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Queen Eleanor Memorial Cross

Queen Eleanor Memorial Cross
Charing Cross Memorial 2 (5822150986).jpg
The cross in 2011
LocationCharing Cross railway station
London, WC2
Built1864–1865
ArchitectEdward Middleton Barry
Listed Building – Grade II*
Designated5 February 1970
Reference no.1236708[1]

The Queen Eleanor Memorial Cross is a memorial to Eleanor of Castile erected in the forecourt of Charing Cross railway station, London, in 1864–1865. It is a fanciful reconstruction of the medieval Eleanor cross at Charing, one of several memorial crosses erected by Edward I of England in memory of his first wife. The Victorian monument was designed by Edward Middleton Barry, also the architect of the railway station, and includes multiple statues of Queen Eleanor by the sculptor Thomas Earp. It does not occupy the original site of the Charing Cross (destroyed in 1647), which is now occupied by Hubert Le Sueur's equestrian statue of Charles I.

Barry based the memorial on the three surviving drawings of the Charing Cross, in the Bodleian Library, the British Museum and the collection of the Royal Society of Antiquaries. However, due to the fragmentary nature of this evidence, he also drew from a wider range of sources including the other surviving Eleanor crosses and Queen Eleanor's tomb at Westminster Abbey.[2] In this search for precedents Barry was assisted by his fellow architect Arthur Ashpitel.[3] The coats of arms of England, León, Castile and Ponthieu appear on the monument.[1]

References

  1. ^ a b Historic England, "Queen Eleanor Memorial Cross (1236708)", National Heritage List for England, retrieved 26 December 2014
  2. ^ Ward-Jackson, Philip (2011), Public Sculpture of Historic Westminster: Volume 1, Public Sculpture of Britain, 14, Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, pp. 257–8CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)
  3. ^ Bradley, Simon; Pevsner, Nikolaus (2003), London: Westminster, The Buildings of England, 6, London and New Haven: Yale University Press, p. 300CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)

External links