St. Mark's (The Lord Mayor's) Chapel at the bottom of the hill on Park Street was full of interesting decorations, including fan vaulting in the ceiling. The misericord carvings on the choir stalls included the head of a Green Man and, what seemed to be the head of an African, not a man of Somerset origin anyhow. There were 16th century Spanish floor tiles in front of the altar and, in the Poyntz Chapel to the south side, German stained glass panels in the windows.
Poyntz or Poins means fist, like the French poing. Sir Robert Poyntz was a friend of Henry VIII.
One of the tombs had the stone carving of a family on it. The husband and wife (who died very young) were gazing at one another with clasped hands. The wife held a baby in her arms.
|The Green Man misericord carving|
|Jesus and the Elders in the Temple|
|St. Anne and St. Mary teaching Jesus to read|
|Jonah and the Whale|
I'd intended to make a very brief, in-and-out visit to this chapel, but by the time I left it, half an hour had gone by!
Other time-consuming distractions on Park Street are such places as a music shop full of ukulelis and tin flutes, the owner being a folk music specialist, and a bookshop selling £2 books, some of those very good value indeed, but on my way to the top of the hill I took a detour onto Brandon Hill, the steeply sloping park around the Cabot Tower, which is a 19th century lookout and landmark more than 30m high. The plaque says:
This tower was erected by public subscription in the 61st year of the reign of Queen Victoria to commemorate the fourth centenary of the discovery of the continent of North America, on the 24th of June 1497, by John Cabot. Who sailed from this port in the Bristol ship Matthew, with a Bristol crew, under letters patent granted by King Henry VII to that navigator and his sons Lewis, Sebastian and SanctusThere are good views from there across the Avon valley and a large tree planted by King Edward VII in 1902.
In the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery, next to the University entrance on Park Street, I found some French Impressionists, Ming vases, stuffed animals including some from Australia and the skeleton of a prehistoric elk, looking like a moose. A painting by Ravilious of a tennis game caught my eye as did one of Winifred Nicholson's children looking sad on the Isle of Wight after their father had left them. A box kite aircraft was suspended from the domed ceiling of the museum, once used as a prop in the film Those Magnificent Men In Their Flying Machines (1965).
|Inside the Bristol Museum|