TITLE: St Catherine; St Lawrence

OBJECT TYPE: stained glass

OBJECT DESCRIPTION: two light window

BRIEF DESCRIPTION: Stained glass window made up of two lights with tracery. The lights depict St Catherine and St Lawrence and date from between 1310-1330.


PRODUCTION PERIOD: Medieval & Early 14th Century

SUBJECT: Saint Lawrence; Saint Catherine

HOW ASSOCIATED: Original location

ASSOCIATED PLACE: St Andrew, Wood Walton, Cambridgeshire, England



St Catherine & St Lawrence

The patron saint of students, scientists, theologians and wheelwrights, St Catherine of Alexandria was a popular figure throughout medieval Europe. This depiction of her, with the spiked wheel on which she was tortured, is typical of the many thousands of images that could once be found in cathedrals and parish churches throughout Britain. The style of glass-painting shown in this and the following panel, showing St Lawrence, flourished in the period c1280-1350, with figures positioned under flat but decorative canopies. The modest use of yellow stain, applied only to the architecture, suggests a date early in the 14th century. The brilliant colour of the glasses and the confident painting are also typical of this great period for English stained glass, examples of which can also be seen at Ely Cathedral in the Lady Chapel.

Lawrence was martyred in 258 AD during the persecutions of the Roman Emperor Valerian. He was said to have been roasted on a gridiron, a fate similar to that of St Vincent, although this grisly detail may not be founded on historical fact. Well over two hundred English medieval churches were dedicated to him. The tracery panel contains rearranged medieval fragments.