Medieval Art in England
From grand cathedral to parish church, and from castle to cottage, medieval England was filled with imagery. Yet only a tiny proportion of what was made has come down to us. Ravaged by war, iconoclasm, religious reforms, neglect and the vicissitudes of fashion, a number of England's medieval buildings may still be standing, but they have been all but gutted of their original artistic splendour.
The works of art in this catalogue evoke the incredible panoply of English craftsmanship from a period of history spanning almost a thousand years: from wearable objects of status and power made by the early Anglo-Saxon communities of East Anglia, to depictions of Heaven's host of angels and the omnipotent power of God; from stout, bulbous jugs which would have occupied the centre of a dining table and borne witness to its theatre, to meticulously-embroidered textiles that formed dramatic focal points for liturgical celebrations. All of these objects tell the story of England's complex history of ascendancy and decline, a country whose populations changed dramatically through war, plague and invasion, and whose artistic community embraced immigrants and indigenous craftsmen alike. England in the Middle Ages may have been a country in flux, but the art it produced continues to endure.