Thursday, 27 July 2017

Church of St. Nicholas, Ash, Kent.

Alabaster carving in Ash Church, 1612.

The Church of St. Nicholas in the village of Ash is said by knowledgable authorities to possess the finest collection of mediaeval monumental effigies of any parish church in Kent, possibly surpassed only by those of Canterbury Cathedral. 
The above carving in alabaster represents Sir Thomas and Lady Septvans, both in a position of praying. Below them, the line of seven figures represent their daughters, five of whom are carrying a skull to signify that they died as children. (see enlarged inset) The sons' effigies which originally appeared on the left of the predella have been lost at some time during the last four hundred years.
Christopher Toldervey and wife, Jane.

Interestingly, Jane, one of the two daughters who survived, figures with her husband, Christopher Toldervey on a carving nearby.

When King Henry VIII appointed himself head of the new Church of England one of the first things that he did was to have any of the Pope's insignia removed from 'his' churches and replaced with his coat of arms.
Arms of King Charles II, dated 1660, painted on wood.

Recently discovered in the church is this royal arms of King Charles II dating from his accession to the throne in 1660 with the restoration of the monarchy. Note that the shield is quartered with the Bourbon family arms, the fleur de lys, because the kings of England still claimed sovereignty over France.

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