List entry

List entry Summary

This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Churchyard cross, St Vincent's churchyard

List entry Number: 1009225

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County District District Type Parish
LincolnshireSouth KestevenDistrict AuthorityCaythorpe

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 28-Sep-1994

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 22631

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

A standing cross is a free standing upright structure, usually of stone, mostly erected during the medieval period (mid 10th to mid 16th centuries AD). Standing crosses served a variety of functions. In churchyards they served as stations for outdoor processions, particularly in the observance of Palm Sunday. Elsewhere, standing crosses were used within settlements as places for preaching, public proclamation and penance, as well as defining rights of sanctuary. Standing crosses were also employed to mark boundaries between parishes, property, or settlements. A few crosses were erected to commemorate battles. Some crosses were linked to particular saints, whose support and protection their presence would have helped to invoke. Crosses in market places may have helped to validate transactions. After the Reformation, some crosses continued in use as foci for municipal or borough ceremonies, for example as places for official proclamations and announcements; some were the scenes of games or recreational activity. Standing crosses were distributed throughout England and are thought to have numbered in excess of 12,000. However, their survival since the Reformation has been variable, being much affected by local conditions, attitudes and religious sentiment. In particular, many cross-heads were destroyed by iconoclasts during the 16th and 17th centuries. Less than 2,000 medieval standing crosses, with or without cross-heads, are now thought to exist. The oldest and most basic form of standing cross is the monolith, a stone shaft often set directly in the ground without a base. The most common form is the stepped cross, in which the shaft is set in a socket stone and raised upon a flight of steps; this type of cross remained current from the 11th to 12th centuries until after the Reformation. Where the cross-head survives it may take a variety of forms, from a lantern-like structure to a crucifix; the more elaborate examples date from the 15th century. Much less common than stepped crosses are spire-shaped crosses, often composed of three or four receding stages with elaborate architectural decoration and/or sculptured figures; the most famous of these include the Eleanor crosses, erected by Edward I at the stopping places of the funeral cortege of his wife, who died in 1290. Also uncommon are the preaching crosses which were built in public places from the 13th century, typically in the cemeteries of religious communities and cathedrals, market places and wide thoroughfares; they include a stepped base, buttresses supporting a vaulted canopy, in turn carrying either a shaft and head or a pinnacled spire. Standing crosses contribute significantly to our understanding of medieval customs, both secular and religious, and to our knowledge of medieval parishes and settlement patterns. All crosses which survive as standing monuments, especially those which stand in or near their original location, are considered worthy of protection.

The churchyard cross at Caythorpe is a good example of a medieval standing cross with a quadrangular socket-stone and octagonal shaft. Limited activity in the area immediately surrounding the cross indicates that archaeological deposits relating to the monument's construction in this location are likely to survive intact. While the socket-stone and part of the shaft have survived from medieval times, the subsequent restoration of the steps and head has resulted in the continued function of the cross as a public monument and amenity.

History

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Details

The monument includes a Listed Grade II standing stone cross located in the churchyard of St Vincent's Church, Caythorpe, approximately 5m south east of the south porch. The cross is of stepped form and is medieval and modern in date. The monument includes the foundation and base, consisting of a plinth and three steps, which are early 20th-century in date; a medieval socket- stone; and a shaft and ornamented head, also of early 20th-century date.

The steps are square in plan and constructed of limestone blocks resting on a chamfered plinth. An inscription on the western face of the second step records the restoration of 1906. On this step stands the socket-stone, square in section at the base with moulded and chamfered corners rising to a top of octagonal section. Set into the socket-stone is a stone shaft of square section at the base with chamfered corners tapering upwards in irregular octagonal section. The lowest part of the shaft is 0.87m high and represents the remains of the original medieval shaft. The head of the cross takes the form of a gabled canopy containing figural scenes; both the head and the upper part of the shaft date from the early 20th-century restoration. The full height of the cross is approximately 5m.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 1 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Russell, J, St. Vincent's Church, Caythorpe, (1990)
White, W, History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Lincolnshire, (1856)

National Grid Reference: SK 93889 48550

Map


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This copy shows the entry on 23-Oct-2014 at 10:25:50.