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Title: Making an entrance : studies of medieval church porches in Norfolk
Author: Lunnon , Helen E.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2745 3886
Awarding Body: University of East Anglia
Current Institution: University of East Anglia
Date of Award: 2012
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What sort of building is a church porch? This question is addressed using methodologies which promote consideration of what a building can be phenomenologically as well as functionally and architecturally. A purpose of the research was to evince the various functions widely associated with porches, to identity consistencies in the nature of events conducted in porches and the involvement of architecture therein. The research discovered a strong connection between porches and burial, a traditional practice which can provide justification of the form and decoration of certain examples. Church porches were, however, used for a broad range of activities, some established and unchanging, others more fleeting. The broad range of purposes can be associated with a tension between formal developmental trajectory and architectural variety. The study is based on the church porches of medieval Norfolk and these buildings evidence this particular tension well. Those constructed before c.1350 were not conceived of as sacred places whereas by c.1400 the facades were employed in the service of the sacred and used to project religious imagery. The implication of this finding is that porches were no longer peripheral but notionally integrated with the church. The range of evidence consulted has established porches to be at least three different sorts of building: entrances which introduce the larger building beyond, facades to communicate social and doctrinal sensitivities, and protective canopies which shelter and edity those within. Not being tightly controlled in terms of form or function an array of choices was available to patrons and designers. Their direct input into the planning of the building therefore needed to be greater in this context than in most others. As the pattern was not predetermined many porches are evidence of the negotiation between people, money and materials
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available