Wednesday, 18 December 2013

The Baptismal Font at Lyngsjö Church in Skåne, Sweden

Lyngsjö church, Gärds District, Skåne. The church was built in the 1100s from materials which were collected from the local area.

Lyngsjö-font attributed to stone carver Tove (ca.1200)  is made of sandstone from Höör and is very well preserved. A description from 1800 mentions that the font was painted.

The rim of mouth of the font is a braid with a pattern that is reminiscent of artefacts made from straw. Below shows an arcade frieze including the martyrdom of Thomas Becket, which took place in 1170. The arcade is supported at irregular intervals by octagonal pillars. Each arch of the arcade encloses a handcarved head. The King of England sits on his throne. He is the only one who is specifically named: Rex Hericus (King Henry). Henry II indirectly caused the death of Becket. Henry is shown talking to a knight, while other knights with swords drawn are assaulting Becket, who gets a sword cut to his head as he reads the prayer. In falling, he is lifting his hands in prayer. A cleric seeking to soften the blow is seriously wounded. This dramatic action spans 7 arches. This is followed by three arches under which Christ receives Thomas Becket as a saint. Then come a further 3 arches with a representation of Christ, who entrusts the Apostle Peter with a key and the Apostle Paul with a book called Traditio Legis.


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