Bristol Cathedral (Official Post 2)

In one of our assignments for this class was to find information on different cathedrals and monasteries. For this assignment I chose to look up information on Bristol Cathedral. The foundation for Bristol Cathedral was built in the year 1140. The cathedral originated as an abbey at the edge of the 12th century and was dissolved in 1539. The buildings of the cathedral might have been lost if Henry VIII had not raised it to Cathedral status. The cathedral was actually founded by one of the most significant people in the 12th century, Robert Fitzharding, who was a merchant, landlord, and financier. In the early period of the cathedral, the people worshiped the saints Augustine of Hippo and Jordan. Augustine of Hippo was the great church father and Jordan was the apostle of the English. The cathedral became a prayer factory for the lords of Berkeley who were the male line of descendants of Robert Fitzharding. A ceaseless round of worship, which consisted of polyphonic singing, which is a piece that is sung with more than one voice or voice part. Apart from this, prayer for the Berkeley family seems to have been one of the dominant concerts in the community’s spiritual life. Today, life at the cathedral still uses worship, especially at the opus dei of the medieval community. Bristol cathedral is listed as a grade 1 building and shows many different periods and styles. The Gothic style of the cathedral can be found in the Elder Lady Chapel which is located across from the choir in the cathedral. The foundation and original function of the Elder Lady Chapel was to serve as a center for devotion to the Virgin Mary. The reason it is named the Elder Lady Chapel is because there is another Lady Chapel located in the Eastern part of the cathedral behind the high alter. The most important architectural change made to the cathedral during the Middle Ages was made in 1298. A new east end was constructed and used for the new alter. During this time, the cathedral functioned effectively without a nave for four hundred years. They used the area where the nave is today to place the alter while the east end of the cathedral was being remodeled. The vaulting of the cathedral is made of lierne ribs. Most of the vaulting is made of short lierne ribs which create patterns when they are connected. On the west side of the cathedral, there is a rose window above the central doorway which is different from other Gothic cathedral. Today the cathedral is used for visitors and for worship services. Many people visit the cathedral to see its beautiful structure as well as learn about its wonderful history. Admission to visit the cathedral is free and they also have a cafe, a shop, and a garden that people can visit. Guided tours are offered almost daily and worship services are free and open to the public. Visit the Bristol Cathedral’s website for more information on tours and their worship services.



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