The Pilgrimage Window

The donor figures are portrayed as pilgrims, giving this window its name. The male figure is possibly Sir Robert de la Warde (d.1306), Steward of the Royal Household, or his son Sir Simon de la Warde (d.1334). Having been pardoned for his involvement in the murder of Edward II’s favourite, Piers Gaveston, Sir Simon went on to play a major role in securing victory for the king at the Battle of Boroughbridge in 1322 and became governor of York. The glass may refer to a pilgrimage undertaken by a family member, or to pilgrimage to the shrine to St William of York, which was very near this window. The window is of the ‘band’ type, with two bands of full-colour panels set between bands of pale grisaille glass, a model followed in many of the nave aisle windows. The upper narrative depicts the Crucifixion. Each of the grisaille panels has a colourful central medallion whose subject is not directly related to either of the colour bands. Some of these medallions have secular themes and some may relate to exempla used during sermons. At the top of the tracery is a figure of Christ in Majesty, below which are two angels bearing symbols of the Passion.

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