THE SAXON CATHEDRAL AT CANTERBURY
or western half of his Great Church. Edmer tells us it had a platform within its apse ascended by steps only, for the purposes of a sanctuary; in the eastern part of which an altar, hallowed in veneration of the Blessed Virgin, was placed; and that when the priest celebrated Mass at this altar, he had his face turned eastward towards the people who stood in the nave below. This was quite the contrary custom to that of the British Church, as we have seen.
Relic of St. Austroberta
This altar contained the head of the blessed virgin Austroberta as a relic (see p. 39). Behind, set in the west wall of this apse, which embraced the whole chapel, was the episcopal seat, built with decent workmanship of large stones and mortar, placed at a good distance from the Lord's Table, showing that this apse must have been of considerable size.
It now only remains to state that St. Austin seems to have used the Roman foundations of the vestibule of the Romano-British Church for the purpose of building upon them the central and porch towers of his Cathedral. The porch towers projected above the aisles and gave entrance, not only to the crossing between his choir and nave, but also to the choir and nave aisles. They were also slightly projected north and south so as to form porches; the northern gave exit to the cloister, as we are told by Edmer that "the cloister about which the clerks went was on all sides of it." This northern tower was dedicated to St. Martin, and was used by the Saxon novices, who were taught here the divine office and its variations according to the changing seasons of the year. The ground floor of the south tower was the place where legal trials were heard, and in the midst of it was the altar of St. Gregory.
NOTE ON THE GALLICAN LITURGY.