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The Medieval Angels of Barton Turf

Updated: Aug 5, 2023

The Medieval Angels of Barton Turf

"I’m at Barton Turf in Norfolk, it is a chilly Winter day – but I am here to show you something that will really warm your heart, it gets me excited every time I lay eyes on it. It is one of the finest examples of late medieval art anywhere in Great Britain – if it were in an art gallery in a city, people would be travelling many miles to see it. Because it is in a church people ignore it. The work of art I want to show you is this – it is the rood or chancel screen that marks the division between the nave where the people met to worship and the chancel where the sacrifice of the mass was offered. Norfolk has quite a lot of medieval painted screens – but this one is special, not only is it one of the finest examples of medieval English panel paintings but it is immaculately preserved – there is only minor damage by iconoclastic Protestants, who would often scrape saint’s faces away. The screen probably dates from the 1440s or 1450s, which was a high point in English art – nothing ugly was produced then. The iconography of the painted images on the screen is the Nine Orders of Angels." from video introduction

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