‘The Bishop, the Devil and the Boot’ – Katherine Barker’s reading of Sherborne Museum’s medieval wall painting

Somerset & Dorset Family History Society

Early in March, the SDFHS Research Centre hosted a talk by Katherine Barker for the Sherborne Museum Association on a medieval wall painting discovered in 1962 during renovations to a house in Sherborne. Katherine has very kindly enlarged on her original note describing the talk, to enable us to provide a more thorough record of her investigations: –

The house was ‘Tudor Rose’ in Long Street and the painting, found during the removal of what was discovered to be a heavily papered-over medieval partition wall, was the only one of six surviving wall panels to show a human figure – a bishop raising his hand in blessing. Dr Clive Rouse dated the painting to about 1500, although he could not identify the bishop; but it was not until 1977 that a previously overlooked, badly-abraded, part of the painting was seen by Nicholas Cooper to portray a tall boot standing in…

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