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THE TEMPLE CHURCH 

AN ACCOUNT OF ITS RESTORATION 

AND REPAIRS 








" Lbt ub reTerence the spirit of self sacriftoe of the Dark Ages, as we con- 
tumelouslj^ term them, and see with what a noble ardonr the men of those 
days devoted aM,— money, time, thought, hope, life itself— to raise for God 
and man, shrined as worthy of God as human hands could raise, and fit and 
able to lift man's thought and hope beyond earth, and lead it on hearen- 
ward."— 7%« Duty of Maintaining the Truth. A Sermon preached b^ore 
the University of CasnMdge, May 18, 1834, by J. H, Rose, B. D* 



Ctie Cemple C|)urtJ) 

AN ACCOUNT OF ITS RESTORATION 
AND REPAIRS 

BY 

WILLIAM SURGE, ESQ. 



■' Tule and art, riuectlDB heatlicn mould. 
Skill dnn tbeir i^hm fram Europe'! nlddla niglit. 
Won ploBud i{ iuoli good dorkuroB ke tkelr ligkl." 
Faher. 



LONDON 
WILLIAM PICKERING 






PREFACE, 



rpiHE following pages are written without 
^ the authority either of the Masters of the 
Benches of the Societies of the Temple, or of 
the Committee appointed by them to superin- 
tend the restoration of their Church. Neither 
those bodies, nor any individual member but the 
writer can be considered responsible for those 
sentiments of which they may not approve. 

When the restoration of the Temple Church 
was nearly completed, it was mentioned to the 
writer, that one whose sincere and devoted at- 
tachment to the Church must secure the greatest 
deference to his suggestions on such a subject, 
had expressed his apprehension that the expense 
which had been incurred might deter others from 
undertaking a similar work. This account has 
been written from an anxious desire to avert 
that evil, by correcting misapprehension, and by 
making it known that the restoration of the 
Temple Church consisted of very extensive re- 



vi PREFACE. 

pairs, absolutely required for sustaining the edi- 
fice ; repairs however, effected in the manner 
and style and character of the Temple Church 
of 118e5, and 1240, and with materials of the 
same kind, worked with the same ornaments, as 
those with which it was then constructed. 

If the completion of this work fail to encourage 
those entrusted with the care of our Cathedrals 
and Churches to engage in similar acts of re- 
storation, at least, it may promote a constant 
and watchful preservation of all which still re- 
mains of the sublime beauty of these venerated 
sanctuaries of the Lord. 

The writer may be disappointed in the wish 
he cherishes, that these pages may in some de- 
gree contribute to so desirable an object. But 
at all events he has afforded himself the gratifi- 
cation of thus expressing his grateful respect for 
the noble and munificent spirit with which the 
Masters of the Benches of the Societies of the 
Temple commenced, prosecuted, and completed 
this great work, and for the liberality and candour 
with which they gave and continued their con- 
fidence to the Committee whom they appointed 
to superintend its execution. He has the further 
gratification of thus acknowledging, with senti- 
ments of the sincerest friendship and esteem for 



PREFACE. vii 

his associates in that Committee, the harmony 
and good understanding whicli uninterruptedly 
pervaded amongst them, and without which, their 
earnest and anxious endeavours, to execute their 
trust to the satisfaction of those by whom it 
had been delegated must have been altogether 
fruitless. 



WILLIAM BURGE. 



1 , Paper Buildings, Temple, 
14 January, 1843. 















THE RESTORATION OF THE 
TEMPLE CHURCH. 

MONGST the numerous attractions 
which the Temple Church had long 
possessed, it may be doubted whether 
those which its Architecture afforded 
were valued, or even known beyond 
the circle of scientific architects and the few persons 
of taste who still clung with attachment and reve- 
rence to that hallowed style of which this Church was 
so beautiful and perfect an example. 

The Ecclesiastical Architecture of the middle ages 
suggests reflections of the deepest interest. In an 
age which was called dark, we find a race of men 
who had been the avowed persecutors of Christianity, 
and from whose savage violence it was au object of 
daily prayer to be delivered, become devout Chris- 
tians, enthusiastically promoting the erection of 
Christian Churches.* 

Influenced by reverential attachment for the reli- 
gion they professed, they bestowed their wealth and 
skill in building edifices which should not be wholly 
unsuited to the sacred purposes for which they were 



» The supplication inserted in the Litany was, " A furore Nor- 
mannorum libera noa Domine." Dr. Milner's Eccles. Hist. 38. 

B 



2 THE RESTORATION OF 

destined. The pious Christian will meditate on the 
fact, that their skill in no other art or science 
equalled that which they exhibited in Ecclesiastical 
Architecture. 

The Norman nobles emulated each other in the 
superior splendour and magnificence of the Churches 
they erected. " In illis diebus (Regnante in Nor- 
mannia Gulielmo I.) maxima pacis tranquillitas fove- 
bat habitantes in Normannik, et servi Dei k cunctis 
habebantur in summa reverentia — Unusquisque op- 
timatum certabat in prsedio suo ecclesias fabricare, 
&c. Primum igitur ponam ipsum ducem, patrem 
patriae, qui monasterium S. Trinitatis, sedificavit 
Cadomi — Rogerius de Montegomerii indignans videri 
in aliquo inferior suis comparibus ecclesias duas 
nobiliter construxit,"* &c. 

The Conquest was followed by the greatest im- 
provement in the Architecture of England. With 
their passion for Ecclesiastical Architecture the Nor- 
mans brought the wealth, the power, the skill, and 
the taste, which enabled them to gratify it. They 
demolished the Saxon Cathedrals for no other reason 
than to replace them with buildings of a more grand 
and noble character. " Videas ubique in villis eccle- 
sias, in vicis et urbibus Monasteria ; novo aedificandi 
genere exurgere."** In 1077, the Abbot of Eves- 
ham "being taken with the new way of building, 
destroyed the old church there, which was looked 
upon as one of the purest in England, and began a 
new one."*" 

* Willel. Gemmeticensis de Ducib. Norm. c. 22. 

•* Leland's Collect. Tom. i. 

c Will. Malmsb. de Gest. Angl. P. III. p. 57. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 3 

No less than fifteen of the twenty-two English 
Cathedrals still retain considerable parts which are 
undoubtedly of Norman erection. The study of 
Architecture was cultivated by the Prelates and Ab- 
bots, and they not only supplied the funds, but fur-^ 
nished the plans for the Churches and Monasteries.* 

The novum sedificandi genus which they intro- 
duced consisted principally in the larger dimensions, 
in the greater height and length of their churches, in 
the buttresses on which they were supported. Their 
portals and windows were larger and better propor- 
tioned, and generally supported by columns at their 
side. They excelled in the design and execution of 
their mouldings. The characteristics of the Saxon 
and Norman styles are stated by Mr. Millers, in his 
excellent description of Ely Cathedral (see p. 18, 
21.) It was their object, by the manner and style 
in which they built their churches, to excite in those 
who entered them sentiments of the deepest devotion 
and reverence. 

It has been observed, that on comparing the early 
structures of Normandy with those of England, it 
will be found the buildings in the latter were more 
ornamented than those in the former ; many of the 
enrichments peculiar to the Saxons are engrafted on 
the enlarged Saxon or Norman style, while the 
edifices in Normandy, of an earlier period, are ex- 
amples of a chaste simplicity.*' 

The Norman style of Architecture commenced in 
1066, and was continued until 1200, a period em- 

^ Walp. Anec. of Painting. See an enumeration in Dalla- 
way's Disc, on Architecture, p. 33. 
** Kendars Gothic Architecture, p. 16. 



4 THE RESTORATION OF 

bracing the reigns of William I., William IL, Henry 
I., Stephen, Henry H., and Richard I. It was suc- 
ceeded by that of the early English, celebrated for 
its peculiar and impressive characteristic, the pointed 
arch ; and as Dr. Milner has happily observed, '* the 
parent germ," from which all the other distinguish- 
ing characteristics of this style arose by easy and 
natural connection. Whether the pointed arch pro- 
duced by the intersections of the semicircular arches 
of the Norman style originated in the East or in the 
West, whether the credit of its first introduction 
belongs to France, as Mr. Whittington insisted, or 
whether, as the French insist, it belongs not to France, 
but to England, is not a suitable subject of enquiry 
in these pages. But even those who hestitate to adopt 
the opinion of Dr. Milner and his followers may allow 
it to retain the appellation of '* English Architecture," 
given it by the Antiquarian Society, and adopted by 
Mr. Britton and other writers. It merits that appel- 
lation, because there is no other country which pos- 
sesses a style so pure and uniform, and there is no 
other country in which this style can be studied free 
from heterogeneous and discordant parts.* 

But even if England cannot claim the credit of its 
first introduction, at least, it can be claimed by 
Christendom and Christians. It was the architec- 
ture of the Christian church, and might for that 
reason, if there were no other, justly retain the 
appellation it has received of " Christian Architec- 
ture." But it is the peculiar character of this style 
that it is adapted " to the expression of the very 

* Whewell's Architectural Notes on German Churches, pp. 
23,91. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 5 

things which the church desires to express in all her 
methods of embodying herself to the eyes of the 
world and to the hearts of her sons." * 

The early English, or Christian Architecture, af- 
fords a striking illustration of the truth of the judi- 
cious observation of an elegant writer, " That in all 
the fine arts, that composition is most excellent in 
which the different parts most fully unite in the pro- 
duction of one unmingled emotion."^ Its sharply 
pointed arches, by which a greater elevation was 
attained within a given width ; its slender and grace- 
ful columns ; its long narrow lancet-shaped windows ; 
its high pitched vaulted roofs, with their numerous 
arches and springers ; its chaste^ simple, graceful 
ornaments, lavished indeed with profusion, but a pro- 
fusion which not only never violated, but was always 
consistent with the most perfect taste ; ornaments, 
which unlike those adopted in other styles, consisted 
of enrichment of the essential construction of the 
building, and never appeared otherwise than as ne- 
cessary parts of it, are some of the striking cha-? 
racteristics which contributed to produce one reve- 
rential emotion, — the consciousness of being in the 
house of God, The heart rises above this world, its 
sorrows and its transitory pleasures, and with a Chris^ 
tian's hope and a Christian's faith, looks up towards 
those realms where all tears are wiped away, and 
where are joys of endless eternity. 

" They dreamt not of a perishable house 

Who thus could build." Wordsworth. 



* Poole's Church Architecture, p. 43. 
^ Alison on Taste, vol. i. p. 137. 



6 THE RESTORATION OF 

The impression which this style creates in a greater 
degree than any other, is derived not from any act of 
the judgment, nor from any reference to rules of art, 
because, before the judgment can have been exercised, 
or the rules of art consulted, the heart has already 
yielded to the dominion which this style at once 
acquires over its purest and most natural feelings. 
There are few who will not acknowledge how different 
are the feelings with which they enter St. Paul's Ca- 
thedral, from those which are excited on entering 
Westminster Abbey. 

The duration of the early English was from 1200 
to 1300, comprehending the reigns of John, Henry 
III. and Edward I. It was succeeded by the orna- 
mented English, which continued from 1 300 to 1 460 ; 
comprehending part of the reign of Edward I., and 
the reign of Edward 11. Edward III. Richard II. 
Henry IV. V. and VI. Then followed the Florid 
English, which prevailed from 1460 to 1637, com- 
prehending the reigns of Edward IV. and V. Richard 
III. Henry VII. and VIII. 

The Cathedrals and Churches erected during these 
bright periods of Christian architecture were dis- 
tinguished, not only by the decorations which formed 
essential parts of their structure, but also by those 
which were contributed by painting and sculpture. 
The painted roofs and walls, the stained glass of the 
windows, the richly gilded bosses, and the general 
magnificence which pervaded the whole edifice, 
evinced the reverential feeling with which Christian 
piety sought to consecrate to the House of God and 
to His service, some portion of those gifts which His 
gracious bounty had bestowed. The heartless age of 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 7 

Paritanism could not recognize, nor even under- 
stand the warm and sincere devotion in which they 
had originated, and which they were intended to 
cherish. It desecrated the Temples of God, by demo- 
lishing all the decorations with which they abounded. 

As the due elevation of the arch constituted the 
perfection of Christian or pointed architecture, the 
undue depression of the arch constituted its decline. 
That decline commenced in the latter part of the 
fifteenth century, and is to be seen in parts of St. 
George's chapel, Windsor, built by Edward IV. ; in 
King's College Chapel, Cambridge ; and in Henry 
the Seventh's Chapel, Westminster. The ruin of 
pointed architecture was complete on the accession 
of Edward VI., in the middle of the sixteenth cen- 
tury. " Then began," says Dr. Milner, " a style 
truly Gothic, or at least a barbaric style, consisting of 
irregular and ill-executed Grecian members, with in- 
termixed globes, triangles, frets, pyramids, obelisks, 
and other absurd devices." * 

Even after this corrupted taste had been corrected, 
the pointed Architecture experienced not merely 
neglect, but even contempt and opprobrium.* The 
term " Gothic" was bestowed on it as an appellation 
of disgrace. The accomplished Sir Henry Wotton 
says,' " that its buildings, for their very uncomeli- 
ness, ought to be exiled from judicious eyes, and 
kft to their first inventors, the Goths and Lombards, 
amongst other reliques of that barbarous age." Eve- 
lyn calls them " congestions of heavy dark melan- 
choly monkish piles, without any just proportion, use, 



^ Miiner*s Ecclesiastical Architecture, p. 112. 



8 THE RESTORATION OF 

or beauty." Sir Christopher Wren commends this 
invective, and calls our Cathedrals, which this style 
had rendered so sublime and beautiful, " Mountains 
of stones, vast gigantic buildings, but not worthy of 
the name of Architecture," 

Thie Temple Church abounded with those decora- 
tions, which excited the hostility of Puritanism, and 
was eminently distinguished for those beautiful styles 
of Architecture which were treated with neglect and 
contempt. Unhappily, it suffered much more than 
our Cathedrals from the corrupted taste of the age. 

" Our Dignitaries," says the Reviewer of Dr. Mil- 
ner's Treatise on the Ecclesiastical Architecture of 
England, " slumbered in their stalls with little curi- 
osity, to enquire whether the columns which sur- 
rounded them were the work of Norman or English 
artists ; whether a circular arch denoted the eleventh 
century, or a lancet window the twelfth. To this 
apathy, however, we are deeply indebted ; for after 
all, they took care that the buildings should not fall 
to the ground ; if they had done more, they would 
probably have done worse." * 

Unhappily the Dignitaries of the two Societies of 
the Temple did more, and therefore did worse. 

In the works which were undertaken for the neces- 
sary repairs of the Temple Church, there was not, nor 
according to the taste of that age could it be expected 
there would be, any desire to consult or even preserve 
those styles of architecture. From the character of the 
works not undertaken nor required as repairs, but in- 
tended to be, according to the taste and language of 

* Quarterly Review, Oct. 1811. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 9 

those days, ^^ beautificatioaand adornment/' we might 
be led to suppose it was their desire to destroy those 
styles, or at least the beautiful effect which they pro- 
duced. 

The following account of the Repairs of theTemple 
Church is given in the "New View of London." 
" Having narrowly escaped the flames in 1666, it 
was in 1682 beautified, and the curious wainscot 
screen set up. The south west part was in the year 
1695 new built with stone. In the year 1706, the 
Church was wholly new white washed^ gilt and painted 
within^ and the pillars of the round tower wainscoted 
with a new battlement and buttresses on the south 
side ; and other parts of the outside were well re- 
paired. Also the figures of the Knights Templars new 
cleaned and painted, and the iron work inclosing them 
new painted and gilt with gold. The east end of 
the Church was repaired and beautified in 1707/' 

In 1737, the exterior of the north side and east 
end was again repaired. 

The taste for that style of architectuie, of which 
this Church was so splendid a specimen, at length 
revived. Gray and Warton, to whom the age is in- 
debted for its revival, greatly promoted a more ac- 
curate knowledge and a more just appreciation of its 
principles. They were followed by writers and archi- 
tects deeply imbued with the knowledge of this style, 
and most solicitous and most competent to diffuse that 
knowledge. The lovers of Church architecture will 
acknowledge its obligations to Bentham, Carter, Brit- 
ton, Rickman, Milner, Millers, Pugin, Cottingham, 
Savage, &c. In the restoration of our cathedrals and 
churches, their original style and its characteristics 



10 THE RESTORATION OF 

were studied with an anxious desire to follow them. 
The early English was the style adopted, and with 
great success in the erection of some of our new 
churches. The church at Chelsea, built by Mr. 
Savage, is a beautiful example of the progress which 
had been made in the knowledge and application of 
the principles of Christian Architecture. Its pro- 
gress within the last few years has been most rapid, 
and it has almost succeeded in recovering its former 
dominion over the Christian heart. It has been greatly 
promoted by the higher tone of religious feeling, and 
by the unremitting zeal and energy with which the 
pious and learned writers of the Tracts have endea- 
voured to promote " that inward worship of the heart 
which is the great service of God, and without which 
no service is acceptable." They have felt and taught 
" that the external worship of God in his church is 
the great witness to the world that our heart stands 
right in that service of God," and that we should 
" render churches meet, as far as we can make them, 
for the presence of Him who has promised to come 
among us there and bless us."* 

The influence of this principle in the structure and 
decoration of our Churches had been sanctioned by 
the authority of our most revered divines. It was 
the doctrine of the judicious Hooker, that " solemn 
duties of public service to be done unto God, must 
have their places set and prepared in such sort as 
beseemeth actions of that regard."** 

" We cannot by our gifts," says Bishop Home, 



* Bishop of Oxford's Charge, 1842. 
*» Hooker's Eccles. Pol. Book v. § 11, 



THE TEM PLE CHURCH. 1 1 

*' profit the Almighty, but we may lionour Him, and 
profit ourselves; for, while man is man, religion, 
like man, must have a body and a soul ; it must be 
external as well as internal; and the two parts, in 
both cases, will ever have a mutual influence upon 
each other. The senses and the imagination must 
have a considerable share in public worship ; and 
devotion will accordingly be depressed, or heightened, 
by the mean, sordid, and dispiriting, or the fair, 
splendid, and cheerful appearance of the objects 
around us.'"* 

The Cambridge Camden Society has exercised, and, 
whilst its proceedings are conducted with the judg- 
ment by which they have hitherto been distinguished, 
will continue to exercise a most beneficial influence 
in promoting Ecclesiastical Architecture. It has ef- 
fected much by the information it imparts, by the 
good feeling it cherishes, and the correct taste it cul- 
tivates. The Oxford Architectural Society zealously 
and successfully pursues the same important objects. 

The first advancement towards the restoration of 
the Temple Church was made in 1825. It had been 
generally repaired in 1811. A little tract entitled 
" Facts and Observations relating to the Temple 
Church," written after the repairs had been finished, 
•* expresses the hope that by the very complete man- 
ner in which it had been repaired, it was restored to 
the full appearance of that beauty and elegance gene- 
rally allowed to belong to it." But both parts o£ 
the Church still retained all the " beautifications and 



Bishop's Home's Works, vol. v. p. 378. 



12 THE RESTORATION OF 

adornments " which had deprived it of the " beauty 
and elegance " which belonged to it. 

In 1825, under the skilful direction of Sir Robert 
Smirke, the Architect of the Inner Temple, the resto- 
ration of the whole south side externally, and of the 
lower part of the circular portion of the Round 
Church was commenced, and completed in 1827. 
The stone seat was renewed, the arcade was restored, 
the heads which had been defaced or removed were 
supplied. The wainscoting of the columns was taken 
away, the monuments affixed to some of the columns 
were removed, and the positions of others altered. 
There still remained, however, monuments in the 
Round Church materially affecting the relative pro- 
portions of the two circles ; the clustered columns 
still retained their incrustations of paint, plaster, and 
whitewash; the three archw:ay entrances into the 
Oblong Church remained in the former state, com- 
pletely detaching the two portions from each other, 
and entirely destroying the perspective which those 
archways afforded ; nothing whatever was done in 
the Oblong Church, but it was allowed to remain in 
its former state. 

All which was authorized by the commission was 
executed by Sir Robert Smirke with the greatest skill, 
and the best taste. Let it not be supposed, however, 
that the slightest reflection is cast on the Societies of 
the Temple, because the commission did not authorize 
a more extensive restoration. From the zeal with 
which the recent restoration was promoted by those 
who were Masters of the Bench in 1825, it cannot 
be doubted that the restriction on the restoration was 
intended to be only temporary. 



ki 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 13 

A detailed description of the Temple Church has 
been given by Mr. Billings in his " Illustrations and 
Account of the Temple Church," published in 1838, 
and a vivid impression of its beauty may be derived 
from the admirable drawings of Mr. Essex. 

The following interesting observations on its pecu- 
liar style and character have been furnished to the 
writer by Mr. Cottingham. The acknowledged taste 
and skill of that gentleman^ and his intimate ac- 
quaintance with the Norman and early English styles 
give to them great value. 

" The Temple Church is one of the most beauti- 
ful, and certainly the most interesting Gothic build- 
ing in England. It is the building which at once 
decides the long disputed point about the origin of 
the pointed style of Architecture, at least, in this 
country. This structure alone is quite sufficient to 
prove that the pointed style was not imported into 
England in a perfect state. 

" The transition from the round to the pointed 
arch was by no means sudden. In the round part 
of the Temple Church we find the Architect endea- 
vouring to obtain an altitude and lightness in the 
character of his building, which compelled him to 
trespass on the solemn grandeur of the Norman style ; 
for although the circular arch prevails throughout 
the exterior of the rotunda, it is evidently of a lighter 
character than the preceding Norman style. The 
carved work in the beautiful entrance door- way, and 
in the capitals of the window columns, fully shows 
that a transition was taking place. No doubt the 
circular colonnade in the interior greatly favoured 
the object in view, namely, that of obtaining by its 



14 THE RESTORATION OF 

elevation a greater quantity of light than the Nor- 
man style would admit. There is every appearance 
that one and the same master mind designed, both 
the round and square parts of the church. The cen- 
tral arch-way into the choir was not an after thought ; 
it was carried up with the original circular wall 
work, and the lightness and elevation obtained by 
this dexterous movement from the circular to the 
pointed style, led to the entire adoption of the latter 
in the square or choir part. Besides, it is very 
doubtful whether any of the round churches in this 
country were originally complete rotundas. Cer- 
tainly the Temple Church was not ; for the oblong 
building on the south side, pulled down a few years 
ago, was undoubtedly a portion of the original de- 
sign. The beautiful Norman Chapel at Ludlow, 
built soon after the Conquest, had a square choir 
attached to the circular part, carried up with it in a 
similar manner to this Church ; and the later speci- 
men of the kind at Maplestead had the square and 
the round parts built at the same time. 

" It appears that the Temple Church was upwards 
of fifty years in building. This was not an unusual 
length of time for such a splendid edifice, but a much 
less period would undoubtedly have been sufficient 
to establish the pointed style of Architecture ; for 
the elevated effect produced by the most simple ex- 
amples of the pointed arch was not lost to the keen 
observation of the Norman Ecclesiastics, who were 
the principal Architects of that period. They soon 
made themselves masters of its powers, and by adopt- 
ing it, threw a flood of light into their buildings 
which enabled them to complete the inimitable coup- 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 15 

d'ceil of a Gothic Church by the introduction of 
stained glass, which the great thickness of the walls 
and sii;;iallness of the windows in a Norman building 
did not encourage. 

" Having thus slightly described the leading fea- 
tures of the new style in the Temple Church, it is 
curious to contemplate the struggle which took place 
in the minor details of the round Church. 

" All the windows are circular headed, and orna- 
mented at the angles with slender columns, termi- 
nated by foliated capitals of a transition character, 
similar to those at the entrance door- way. The re- 
cesses formed by a series of columns above the stone 
bench in the aisle on the north and south sides of the 
entrance are decidedly pointed, retaining the Norman 
square abacus in the capitals of the columns, and the bil- 
letted moulding in the arches. The triforium is orna- 
mented by an arcade of interlaced arches, a portion 
of Norman decoration, retained long after the ascen- 
dancy of the pointed style. I am inclined to think 
that the circular part of the oak ribs, and the richly 
carved oak boss in the centre of the ceiling, are por- 
tions of the original work, which might have been cut 
down from the top to accommodate a new roof. It 
was not at all unusual for the ribs of wood groining to 
have stone springers to a certain height, which is the 
case here ; the boss and mouldings of the present ribs 
are decidedly of very early pointed character. The 
ceiling was probably finished in a domical form 
originally. 

" No building in existence so completely developes 
the gradual and delicate advances of the pointed style 
over the Norman, as this church, being commenced 



16 THE RESTORATION OF 

in the latter, and finished in the highest perfection of 
the former ; the choir or square part of the church is 
decidedly the most exquisite specimen of pointed ar- 
chitecture existing. There is a boldness in the con- 
ception, and a lightness in the execution, which charm 
every beholder. 

"The groining of the ceiling is in perfect unison 
with the whole design. The ribs, light and elegantly 
moulded, rise from the caps of the slender marble 
columns, and branch out in such palmy and grace- 
ful lines, that the mind is quite prepared to meet the 
flowery canopy which they are made to support. 

"Howrejoiced must every lover of our ancient church 
architecture be to see the plague-spot of Gothic 
architecture (whitewash) swept from its painted ceil- 
ings, the pew lumber from its floors, the monstrous 
Pagan altar screen, and glaring monumental tablets, 
from its walls and pillars, and the preposterous organ- 
ease from closing up its centre arch. If one step fur- 
ther could be set, by removing the houses which 
crowd against its north-western front, it would be a 
glorious triumph for Gothic architecture indeed ! " 

The entrance to the Church is at the west end, by 
a circular-headed door-way ; a most beautiful speci- 
men of Norman architecture. It is deeply recessed. 
On each side are three columns with foliated capi- 
tals, carrying over the arch a similar number of ribs. 
At the outer extremity on each side are two small 
columns, from which the ribs of the porch spring. 

The angles of the wall projecting between the 
columns are enriched with ornaments of various des- 
criptions. The apex of these angles is hollowed, and 
small sculptures of half-figures inserted ; the first or 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 17 

outer edge represents a King and Queen, the others 
monks. Some of these hold rolls in their hands, others 
are in the attitude of prayer. Above these, and sepa- 
rated by arched ribs over the capitals, are four rows 
of enriched foliage. The inner row consists of heads 
with foliage springing from their mouths. 

The bases of thfe columns were concealed by the 
pavement, which had been raised, and which caused 
a descent into the Church of two steps. 

Some of the columns were not original, and had 
probably been substituted at the time the Church 
was wainscoted. 

This door-way is protected by and entered under 
a porch, which seems to have been one compartment 
of a cloister which extended westward. 

In " The New View of London," it is stated that 
the cloister chambers, being burnt down in 1678? 
were re-erected and elevated on twenty-seven pillars 
and columns of the Tuscan order, in 1681. 

The northern side of the porch was walled up, it 
is said, at the time the houses in Inner Temple-lane 
were built. 

The groining of the porch was covered with a 
thick coat of plaster, so that the bold effect of the ribs 
was lost. 

Until 1825, there existed the remains of a building 
attached to the south side of the circular portion of 
the Church, which was, from the style of its archi- 
tecture, evidently part of the original design. 

It contained two stories : the lower floor was en- 
tered through a door-way, formed under one of the 
arches of the arcade, by a descent of five steps, and 
consequently so much lower than the Church. This 

c 



18 THE RESTORATION OF 

apartment had two niches, probably for piscinas 
placed at its eastern end ; there was also another re- 
cess. This apartment had a circular archway near 
the centre, three feet four inches in thickness, orna- 
mented by a rib and supported by a column at each 
side. It was thus divided into two apartments, the 
first of which measured, according to the plan of the 
Society of Antiquaries, in the Vetusta Monumenta; 
16 feet by 14; and tjie second, towards the east, 
20 feet by 15. They were each lighted by a window 
in the centre towards the south, and the larger one 
had an additional small window near the east end. 
The roof was arched, and ornamented with cross 
ribs (having bosses at the centres), supported by 
columns at the angles. The upper apartment is des* 
cribed as having been similar in character to the 
lower one. It was communicated with by a door- 
way in the body of the Church, which led up a stair- 
case to the opening. * 

In 1825, portions of it fell down, and the whole 
was removed during the progress of the repairs of 
1827. It must ever be a subject of deep regret that 
this building was suffered to perish. 

The Temple Church was built by the Knights 
Templars in 1185, and dedicated by Heraclius, the 
Patriarch of Jerusalem, to the Virgin. It then, as now, 
consisted of two parts, the circular or round church,^ 
and an oblong addition. The present oblong or square 
church was, it is believed, subsequently erected and 
consecrated in 1240. The round church is the largest 
of the four round churches in England. It contains 

" Billing's Architec. Illust. of the Temple Church. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 19 

a central area and aisles ; the two parts are divided 
by six clustered columns of Purbeck raarble. Each 
column consists of four detached shafts, connected 
at the bases and capitals as well as at their centre by 
a band. A thin shaft resting on each of the columns 
facing the area, is carried up to the clerestory, and 
upon the capitals of these shafts the ribs which sup- 
port the ceiling rest. Six pointed arches, which are 
divided into numerous mouldings, spring from the 
clustered columns. A peculiar effect is produced by 
these arches being constructed on the line of the circle. 
A small band or cornfce, which is placed immediately 
above their points, extends round the circle and also 
round the small shafts between the arches. The tri- 
forium rests upon this cornice. It is ornamented by 
an arcade of interlaced arches, and by the manner in 
which the small shafts are disposed, it is divided into 
six compartments, and each of these compartments is 
again divided into six compartments by seven small 
columns. There is another cornice immediately above 
the triforium, and surmounting this is the clerestory, 
which is lighted by six circular headed windows^ 
ornamented internally at the angles with columns 
having foliated capitals. 

The exterior circle, or, as it is called, aisle, extend- 
ing round the circular portion, is divided into twelve 
compartments by means of the single columns against 
the wall. A groined ceiling rests upon the capi- 
tals of those columns, in conjunction with those at 
the back of the clustered columns. At the base of 
the wall, resting on a plinth, there is an arcade of 
pointed arches, which occupy four compartments of 
the aisle on each side of the western doorway, and 



20 THE RESTORATION OF 

parts of the piers dividing the entrances to the east 
end. This arcade is divided in the same manner as 
that of the triforium. The capitals of the columns 
as well as the arches are highly ornamented. In the 
spandrils of the arches there is a curious series of 
sculptured heads ; and above it are on each side of 
the doorway four long semicircular headed windows 
ornamented externally and internally with small 
columns at the angles, having foliated capitals. 

There are three entrances to the oblong or eastern 
part of the church ; the central entrance leads to the 
nave, and occupies the space of one compartment of 
the aisle immediately opposite the western doorway- 
This entrance is a pointed arch, composed of a bold 
rib, supported by two columns on each side. The 
other two entrances to the aisles are also pointed 
arches, but smaller than the former, and richer in 
detail. Below the band at the head of the arcade, 
the face of the wall is on each side ornamented with 
foliage, and above, supported by a corbel head, there 
is a semi column terminated by a richly foliated 
capital. The archway above is divided into nume- 
rous small mouldings ; and the angles of the wall 
below are cut into small shafts with bases. Immedi- 
ately beyond the arch of each side entrance there 
rises to the same height as the central entrance, a 
bold arch parallel with the body of the church ; the 
large rib forming it is partially supported by corbels 
ornamented with grotesque heads. 

The eastern or oblong portion of the Church is 
generally allowed to be the most pure and beautiful 
example existing of the early pointed or lancet style. 
It consists of a nave with two aisles ; it is divided 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 21 

into five compartments by a series of four clustered 
Purbeck marble columns on each side. Their capitals 
vary in some of the minor mouldings, but their bases 
are uniform. A series of small clustered columns are 
attached to the wall of the aisles, except at the 
angles, and are parallel with the clustered columns 
of the nave. Each of these columns consists of 
three shafts, the central one is detached, and is orna- 
mented with a small band round its centre. At each 
angle is a single detached shaft, decorated in the 
same manner. A stone seat extended along both 
sides, and on this seat the columns attached to the 
wall rested. A blank wall, broken only by the 
columns of the aisles, is carried to the height of 
nine feet four inches above the floor of the nave, and 
is there terminated by a small cornice. This cornice 
(excepting the two piers between the entrances at the 
west end,) extends round the whole area, and turns 
round and finishes under the lateral entrances. 

In each of these five compartments there is a large 
window which has the cornice for its basement. This, 
with the window fills the whole of the compartment, 
with the exception of the space occupied by the 
buttresses. Each window is divided into three open- 
ings, by two massive mullions. By means of small 
detached columns placed before them they acquire 
great lightness. Three arches ornamented with nume- 
rous mouldings rest on the capitals of these detached 
columns. The central opening rises to a greater 
height than the others, and thus the window com- 
pletely occupies the space formed by the groining. 
The windows in the eastern compartment are orna- 
mented with foliated bosses, at the junction and ter- 



22 THE RESTORATION OF 

mination of the label mouldings, excepting that in 
the nave ; here the termination on each side is orna- 
mented with a crowned head, supposed to represent 
Henry III. and his Queen. It also differs in other 
respects ; its width is greater, the columns taller, and 
consequently the head of the window shorter. In the 
spaces between the head of the window and the 
groining of the nave, are two oblong quatrefoils ; the 
only instance of this ornament in the Church. 

The columns of the nave are connected longitudi- 
nally by massive pointed arches, carrying above them 
a thick wall, upon which rests the greater portion of 
the timber roof. The groined roof was composed of 
cross ribs ornamented with foliated bosses at their 
centres, and arched ribs springing from column to 
column across the Church.* 

There can be little doubt that the eastern or oblong 
Church was part of the original design. The arch- 
way forming the central entrance has been referred 
to, as affording proof that the circle was not intended 
to complete the Church. The penitential cell on 
the staircase leading to the triforium, contains two 
windows, one looking into the round, the other into 
the oblong Church. 

The present eastern or oblong part was not, per- 
haps, the identical building which formed, and was 
erected as part of the original design. In the recent 
restoration a foundation was discovered, extending 
not much beyond the centre aisle, nor nearer the east 
end than the last column. It is not improbable that 
the eastern part was either rebuilt or enlarged, and 



Billing's Architect. Illust. &c. of the Temple Church. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. ^3 

that the Church, rebuilt or enlarged, was that which 
was consecrated in 1240. 

In the reparation and enlargement of our Cathe- 
drals there were many deviations from the original 
style of their structure. Those noble edifices exhibit 
therefore many discordant parts; still, however, they 
retain so much of the original style, so much to 
delight the eye and fill the heart with devout ad- 
miration, that there is no desire to dwell, and, from 
the magnitude and height of the building, the spec- 
tator is enabled to avoid dwelling, on those discor* 
dant parts. Hence the descrepancy of style in our 
Cathedrals does not produce the same injurious effect 
on the whole edifice as it does in Churches of less 
size and height. 

From the size and height of the Temple Church, 
and from the peculiar disposition of its parts, its 
original character and effect could scarcely have been 
retained, even if the works called beautifications and 
adornments had been merely deviations from the 
original style. But they so disguised and defaced 
those parts of the building which would have best 
displayed the beauty of its style, that they destroyed 
all reverence for it, and all interest for those parts 
which remained untouched. 

The screen of '' right wainscoaty' which in 1682 
was erected at the west end of the oblong Church, 
and between that and the round Church, was 
adorned with ten pilasters of the Corinthian order, 
also three portals and pediments ; and the organ 
gallery over the central entrance was supported by 
two fluted columns of the Corinthian order, and 
adorned with entablature and compass pediment 



24 THE RESTORATION OF 

The inter-columns were large panels in carved frames, 
with an enrichment of cherubims near the pediment 
on the south side. The screen extended completely 
across the Church. The central archway was occu- 
pied by the organ, the ornamented front of which 
was carried up nearly to the ceiling of the nave. 

The side archways were, above the screen, care- 
fully plastered up, so that their form was rendered 
invisible. The lower parts of these, and the centre 
archways, were filled up with glass doors and win- 
dows. 

This most extraordinary perversion of taste, and this 
utter indifference to some of the most striking beauties 
of the Temple Church, destroyed its entire charac- 
ter. The round and the oblong parts were detached 
from each other, and formed two Churches. The 
effect of the perspective obtained through these arch- 
ways, and which gave length and height to the 
oblong Church was lost. The character and beauty 
of the entire edifice having been thus destroyed, the 
two parts of which it consisted, were also deprived of 
all which constituted the character and beauty of each. 

The beautiful columns and shafts of Purbeck mar- 
ble, their foliated capitals, and the cornice or string 
course of Purbeck marble, were enveloped in white- 
wash and plaster. The clustered columns were con- 
cealed by an encasement of wainscoting reaching 
above the band which connected them at the centre, 
and they were further concealed by large massive 
monuments, which were affixed to them above their 
centre. 

The relative proportion between the two circles 
which was observed in all the round churches, and 



i 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 25 

produced so peculiar an effect, was greatly impaired 
by the monuments affixed to the columns, and by the 
wainscot in which they were encased. It was still 
further impaired by placing two very high and cum- 
brous monuments in such a situation as not only to 
occupy a considerable space, but by their height, to 
obstruct the greater part of two of the circular win- 
dows on the north side. The clerestory lost its light 
and airy gracefulness by the partial blocking up of 
some of its windows. 

In the oblong part of the Church, the Purbeck 
marble pillars were encrusted with coats of plaster 
and whitewash. A floor was raised nine inches 
above the original pavement, and the intermediate 
space between was filled with loose earth, saturated 
with water, flowing from the graves in the church- 
yard. The height of the building was thus dimi- 
nished. This raised floor, and the wainscoting and 
pewing of the whole Church completely concealed, 
not only the bases, but eight feet of the columns. 
The New History of London, published in 1708, 
thus describes what had been done in the oblong 
part of the Church : " It was well pewed and wains- 
coted with right wainscoat, above eight foot high." 
It extended round three sides, excepting the space 
occupied by the altar screen. Its entablature com- 
pletely covered the cornice or string course of Pur* 
beck marble at the base of the windows ; the only 
part of the plinth or stone- seat which remained was 
that at the north-west angle. The monuments af- 
fixed to these columns still further contributed to 
impair their intrinsic beauty, and effect on the edi- 
fice. Cumbrous and heavy monuments were also 



26 THE RESTORATION OF 

affixed to the sides, so as to encroach considerably on 
the beautiful lancet-shaped windows, conceal their 
character, and affect the whole appearance of the aisle. 

'' The altar-piece extended still higher than the 
wainscoting ; it was finely carved, adorned with four 
pilasters, and between them two columns with entab- 
lature of the Corinthian order, and enrichment of 
cherubims ; a shield, festoons, fruit and leaves, en- 
closed with handsome rail and banister." 

It covered not only the Purbeck cornice or string 
course, but concealed from view a considerable por- 
tion of the beautiful central window at the east end. 

A large heavy pulpit with carved arches, festoons, 
cherubims, vases, &c. and a large ponderous sound 
board suspended from the ceiling, could not fail by 
their incongruous, as well as by their size and posi- 
tion, to contribute to that effect on the whole structure, 
which had been produced by the other beautifications 
and adornments bestowed on it. From the preceding 
statement, it cannot be doubted what that effect was. 
This Temple Church, which was once so admired and 
renowned for its beauty, that Kings desired a place in 
it for their sepulture, had lost its original character. 
Its style and the beautiful manner in which it was 
followed out, if they could be discovered^ at all, were 
discoverable only under such disadvantages as to ex- 
cite little or no interest. 

As a proof how little the public were acquainted 
with the character of the Temple Church, and with 
those parts of its style and construction which con- 
stituted its beauty, it may be mentioned that when 
the restoration was commenced in 1840, the removal 
of these beautifications and adornments^ for the purpose 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 27 

of effecting the restoration, was regarded and publicly 
reprobated as an act of Vandalism, evincing an utter 
disregard for the ancient and original beauty of the 
Church, and a fond devotion to the frivolous and de- 
graded styles of modern architecture. It was, in fact, 
considered, that these screens, &c. constituted the 
beauty and character of the Church, and that any 
alteration must necessarily be a sacrifice of beauty 
and character to fancied improvements in modern 
architecture. 

A considerable interval followed, during which 
nothing was done towards either the repair or the 
restoration of the Temple Church. In 1840 its con- 
dition was such that the necessary reparation and 
cleaning of it could no longer be delayed. In the 
month of April of that year the two Societies made 
their order, that the roof and east end should be 
completely repaired, and the interior beautified, re- 
paired, and warmed. A joint Committee was formed, 
consisting of the respective Treasurers and three 
Masters of each of their Benches, for the purpose of 
carrying into effect that order, and of reporting their 
recommendations thereon to their two Societies. 

In consequence of his illness, the Committee were 
deprived of the valuable services of Sir Robert Smirke, 
and they applied to Mr. Savage, who was the archi- 
tect of the Middle Temple, to render his services in 
the execution of this order. 

The Committee, by their report of the 29 th of May, 
1840, recommended to the Societies, " That the an- 
cient entrance doorway should be repaired and restored 
to its original state : 

"That the interiorof the oblong and round Churches, 



28 THE RESTORATION OF 

with the tablets, monuments, pavements, &c. be re- 
paired and cleaned, also the wood work of the pews, 
pulpit, reading desks, altar screen, organ loft, &c* 
be repaired, cleaned, and re-varnished." They fur- 
ther strongly recommended that the stonework of the 
oblong and round Churches, viz. the Purbeck pillars, 
the groins of the ceiling, &c. should not be re- 
coloured, but be restored to their original state. 

That the two arches on each side of the organ 
at the west-end of the side aisles should be opened, 
and that the Benchers of the two Societies should 
take into their immediate consideration, the propriety 
of removing the screen under the organ, and the altar 
screen ; in order that those portions of the Church 
might be fitted up in a manner more^ consistent with 
the general character of the Church. 

The two Societies by their orders of the 29th of 
May and 2d of June, 1840, authorized the Committee 
to make such altei'ations in the screens as might ap- 
pear advisable, and full powers were granted to them 
to give directions throughout. 

The Committee in proceeding to execute the trust 
thus committed to them, found on removing the pave- 
ment, that the bottom of the pews, pulpit, and read- 
ing desk, and the joists and wood work under them, 
were in the most dilapidated and insecure state, in 
consequence of the excessive dampness from the 
foundation of the Church, apparent even on the pave- 
ment; and it became absolutely necessary to take up 
all the pews. If they had been replaced, there must 
have been new joists under them ; the decayed parts 
must have been removed, and as the pews were 
panelled, they must have been entirely altered. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 29 

The Societies were of opinion that, instead of in- 
curring the expense which would be unavoidable 
if they retained the pews, which were wholly incon- 
sistent with, and injurious to, the style and charac- 
ter of the Church, seats ought to be substituted, 
which would contribute not only to preserve, but to 
exhibit the beautiful effect of both, and which were 
used in other collegiate churches and chapels. It 
was a necessary consequence of this arrangement, 
that the pulpit and reading desk, which both in their 
size and character were wholly inconsistent with the 
style of the building, should be replaced by a pulpit 
and reading desk of more appropriate size and cha- 
racter. 

The pavement, upon its removal, was found not 
to have been the original pavement of the Church, 
which was much lower. The space between the 
new and the original pavements had been filled up 
with earth, nearly to the level of the floors of the pews^ 
It became necessary, and it was determined, that the 
whole of the Church, including the round part? 
should be lowered to the original paving, so that 
the bases of the columns might be exposed, and that 
thus not only would there be an addition to the 
height of the interior of the Church, but the beauty 
of the building would be greatly increased, by shew- 
ing the whole of the columns as they were originally 
erected. It was determined to place concrete under 
the pavement, and thus prevent dampness. 

Under the authority of the two Societies, the altar 
screen and railing were altogether removed. In con- 
sequence of this arrangement, and of the removal of 
the pews, it became necessary to remove the wains- 



30 THE RESTORATION OF 

coting round the Church, and restore the ashler or 
stone-work. Under the same authority, the organ 
screen and the organ were also removed. 

On removing the latter screen it was discovered 
that the organ was in great danger of falling, from 
the very decayed state of the stone-work, and the in- 
secure manner in which the organ itself had been 
supported. Indeed, such was its state, that in the 
opinion of the Architect and the organ-builder, any 
considerable motion from persons in the organ loft 
might have thrown it down ; it would have therefore 
been impossible to have left it standing in its former 
place. By the removal of it, all the arches from the 
round church to the body of the oblong church are 
thrown open, and not the side arches alone. By this 
alteration the character of the Church is shewn in 
its original beauty, and there is an increase of accom- 
modation in connecting the round with the oblong 
church. 

The position of the organ engaged the anxious 
consideration of the Committee, and was not adopted 
until their own judgment had been confirmed by the 
skill and experience, not only of the Architect who 
was employed, but of the other eminent persons to 
whom they referred, and whose written opinions they 
obtained. 

They had regarded it as a principle which they 
ought most strictly and faithfully to follow, that their 
duty was that of restoration, and that in the execu- 
tion of that duty they should not sanction any work 
which they were not satisfied, either from the direct 
evidence furnished by the edifice itself, or from the 
presumptive evidence derived from historical accounts 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 31 

of churches of the same age as that of the Temple 
Church, and from the character of its founders, had 
formed part of the original edifice. They were 
equally influenced by that principle in selecting the 
position for the organ. 

Deeply impressed with the beautiful effect pro- 
duced by opening the centre arch between the two 
Churches, they felt an insurmountable objection to 
destroy it by replacing the organ there. It is ob- 
served by Mr. Savage, who strongly urged the selec- 
tion of the present position of the organ, that " A 
gentleman who had occasionally attended at the 
Temple Church, upon entering it lately with him, 
expressed his astonishment at the great length of the 
building. Having hitherto been accustomed to see 
only the two divided halves in succession, he had 
obtained no idea of the actual extent. Such is the 
frittering effect of dividing a building into bits ; the 
mind examines the bits in succession and masters 
them ; whereas, when the whole is presented in its 
entirety, the mind of the beholder is subdued and im- 
pressed with the sentiment of extent. The bits may 
be pretty, but it is the totality alone that can be sub- 
lime and beautiful. Although there is a recorded 
difference of 55 years between the times of conse- 
crating the Round Church (1185), and the Square 
Church (1240), I am strongly of opinion that the 
extension and connection was originally planned and 
intended as we now see it. There is nothing in the 
masonry to indicate a change of plan or construc- 
tion, and the lapse of time or delay in completing^ 
may be accounted for by various causes.* 

'^The mode of connecting or combining the circu-; 



32 THE RESTORATION OF 

lar and quadrangular buildings is perfectly unique. 
It is at once simple, graceful, and elegant. There is 
no violence, no hardness, no weakness in the connec- 
tion. The lines are so composed as to lead the eye 
gently from one form to the other ; and when return- 
ing, the eye dwells upon the connecting parts with 
entire satisfaction. I think no one who has seen 
the beautiful effect produced by opening the arch be- 
tween the two churches, would willingly wish to 
close it again for any purpose." 

Mr. Etty expresses his decided objection to the 
situation between the square Church and the round 
Church, because " it would break the beautiful 
length, and destroy at once the great advantages 
which had just been gained, and which struck me 
most forcibly on its entrance." 

Mr. Sydney Smirke says, *' There is so beautiful 
an effect produced by clearing away all the obstruc- 
tions that have hitherto been interposed between the 
circular and quadrangular portions of the Church, 
that I would strongly recommend the former site of 
the organ to be left perfectly clear and open . I am 
therefore, much against the plan of restoring the in- 
strument to its original position. '^ 

Mr. Cottingham is equally opposed to the obstruc- 
tion of the centre archway by replacing the organ. 
" The picturesque effect, in every point of view, is 
incomparably fine, and shews with what a masterly 
hand and correct eye the artist who engrafted the 
square Church upon the circular, could produce a 
whole, under circumstances requiring the most con- 
summate skill in construction, and the most delicate 
conception in harmonizing the two styles, so as to 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 33 

make the transition from one to the other appear as 
one design. The integrity, 'beauty, and singularity 
of such an unique work of art should not be inter- 
rupted." 

Mr. Blore is of the same opinion, "I was parti- 
cularly struck," he says, " with the beauty of the 
interior as seen from the western entrance, an im- 
pression which is in no degree diminished by repeti- 
tion ; and I should therefore be very unwilling to 
lose this view, which must necessarily be the case 
to a very great extent were the organ to be replaced 
in that situation. It is not, however, from this point 
of view alone that I think a great improvement has 
been effected by opening the above arch, for I could 
not help feeling, in moving from point to point, that 
the variety and beauty of the architectural combina- 
tions ought, if possible, to be preserved unimpaired* 
It is true that they may be associated with some de- 
fects arising out of the peculiarity of the building ; 
but it must be borne in mind that there are few an- 
cient buildings, however great their merits, that are 
perfectly free from such defects, and that it would be 
considered a piece of very bad taste to exclude a view 
of their beauties, in order to get rid of these inci- 
dental blemishes.'' 

Mr. Willement, in whose taste and judgment as 
well as intimate acquaintance with the Ecclesiastical 
Architecture of the Middle Ages, the Committee had 
such abundant reason to confide, concurred in these 
opinions. 

There can be no pretence for supposing that the 
original position of the organ was in the centre arch- 
way. The taste which formed that archway did not 

D 



34 THE RESTORATION OF 

eontemplate any such destruction of the eflfect it was 
intended to produce. The present organ was not 
erected until 1687. 

There is every reason to believe, that the organ 
before then used, was placed in the Chapel at the 
south side. 

Before the Reformation, the space between the 
nave and the choir was occupied by the roodloft. 
Its size and form were not such as to cause an ob- 
struction which would prevent the impressive effect 
of an uninterrupted view of the entire length of the 
Church. 

Again, before this period, organs were of much in- 
ferior size and power, and they held a subordinate 
place in the vocal and instrumental part of the service. 
Mr. Etty justly observes, that " in St. Peter's at the 
present day, the organ is a very small one compara- 
tively to the building, and is wheeled about like the 
ancient pulpits, to different parts of the church." 

Another scheme was suggested for making use 
of the lower parts of the centre and side arches, in 
which were to be distributed the organ pipes, and a 
place was to be provided there for the organist. The 
Committee were unable to reconcile thia plan with 
the preservation of the antiquity of the edifice, and 
of the beautiful effect produced by leaving the arches 
entirely open, even if they could have felt themselves 
warranted in cutting and adapting to this scheme the 
pipes of this celebrated organ, and in incurring the 
danger of materially impairing its power and melody. 

Another project was suggested, namely, that the 
organ should be pla<eed over the western door. It is 
quite clear that this never could have been the posi* 



tHE tEMPLE CHURCH. 35 

tion of the organ, because it would have been placed 
against, and completely obstructed the beautiful 
wheeled or marigold window. 

The objections to thig position were tiumerous. It 
would have been impossible to have sung near that 
place with any accuracy or eifect. The singers were 
placed there, and it was found that their voices re- 
turned upon them. 

The organ would have occupied so much of the 
outer circle, as to have entirely destroyed the effect 
produced by the relative proportion of the two circles. 
In fact, it would have eficfoached so much on the 
circular part of the Church as to have encumbered it. 

Mr. Savage observes, '* Its peculiar and distin- 
guishing characteristic would be lost, namely, the 
unbroken ambit round the Church by the continued 
endlesiS aisle^ but that aisle would be interrupted 
by the interposition of this solid enclosure of the 
arches." 

This architect ^dds, ** In the unincumbered state 
of the Church, the visitor is admitted from the porch 
iiito the arch of the round aisle. This arch, from its 
diminished height, gives full effect to the altitude of 
the round Church, which is also seen without any 
painful effort. But if the organ be placed here, this 
arch of the aisle must be inclosed, and will form an 
interior lobby, from whence the vi&itor will at once 
step into the round Church, the great altitude of 
which will at once compel him to strain his neck 
in viewing it ; besides, its great height will cause the 
square church to appear comparatively low. Whereas, 
when the view commences with the arch of the aisle, 
th6 lofty tower, and the returning arch of the round 



36 THE RESTORATION OF 

aisle intervening between it and the groined ceiling 
of the square Church, every part maintains its due 
proportion, and the building has its full effect. 

" So perfect to my mind appears the plan of the 
Church, that I feel strongly that every part is essen- 
tially necessary to the full effect of the whole ; and 
while the division interposed between the two 
Churches would destroy the vitality of the design, 
in like manner the inclosing of the arch near the en- 
trance would greatly impair it." 

Mr. Sydney Smirke considered that the introduc- 
tion of the organ loft would be found to be very 
objectionable, by breaking in upon the circle and 
destroying the unity and simplicity of the original 
design. 

A similar opinion is expressed by Mr. Cottingham, 

Mr. Etty says, " I object to the situation proposed 
under the arch of the western door as decidedly, 
because it will destroy the circumambit of the round 
Church, its peculiar and distinctive feature ; and at 
once bring the spectator under the centre of the round 
tower, instead of the gradual and pleasing approach 
it now possesses ; and because it would shut out the 
possibility of availing yourselves of what would be a 
feature of great beauty, when it can be done, the 
opening of the wheel or marigold window (with 
stained glass), over the western entrance, which I 
should confidently recommend to your considera- 
tion." 

The fact that in many of the Continental Cathe^ 
drals and Churches the organ is placed over the 
western entrance door, affords no sanction for the 
adoption of a similar position in the Temple Church, 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 37 

It will be recollected that the entrance in those 
Cathedrals is not into one of two circles of a round 
Church, where true taste would anxiously preserve 
the relative proportion of those two circles. From 
the magnitude of those Churches, it produces no 
such obstruction, as it would have inevitably pro- 
duced in this portion of the Temple Church ; their 
loftiness, too, is such as to admit of the organ being 
placed at a great height above the door, and from 
the magnitude, length, and height of the entire vista 
on which the eye opens on entering them, th* loss of 
the space occupied by the organ is scarcely, if at all, 
perceived ; and the visitor would probably not raise 
his eye to the height of the building, until he passed 
beyond the part over which the organ is placed. 

A third position was suggested, namely, to place 
it above the eastern window. The objections to it 
were quite unanswerable. 

" This," Mr. Savage observes, " would be a very 
unusual interference with the altar, and would be put- 
ting out the principal eye of the Church. It would 
have the effect of magnifying the organ into the prin- 
cipal, instead of what it should be, viz. only a sub- 
sidiary means of worship.'* 

Mr. Smirke observes, " The eastern extremity of 
the Church would be a very objectionable position, 
inasmuch as the eastern window would be entirely 
concealed, and the only suitable place for the altar 
would be engrossed by the organ." 

The fourth position, which was strongly and un- 
answerably recommended by Mr. Savage, was to 
place the organ in a chamber, to be carried out from 
the centre window of the north side, the window 



38 THE RESTORATION OF 

to be retained, and form the front of the organ, and 
that a gallery should be made for the singers, pro-» 
jecting about eighteen inches, the space under the 
floor of the organ to be converted into a robing-room 
for the Master and Reader, instead of the low damp 
room formerly appropriated to that purpose. It was 
found by experiments that the voices of the singers 
and the notes of even a small organ, were most dis- 
tinctly heard over both portions of the Church, and 
that to produce the best effect for the organ and 
voices, no position could be more desirable. Mr, 
Savage thus combats the objections which were made 
to it : " It has been objected that it is interfer- 
ing with the beauty of the Church, and making a 
dark hole to put the oi^an into ; but the chamber is 
proposed to be made with windows on the three 
sides, and the light will play round and above the 
organ, and will by no means produce an effect of a 
dark hole. As to injuring the effect of the Church 
on the outside, there is no just reason to expect that 
to be the consequence, as such additions have been 
made to so many Cathedrals and Collegiate Churches, 
from time to time, as convenience demanded, and 
were not deemed injurious to the effect. The Temple 
Church had a Chapel on the south side added in the 
time of Edward IV. a period of good authority in 
Gothic architecture. 

•' It has been conjectured, and not without reason, 
that the original site of the organ was probably in 
this Chapel. It will be remembered the organs were 
originally small, and were secondary to the vocal 
performance of the Church. 

** Among other examples of subsequent additions, 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 39 

may be mentioned the Choir of Lincoln Cathedral, 
built about the period of the square parts of the 
Temple Church. In the time of Edward IV. Chapels 
were added, viz. two on the south side and one on 
the north side. These Chapels are considered emi- 
nently beautiful, and no one has condemned them as 
injurious. Magdalen College, Oxford, was originally 
built by Waynefleet, with an organ chamber pro- 
jecting from the south side, being from the middle 
bay of five ; the other four bays having windows in 
each, a case very analogous to what is here pro- 
posed. 

" Considering this proposition in reference to the 
integrity and entirety of the plan of the Church, it 
appears not to injure it in any way, and can hardly 
be said to interfere with it. It leaves the two ex- 
tremities uncrippled and unmutilated, and the middle 
undisturbed, preserving the small columns of the 
window and the arches over them, and the plinth or 
base under them ; the architectural composition of 
the sides of the Church is not affected. There is, 
therefore, nothing internally that can justly be said to 
be interfered with, or so very slightly, as not to pro- 
duce any disturbing effect. The alteration appears 
to be in full accordance with those principles which 
governed the original architects of the Church, and 
what they themselves would have done had they re- 
quired the same accommodation." 

Mr. Cottingham recommends this position, " In the 
palmy days of Gothic architecture organs were fre- 
quently put on one side of the choir ; which was the 
case at Magdalene College Chapel, where a chamber 
for the organ was erected opposite the present centre 



40 THE RESTORATION OF 

window, on the south side of the choir, and pro- 
jected into the lower courts. At Winchester Cathe- 
dral, the organ is on the north side of the great central 
tower, for the purpose of giving an uninterrupted view 
of the building. At Canterbury Cathedral, it is en- 
tirely out of sight in one of the great galleries of the 
Church. At Armagh Cathedral, St. Alban s Abbey 
Church, and Ashbourne Church in Derbyshire, I have 
had the great gratification of removing the organs from 
the centre of the Church into the transepts ; and I 
hope the increasing taste for restoring the legitimate 
character of Gothic buildings will induce the Socie 
ties of the Temple to build a chamber for the organ 
at the back of the centre window, on the north side of 
the Church; this might be done in the most satisfac- 
tory manner. The instrument, I am convinced, would 
be heard quite powerfully enough in the Church, 
and the chapel- like effect of the projecting building 
would not in the least effect the integrity of the in- 
terior, nor look at all out of character externally; on 
the contrary, there are innumerable instances in our 
ancient Churches of such projections, which greatly 
add to the picturesque effect of the whole design." 

Mr. S. Smirke concludes his Report with the fol- 
lowing remark ; *' Having duly considered all these 
points, I have come to the conclusion, that the latter 
position for the organ is attended with objections of 
the least weight, and is, therefore, the position which 
I would, without hesitation, recommend." 

Mr, Etty and Mr. Willement both concurred in re- 
commending it. 

Mr. Blore suggested the erection of a chamber on 
the north side, nearer the end of the square Church* 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 41 

The Committee did not see any reason for preferring 
that position, and were, therefore, relieved from the 
necessity of considering how they might surmount the 
very serious difficulties which would have opposed 
its adoption. 

The chamber has been erected in the place and in 
the manner recommended by Mr. Savage, and the 
organ has been placed in it. An abundance of light 
has been thrown into the chamber which reaches the 
aisle. It has not concealed, nor in any degree im* 
paired the character and effect of the north aisle ; it 
produces an impression, which not only does not de- 
tract from, but rather improves that which is felt on 
the contemplation of the whole square Church. The 
organ and the voices of the singers are heard with 
impressive effect in the circular as well as square 
Church. Every expectation on which this position 
was recommended has been realised, and there are 
few, it is believed, who do not concur in the pro- 
priety of its selection. 

In making the excavation required for some of the 
works, it was found that the drains on the north side 
and east end of the Church, and of the two original 
catacombs, were very imperfect. The drain through 
the catacombs, which was intended to take the leak- 
age from the coffins, had little or no fall, and was 
almost entirely choked up, so that there was great 
dampness in the neighbouring ground ; and this damp- 
ness was farther increased by a spring of water ad- 
joining. 

The defective state of the former drains, the con- 
sequent dampness of the ground, and the decayed 
matter under the floor of the pewing, will sufficiently 



42 THE RESTORATION OF 

account for the noxious eflfluvia in the Church, of 
which there were frequent complaints, and which, on 
the introduction of warm air, would be more sen- 
sibly felt. The drains have been reconstructed, and 
the building will be preserved by being rendered 
dry ; the house of the Master and the adjacent cham- 
bers will be more healthy, and the catacombs will 
no longer be overflowed with water. 

When the Societies commenced the restoration and 
the repairs of the Church, they had not the least 
suspicion that it was in so dilapidated and insecure 
a state as it was found to be. The statement made 
in 1811, represents, that it had been lately repaired 
in a very complete manner. It is evident, however, 
that the repairs must have been of a very superficial 
character, and could not have contributed to render 
the fabric less insecure. The repairs of 1826 were 
confined to the external face of the south side, to the 
paving of the interior of the round Church, and the 
renewal of the arcade there, and to the partially re- 
pairing and piecing of the roof of the round Church, 
and releading the roof of the tower and one-half of 
the roof of the aisle. 

It does not appear that any substantial repairs had 
been made for many years, and those which had been 
made had concealed and not repaired the dilapidated 
and decayed state of the Church. It was not until 
the thick coats of plaster and paint with which the 
columns had been disguised, and the monuments 
affixed to some of them had been removed, that the 
actual condition of these columns was ascertained. 
The joints of the marble, and considerable portions 
of the surface of the columns in the square Church, 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 43 

were found to be in a very decayed state. It would 
be necessary to insert a great number of new pieces, 
and to lengthen out the bases down to the original 
floor line. The six clustered columns of Purbeck 
marble in the circular part of the Church were found 
so shattered and injured, that it was indispensably 
necessary for the safety of the fabric that new columns 
should be supplied. After a very little scraping on 
the surface of the inner roof or stone groining, and 
raking out the loose joints of the stone ribs, it was 
discovered that the roof was in a very dilapidated 
and dangerous state throughout. Mr. Savage in re- 
porting on the state of the roof of the round Church, 
came to the conclusion that " the roof was not in a fit 
state to remain, and that to repair it effectually would 
cost as much as a new one. It was in a very bad 
state, it was never constructed on any correct geo- 
metrical principle, but depended for its durability 
on the main strength of the pieces of timber, and 
the firmness of their construction. Those timbers 
were for the most part decayed and rotten in their 
ends, and the connections broken. They have been 
helped by strapping, scarfing, and bolting on pieces ; 
but the roof is far from being in a state of durable 
safety. And, in fact, it has thrust out the walls of 
the tower, so that the inside of the wall, instead of 
being perpendicular, measures 30 feet 6 inches in 
diameter at the ceiling, and 29 feet 6 inches only 
immediately above the principal arches. 

" The construction of the roof was such as to throw 
a great strain upon the oak-moulded arch ribs of the 
ceiling, whereas with a well contrived roof they would 
have had nothing to carry but their own weight, the 



44 THE RESTORATION OF 

arch ribs were consequently much crippled and dam- 
aged, besides being quite rotten at their feet, or where 
they rise from the stone springers. On removing the 
wainscoting and monuments from the walls of the 
Church, it appeared that there were parts of these 
walls which consisted only of rubble masonry. Ac- 
cording to the usage in the early history of Church 
Architecture, those parts were covered with arras or 
tapestry ; as no such decoration is now used, it be- 
came necessary to face the whole with ashler of 
Caen stone to correspond with the other parts of the 
walls." 

Other extensive repairs were required in the ex- 
terior as well as the interior of the two Churches, the 
details of which it is unnecessary to give. It is evi- 
dent from those already stated, that the Societies be- 
came unavoidably engaged, not merely in the works 
of restoration originally contemplated, but in those of 
most extensive and substantial repairs indispensably 
requisite in the discharge of their obligation "to 
uphold and maintain the Church" which had been 
granted them. It was quite impossible that the re- 
pair of the Church could be made on any other prin- 
ciple than that of restoration. The adoption of that 
principle necessarily occasioned the heavy expense 
of replacing the Purbeck marble columns, and of 
carving their capitals. 

No one would have tolerated such an outrage on 
the/eligious feeling, no less than on the taste of the 
age, as the demolition of these beautiful pillars, with 
their enriched capitals, and the substitution of some 
brick and mortar pillars, because the latter were less 
expensive. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH, 45 

The feeling naturally was, as it might be expected, 
and as it ought to be, 

" Give all thou canst ; high heaven rejects the lore 
Of nicely-calculated less or more : 
So deem'd the men who fashioned for the sense 
These graceful Pillars." 

The Societies did not shrink from the duty of re- 
storing this Church, because their predecessors had 
by neglect, or by the manner in which former repairs 
had been conducted, reduced it to such a state as 
to increase the expense of the restoration, and per- 
haps, render it greater than that of building another 
church. 

Columns of the same species of marble, of the 
same form, and with their capitals enriched with the 
same ornaments, as the original columns of this 
Church have been replaced. Fortunately there still 
remained in the decayed columns and their capitals 
enough to disclose the original design, to prevent re- 
course to any speculation, and to leave the architect 
without an excuse if the restoration were not a faith- 
ful adoption of that which had constituted one of 
the beautiful characteristics of both portions of the 
Church. 

Upon removing the floors of the pews, remains of 
theoriginal tesselated pavement were found in patches, 
at the uniform level of nine inches below the lowest 
part of the late pavement. The renewed pavement ha& 
been brought to the lower leveL For the purpose of 
selecting with the greatest accuracy the appropriate 
tile paving of the Church, Mr. Savage was allowed 
by Sir Francis Palgrave, to take up the wooden floor 



46 THE RESTORATION OF 

of the Chapter House, Westminster, in order that he 
might examine the original tile paving, which being 
of the same date as the Temple Church, was an ex- 
ample completely in point- *' I find,'* says he, in the 
report, " the paving to be in the most excellent pre- 
servation, and of great variety in the patterns of the 
devices, but alike in colour throughout; viz. a red 
ground with orange coloured ornaments. Copies 
of the proposed tiles for the Temple Church having 
been examined, Mr. Minter was employed, and under- 
took to supply and complete the whole. The resto- 
ration of that important part of the Church would 
be completed in a manner which undoubtedly agrees 
with its original state, and for less than half the ex- 
pense estimated to complete it in Purbeck marble." 

The encaustic tiles which have been laid down have 
not disappointed the expectation which was formed 
of their general effect, and of their keeping with the 
style and character of the Church. 

In executing the work of restoration, it became ne- 
cessary to ascertain what had been the original state 
of the ceiling of the Church. Those acquainted with 
the Ecclesiastical iHrchitecture of the twelfth and 
thirteenth centuries are well aware that the ceiling 
was not left in plain white chalk, but highly painted 
and decorated.* GervasiuiS, in his account of the 
second Cathedral of Canterbury, thus describes the 
painting of the original roof, ^ Caelum inferius 
egregi^ depictum,'' and '* Caelum egregia picturS, 
decoratum." There could have been no doubt, that 
the ceiling of the Temple Church had been richly 

* De la Po^sie Chretienne Par. A. F. Rio, Forme de V Art 
Peinture, p. 29. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 47 

decorated ; but until there was proof of that fact, the 
strictness with which the Committee adhered to the 
principles they had prescribed to themselves, pro- 
hibited them from sanctioning the decoration of the 
ceiling". 

But upon washing off the coats of the numerous 
coats of lime-white and common colour from the 
chalk groins, several pieces of ancient decorations 
were discovered. With this proof of the actual de- 
coration of the ceiling, there could be no longer any 
doubt, that it should be restored. Mr. Willement 
was selected for this part of the restoration. The 
eminent skill, the extensive experience and scientific 
attainments of that artist, afforded perfect security 
that its restoration would be conducted on the truest 
principles, and in the most perfect taste. The follow- 
ing interesting Report was addressed by him to the 
Committee, in answer to their reque&t that he would 
communicate his views on the nature and extent of 
the proposed decoration in which he was then en- 
gaged, and on the stained glass windows which he 
intended to recommend to the Societies. 

" It is perhaps scarcely necessary to notice here 
that the earliest places of worship used by the primi- 
tive Christians were, for privacy sake, the Catacombs; 
of which the ceilings were generally decorated by 
light foliage ornaments, afterwards named from their 
original place of application, grotesque. In the very 
learned work by Ciampini, * Vetera Monumenta,' 
&c. many examples were given where the emblems 
of the Christian Faith had been engrafted on the 
previous decoration of the heathens. But on the 
conversion of Constantine, such places of conceal- 
ment became no longer necessary ; the most splendid 



48 THE RESTORATION OF 

Temples were then raised, formed of the most costly 
materials, and profusely adorned with gold and 
colours in the most brilliant manner on the walls and 
pavements, but most particularly on the ceilings. In 
the Norman Architecture, colour was much used 
within the Churches, of which many examples may 
be found in the early illuminations. In the early 
buildings of the pointed style, the ceilings partook of 
the same richness which was spread over the win- 
dows, walls, and pavements. In some cases, the 
vaultings were made resplendent by stars and rosettes 
in gold, on a rich ground of azure, but more fre- 
quently by flowing ornaments drawn with decision 
in powerful colours strongly contrasted, on a ground 
tinted, to represent the hue of ancient vellum, or per- 
haps nearer to the rich tone of the Normandy stone 
when first raised. Although in the early examples 
a pleasant tint of colour was generally thrown over 
the whole ground of the vaultings, it was so done 
that the peculiar construction of the arch was per- 
fectly obvious. The painting on the vaultings of the 
Temple Church is not yet sufficiently advanced for 
this part of the work, but it is mentioned here to 
shew that so important a feature has not been over- 
looked. The rank and importance of the building, 
in some degree, regulated the quantity and richness 
of the decoration, but it was so general, that there 
are even at this time very many examples remaining 
even in small parochial Churches (more particularly 
in Norfolk and Suffolk) shewing that the same system 
had been very generally adopted ; in some smaller 
buildings, the decoration was very simple and exe- 
cuted with less costly materials. 






THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 49 

** The colours most affected were yellow or gold, 
bright blue and scarlet, which were taken mystically 
to represent light, air, and heat ; to these were cau- 
tiously added, a bright green, emblematic of fecun- 
dity. Black, which was understood to represent 
darkness or evil, was very seldom introduced. 

" The Chapel of St. Stephen, Westminster, was, 
perhaps, the most profusely decorated building of 
that time (Edward III.) in Europe. A general mass 
of ornament was applied to every part of the interior. 
The walls, the vaultings, the floor, and every member 
of the architecture were covered by the most elaborate 
ornaments, gilt and painted in the richest tints ; and 
the whole, though gorgeous, presented the most per- 
fect harmony of effect. 

**The puritanical spirit which prompted the de- 
struction of stained glass, obliterated, or at least, de- 
faced the rich decorations of walls and ceilings, and 
the successive white-washings by parochial officers 
have made the restoration of these interesting memo- 
rials most difficult if not altogether impossible. There 
are, however, still considerable remains of ancient 
decorative painting in the Cathedrals of Rochester, 
Peterborough, Winchester, and Canterbury; in 
Tewkesbury Abbey also, and among smaller Churches, 
in those of St. Mary, at Guildford, in Surrey ; Sand- 
hurst, in Berkshire; Ravenstone, in Buckingham- 
shire ; and Llandouror, in North Wales. 

" It is to be hoped that a better and more reve- 
rential taste now prevails, and that * we shall 
feel more and more,' as Sir George Wheler says, 
^ the most convincing reasons for decorating the 
building called by the august title, of the House of 

£ 



50 THE RESTORATION OF 

God.' The same author very properly observes, * as 
our ideas of splendour are relative, it is clear that we 
cannot fix any precise standard for the magnificence 
of religious structures ; that they should considerably 
exceed all other buildings seems to be the only in- 
variable rule, a rule which at different times has pro- 
duced a tabernacle, or the most superb of all edifices. 
It is most manifest that the primitive Christians did 
endeavour to perform the public worship of God, 
with as great external reverence and magnificence as 
possible; joined to the internal truth, fervency of 
spirit and mind.'* 

** Some powerful remarks were published, under 
the title of ' Ornaments of Churches considered,' 4to 
Oxford, 1761, as an answer to the strong objections 
made at the time to the introduction of the stained 
glass window above the altar of St. Margaret's 
Church, Westminster. 

" Considerable remains were discovered on the ribs 
and vaultings of the Temple Church, which proved 
that these had been originally painted in powerful 
colours, but they were not of suflficient extent, to war- 
rant a restoration of any particular pattern. The 
manner in which the ceiling is executed is founded 
on exaniples of the same period, and which strongly 
assimilate with the decorations of the illuminated 
manuscripts coeval with the Church. 

" The devices in the circular panels of the centre 
vaulting are founded on the arms, at present used 
by the two Societies of thd Temple. Those in the 






* Account of the Churches of Tyre, Jerusalem, and Constan- 
tinople, as described by Eu^bius, 8vo. London, 1689. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 51 

side aisles are, the cross peculiar to Knights Tem- 
plars, their banner and cri-de-guerre, and the very 
expressive device of the cross of Christ triumphant 
over the crescent of the Saracens. The latter has 
been copied from an ancient seal belonging to the 
Master of the Temple in the year 1320. The three 
divisions which occupy the easternmost end of the 
centre and of the side aisles, are strongly diflFerenced 
from the others by greater richness of pattern and 
colour, and by the ornaments being entirely of a 
sacred character ; the I. H. S. the A- Q. — the emblems 
of the Holy Evangelists, &c. 

" With reference to the designs proposed for four 
of the windows, I would beg to observe, that the 
insertion of stained glass into that window which 
occupies the centre of the east end, is not only de- 
sirable as a necessary completion of the general deco- 
ration, but essentially requisite here to give an 
appearance of additional elongation. The designs 
generally have been founded on stained glass still ex- 
tant, executed at the same period as the erection of the 
Temple Church, so that the whole decoration may 
be consistent and harmonious. The finest windows 
of this period were composed in a manner very simi- 
lar to the early Mosaics ; of small pieces arranged in 
regular panels, containing subjects from Holy Writ ; 
the intervening spaces filled by foliage ornaments ; 
and the whole, when there was sufficient space, en- 
closed within a rich and elaborate border. Such a 
border is particularly necessary in the centre open* 
ing of the middle eastern window here, to reduce its 
proportions to a more perfect accordance with the 
openings of the other windows. In all the examples 



52 THE RESTORATION OF 

of this period, the sapphire hue, the tint of Heaven, 
particularly predominates, as may be observed in the 
finest windows of Canterbury Cathedral ; some of 
the best examples in the Churches at Rouen ; in the 
Cathedral at Ulm, in Austria ; and more particularly, 
in that gorgeous collection still remaining in the 
Sainte-Chapelle, at Paris. 

" One of the great errors in the modem Churches 
of the pointed style, is the formation of windows to 
be filled with white glass, of the same expanse as 
those which in the old Churches were purposely 
formed for the admission of painted glass. Stained 
glass was considered necessary to produce the sub- 
dued light, so conducive to that religious feeling, and 
that calm devotion required in a place dedicated to 
the worship of God. The representations which it 
contained produced, particularly on the unlearned, 
the most powerful impressions of those events, judg- 
ments and mercies which are recorded in the Holy 
Scriptures." 

Mr. Willement proceeds to give an account of the 
devices introduced on the vaulting of the Church. 

" The Church itself was originally dedicated to God 
and our blessed Lady. The habits of the Knights 
Templars were white, charged with a red Cross, of a 
form peculiar to the order ; this has been introduced 
in the leading panels of the side aisles. These Knights 
styled themselves the * poore soldiers of Jesus Christ 
and of the Temple of Solomon,' and Favine (Theatre 
of Honor) tells us, from William of Tyre, that they 
carried to warre their banner, which they called 
Beau-Seant, which is in French term Bien-Seant ; 
halfe white and halfe blacke, because they were and 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 53 

shewed themselves wholly white and fayre towards 
the Christians, but blacke and terrible to them that 
were miscreants." This banner, with their cri-de- 
guerre, has been adopted also as one of their devices 
on the vaultings. A manuscript history, by Matthew 
Paris, contemporary with these Knights, represents 
in a sketch by the historian, this banner; but the 
black part of the banner is there only one-third part 
of the whole. The third device, representing the 
Cross of our Salvation raised above the crescent, has 
been copied from a seal of Milo de Stapleton, belong- 
ing to the order of the Temple, and is affixed to a 
charter, remaining at this time in the British Museum, 
and dated 1320. 

*' The devices on the vaultings of the centre of 
the Church are, the Horse represented with Wings, 
and the Holy Lamb, the emblems of the two Socie- 
ties. On a strict search of the records of the 
Herald's College, no entry can be found of any 
grant of arms having been officially made to either 
of these Societies ; and from the extracts which fol- 
low, it would appear that the date of their first use, 
which however is evidently not earlier than the end 
of the sixteenth century, is not clearly defined. 

** Stowe says, * It appeareth upon record and in 
good authors, that the Knights Templers bore a 
shield argent, charged with a crosse gules, and upon 
the nombril thereof a Holy Lambe ; but before they 
tooke this device they bare a horse (as Matthew 
Paris writeth) with two men riding upon him, and 
this (as he sayth) was engraved in their common 
scale. But if the Fellowes and Gentlemen of the 
Inner Temple have taken for the device or ensigne 



54 THE RESTORATION OF 

of their College a Pegasus or flying Horse, sables 
or gules upon a shield or, as I hear they did in 
the reign of the late Queene of immortal memory, 
then are they already farely armed. And because 
the utter Temple neither is, nor was, ever any Col- 
ledge or Society of Students, and therefore not to 
be considered here, I will leave the choice of either 
of those old devices and ensignes to the Gentlemen 
and Fellowes of the Middle Temple, they not having 
as yet, to my knowledge, chosen or appropriated any 
ensigne to their Society or Colledge.'* 

** Carter, however, tells a different story, * The 
Middle Temple beareth for distinction, argent on a 
cross gules the Holy Lamb, or. It is to be under- 
stood that before the order of Knights Templers as- 
sumed to themselves the said coat armour they now 
wear, that they did embrace, as to them appropriate, 
this device, a Horse galloping with two men on his 
back. The which ensigne was usually engraven on 
their signet or common seal.' * The Society of the 
Inner Temple hath lately assumed to themselves 
a Pegasus, whereof in particular I spare to relate any 
more ; for the same is vulgarly known to all. The 
ensigne is azure a Pegasus argent.'** 

" In Dugdale's * Origines' 1671, the arms of both 
the Societies are given exactly as they are now used. 

*' In an edition of Matthew Paris, fol. Lond. 1640, 
is a rude wood-cut, representing two Knights seated 
on the same Horse, and also a sketch of their banner, 
which has been already referred to. These Knights 



* Arinales, fol. London. 1631, page 1072. 

^ Analysis of Honor and Armory, 8vo. Lond* 1655, page 147. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 55 

were probably sketched from an impression of their 
original seal. In the * Sceaux de la France,'* Plate 
xxiii. is a copy from an impression taken by the new 
process of engraving ; it is not very clearly defined ; 
but the Horse and the two Knights are perfectly evi- 
dent. 

** The arms now used by the Society of the Mid- 
dle Temple, appear clearly to have been founded on 
the device of St. John, which was undoubtedly borne 
by the Knights Templars, as is evident from a seal 
attached to a charter still remaining in the British 
Museum, and dated 1304, The Lamb bearing the 
flag fills the whole seal ; the legend around it being 
a * Sigillum Templi,' and on the reverse a Man's 
head in profile, with the continuation of the legend 
* Testis Agni; The Society of the Middle Temple 
no doubt placed the Lamb on the Cross of St. George, 
to designate their nation, thus distinguishing their 
device from that of the ancient Knights. 

" The derivation of the winged Horse now used as 
arms by the Inner Temple, is not so easily traced as 
the Lamb of the other Society. It very probably took 
its rise from the earliest device of the Knights Tem- 
plars, namely, the two Knights on the same Horse. 
From an imperfect inspection of an imperfect seal, 
these two Knights were by mistake converted into 
two wings, which the classic taste of the reign of Eliza- 
beth might induce the Society to think a very pretty 
device, and the error has been, without further exa- 
mination, perpetuated." 



* " Tresor de Numismatiqiie et de Glyptique." Paris, fol. 
1834. 



56 THE RESTORATION OF 

The decoration of the ceiling has been the sub- 
ject of criticism. It appears that two opposite 
opinions are entertained by the very few who do 
not bestow their unqualified approbation on the judg- 
ment and taste with which it has been executed. 
The one is, that the colouring of the four first com- 
partments of the ceiling of the square Church, is 
not rich enough ; and the other opinion is, that it is 
too rich. Mr. Willement, in making the distinction 
between the two parts of the ceiling, has accurately 
followed the original design of the Architect, who 
has purposely made the fifth compartment, which 
comprises the altar, much richer in its architectural 
ornaments, than the other four compartments. A 
greater richness of colouring on the other four com- 
partments of the ceiling would have had the effect of 
bringing it lower, and of diminishing the height of 
the building. If the decoration had been less rich, it 
would have failed to have exhibited as it now does 
the peculiar structure and beauty of the ceiling. It 
appears to the writer, that it is a singular merit in 
the execution of this decoration, and for which the 
artist is entitled to the greatest credit, that it is made 
subservient to the display of the architectural beauty 
of the ceiling, and that it seems to ask admiration, 
not for itself, but for the structure on which it is be- 
stowed. 

Mr. Willement executed the works undertaken by 
him with the happiest success. There is no commen- 
dation which the writer can bestow on the stained 
glass windows this artist has supplied, adequate 
to that, which they largely receive from all who 
personally witness their beautiful and impressive ef- 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 57 

feet. The three windows at the east end of the 
square Church contain the principal events of our 
Saviour's life. The centre window on the south side, 
which directly faces the organ, is filled with stained 
glass of a richness subordinate to that of the win- 
dows at the altar end of the Church. In four com- 
partments, placed cruciform, are whole length figures 
of angels, playing on ancient instruments of music. 
The general ground of the window is filled by scroll 
ornaments, delicately outlined, and relieved by slight 
bands of various colours. On the jambs of this win- 
dow are written the appropriate quotations of the 
third and fourth verses of the 150th Psalm. 

It was the practice of our " Gothic " ancestors to 
make the walls of their Churches convey instruction, 
or awaken reverence, by the sentences inscribed on 
them.* That practice is retained in the TempleChurch. 
Immediately under the string course of the square 
Church is inscribed the whole of the Te Deum. 

On the spaces of wall left between the vaulting 
and the three arches which communicate with the 
round Church, have been painted, in a style strictly 
according with the date of the architecture, six en- 
throned figures of those English monarchs who were 
connected with the history of the Knights Templars 
and with this Church. The first represents King 
Henry I. in whose reign the order was first recog- 
nised in England. He bears their original banner, 
the Beau-Seant ; the second, Stephen, carries their 
subsequent device, the red Cross, on the silver field. 



* Bingham's Ecclesiastical Antiquities, 8vo ; Neil's Views of 
Churches, 2d vol. ; Whittaker's Thorsby. 



58 THE RESTORATION OF 

Then follows Henry II. holding a representation of 
the Temple Church as it was built in bis reign. Next 
comes Coeur-de-lion, the only monarch of England 
who was personally engaged in the crusades; he 
bears loftily the representation of the Temple Church 
in his left hand, and in his right his sword un- 
sheathed. Between these, in a subordinate panels 
is a representation of " Henricus Junior," the eldest 
son of Henry II. who was crowned as King, and 
died during his father's reign. These are followed 
by the figure of King John, who carries also a repre- 
sentation of the Church ; and the series is completed 
by the figure of King Henry III. who holds a model 
of the Temple Church, with its eastern addition, as 
it stood in his time. 

The interspaces are filled by scroll ornaments, simi. 
lar in design to those on the vaultings, with the 
shields of Henry I. and III. and the Cross of the 
order. 

On the spandrils of the centre arch are the fol- 
lowing quotations from the Psalms : 

** Nisi Dominus sedificavent domum, in vanum labora- 
verunt qui sediiicant earn. 

** Nisi Dominus custodiverit civitatem, frustra vigilat 
qui custodit earn." 

On the piers on either side, are painted the em- 
blazoned shields of the arms which are borne at the 
present time by the two Societies. 

The decoration of the roof of the round Church has 
been chiefly confined to a richly coloured ornament 
surrounding the centre boss, the other parts being 
marked out in courses by red lines and studded with 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 59 

blue cinquefoils. On the outer edge, adjoining the 
walls, are inscribed several verses from the 144th 
Psalm in uncial letters of white on a red ground. Some 
few persons have expressed a wish that the colouring 
had been deeper. It may be doubted whether they 
have sufficiently considered the whole style and 
character of the round Church, and whether any in- 
creased decoration would not have withdrawn u« 
from, rather than attracted us to, the contemplation 
of its singular beauties. There are persons of great 
taste and skill, who strongly deprecate the least ad- 
dition to the colouring. 

The beautifully stained glass window in the eastern 
part of the clerestory is the donation of Mr. Wille- 
ment to the Societies. It represents, within the Ve- 
sica, the figure of our blessed Saviour enthroned, his 
right hand raised in the act of benediction, his left 
sustaining the Gospels. In the angles outside of this 
panel are the four emblems of the holy Evangelists. 
In the extreme upper part, from clouds, is seen a 
hand, the thumb and two first fingers only of which 
are extended, surrounded by a cruciated nimbus. At 
the bottom of the window, beneath the figure of 
Christ, is inscribed this passage from the Lamenta- 
tions, chap. V. 19 : — 

** Tu autem Domine in eeternum permanebis, solium 
tuum in generationem et generationem." 

It is impossible to close this most imperfect ac- 
count of the additional proofs this eminent artist has 
given of his talents, without acknowledging in the 
warmest terms the readiness with which he always 
imparted the suggestions of his taste and experience, 



60 THE RESTORATION OF 

and the zealous and liberal feeling with which he 
cooperated in the restoration of the Temple Church, 
even if he had not given the further proof of that 
feeling by his munificent donation. 

In the spring of 1841, in consequence of certain 
differences between Mr. Savage and the Societies, 
the prosecution of the works was for some time sus- 
pended — ^he ceased to be the architect, and Mr. 
Sydney Smirke, and Mr. Decimus Burton, were ap- 
pointed by the Societies, the architects to complete 
the restoration. It is as unnecessary, as it would be 
painful to enter on those differences. They did not 
aflFect either the integrity of Mr. Savage, or his reputa- 
tion as an architect, intimately acquainted with those 
styles of architecture which it was the object of the 
restoration carefully to preserve. His recommenda- 
tions, which had been approved of by the Societies, 
were submitted to the re-consideration of Messrs. 
Smirke and Burton. They proceeded to execute 
this duty with the delicate and liberal feeling to- 
wards Mr. Savage, which would be evinced by gen- 
tlemen of their character and station. 

Considerable progress had been made in the exe- 
cution of some of the details recommended by him. 
It does not detract from his reputation, or that of 
the architects who succeeded him, to say, that it was 
scarcely possible they could err in the manner of re- 
storing the Temple Church. Fidelity in replacing 
that which was originally part of the edifice, and in 
removing that which never was, and never could 
have been a part of it, must constitute their great 
merit. When the columns, and their capitals and 
bases were no longer concealed, and when by the 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 61 

removal of the monuments and wainscoting, and the 
opening of the archways, its original character and 
beauties could be seen, the church itself afforded all 
the information they could require. In language 
too plain to be misunderstood, and too impressive to 
be disregarded, it said, ** Inspice et fac secundum 
exemplar quod tibi monstratum est." It pointed out 
what ought, and what ought not to be replaced. 

The most earnest desire to adhere with scrupulous 
fidelity to the original plan and details of this church, 
was necessarily controlled by the paramount duty of 
affording to the congregation, for whose use it was 
granted, accommodation adequate to their numbers, 
and suited to the present form of worship. It was 
not consistent with that duty to have excluded all 
other fixed seats but the original stone benches which 
surround its walls ; and yet such an exclusion, which 
would have left the entire area of the church open, 
would have been a restoration not only the most 
faithful, but that, which would have best preserved 
the impressive beauty of the structure. It was a 
subject of long and anxious consideration, that the 
sittings, in their character and arrangement should 
as little as possible interfere with the proportions, or 
impair the effect of the building. 

Of all the characteristic beauties of the early En- 
glish style, none are so impressive as its columns. The 
effect of their smallness and slenderness, contrasted 
with the loftiness and extent of the roof they are 
employed to support, is, to awaken those emotions 
which have been thus beautifully and truly repre- 
sented, '* I am filled with devotion .and awe : I am 
lost to the actualities that surround me, and my 



62 THE RESTORATION OF 

whole being expands into the infinite : earth, and air, 
and nature, and art, all swell up into eternity, and 
the only sensible impression left is, that I am no- 
thing:' "^ 

The effect of the colums in the oblong part of the 
Temple Church, which are much smaller, and more 
slend^ than those in churches of greater extent and 
height, is not less impressive. They are the ob- 
jects which first engage the attention of the visitor, 
who turns to them again and again with increased 
interest, and retires from beholding them with an 
impression not easily effaced* 

By the arrangements of the sittings, the columns 
and their bases are left entirely open, and unincum- 
bered« There is no obstruction to conceal their 
graceful beauty, or impair their effect. The eye of 
a person standing at the lower part can range over 
the benches, and trace the columns on< either side, 
from the roof down to the pavement on which they 
stand, and thus all the beautiful proportions of the 
whole edifice are comprehended, and its simplicity is 
left unimpaired. 

The introduction of a third central aisle, of ade-< 
quate width, which would have divided the sittings 
in the area, even if it could have been accomplished 
without encumbering the bases of the columns, would 
have reduced the number of sittings greatly below 
that which was required for the two Societies. It 
would also have had a most injurious effect on the 
whole character of the building, by breaking up the 
area into a confused multiplication of parts. 



* Lit. Remains of S. T. Coleridge. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 63 

The manner in whicli the sittings have been con- 
structed and placed, has been, as might have been 
anticipated, the subject of much criticism. The 
articles in the Christian Remembrancer, the Spec- 
tator, in Felix Summerly, Glance at the Temple 
Church, in the Times, the Morning Chronicle, and 
the Athenaeum, have been written in the tone and 
spirit which might be expected from writers who were 
influenced by the same feelings, and desired to accom- 
plish the same objects, as the persons by whom the 
restoration was tmdertaken. The opinions entertained 
by some of the most eminent architects of the age, 
evince the liberality and candour which ever distin- 
guish those who really possess the talents and acquire«> 
ments, and deserve the eminence assigned to them. 

It may be doubted, whether the difficulty of pro- 
viding accommodation : adequate and appropriate, and 
at the aame time, of preventing thd:. accommodation 
from obstructing the view or impairing the general 
effect of the edifice, has heea felt in its full extent* 
It niay be doubted too, whether allowance has been 
made for the very decided superiority which is attri- 
buted to a plan existing only in the mind of its 
author, when it is compared with that which has 
already been executed. The advantages of the for- 
mer are always magnified, and its defects are not 
visible, because, they would be apparent only when 
it was exeouted. 

In the design and construction of the tabernacle 
work of the altar, Messrs. Smirke and Burton have 
had to contend with, and they have overcome great 
difficulties arising from the comparatively little height 
firom the pavement to the base of the central eastern 



64 THE RESTORATION OF 

window. It has been already remarked, that the 
compartment in which are the eastern windows, is 
distinguished from the other compartments. The 
central window is higher and wider than the others, 
the columns of the mullions are taller, and the head 
of the window consequently shorter, and the mullions 
themselves wider. The shafts are composed of two 
pieces of purbec marble equal in length, and joined 
at the centre by a small brass collar or band, ri vetted 
at the centre of the mullions. It was evidently de- 
signed that this compartment of the ceiling should be 
distinguished from the others, because it was here 
the altar stood, and it was at that sacred place that 
christian hands " received with trembling joy, the 
signs and seals of God's heavenly promises." 

In the painted decoration of the ceiling, care has 
been taken to carry out the original idea of the de- 
sign, by increasing the richness of the colouring in 
that compartment which receives the altar, and with 
the same object in view, the table with all that sur- 
rounds it is made resplendent with gold and colour, 
and all the means that art could suggest. The string 
course on which the central eastern window rests is 
not more than nine feet from the pavement. There 
could be only one step from the pavement to the 
altar. The altar itself could not be raised above the 
surbase of the wall. Greater richness in the orna- 
mental parts which surmount and surround the altar, 
would therefore be required to counteract the disad- 
vantage of the want of height. These ornamented 
parts must be so constructed, as not to conceal the 
string course or cornice, which with severe simplicity 
has been preserved round the whole church. The 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 65 

altar is surmounted by an arcade which extends the 
whole width of the middle aisle, being the entire 
space appropriated to the altar. This is enclosed by 
a low perforated parapet of carved stone, elaborately 
painted* In the centre of the arcade are panels of 
rich tabernacle work. The Decalogue is inscribed 
in the two panels to the north, and the Lord's prayer 
and Creed on the two panels to the south, with illu^ 
minated capitals and ornaments. The central panel 
is a cross fleury with the monogram L H. S. ; the 
ground is light blue, stillated in gold. Although the 
gablets of the tabernacle work extend above the 
marble string course, the eye distinctly recognises 
that same string course which has been continued 
round the whole church. The other panels of the 
arcade are also ornamented with rich gold coloured 
foliage, and various suitable devices painted upon a 
red ground, and are well calculated by the depth of 
their colouring to give a peculiar brilliancy to the 
central panels. 

Upon the removal of the monuments from the 
round, and square Churches, for the purpose of pre- 
serving them from injury during the progress of 
the works, it was perceived not only how much they 
had impaired the original beauty and character of 
the fabric, but how much they had contributed to 
injure the columns. It was the decided opinion, and 
the earnest recommendation of Mr. Savage, and which 
was urged with equal earnestness by Messrs. Smirke 
and Burton, that they should never be re-admitted 
into either of the Churches. The whole effect of 
the restoration would have been lost by their re-ad- 
mission. 



66 THE RESTORATION OF 

It was under the consideration of the Societies^ 
whether the feelings associated with these sacred 
memorials, would not be best consulted, and the 
beauty of the building preserved, by the erection of 
a cloister for their reception. There were many 
obstacles to the adoption of this measure. 

At length it was decided, on the recommendation 
of Messrs, Smirke and Burton^ that the interior of the 
Triforium should receive such additions as would 
render it appropriate, not only for the reception, but 
for the inspection of the monuments. These addi- 
tions have been made, and the Triforium affords 
abundant space and light for the most minute exami* 
nation of them. The access to it is greatly improved, 
and it can easily be made the resort of all who are 
desirous of visiting it. 

The figure of the bishop has been returned to the 
South side near the Altar. It does not now, as 
formerly, project into the aisle, but a recess has been 
formed for it in the wall, where it rests on the leaden 
coffin. This figure has been supposed to represent 
Heraclius ; but the patriarch died at Acre, and there 
is no mention of his remains having been sent to this 
country. The dress too is not that of an oriental 
bishop. The paint and dirt with which the figure 
had been encrusted and which concealed the expres- 
sion of the countenance, as well as the exquisite 
manner in which the dress was executed, were most 
carefully and judiciously removed by Mr. W. S. 
Richardson, a very intelligent and ingenious artist. 

The double Piscina or Lavacrum of purbeck 
marble which was concealed by the wainscoting and 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. &9 

much mutilated, has been replaced by one executed 
in the same style, and of the same marble. 

The two other small recesses, which were dis- 
covered near the east end, one on the north, and the 
other on the south side have been also restored. 

The monumental effigies in the Round Church had 
been greatly neglected* An incrustation of paint and 
dirt had rendered it scarcely possible to discover the 
lineaments and character of the countenances, or the 
particulars of the costume. They had also suffered 
from mutilation and decay. Mr. Richardson has with 
great skill and judgment, restored them to that state in 
which they would have been, if they had been pre- 
served with common care/ 

The organ of the Temple Church, it is believed, is 
in many respects superior to any other organ in Eng-* 
land. It was built by the celebrated Bernard Schmidt, 
a native of Germany, and who arrived in England 
in the reign of Charles II. with his two nephews, 
Gerard and Bernard, as his assistants. He was 
called Father Smith, an appellation adopted not only 
to distinguish him from his nephews, but to express 
the reverence which was entertained for his great abili- 
ties, which placed him as the head of his profession. 
It is said he did not take sufficient time in erecting 
his first organ at Whitehall, and in some degree dis«< 
appointed public expectation. It taught him, how- 
ever, greater care ; Dr. Bumey says, " he was assured 
by Snetzler, and by the immediate descendants of 



» Mr. Richardson is preparing for publication, a series of 
Drawings from these figures as they now appear. 



68 THE RESTORATION OF 

those who had conversed with Father Smith, and 
seen him work, that he was so particularly careful 
in the choice of his wood, as never to use any that 
had the least knot or flaw in it." Mr. Bishop the 
eminent organ builder, observed to the writer, that he 
was equally careful in rejecting any wood which had 
sap in it. " He never," continues Dr. Bumey, ** wasted 
his time in trying to mend a bad pipe, either of wood 
or metal ; so that when he came to voice a pipe, if 
it had any radical defect, he instantly threw it away 
and made another. This in a great measure accounts 
for the equality and sweetness of his stops, as well 
as the soundness of his pipes to this day," * 

Some few months after Smith had arrived in Eng- 
land, the elder Harris brought with him from France, 
his son Rene, who, upon his father's death, became 
the competitor of Smith. 

About the latter end of the reign of Charles H. 
the Societies of the Temple determined to have an 
organ as complete as possible, erected in their Church. 
They received proposals from Smith and Harris. These 
distinguished artists were supported by the recom- 
mendation of such an equal number of powerful 
friends, and celebrated organists, that they were 
unable to determine among themselves which to em- 
ploy. They therefore told the candidates, if each of 
these could erect an organ in different parts of the 
Church, they would retain that which in the greatest 
number of excellencies, should be allowed to deserve 
the preference. Smith and Harris agreed to this 
proposal, and in about nine months each had, with the 

» Burney^s History of Music, p. 436. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 69 

utmost exertion of his abilities, an instrument ready 
for trial. Dr. Tudway, their contemporary, and the 
intimate acquaintance of both, says that Dr. Blow 
and Purcell, then in their prime, performed on Father 
Smith's organ, on appointed days, and displayed its 
excellencies, and till the other was heard, every one 
believed that this must be chosen. 

Harris employed Mons. Lully, organist to Queen 
Catherine, a very eminent master, to touch his organ, 
which brought it into favour ; and thus they continued 
vying with each other for near a twelvemonth. At 
length, Harris challenged Father Smith to make cer- 
tain additional reed stops, within a given time. 
These were the vox humana, cremorne, the double 
courtil or double bassoon, and semi stops. These 
stops, which were new to English ears, gave great 
delight to the crowds, who attended the trials ; and 
the imitations were so exact and pleasing on both 
sides, that it was diflScult to determine who had best 
succeeded. At length the decision was left to Lord 
Chief Justice Jefferies, who was of the Inner Temple ; 
and he terminated the controversy in favour of Father 
Smith. 

Part of Harris's organ, after its rejection at the 
Temple, was erected at St. Andrews, Holborn ; and 
part in the Cathedral of Christ Church, Dublin. 

The honourable Roger North, who was in London 
at the time of the contention in the Temple Church, 
says, in his Memoirs of Music, that the competition 
between Father Smith and Harris, was carried on 
with such violence by the friends of each party, that 
they ^^ were Just not ruined." Old Roseingrave as- 
sured Dr. Burney, that the partisans of each candi- 



70 THE RESTORATION OF 

date, in the fury of their zeal, proceeded to the most 
mischievous and unwarrantable acts of hostility ; and 
that in the night preceding the last trial of the reed 
stops, the friends of Harris cut the bellows of Smith's 
organ in such a manner, that when the time came for 
playing upon it, no wind could be conveyed into the 
wind chest. 

Besides the sweetness of the several stops, and 
power of the chorus, in order to render the tuning 
more perfect, two of the five short keys are divided 
in the middle, and communicate with two different 
sets of pipes, so that o^and a flat, d sharp and £ flat, 
are not synonymous sounds. 

In consequence of the reputation which Father 
Smith had acquired, he was employed to build an in- 
strument for the Cathedral of St. Paul, which is uni- 
versally acknowledged to have the sweetest tone 
(except that in the Temple Church), the most noble 
chorus, and a swell which produces the finest effects 
of any in the kingdom. 

. It is said that several more excellent stops were 
made for that instrument, and that they lay many 
years useless in the vestry, for so tender was Sir 
Christopher Wren of his architectural proportions, 
that he would never consent to let the case be suffi- 
ciently capacious to receive them. 

The number of organs built, and enriched with 
new stops by Father Smith is prodigious, and their 
fame equal to that of pictures, or single figures, of 
Raphael. A single stop known to be of his work- 
manship, is still invaluable. The touch and general 
mechanism of modern instruments are certainly supe- 
rior to those of Smith, but, for sweetness of tone, I 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 71 

have never met with any pipes that have equalled 
his, in any part of Europe* At Oxford he built the 
organ at Christ Church, and St. Mary's, at Cambridge 
that of Trinity College, and in London the organs 
for the Churches of St. Margaret's Westminster, and 
St. Clements Danes.* 

The space allotted to the organ of the Temple 
Church in its former situation, was much too con* 
tracted to admit of the best as well as most usual 
mode of placing the different parts of the instru- 
ment* 

The wind chest, movement bellows, &c. were sus- 
pended to various parts of the old case. Neither had 
the instrument received any of the modem improve- 
ments which had been made in the construction of 
organs. 

Mr. Bishop, the inventor of the composition pe- 
dals, was employed to add those improvements, and 
generally to reconstruct the organ. He was selected 
not only on account of his eminence, but because the 
organ at St. Paul's had been previously under his 
charge for a similar purpose, and he had admirably 
executed his work ; — he therefore knew, and valued 
the organs of Father Smith. 

The whole of the organ of the Temple Church has 
been reconstructed by him on a substantial frame, 
and he has made the following additions and improve- 
ments. 

The great and choir organ sound boards have 
been entirely reworked, and new pallated, with all 
the modem improvements. 

• Dr. Burney's History of Music, p. 436. 



7*1 THE RESTORATION OF 

The compass of the swell has been extended ta 
tenor c in the bass, with four additional tones to f in 
alt. The compass of the swell by Byfield, about 60 
years since, was from fiddle o to d and is said to be 
the first ever effectually applied to an organ. The 
quarter tones have likewise been added to correspond 
with the great and choir organ, the former swell 
having neither a flat nor £ fiat. The whole of the 
fittings up, sound board, swell box movement, with 
improved action, &c. are entirely new. 

The double d. sharp has been introduced to the 
great and choir organ, as well as the four additional 
tones, extending the compass to f. in alt. 

A coupler movement has been applied to unite the 
swell to the great organ at pleasure. 

An octave and a half of German pedals with 
quarter tones, and pedal pipes on the same scale as 
those in St. Paul's Cathedral, have been also added ; 
the German pedals are made to act on the great 
organ, choir organ, or pedal pipes separately or con- 
nectedly. 

He has also added four composition pedals, which 
produce the various combination of stops without the 
aid of the hands, or confining the feet, A dulciana, 
a stop not known when the organ was built, and 
first introduced by Snetzler, in the organ he built 
for Lynn Regis, has been introduced into the choir 
organ. 

The bellows have been remx)delled, with all the 
modern improvements for steadiness of wind. The 
organ generally, and the pedal pipes are supplied 
independently of each other. 

The pitch of the organ was more than a tone 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 73 

above concert pitch. This was also formerly the case 
with the organ in St. Pauls Cathedral, but it was 
altered some years since, and the Temple organ has 
now been lowered more than a note. The pitch in 
these two organs being so sharp, is remarkable, as 
the organ in Christ Church, Oxford, by the same 
builder, is rather below concert pitch. 

The great and choir organ wind chests have been 
entirely reworked, and new pallated with all the mo-» 
dern improvements. 

The compass of the great organ, and choir organ, 
are from f f f to f in alt, the swell is from tenor c, 
to F in alt. The following is the number of pipes 
attached to each row of keys. The great organ has 
b'29 pipes, the choir organ 408, the swell 441 pipes, 
and there are 15 pedal pipes, making in the whole 
1793. 

St. Paul's great organ contains 920 pipes, the 
choir organ 416, the swell 342, and the pedal pipes 
are 13, making in the whole 1691. 

The compass of the great organ is from c c c to f 
in alt. The choir from f f f to f in alt, and the swell 
from tenor c to f in alt. 

If no other consideration had influenced the Socie- 
ties of the Temple, it would have been quite incon- 
sistent with the style and character of their church 
to have retained the female professional singers, whoi 
before its restoration, formed part of its choir. The 
restoration of the church affords a proper occasion 
for reviving the chanting adopted in cathedral and 
collegiate churches, and which had prevailed in the 
Temple Church on its first foundation. Of the an- 
tiquity of this service there can be no doubt ; Andrew 



74 THE RESTORATION OF 

Marveli with whom certainly it had no favour, allows 
it an origin as early as the year of our Lord 350. 
— It is said to have been first heard at Antiocht 
where the disciples were first called Christians. — ^I 
was heard at Canterbury in the seventh century, and 
has ever since been continued as part of the service of 
the Church of England. Our Reformers knew the 
value of this ancient service; they felt that it was not 
inconsistent with the purity of the Christian religion 
to retain all the lawful and appropriate means by 
which the feelings might be made to assist in winning 
the heart to its service — some of the holiest, and 
brightest lights of our church. 



** Men whose life, learning, faith, and pure intent 
Would have been held in high esteem with Paul ;* 



have considered that the choral service afforded 
those means. Amongst its warmest advocates is 
pre-eminently distinguished a master of the Temple 
Church, and that master, the pious and "judicious 
Hooker," of whose books Pope Clement VIII. is 
reported to have said, " there are in them such 
seeds of eternity that shall last, until the last fire 
shall consume all learning i"** He asserts it to be 
" the ornament to God's service," " and an help to 
our own devotion," as that " which so fitly accorded 
with the Apostle's own exhortation, * speak to your- 
selves in psalms, and hymns, and spiritual songs, 
making melody, and singing to the Lord in your 



» Milton. *'0n the new Forcers of Conscience." 
^ Hooker's Life, Oxford Edition, 18^0. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 75 

hearts/ that surely there is more cause to fear lest 
the want thereof be a maim, than the use a blemish 
to the service of God." He concludes his account of 
the antiquity of this service, with the following obser- 
vation, so beautifully characteristic of his Christian 
humility — " Sith we are wont to suspect things only 
before trial, and afterwards either to approve them 
as good, or, if we find them evil, accordingly to 
judge of them ; their counsel must need seem very 
unreasonable, who advise mankind to suspect that 
wherewith the world hath had, by their own ac- 
count, twelve hundred years acquaintance and up- 
wards, enough to take away suspicion and jea- 
lousy."^ 

The early compositions of the ecclesiastical music 
of England are distinguished by their sublime sim- 
plicity and purity. Powerfully as they speak to the 
heart yet they excite no emotions which are no| be- 
coming the place and the service for which they 
were written. It has been said, that Handel, during 
his residence at Cannans, devoted himself to the study 
of these writings, and to that study attributed his 
subsequent eminence. They form a striking con- 
trast to the compositions which are used in Roman 
Catholic Churches. 

The restoration having been sufficiently completed 



^ Hooker's Ecclesiastical Polity, Book v. See an admirable 
Essay, entitled ^' An apology for Cathedral Service/* where are 
collected many interesting examples of the most pious Christians, 
who have expressed their attachment to the Cathedral service^ 
and unhesitatingly acknowledged, how great an aid it had been 
to their devotion. 



76 THE RESTORATION OF 

to admit of the performance of Divine Service, the 
Temple Church has been re-opened. The fears which 
were entertained lest the long interruption of its ser- 
vice might cause the dispersion of its former con- 
gregation have proved groundless. The re-opening 
of the Church was almost immediately followed by 
numerously signed memorials from the Barristers and 
Students of both Societies, requesting the revival of 
daily service.* Its congregation has been more nu- 
merous than at any former period. 

Before the Restoration of the Church, the afternoon 
service of the Sabbath was attended by some fifteen 
or twenty persons. It is now attended by a congre- 
gation so numerous, that it is scarcely possible to find 
adequate accommodation for them. The Utilitarian 
either cannot, or will not believe that there are any 
other feelings with which such a congregation attends 
the phurch but those, either of curiosity, or of ad- 
miration of its structure and decoration, or of the 
love of church music. But there have been, and 
there continue to be, men, who with the Christian 
charity ** which thinketh no evil," believe that, even 
if such be the feelings with which the Church is 
entered, they soon give place to those of reverential 
devotion. 

The architectural beauty and the splendid deco- 



* The Temple Church retained dafly service long after it 
had been discontinued in the other churches of the metropolis. 
It is part of the duty of the Reader annexed to his appointment, 
that he should read daily service, except on alternate Thursdays, 
and Saturday evenings. 



THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 77 

ration of our Cathedrals and Churches in an earlier 
age, which were dictated by the purest spirit of piety 
and by a consummate knowledge of the wants and 
weaknesses of our fallen nature, were intended to 
awaken those feelings. 

To the beneficial as well as powerful influence 
which may be thus exercised on our holiest affections 
the judicious Hooker bears his authoritative testi- 
mony ; — 

" Albeit, the true worship of God be to God in 
itself acceptable, who respecteth not so much in what 
place, as with what affection He be served ; manifest, 
notwithstanding it is, that the very majesty and holi- 
ness of the place where God is worshipped, hath, in 
regard of us, great virtue, force, and efficacy, for that 
it serveth as a sensible help to stir up devotion, and 
in that respect, no doubt, bettereth even our holiest 
and best actions in this kind."* 

The present age has not found us less susceptible 
or less in need of this influence. May not the hope 
be cherished that its " virtue^ force^ and efficacy^'' 
may be felt by the numerous congregations attending 
the service in the Temple Church, and that there 
are many on whom feelings of devotion and reverence 
awakene4 within its sacred walls, will have produced 
those deep and permanent impressions which will 
open their hearts to receive Him who hath the words 
of eternal life? If that hope be well founded, the 
Societies of the Temple in humble gratitude may 



» Hooker's Ecclesiastical Polity, Book, V. 



78 THE TEMPLE CHURCH. 

reflect on the restoration of their Church as an act 
by which they have not only discharged the moral 
and legal obligations they incurred as its Guardians, 
but have been made by God s blessing the instru- 
ments of promoting His service and extending the 
knowledge " which maketh men wise unto salva- 
tion'' 



THE END. 



C. Whittingbam, Tooka Court.