The Monday Photo
This is one of the oldest parts of Dinton church near Stone. It is a fine Norman doorway, built in 1140.
If you didn’t know, the biggest clue to it being Norman is the semi-circular arch, surrounded by concentric orders of decorations. The zig zag patterns are typically Norman.
The columns flanking the doorway are also a common Norman design theme.
Above the door is a lintel with a carving of St Michael fighting Satan, who is in the form of a dragon. Above that and under the arch is a tympanum with a carving of a tree of life, with monsters each side that are eating fruit straight off the tree.
This is the South doorway of the church. Saints Peter & Paul’s Church was largely rebuilt in the 13th Century, but there are a few parts of the church that may date back to the original building.
Some of the wall above the South arcade (the arches between the nave and aisle) may also be from 1140, and just possibly a small part of the South aisle’s East wall too.
This is one of the books I use to research posts on this blog. I referred to it for this post as Dinton is one of the first churches in the book.
This doorway is in the wall of the 1240 South aisle. It’s believed that the door had originally been in the South wall of the original aisle-less Norman nave, and was carefully dismantled and re-erected here.
This means the doorway’s original place was on the line of the present South aisle. But in the 15th Century the South aisle was widened; it seems this doorway has been moved twice! It is now protected from the weather by a porch built in 1500.
I wonder what the original builders would think of how the church looks today, with its Perpendicular windows and finely arched arcade so different from the massive stonework and tiny windows of a Norman church.