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Guidebook: Longthorpe Tower


Product Code: 63333

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Longthorpe Tower was built in about 1290-1300 by Robert Thorpe, a lawyer, landholder and an official of Peterborough Abbey. The first floor of the tower is decorated with one of the most complete and interesting examples of medieval domestic wall painting in northern Europe. Dating from about 1330, the scenes depict religious, secular and mythical subjects, along with heraldry and images of birds and animals, abundantly displaying the erudition, devotion and importance of the owner. The room was probably used as a study and private place to receive special guests and clients.

Added to an earlier house, the tower belongs to a type known today as 'solar towers'. These were attached to grand but otherwise unfortified houses to provide extra rooms (a 'solar' being a private room), a measure of security, and a powerful symbol of status. Longthorpe is interesting for its mimicry of the 'great towers' of 'keeps' of the 12th century, and for being among the earlier examples built for a man of less than noble status.
Illustrated with new photography, reconstruction drawings, plans and historic images, Longthorpe Tower guidebook provides a comprehensive guide to the wall paintings and a history of the tower, its inhabitants, and how the paintings were discovered and restored.

Key Features:

  • 24 pages
  • Paperback
  • Published in 2014

Size: Approx. 160 mm (w) x 285 mm (h)
Author: Edward Impey
ISBN: 9781848022935

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Guidebook: Longthorpe Tower