Original copper line engraving of Church of St Cross, Winchester from Britton’s Beauties published 1805.

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Published by Vernor & Hood, Poultry Sept. 1805

Drawn by G. Shepherd : Engraved by W. Woolnoth 

An original copper line engraving from The Beauties of England and Wales (Volume VI) written by John Britton in conjunction with his friend Edward Brayley. Volume VI comprised the counties of Hampshire, Isle of Wight and Herefordshire and included 25 plates. George ‘Sidney’ Shepherd was a topographical, landscape and architectural painter who flourished 1800-1830, and was also a founding member of the New Society of Painters in Watercolours. William Woolnoth was a landscape engraver and the elder brother of the portrait painter and engraver Thomas Woolnoth.

This framed engraving shows a view towards the west side of the Norman church of St Cross in Winchester and also shows the C14th north porch. The Hospital of Saint Cross was founded by Henry de Blois, Bishop of Winchester, between 1132-36 on the site of the ruins of a religious house in Winchester’s water meadows. It was built as an almshouse, a secular foundation endowed with land, that supported 13 poor men (the Brothers of St Cross) and could feed 100 people at the gates.

It was constructed of stone from Caen, Dorset and the Isle of Wight together with local flints. Inside on a pillar in the north aisle is the Cross, which is illuminated by sunlight twice a year: on Holy Cross Day and Invention of the Cross Day.

In the C15th Cardinal Beaufort added several buildings south of the church to form a quadrangle, including the Hundred Men’s Hall and the Beaufort Tower. The Tudor cloister and infirmary were added by Robert of Sherborne in the early C16th. The Norman transitional style church is all that now remains of the original building. The Hospital of St Cross is the oldest continuing almshouse in England, and the wayfarer’s Dole – a horn of bear and morsel of bread – can still be claimed from the Almshouse of Noble Poverty.

This print is in a good clean condition and is available presented in an ivory conservation quality mount and framed with a light walnut and gold wood frame with acrylic glazing. Price – £30.00.

Approximate dimensions are:

Mount window: 180 x 120 mm

Frame overall size: 280 x 235 mm

Additional information

Weight 0.5 kg