Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Exeter Cathedral - bosses

In architecture, a boss is a knob or protrusion of stone or wood. Bosses can often be found in the ceilings of buildings, particularly at the intersection of a vault.

Some of the bosses at Exeter Cathedral weigh as much as two tons. This model of a boss is at ground level and is designed to show visitors how big the bosses are.

This boss depicts the murder of Thams Becket in 1170. Born in 1118 he was Archbishop of Canterbury from 1162. He was later also known as Thomas à Becket and his death made him an instant martyr.

These bosses depict the Green Man. A Green Man is a sculpture, drawing, or other representation of a face surrounded by or made from leaves. Branches or vines may sprout from the nose, mouth, nostrils or other parts of the face and these shoots may bear flowers or fruit. The Green Man motif has many variations and is found in many cultures around the world' It is often related to natural vegetative deities and is primarily interpreted as a symbol of rebirth or renaissance, representing the cycle of growth each spring.

Some of the bosses represnt other creatures - both real and mythical.

1 comment:

GB said...

I had absolutely no idea that they could be so large.