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(NEW SERIES VOLUME XXII)
"Surge igitur et fac et erit Dominus tecum"
PUBLISHED UNDER THE SUPERINTENDENCE OF
THE ECCLESIOLOGICAL SOCIETY
JOSEPH MASTERS ALDERSGATE STREET
AND NEW BOND STREET
"Surge igitur et fac: et erit Dominus tecum."
No. CLX.-FEBRUARY, 1864.
(NEW SERIES, NO. CXXIV.)
A VISIT TO BRANCEPETH CHURCH IN 1863.
BY THE REV. J. T. FOWLER, OF HOUGHton-le-Spring. THIS church is, in many respects, so very interesting, that an account of it will probably be acceptable to some who have never heard of it, as well as to those who already know something about it; and, as a "restoration" is contemplated, it seems desirable to place on record a detailed account of features which may soon be lost for ever or greatly altered.
The church is situated about five miles from the city of Durham, close to Brancepeth Castle, which was once the seat of the ancient and powerful family of Neville. The saintly John Cosin, afterwards Bishop of Durham, held the rectory previous to the great Rebellion; and we shall find many proofs of his love for the "habitation of GOD'S house" as we proceed in our examination of a church that owned him as rector, though most of the work done by his direction is in the utterly debased style of the period at which he lived. The fabric itself, dedicated to S. Brandon, Abbot of Clonfert, has evidently been built at several different times. The tower is Early English, of very rude character, presenting some appearance of Norman work in its lower stages. The nave is also of Early English work, with plain but good piers and arches. The aisles and transept belong to the Decorated period. The chancel and south side-chapel are Perpendicular, and the north porch debased. The north chapel is Decorated, and seems to have been cut away in part when the present chancel was built. The most convenient way to describe the building will be to go from east to west, mentioning, as we proceed, any particulars respecting its furniture and arrangements which may seem to call for special notice.
The chancel forms a double square, its dimensions being 42 feet 6 inches by 21 feet 3 inches. It is a most beautiful specimen of the Early Perpendicular, or transition from the Decorated to the Perpendicular style. The east window is somewhat low and wide, and of