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Re: 15th Century Rosslyn Chapel

> From: Nicole <ygrandov@vom.com>
> To: sinclair@zilker.net
> Subject: 15th Century Rosslyn Chapel
> Date: Wednesday, May 13, 1998 10:22 PM
> My name is Nicole, I've been getting lots of mail for my boyfriend, Tom
> Sinclair, on my
> computer.  I find this very interesting.  I've spoke a person who has
> visited the
> Rosslyn Chapel.  He has so much information I can't even remember all he
> talks
> when I talk to him.  I'm still trying to figure out the Royal Scotts and
> the Scotts Royal.
>   Well, this info comes from the Chapel Tour pamphlet.
> 	Welcome to Roslyn Chapel which was founded in 1446 by William 
> Sinclair who was the third and last Sinclair Prince of Orkney.  William
> was fifty when he started the building and was already considered an old
> man.  However, we are fortunate that he lived long enough to see the
> choir area completed and the start of the transepts.  William died in
> 1484.  The correct name for Roslyn Chapel is the Collegiate Church of
> St. Matthew and was to have been built in cruciform shape.  The
> are there for entire building.  The nave extends more than 95 feet from
> the west end of the existing Chapel.  The Chapel is built entirely
> of sandstone which was quarried locally;  the interior has a protective 
> wash on it which gives it a rather uniform color.  The wash was put on
> in the 1920s.  The vaults of the Chapel are extensive and extend the full
> length of the building, running between the two rows of pillars.  Within
> these vaults the knights of the family are lying in their full armour.
> The first one to be buried in this manner was William, the founder, in
> 1484, and the last was also a William Sinclair who was killed at the
> of Dunbar in 1650.  Our research has shown that William, the founder, had
> brought some of his illustrious ancestors to be interred in his lovely
> Chapel, notably Sir William Sinclair of 1297 who was Grand Prior of the
> Knights Templars.  His stone can be seen lying in the north-west corner
> the Chapel.  Prince Henry Sinclair, first Prince of Orkney, was born in
> the Robin Hood Tower of Rosslyn Castle in 1345.  He is also interred at 
> Rosslyn.  He became known as the Holy Sinclair and he became the first
> Prince of Orkney in 1379.  With the aid of Templar funding, Henry
> commissioned twelve ships to be built for a voyage of exploration to the 
> New World.  He was accompanied by Antonio Zeno, a member of one of the
> most illustrious families in Venice.  Antonio was Henry's navigator.
> Henry sailed to Nova Scotia in 1398. He lived amongst the MicMac Indians,
> teaching them how to fish with nets, and to sow crops, etc.  He them
> down
> to the Eastern seaboard to what is now known a Massachussetts, where his
> great friend, Sir James Gunn died.  Henry had Sir James' effigy carved
> on a rock face at Western Massachusetts, which can be seen to this day.
> Henry was murdered shortly after his return to the Orkneys.  His
> William, had his body brought back to be buried with due honour and
> respect here a Rosslyn.  William commemorated Henry's trip to the New
> World by carving into the stone some of the strange plants that Henry
> brought back with him.  To the right of the south door can be seen the
> American cactus, and on the arch of the second window at the east
> end of the south aisle can be seen Indian sweetcorn.  The other plants
> and vegetables which abound in the Chapel, and in particular the
> architraves
> and capitals of the pillars, represent a harvest thanksgiving or a
> garden.  As you enter the Chapel, please stand at the crossing facing the
> Main Altar.  You are now looking east.  Look up to the roof.  It is over
> 3 feet thick and divided into five sections.  Starting at the east end
> have a series of daisies which represent Innocence.  The next panel are
> lillies for Purity - the Virgin Mary.  The next are flowers open to the
> adoration.  We then have roses for Love - Christ.  Lastly, at the west
> end we have the stars which represent the Heavens and amongst those stars
> you can see four guardian angels, the sun, the moon and a dove.  Coming
> down to the clerestory area you can see where there would have been two
> rows of statues, twenty-four in all. These were taken down and possibly
> hidden at time of the Reformation.  The one above the main altar is
> a Victorian replacement;  it was put there in about 1882.
> 		I'll continue later there is so much more.
> 				Nicole