The Windows of St Wulfram, Grantham
- A concise guide to English Gothic window tracery
- The Windows of St Wulfram's Church, Grantham
- Early English Period - late 12th century to late 13th century
- Plate tracery
- Geometric tracery, c.1270-1300
- Intersecting tracery, c.1310
- Decorated Period - c.1310-1350
- Reticulated tracery
- Curvilinear tracery
- Perpendicular period, c.1350 - 1530
- Panel tracery
Before starting the main walk, a visit to the south porch is necessary, to introduce us to the earliest form of tracery.
From here we pass round to the north side of the church to start the circuit proper, which takes place in an anticlockwise direction. There are 6 windows along the wall of the north aisle, 3 either side of the porch, and following the system set out in the church's own guides, they are numbered 1-6 from east to west (left to right). These 6 windows all have the same pattern of tracery.
Window 8 is dealt with under window 10
Window 9 is also Geometric, although of a different pattern to Window 7.
Window 8 in the centre of the west front is identical but decorated profusely with ballflower.
Where there are only two lights in the window, the usual name given is Y-tracery
Examples of this at St Wulfram's can be seen in windows of the ringing chamber of the tower.
These are identical, similar to window 10 but now with decorative cusps on the bars, pointing towards the
The windows are not so clearly visible in that picture, so the following provides a better example
Returning to the south side of the church, we continue with the fully mature style of the Decorated period
and at the east end of the chapel, the largest and most intricate of the group
These windows show an intricacy of tracery that is probably not exceeded except in some of the largest cathedral windows. Apart from those resulting from symmetry, essentially no two shapes in any window are identical.
With the increasing size and height of windows being created from the second half of the 14th century onwards, such as the great east windows at Gloucester and York, support for large areas of glass became critical and mullions tended to be continued vertically through to the top of the window, creating the
Window 19, the east window of the Corpus Christi Chapel, is the most elaborate of these, combining sections which can be read as single lancets, or overlapping 4-light units, melded into a single 7 light window. The circular and teardrop shaped elements are unusual in windows of this period.
The Corpus Christi Chapel represents the final phase of construction of St Wulfram's Church and brings us to the end of our circuit.