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Norwich 12, A journey through the English city
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Norwich Cathedral

Norwich Cathedral
Norwich Cathedral
Detail of a roof boss found in the Cathedral
Norwich Cathedral
Norwich Cathedral
Norwich Cathedral
The choir of Norwich Cathedral
Virtual model
Virtual model


What

An iconic Norman Cathedral and one of the most complete major Romanesque buildings in Europe

Most of Norwich Cathedral's Norman architecture is still intact and it forms one of the finest examples of the Romanesque style in Europe. Like the Castle, the Cathedral's awe-inspiring scale signifed the power and permanence of the Norman invaders. Caen stone was transported from Normandy and the immense building project required an army of masons, craftsmen, glaziers and labourers. Some of the original Norman wall painting survives in the Jesus Chapel and the presbytery.

Norwich Cathedral was founded by the first Bishop of Norwich, Herbert de Losinga. He acquired and cleared land in the centre of the city for the new Cathedral and adjacent Priory complex.

The Cathedral has the second tallest spire (at 96m or 315ft - only the spire at Salisbury is higher) and the largest surviving cloister in England.

Norwich Cathedral also has the largest collection of decorative roof bosses in Christendom, 1,106 in total. They provided one of the earliest forms of theological education, at a time when illiteracy was common.

The term Cathedral comes from the Bishop's Cathedra (throne) which is the Greek term for teaching seat. The unusual west facing throne at Norwich is built above the visible remains of the throne of St. Felix (the first Bishop of East Anglia in the seventh century). Bishop Herbert moved these stones to his new Cathedral to create a link between himself and St. Felix and the Saxon population.

A new Hostry Visitor and Education Centre, built within the footprint of the medieval Hostry, opened in 2009.



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