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St. Paul's Churchyard (EC4)
(St. Paul's Cathedral)

Apostles and Evangelists at St. Paul's Cathedral

Francis Bird
1706 and 1721

London /  Apostles and Evangelists at St. Paul's Cathedral   London /  Apostles and Evangelists at St. Paul's Cathedral

Description

St. Paul's cathedral has statues of the Apostles on three sides, statues of the four Evangelists at the front and a large pediment on the front as well.

In December 1706 Francis Bird was paid £650 for carving the "Conversion of St. Paul", 64' (19&frac;12 m) long and 17' (5 m) high for the great pediment. This contained "eight large figures" six whereof on horseback and several of them "two and a half feet imbost". But it was not until 1721 that he carved the statues of various apostles and evangelists (each nearly 12 ft (3.7 m) high) for the west front and south side of the Cathedral. For these he received a total sum of £2,040.

Front façade

Pediment with relief "The Conversion of St. Paul".

London - Apostles and Evangelists at St. Paul's Cathedral


Three statues, with St. Paul on the apex:
  1. St. Peter, with a rooster.
    (possibly died AD 67), apostle, first pope; patron saint of locksmiths and confessors. Usually holding the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven in his hand (Wikipedia)
  2. St. Paul, with a sword.
    the Apostle, (c. 5 - c. 67 ), persecuted the early followers of Jesus before switching sides and seeking to join them. He was instrumental in creating the Christian Church. He is the protector of tent-makers, theologians and the ecclesiastical press and is depicted with a sword. (Wikipedia).
  3. St. James the Greater
    (d. 44), one of the Twelve Apostles. Patron saint of pilgrims, soldiers and cavalrymen. Depicted holding a pilgrim's staff decorated with a scallop shell. His remains are in Santiago de Compostela in Galicia (Spain) (Wikipedia).

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Towers: Four evangelists flanking the towers.
    North tower:
  1. St. Matthew with angel.
  2. St. Mark with lion.
    South tower
  3. St. Luke with bull.
  4. St. John with eagle.

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North façade

Small pediment relief showing the Royal coat of arms and five statues.

London - Apostles and Evangelists at St. Paul's Cathedral

  1. St. Philip, sitting, with cross
    one of the Twelve Apostles. He is protector of trinket merchants. He is depicted holding a cross in his left hand as a symbol of the way in which he died, and a book in his right hand as an emblem of dying for the Word of God (Wikipedia).
  2. St. Thomas, with carpenter's hook
    one of the Twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ. Patron saint of architects, builders and land surveyors, usually holding a right-angle (Wikipedia).
  3. St. James the Lesser, with club
    one of the Twelve Apostles. Depicted with a club, since he is said to have been clubbed to death (Wikipedia).
  4. St. Jude the Apostle with a club (?)
  5. St. Bartholomew (?), sitting, with ??
    the Apostle, one of the Twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ. Protector of shepherds and winegrowers. His attribute is a knife, which signifies the way in which he died (Wikipedia).

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South façade

Small pediment relief, sculpted by Caius Gabriel Cibber, showing a Phoenix with the word (found inscribed on a grave-stone on the site) Resurgam - I shall rise again; and five statues.

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  1. St. Simon the Zealot, sitting, with a saw. or Simon Zelotes, one of the most obscure among the apostles of Jesus. He is depicted with a saw (Wikipedia).
  2. St. Matthias, with halbert or spear.
    the apostle chosen by the remaining eleven apostles to replace Judas Iscariot. Protector of carpenters, butchers and smiths. His attribute is a halberd, signifying the way in which he died (Wikipedia).
  3. St. Andrew, with a saltire cross.
    apostle and the brother of Saint Peter; founder and the first bishop of the Church of Byzantium. Protector of fishermen, in particular. He is shown with a saltire cross, in accordance with the way in which he died (Wikipedia).
  4. St. John the Apostle, (?) with ??
    one of the Twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ. The patron saint of book engravers, booksellers and authors, John, is holding a book and a chalice, and he, according to legend, prayed for it to become non-poisonous - considered to be the same person as John the Evangelist (Wikipedia).
  5. St. Matthew, sitting, with ??
    one of the twelve Apostles of Jesus and one of the four Evangelists. His attribute is an angel. As patron saint of book-keepers, tax collectors and security forces, he is also depicted with writing utensils (Wikipedia)..

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Sculptor

Tags

  • Apostles (Twelve)
  • Bartholomew, St.
  • Bird, Francis
  • Evangelists (Four)
  • James the Greater, St.
  • James the Minor, St.
  • John the Apostle, St.
  • Jude the Apostle, St.
  • Matthias, St.
  • Paul, St.
  • Peter, St.
  • Philip, St.
  • Simon the Zealot, St.
  • Thomas, St.
  • Location (N 51°30'49" - W 0°5'53")

    Item Code: gblo127; Photograph: 7 August 2014
    Of each statue we made photos from various angles and also detail photos of the various texts.
    If you want to use photos, please contact us via the contact form (in Dutch, English or German).
    © Website and photos: René & Peter van der Krogt