon
one such moment Mr. Warde had intruded.

"I thought I would come in and talk to you about your sonnet,
Marjorie," he said, looking about for a seat. There was nothing

1 2 3 4 5 7 9 10 11 12

Online LibraryAnonymousThe Quiver, 11/1899 → online text (page 7 of 12)