Wednesday, February 25, 2015
Have you got the scrolls?
Very often when I do a post a reader or two makes a comment, or sends me an email, and one of the pleasures of the process is that the comments make me think again, or think further about a parallel theme or similar subject. Some of the comments on my recent Hertford post, Red, orange, Strawberry, set me thinking about porches on buildings and their decoration. Not just delicate Georgian or Regency porches like the one in Hertford, but also chunkier Victorian ones. It was not long before I was remembering this example, with its lively ornamentation, from my recent visit to Brailes in Warwickshire.
The pair of pillars may be plain. The modern guttering may be underwhelming. But what a pair of bargeboards! Those sweeping supersize S-scrolls, the quatrefoils (ubiquitous, of course), and that central pendant pointing down at the visitor like some suspended sword of Damocles (or like nothing so much, frankly, as an upside-down finial): it certainly stops you in your tracks. Great design? Hardly. But somebody took the trouble to put this together and deserves some credit for it. That someone, I think, was a local carpenter who liked this kind of work, because there are several other examples in this village in similar quatrefoiled style. None I saw, though, were quite as grand as these monster bargeboards. Salute the scrolls!