CHURCH OF ST MICHAEL
- Heritage Category:
- Listed Building
- List Entry Number:
- Date first listed:
- Statutory Address:
- CHURCH OF ST MICHAEL
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- Statutory Address:
- CHURCH OF ST MICHAEL
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
- West Oxfordshire (District Authority)
- Stanton Harcourt
- National Grid Reference:
- SP 41674 05653
Church of St Michael
Church. Mid C12; transepts added and chancel enlarged in mid C13 and late C13; C15 bell-stage to tower; Harcourt Chapel probably by William Orchard, c1470; transepts remodelled in C15. Coursed limestone rubble; rendered chancel, nave and lower stage of tower; Harcourt Chapel of ashlar. Gabled stone slate roof. Cruciform plan, with tower over crossing.
Chancel: east gable has offset corner buttresses and three mid C13 graduated lancets, with string course forming hoods over these and two groups of triple lancets to north wall and one to south; simple blocked Norman door to north. Harcourt Chapel: 4-light Perpendicular east window of panel tracery; similar 3-light windows, divided by offset buttresses, to 3-bay south wall which has inserted C17 round-arched doorway; corbel table with carved heads, bird, roses and flowers; parapet with pierced quatrefoils, and pinnacles. South transept: mid C13 string course forming hoods over blocked lancet to north-east, two lancets to west and mid C13 pointed moulded doorway to south; remodelled in C15 with 5-light panel tracery window to south and plain parapet. North transept: mid C13 string course forming hoods over two lancets in each side wall and pointed chamfered doorway to north; remodelled in C15 with 3-light panel-tracery window to south and plain parapet. Stair-turret with broached spire adjoins chancel. Tower over crossing: mid C12 double-chamfered round-arched windows to lower stage; C15 bell-stage with 2-light windows and crenellated parapet with gargoyles at corners. South side of nave has two mid C12 round-arched roll-moulded windows and mid C12 doorway: pelleted hood over roll-moulded arch set on jamb shafts with scalloped capitals, and chamfered inner arch. North side of nave has two similar C12 windows, and small C15 Perpendicular 2-light window set in C13 archway with ballflower-decorated hood. North porch of 1843: fine mid C12 north door, with sawtooth-decorated hood, outer hollow-chamfered order and inner roll-moulded order set on jamb shafts with scalloped capitals. Perpendicular 5-light west window with panel tracery. C15 parapet to nave. Memorial on south transept wall to John Hewet and Sarah Drew, with epitaph by Alexander Pope.
INTERIOR: mid C13 rere-arches set on clustered shafts, with stiff-leaf capitals to east and bell capitals to side windows. In south-west corner are shafts with stiff-leaf capital and springers of former mid C13 vaulted recess. C13 string forms hood over pointed roll-molded recess housing credence table above pillar piscina. All mid C13 features are picked out in red ochre (uncovered 1970). Two C15 archways to Harcourt Chapel, blocked in early C18 with early C19 wrought-iron gateway. Mid C13 chancel screen, a very rare example: has trefoiled openings set on banded shafts, and pierced quatrefoils etc. in screen below; door has original C13 bolt, lock and fittings. C17 parish chest in chancel. Crossing arches: double-chamfered, with chamfered inner order set on shafts with bell capitals and piscina with head corbel to south-east. North transept: rere-arches to east set on clustered shaft with naturalistic leaf-carved capital; sill-band set on head and leaf corbels; piscina and two round-arched heads to west. South transept: two similar hoodmoulds to west and early C18 wrought-iron gates set in C15 archway with two orders of shafts and capitals to Harcourt Chapel. Each transept has C15 two-bay tie-beam roof with moulded and quartered beams. Nave has four statue corbels and fine C15-style font of 1831; C15 four-bay king-post roof with cusped struts and C12 and C13 head corbels supporting arch braces with traceried spandrels. Early C19 pews include box pews with panelled dados in south transept; early C19 Gothick-style pulpit with steps. Shrine of St. Edburg in north wall of chancel: dated 1294-1317, removed from Bicester Priory at the Dissolution by Sir Simon Harcourt. Painted and gilded Purbeck Marble canopy has crocketed ogee arches, armorial shields in spandrels and small statues set under similar canopied niches in corners; frieze of carved head, and two bays of octopartite vaulting inside.
MONUMENTS: chancel: C17 and C18 marble ledgers, brasses of Ellen Camby (died 1516) and Sir Henry Dodschone (died 1519). Tomb of Maud, wife of Sir Thomas Harcourt, (died 1394), under arched recess in north wall: stone effigy, painted red, lies on tomb-chest with painted shields. Small wall tablet to Christopher Hovenden (died 1610), and marble wall tablets with urns and weeping women to Robert Huntington (died 1685) and William Gibbons (died 1728). Harcourt Chapel: floor brasses to Thomas Harcourt (died 1460) and Nicholas Atherton (died 1454). Fine tomb of Sir Robert Harcourt (died 1471) and wife: alabaster effigies, painted in C19 restoration, set on tomb-chest with shields in traceried panels. Similar painted effigy and tomb chest of his grandson Sir Robert Harcourt (died c.1509) with carved figures of angels and bedesmen, and Tudor roses: remains of standard above said to be that which Sir Robert carried at Bosworth Field (1485) for Henry VII. Part of a C14 chest tomb behind. Pedimented marble wall-tablet to Simon Harcourt (died 1720), with epitaph by Alexander Pope; wall tablet with Greek Doric frame to Simon, first Earl Harcourt (died 1777) probably by James Stuart; another neoclassical wall-monument to William, third Earl Harcourt (died 1830) by R.W. Sievier; medieval-style monuments, with recumbent effigies on tomb-chests, to George Simon Harcourt (died 1809), and Archbishop Edward Vernon Harcourt (died 1847) by M. Noble, 1858; wall-monument to George Granville Harcourt (died 1861) by M. Noble, has classical bust on Gothic pedestal. South transept: original plaster models for statues of Field Marshal William, third Earl Harcourt, and Sir William Vernon Harcourt; the former, by Sievier (1832) in St. George's Chapel, Windsor, and the latter in the Houses of Parliament. Tomb chest to Sir Simon Harcourt (died 1547), reduced in length, has black marble top and shields set in quatrefoils to sides. Very fine Baroque architectural wall monument, with portrait busts in oval niches of Sir Philip Harcourt (died 1688) and wife. Stained glass; restored 1960-1962. In south lancets of chancel are rare remains of C13 grisaille glass and a figure of St. James Major. Harcourt Chapel has remnants of canopy designs dated c.1475-80 in heads of east window; armorial glass of c.1475-80 and two mid C13 roundels of a king and an ecclesiastic in the south window.
An exceptional church: notable features are the remarkable C13 chancel screen and shrine, and its fine monuments.
(Buildings of England: Oxfordshire, pp. 778-781; National Monuments Record; Bodleian Library, Topographical Drawings, for many late C18 and C19 prints and drawings).
Listing NGR: SP4167705653
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
- Legacy System number:
- Legacy System:
Books and journals
The Victoria History of the County of Oxfordshire: Volume XII, (1990), 289-293
Pevsner, N, Sherwood, J , The Buildings of England: Oxfordshire, (1974), 778-81
This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.
End of official listing