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Temple Church
St Paul's Cathedral

The Temple Church
Underground: Temple: District & Circle Lines
There is now an admission charge of £4.00 but with several concessions; photography allowed at no extra charge.
 The Temple Church
'London's Friendliest Church'

William Marshall (1219)
(RCHM no 10)

Gilbert Marshal (1241)
(RCHM no 9)
The Military Effigies

The Temple Church lies between Fleet Street and the Thames Embankment in a complex of buildings of the legal profession. Some of the entrances to this complex may be closed at certain times so it is best to check The Temple Church website for further details and for a useful plan of the area. This website also gives details of the opening hours.

The Temple Church belongs to two of the four Inns of Court, the Inner Temple and Middle Temple; it is thus the lawyers' private chapel. It is extra diocesan, has no parish and is not subject to the authority of the Bishop of London.

The Temple takes its name from the crusading Order of Knights Templars founded in 1118 to protect pilgrims travelling to the Holy Land. Their names comes from their headquarters being near the site of the Temple in Jerusalem. Henry I introduced them to England and they first settled in Holborn near the top of Chancery Lane. In the 12th century they built their great house of the New Temple on the banks of the Thames. The Round Church was built on the model of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. The Order was accused of heresy and other offences and dissolved in 1312 at the instigation of Phillipe Le Bel of France. The Grand Master - Jacques Molay - was burned at the stake. In England the Templars' property passed to their rival order, the Knights Hospitallers who, in turn, were suppressed at the Reformation. Thus the Temple eventually passed to the Crown, subject to the tenancies of the lawyers who had settled there as tenants of the Hospitallers and formed themselves into two societies, The Benchers of the Inner Temple and the Middle Temple, who secured the freehold by charter from James l in 1608. One of the conditions of the grant was that they were to maintain the Temple Church and its services for ever. The Minister of the Temple Church is still called the "Master of the Temple"; the Minister's title is 'Reverend and Valiant', reflecting the ancient origin of the church.

In the round part of the church, simply called The Round, are the nine military effigies which probably do not represent Knights Templars but rather their supporters, some of whom may have actually joined the order shortly before they died while others became 'associate' members. The southern group (on your left) includes the effigy of William Marshal, Earl of Pembroke, who was Regent during the minority of Henry III, (1219), and his sons William and Gilbert as well as that of William de Ros, which was brought from Yorkshire. In the southern group (on your right) is the effigy of Geoffrey de Mandeville, Earl of Essex (1144) and a 13th century coped Purbeck marble coffin lid. These monuments were restored by Edward Richardson  whose efforts were much criticised, in the early 1840's,; his drawings of the effigies - after his restorations - appear on this page. He also rearranged the position of the effigies to that we see today; before this they were arranged in line across the Round, being centrally divided onto two groups. It is not known how they were positioned in medieval times.

On the night of 10th May 1941 London was subjected to a Luftwaffe bombing raid and the roof of the church fell onto the effigies; they had been protected in the anticipation of such a raid by railway sleepers but this was a fire bomb so each effigy was subjected to its own inferno causing great damage, molten lead from the roof entering cracks in the stonework. The effigies have been carefully repaired by Harold Haysom.

Below are photographs of the effigies as well as other monuments in the Temple Church. As can be seen the monuments on the north were more badly damaged than those on the south of the round; those in the nave escaped damage. To see what the monuments used to look like before the bomb damage, visit the Cast Courts in the Victoria and Albert Museum, where plaster casts of these monuments before damage, as well as many others, are displayed.

Geoffrey de Mandeville (1144)
(RCHM no 6)

(RCHM no 5)

William Marshall II (1231)
(RCHM no 8)

(RCHM no 7)
(RCHM no 4)

(RCHM no 3)
William de Ros (1316)
(RCHM no 12)
Richard of Hastings (?) (c.1185)
(RCHM no 11)

Although I have given possible indentification of several of these monuments, it must be pointed out that there is no firm evidence to identify any of them conclusively. This is discussed by Philip Lankester and David Park in The Temple Church in London (ed. Robin Griffith-Jones and David Park), Boydell Press 2010.

Northern Group
On the right above 

Said to be the effigy of Geoffrey de Mandeville (1144) He was buried in the Old Temple, of which he may well have been the founder, while still in Templar hands. He was one of the most infamous of the anarchistic barons in the reign of King Stephen.. He died still excommunicated at Mildenhall in Suffolk following a fatal wound; some Templars laid the habit of their order on him and removed his body. He was encased in lead and 'buried' hanging from a tree in the Temple garden, being an excommunicant.His body was transferred to the New Temple twenty years later and buried  there following the absolution of excommunication obtained by his son from the Pope in 1163. Of Purbeck marble and in greater relief. (RCHM no 6)

Effigy of Purbeck marble in low relief and probably the earliest of the group. (RCHM no 5)

Unknown Purbeck marble effigy. (RCHM no 4)

Unknown Purbeck marble effigy (RCHM no 3)

This Purbeck marble grave cover is the earliest monument inside the church and is said to be that of Richard of Hastings (c. 1185), Master of the Temple who was responsible for the building of the New Temple. The ram's head decoration (seen best in Richardson's drawing above) is the symbol of the Masters of the Temple in London. (RCHM no 11)

Southern Group
On the left above 

Said to be William Marshall Earl of Pembroke (1219) Effigy of Purbeck marble and in low relief. (RCHM no 10)

 Said to be Gilbert Marshall (1241) 4th son of William. Effigy of Reigate stone.  (RCHM no 9)

Said to be William Marshall II (1231) Eldest son of William. Effigy of Reigate ston (RCHM no 8)

Unknown effigy of Purbeck marble (RCHM no 7)

William de Ros (1316) 
This effigy was brought from Kirkham Priory, near York, by Mr Serjeant Belwood, Recorder of York, about 1682, although why and how this was done I have not discovered

Plaster Casts in the Victoria & Albert Museum
Plaster casts were made of several of the Temple Church effigies well before the bomb damage and these give an idea of what these effigies looked like in the round before this damage. They are to be found in the Casts Courts in the Victoria and Albert Museum, together with many other monuments and effigies, which will be recorded in due course on other pages. These casts were taken by Richardson (see above) after his restoration work.

Bishop Sylvester of Carlisle (1255), Purbeck Marble and very well carved. (RCHM No 1)

Modern Monuments

Richard Martin (1615) Recorder of London. He kneels before his desk holding an open book. By William Cure II George Wylde (1679) signed by William Stanton Thomas Lake
Sir John Williams (1668) Sir John Witham (1689) signed by Thomas Cartwright Snr

Other monuments:
Edmund Plowden (1584), Treasurer of the Middle Temple. Alabaster effigy with richly decorated canopy.

Edward Littleton (1664), heraldic brass with 29 shields and a Latin inscription of a winding scroll  in front of choir stalls.

John Selden (1654) Middle Temple jurist, legal antiquary and scholar;  ledgerstone beneath a glass panel.

Lord Chancellor Thurloe (1806) bust by Carlo Rossi

Other Burials in the Temple Church
St Hugh of Lincoln (1200) Entrail burial only in the Old Temple, where he died, although his body was taken to Lincoln. This was after the move (in 1161) to the new and present site.
Constant de Hoverio Now lost. Probably refers to a slab with a lost brass indent, recorded in an engraving of 1819. Possibly a Templar of c. 1300
William (1256 or 59) Fifth son of Henry III. A skeleton of an infant was found when the tomb of Bishop Sylvester was opened in 1810 and said to be of this William.
Aimery of St Maur (1219)
Robert de Ros (1226/27)
Robert de Vieuxpont (1227/28)

These burials were recorded in various documents, although the sites are either given obscurely or not at all. The actual monuments were not described and some of those above may well relate to these burials.

Please note: this section on the Temple Church is in progress and further and replacement photographs and information will be added in due course.

St Olave, Hart Street
Underground: Tower Hill: District & Circle Lines
Church open weekdays 10am-5pm except week after Christmas and week after Easter and during August.

Sir John Radclif (1568) This is a fragment of a recumbent effigy Lady Radclif (1585) The kneeling figure only

Peter Cappone (1582) A Florentine merchant. Kneeling figure in surround.

 Sir James Deane (1608) A tripartite piece with kneeling figures of Sir James and his three wives.

 Andrew (1610), Alderman, and Paul Bayning (1616), Alderman and Sheriff. Kneeling figures surrounding  a corner. Attrib. to Christopher Kingsfield

 Mrs Elisabeth Pepys (1669) - wife of the diarist. By John Bushnell

 Sir Andrew Riccard (1672) in Roman dress; erected by Levant Company of which he was chairman. Attrib. to Bushnell

Elizabeth Gore (1698) -  one month short of her  19th birthday

 Jane Humberstone (1694) The  monument was erected by her  husband Matthew (1709) whose  name is added at the bottom

Samuel Pepys (1703 )- the diarist. By Blomfield (1884)

 Lord Mayor Sir Richard Haddon (1524) Brass with kneeling figures of two wives and five children.
Thomas Morley (1566) Brass - a palimpsest
Also several brasses of the 17th century
Sir William Ogborne (1734) Master Carpenter to Board of Ordnance. Cartouche.

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St Botolph Aldersgate
Underground: St Paul's : Central Line
NB Not St Botolph Aldgate !
Hours unknown

Richard Chiswell (1711) 'Citizen and Stationer of London' Also his parentsJohn and Margaret - his first wife Sarah, and his five children, who died young, whom he had with his second wife Mary; she is buried in 'Christ Church, London.' Attrib. to William Woodman Snr


Sir John Micklethwaite (1682) Attrib. to Gibbons

Dame Anne Packington (1563)
The three kneeling figures, shield and inscription are not 'brasses' but incised and painted to look like a brass.

Many other monuments not yet shown.

St Helen Bishopsgate
Great St Helen
Underground: Liverpool Street: Circle, Hammersmith & City and Metropolitan Lines
Hours unknown

Agnes and John Crosby (1476)
Purbeck marble tomb chest with alabaster effigies

St Bartholomew the Great
West Smithfield
Underground: Barbican: Circle, Hammersmith and City & Metropolitan Lines
Hours: Mon-Fri. 8.30am-5.00pm (11th Nov-14th Feb 4.00pm). Sat 10.30am-4.00pm. Sun 8.30am-8.00pm.
There is a charge for visitors of £4.00 (adults) but not for the 1st hour or those wishing to worship. 

Rahere (1144)Founder of the church. Made when the east end was modified in c. 1405. Effigy, in Augustinian habit, of Reigate stone. Two bedesmen and angel holding shield at feet. Back wall is pierced to the ambulatory

Edward Cooke (1652)
Attributed to
Thomas Burman

Percival Smalpace (1558 & Wife (1588)
Below the busts is a slate panel incised with images of the couple's naked corpses. Attrib to
Giles de Witt

John (1681) & Margaret (1680) Whiting

'lived lovingly in holy Wedlock in this Parish 40 years and upwards...'

St Batholomew the Less
St Batholomew's Hospital
Underground: Barbican: Circle, Hammersmith and City & Metropolitan Lines
Hours: 7.00am - 8.00 pm or later
Website of the Friends

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William Markeby (1439) & Wife


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