Located in the far North of England, Carlisle is just a few miles from the Scottish border. This city has had a very turbulent history. The Romans built a wall through it, Vikings invaded it and the Scots and English fought over it for many years. The Cathedral, founded in 1122 and battered by centuries of warfare, was built for the glory of God, and services have been said and sung daily in it for nearly 900 years. Items of special interest include the east window, with its tracery containing some very fine 14th century stained glass, and the Brougham Triptych, a magnificent 16th century carved Flemish altarpiece in St. Wilfrid's Chapel. There is a very fine renovated 14th century barrel-vaulted painted ceiling in the choir and in the north and south aisles medieval paintings depicting the Life of St. Cuthbert, St. Augustine and St. Antony and the figures of the 12 Apostles. The carved capitals of the columns in the choir represent activities associated with the months of the year and the early 15th century choir stalls and misericords are notable examples of medieval carving. The Cathedral's stained glass dates from the 14th to the 20th centuries. The Treasury contains a fine display of Cathedral and Diocesan silver and treasures, illustrating the story of Christians in Cumbria through the centuries. Carlisle Cathedral Library has a fine collection of early printed books dating from the late fifteenth Century. Although Carlisle Cathedral’s medieval library collection did not survive the destruction of the Commonwealth period in the 1650’s, the cathedral’s library was re-founded in 1691. Smaller collections were added through the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Subjects covered are mainly theology but also classical authors of Greek and Latin antiquity, geography, history, law, philology, philosophy and science.
Mon-Sat 07.30-18.00 Sun 07.30-17.00
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