English Romanesque Sculpture, 1066-1140

English Romanesque Sculpture, 1066-1140

English Romanesque Sculpture, 1066-1140

English Romanesque Sculpture, 1066-1140

Excerpt

The scope of this little book is limited to a short period in the history of Romanesque sculpture in England from the Norman Conquest to the years immediately following the death of Henry I in 1135. Although we know that Norman influences were felt in England for a decade or two earlier, the year of the Conquest provides a useful, conventional date with which to mark the beginnings of Anglo-Norman art. The choice of 1140 as the end of the period to be considered demands an explanation. Nothing of any historical or artistic consequence occurred in that year. It was, however, about that time that the first important regional school of sculpture in England came to an end. About that time, also, English sculpture was developing considerable stylistic changes; during the reign of the Conqueror and of William Rufus Anglo-Norman sculpture was in its infancy; the thirty-five peaceful and prosperous years of Henry I's rule were a period of experiment, expansion and consolidation. By 1140 or thereabouts full maturity had been reached.

It is incorrect to call the sculpture of this period Norman because such a term entirely excludes the English element in that sculpture. Actually, the correct term is Anglo-Norman and this should be used to distinguish Romanesque sculpture in England from that of the Continent. Anglo-Norman sculpture is part of a wider artistic movement embracing the whole . . .

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