Statues - Hither & Thither

Great Britain
Cambridge
Cambridgeshire

East of England

St. John's College  
(Chapel)

Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College

Farmer & Brindley
1869

Cambridge /  Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College   Cambridge /  Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College

Description

The Chapel of St John's College was constructed between 1866 and 1869 to replace the smaller, mediaeval chapel which dated back to the 13th century. The architect was Sir George Gilbert Scott. The chapel is adorned two reliefs and 18 statues.

A. Entrance in the north corner of the First Court:

Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
1. St. John the Evangelist
Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
2. Christ King
Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
3. Saint John Fisher
Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
4. Margaret Beaufort, Countess of Richmond and Derby

  1. (in a rose in the gable of the porch) St. John the Evangelist conventional name for the author of the Gospel of John - considered to be the same person as John the Apostle (Wikipedia).
  2. (in the tympanum) Christ King, flanked by two angels with censers.
  3. (left of the doors) Saint John Fisher (Beverley, Yorkshire 1469 - London 1535), Bishop of Rochester, Chancellor of the University of Cambridge. Executed by order of Henry VIII during the English Reformation for refusing to accept the king as Supreme Head of the Church of England. He was responsible for building St. John's college after the of Margaret Beaufort (Wikipedia). He stands on the figure of Vice.
  4. (right of the doors) Margaret Beaufort, Countess of Richmond and Derby (Bletsoe Castle, Bedforshire 1443 - London 1509), mother of King Henry VII of England and an influential matriarch of the House of Tudor. Founded Christ's College in Cambridge in 1505 and began the development of St John's College, which was completed posthumously by her executors in 1511 (Wikipedia). She holds a model of the college and stands on the figure of Ignorance.

B. 16 statues in tabernacles in the buttresses around the nave and choir. They show statues of prominent college alumni benefactors:

    South (facing First Court)

    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    1. William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley
    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    2. Lucius Cary, 2nd Viscount Falkland
    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    3. John Williams
    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    4. Thomas Wentworth, 1st Earl of Strafford

  1. burleigh - William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley (Bourne, Lincolnshire 1520 - London 1598), English statesman, the chief advisor of Queen Elizabeth I for most of her reign, twice Secretary of State (1550-1553 and 1558-1572) and Lord High Treasurer from 1572 (Wikipedia).
  2. falkland - Lucius Cary, 2nd Viscount Falkland (Burford, Oxfordshire c. 1610 - Newbury 1643), English author and politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1640 to 1642 (Wikipedia).
  3. williams - John Williams, Archbishop of York (Wikipedia).
  4. strafford - Thomas Wentworth, 1st Earl of Strafford (London 1593 - London 1641), English statesman and a major figure in the period leading up to the English Civil War (Wikipedia).

    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    5. William Gilbert
    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    6. Roger Ascham
    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    7. Mary Talbot, Countess of Shrewsbury

  5. gilbert - William Gilbert (Colchester 1544 - London 1603), English physician, physicist and natural philosopher, remembered today largely for his book De Magnete (1600), and is credited as one of the originators of the term 'electricity' (Wikipedia).
  6. ascham - Roger Ascham (Kirby Wiske, Yorkshire 1515 - London 1568), English scholar and didactic writer, instructor to Elizabeth I (Wikipedia).
  7. countess of shrewsbury - Mary Talbot, Countess of Shrewsbury (born Mary Cavendish, 1556 - 1632), wife of Gilbert Talbot, 7th Earl of Shrewsbury; she financed the building of the second court, 1598-1602 (Wikipedia).
    East (facing St. John's Street)

    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    8. Richard Bentley
    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    9. Edward Stillingfleet
    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    10. John Overall
    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    11. Peter Gunning

  8. bentley - Richard Bentley (Oulton, Leeds 1662 - Cambridge 1742), English classical scholar, critic, and theologian (Wikipedia).
  9. stillingfleet - Edward Stillingfleet (Cranborne, Dorset 1635 - London 1699), English theologian, bishop of Worcester (Wikipedia).
  10. overall - John Overall (Hadleigh, Suffolk 1559 - Norwich 1619), Bishop of Coventry, Lichfield and Norwich (Wikipedia).
  11. gunning - Peter Gunning (Hoo St Werburgh, Kent, 1614 - 1684), Bishop of Chichester and Ely (Wikipedia).
    North (facing Forecourt), here are also two empty niches

    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    12. Sarah, Duchess of Somerset
    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    13. Thomas Clarkson
    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    14. Brook Taylor
    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    15. Thomas Linacre
    Cambridge - Founders, Alumni and Benefactors of St. John's College
    16. Thomas Baker

  12. duchess of somerset - Sarah, Duchess of Somerset (born Sarah Alston, 1631-1692), wife or John Seymour, 4th Duke of Somerset. She was a philantropist and largely endowed St John's College, 'for the education and nourishing of youth in piety and good literature' (Biography).
  13. clarkson - Thomas Clarkson (1760 - 1846), English abolitionist and a leading campaigner against the slave trade in the British Empire (Wikipedia). He holds a slave chain.
  14. brook taylor - Brook Taylor (Edmonton, Middlesex 1685 - London 1731), English mathematician who is best known for Taylor's theorem and the Taylor series (Wikipedia).
  15. linacre - Thomas Linacre (Brampton, Derbyshire c. 1460 - 1524), English humanist scholar and physician, founder of the Royal College of Physicians (Wikipedia).
  16. baker - Thomas Baker (1656 - 1740), antiquarian and historian.

Annotation

The statues on the south façade and the entrance are visible from the First Court, those on the east end from St. John's Street and the ones on the north façade from the Forecourt, which is not open for visitors.

The statues on the chapel tower - two on each face - we did not photograph. These statues depict Moses, Aaron, Solomon, a high priest, Lady Margaret Countess of Richmond and Derby, Bishop John Fisher of Rochester, the Bishop of Ely and John Frost (who gave the land upon which the Hospital of St. John was built).

Colleges in Cambridge

The university colleges in Cambridge occupy large areas with several buildings and courts. There are numerous statues, mostly in the façades of the various buildings. The statues with are not visible from the public road. Most of the colleges are accessible for visitors during certain times of the day, some for free, others for a small (or not so small) fee.

Sculptor

Sources & Information

Tags

  • Bishop
  • Cary 2nd Viscount Falkland, Lucius
  • Cecil 1st Baron Burghley, William
  • Christ
  • Clarkson, Thomas
  • Façade with statues (church)
  • Farmer & Brindley
  • Fisher, John
  • Gilbert, William
  • Gunning, Peter
  • Historian
  • John the Evangelist, St.
  • Linacre, Thomas
  • Mathematician
  • Overall, John
  • Philanthropist
  • Physicist
  • Politician
  • Richmond and Derby, Countess of
  • Scholar / scientist
  • Shrewsbury, Countess of
  • Somerset, Sarah Duchess of
  • Statue (woman)
  • Stillingfleet, Edward
  • Talbot, Mary
  • Taylor, Brook
  • Theologian
  • Tympan
  • Wentworth 1st Earl of Strafford, Thomas
  • Williams, John
  • Location (N 52°12'29" - E 0°7'4")

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    Item Code: gbee059; Photograph: 23 October 2015
    Of each statue we made photos from various angles and also detail photos of the various texts.
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    © Website and photos: René & Peter van der Krogt