Page:EB1911 - Volume 01.djvu/51

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.


maintained its rigid austerity, till in the course of years wealth impaired its discipline, and its members sank into indolence and luxury. The Premonstratensians were brought to England shortly after a.d. 1140, and were first settled at Newhouse, in Lincoln shire, near the Humber. The ground-plan of Easby Abbey, owing to its situation on the edge of the steeply sloping banks of a river, is singularly irregular. The cloister is duly placed on the south side of the church, and the chief buildings occupy their usual positions round it. But the cloister garth, as at Chichester, is not rectangular, and all the surrounding buildings are thus made to sprawl in a very awkward fashion. The church follows .the plan adopted by the Austin canons in their northern-abbeys, and has only one aisle to the nave—that to the north; while the choir is long, narrow and aisle less. Each tran-sept has an aisle to the east, forming three Chapels.

The church at Bayham was destitute of aisles either to nave or choir. The latter terminated in a three-sided apse. This church is remarkable for its exceeding narrowness in proportion to its length. Extending in longitudinal dimensions 257 ft., it is

EB1911 - Volume 01 pg. 51 img 1.png

Fig. 11. — St Augustine's Abbey, Bristol (Bristol Cathedral).

A. Church.
B. Great cloister.
C. Little cloister.
D. Chapter-house.
E. Calefactory.
F. Refectory.
G. Parlour.

 

H. Kitchen.
I. Kitchen court.
K. Cellars.
L. Abbot's hall.
P. Abbot's gateway.
R. Infirmary.

 

S. Friars' lodging.
T. King's hall.
V. Guest-house.
W. Abbey gateway.
X. Barns, stables, &c
Y. Lavatory.

not more than 25 ft. broad. Stern Premonstratensian canons wanted no congregations, and cared for no possessions; therefore they built their church like a long room.

The Carthusian order, on its establishment by St Bruno, about a.d. 1084, developed a greatly modified form and arrangement of a monastic institution. The principle of this Carthusians.order which combined the coenobitic with the solitary life, demanded the erection of buildings on a novel plan. This plan, which was first adopted by St Bruno and his twelve companions at the original institution at Chartreux, near Grenoble, was maintained in all the Carthusian establishments throughout Europe, even after the ascetic severity of the order had been to some extent relaxed, and the primitive simplicity of their buildings had been exchanged for the magnificence of decoration which characterizes such foundations as the Certosas of Pavia and Florence. According to the rule of St Bruno, all the members of a Carthusian brotherhood lived in the most absolute solitude and silence. Each occupied a small detached ccttage, standing by itself in a small garden surrounded by high walls and connected by a common corridor or cloister. In these cottages or cells a Carthusian monk passed his time in the strictest asceticism, only leaving his solitary dwelling to attend the services of the Church, except on certain days when the brotherhood assembled in the refectory. The peculiarity of the arrangements of a Carthusian monastery, or charter-house, as it was called in England, from a corruption of the French chartreux, is exhibited in the plan of that of Clermont, from Viollet-le-Duc.

The whole establishment is surrounded by a wall, furnished at intervals with watch towers(R) . The enclosure is divided into two courts, of which the eastern court, surrounded Clermont.by a cloister, from which the cottages of the monks (I) open, is much the larger. The two courts are divided by the main buildings oi the monastery, including the church, the sanctuary (A), divided from B, the monks choir, by a screen with two altars, the smaller cloister to the, south (S) surrounded by the chapter-house (E), the refectory (X)—these buildings occu ying their normal position—and the chapel of Pontgibaud (K). The kitchen with its offices (V) lies behind the refectory, accessible from the outer court without entering the cloister. To the north of the church, beyond the sacristy (L), and the side Chapels (M), we find the cell of the sub-prior (a), with its garden. The lodgings of the prior (G) occupy the centre of the outer court, immediately in front of the west door of the church, and face the gateway of the convent (O). A small raised court with a fountain (C) is before it. This outer court also contains the guest-chambers (P), the stables and lodgings of the lay brothers (N), the barns and granaries (Q), the dovecot (H) and the bakehouse (T). At Z is the prison. (In this outer court, in all the earlier foundations, as at Witham, there was a smaller church in addition to the larger church of the monks.) The outer and inner courts are connected by a long passage (F), wide enough to admit a cart laden with wood to supply the cells of the brethren with fuel. The number of cells surrounding the great
EB1911 - Volume 01 pg. 51 img 2.png

Fig. 12. — Carthusian monastery of Clermont.

A. Church.
B. Monks' choir.
C. Prior's garden.
D. Great cloister.
E. Chapter-house.
F. Passage.
G. Prior's lodgings.
H. Dovecot.
I. Cells.

 

K. Chapel of Pontgi-
 baud.
L. Sacristy.
M. Chapel.
N. Stables.
O. Gateway.
P. Guest-chambers.
Q. Barns and
 granaries.

 

R. Watch-tower.
S. Little cloister.
T. Bakehouse.
V. Kitchen.
X. Refectory.
Y. Cemetery.
Z. Prison.
a. Cell of subprior.
b. Garden of do.

cloister is 18. They are all arranged on a uniform plan. Each little dwelling contains three rooms: a sitting-room (C), warmed by a stove in winter; a sleeping-room (D), furnished with a bed, a table, a bench, and a bcokcase; and a closet (E). Between the cell and the cloister gallery (A) is a passage or corridor (B), cutting off the inmate of the cell from all sound or movement which might interrupt his meditations. The superior had free access to this corridor, and through open niches was able to inspect the garden Without being seen. At I is the hatch or turn-table, in which the daily allowance of food was deposited by a brother appointed for that purpose, affording no View either inwards or outwards. H is the garden, cultivated by the occupant of the cell. At K is the wood-house. F is a covered walk, with the necessary at the end.

The above arrangements are found with scarcely any variation in all the charter-houses of western Europe. The Yorkshire Charter-house of Mount Grace, founded by Thomas Holland, the young duke of Surrey, nephew of Richard II. and marshal of England, during the revival of the popularity of the order, about a.d. 1397, is the most perfect and best preserved English example. It is characterized by all the simplicity of the order. The church is a modest building, long, narrow and aisle less. Within the wall of enclosure are two courts. The smaller of the two, the south, presents the usual arrangement of church, refectory, &c., opening out of a cloister. The buildings are plain and solid. The northern court contains the cells, 14 in number.It is surrounded by a double stone wall, the two walls being about 30 ft. or 40 ft. apart. Between these, each in its own