Dragon Roof Boss
On the top floor of the Kings and Scribes exhibition is this deeply carved piece of limestone. It is thought to be a roof boss, which would have been set high up, joining the ribs of a vault together.
The Normans first introduced roof bosses to Britain; we have more than a thousand in our vaults from this period. This roof boss may have been dislodged from the east end of the cathedral when it was remodelled at the start of the 1200s.
The lively carving is of two dragons biting each other’s tails, with the tips becoming acanthus leaves. The dragons have long pointed ears, three-clawed feet and prominent rib cages.
This image, called a double ouroboros, may symbolise opposing forces coming together to create a united whole.
Picked by one of our wonderful Kings and Scribes Stewards from the Sunday Team.
The Portrait of Bishop George Morley
On the mezzanine floor of the Kings and Scribes Exhibition is our stunning 17th century Morley Library.
Above the door hangs a portrait of Bishop Morley, painted by the studio of Sir Peter Lely.
Morley is wearing his Garter robes as Prelate of the Order of the Garter, which is an Office held by all Bishops of Winchester since Bishop William of Edington was created the first Prelate in 1348.
Morley was a Royalist during the Civil War, and on his return from exile at the Court of Charles Il the King made him Bishop of Winchester.
Morley took the time in exile to indulge in his passion for books and understand the leading ideas and emerging knowledge of the period- that is when he collected his books. Morley left his collection of nearly two thousand books to the cathedral to establish the library which bears his name.
He encouraged reading and study, his portrait looks down here to remind us to follow his example.Picked by one of our wonderful stewards from the Saturday Team.