A visit to Somerton- Agape

Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

Behind the altar of the church at Somerton is a remarkable reredos, carved in high relief. It would be easy to overlook from a distance, but it repays a much closer inspection. It is a depiction of the Last Supper unlike any other I have seen, dating back seven hundred years, to the fourteenth century, and it is a fascinating artistic survival from this time.

The reredos is in superb condition for its age.  In places you can still see the colours of the original, medieval pigments used to paint the carving. One reason for this is because, for centuries, the reredos was hidden away to preserve it from the Puritanical forces of Cromwell and his troops and was only reinstated in 1822. There were originally thirteen figures, though only eleven are now immediately apparent… and therein lies a tale.

“Now there was leaning on Jesus’ bosom one of his…

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