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than a cornice or impost curved around it. Such a pier, if perfectly plain, is more satisfactory to the eye than a perfectly plain rectangular pier; and it is much easier to design and build than a shafted rectangular pier. Some have thought, therefore, that it may have been the primitive English device here in the barbarous north- that Carilef may have got his idea for it from those old-English churches which he and his fellow-countrymen so utterly swept away. It is much more certain, however,

that the peculiar decoration he applied to it was a survival of old-English fashions.

The thing that is very sure indeed is that by its aid Carilef and Flambard succeeded in making their interior the most imposing, the most magnificent, of its time. The greater height of the main arcade, which involves, of course, a greater height in the aisles beyond, gives a much nobler air of space and size and vigor

than is seen at Ely or at Peterborough, and takes away that tunnel-like effect which distresses one a little there. The contrasting outlines of the alternated piers give an extraordinary majesty, a phenomenal force and dignity, a titanic pomp which can be matched in Egypt only. There is none of the grace of Egyptian columnswhich are true columns, despite their size in the cylindrical piers of Durham; and the design as a

whole gives perhaps less than the design of Peterborough an impression of complete. artistic development, an impression as of the final word of a long-developing style. We are somewhat tempted to say that Durham is almost barbaric in its grandeur as compared either with Egyptian work or with much other Romanesque work. But in reality

it is not barbaric. If its vigor, audacity, and immensity seem to speak of the likings and darings of some primitive race, its fine proportioning and the reticent dignity of its decorations speak very clearly of cultivated, practiced builders, clever of hand and sensitive of eye. It is so splendid, so triumphantly impressive, solemn, awful, and yet beautiful, that when possessed by the spell of its presence we feel as though it had no peer in all the world.

In one way it is not only grander but more perfect, more complete, than any other Anglo-Norman church. All its parts are vaulted. The choir-vault was renewed in the thirteenth century. But the nave-vault is still the same that was built in late-Norman days; and though its main ribs are pointed, it has a thoroughly Norman look, owing to the massive simplicity of its design and the bold zigzags

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which enrich its ribs. Of course such a vault is not only finer in itself than a flat ceiling but makes the whole effect far finer, giving added height and greater unity as well as an infinitely nobler look of strength. An impression of "rocky solidity and indeterminate duration" is what Dr. Johnson said he received at Durham when starting on his Scottish tour; but all his most sesquipedalian adjectives could not have translated the impression it really produces.

It is worth noting, too, that its effect must always have been pretty much what it is today. So few remains of paint have been found upon Durham's walls that it seems improbable that any general scheme of chromatic decoration was ever applied to them. Nor is the eye

impelled, as in so many other cases, to clothe them with imagined hues. Color could hardly add to the beauty of this interior where the stone is so softly warm in tone and where the design is so complete, in spite of its boldness and simplicity, that nakedness is the last word which could come to mind. It is wonderful to see what extraordinary decorative emphasis is given by so simple a device as the incising of the circular piers- what an accent of richness and vivacity it brings to the seriousness of the immense design. It has been thought that the lines may once have been filled with metal or with colored pastes; but no traces of a filling have been found. The incisions are far deeper than a preparation for

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itself; and it is a Lady-Chapel as well as a narthex. The reason for its peculiar composite character is to be found in the single fault which tradition fastens upon Cuthbert. He had a very pronounced hatred or contempt for women,- or may we not give gentler explanation to the foible of so gentle a saint and think that he had a very godly fear of them for which he felt some good human excuse deep down within his holy bosom? Centuries after his death his susceptibilities were guarded by the builders of Durham. Far away from his shrine, near the west end of the nave, they worked a white line across the pavement and with almost Mohammedan scorn forbade a feminine foot to cross it. When at last men threatened to forget his jealousy, the saint himself remonstrated. Bishop Pudsey tried first to build the Blessed Virgin's chapel in the usual place (eastward of the choir); but the foundations refused to bear their load, and this was, of course, "a manifest sign" that the work "was not acceptable to God and to his servant Cuthbert." So he piously began again westward of the nave where, as the foundations rested upon the rock itself, no supernatural mandate checked him; and, seeming to have

VOL. XXXV.-34.

thought the ewes of his flock harshly treated, he made his chapel a Galilee as well, "into which women might lawfully enter." Why, indeed, should he not have been more sympathetically minded than St. Cuthbert ?- since the first body which claimed interment within his walls was that of his own illegitimate son, another Hugh de Puiset who had been Chancellor to Louis VII. of France.

But the most famous tomb in this chapel is that of the Venerable Bede. Few saints or sinners so far away in time as Bede are of so vital an interest and value to modern men; and with regard to few have we such good reason to believe that their bones really rest in their reputed sepulcher. Bede was a monk at Jarrow, and his bones reposed there from the eighth to the early eleventh century, when they were most piously stolen by the sacrist of Durham and placed in Cuthbert's hospitable coffin. Pudsey built for them a separate and splendid shrine which, two hundred years later, was removed into his chapel. The Reformers destroyed it, but reburied the bones beneath a square plain tomb; and here they were found, upon examination, in the year 1830. Not until this time was cut the epitaph we now may read:

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