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St Michael & All Angels, Castle Frome (Herefordshire)




Link to more baptismal fonts









The little church of St Michael and All Angels near Castle Frome in Heredfordshire is to be found at the end of a farm track well away from the village.  Originally it would have been in the village centre, but it is probable that this earlier village was abandoned at the time of the Black Death in 1348.


The church's font is one of the glories of the Herefordshire Romanesque School.  The photos below take you round the font, starting from the south side, which has a pair of doves followed by the baptism of Jesus (with dove and fishes).  Moving clockwise you encounter the Angel of Matthew, the Eagle of John, the Lion of Mark and the Bull of Luke.  The pedestal, of which sadly only one of the three faces remains, is a work of art in its own right.  The font dates from around 1170. 



A fine pair of buttocks braces the main font pedestal.





In the porch, one of the doves (or is she a friend of the eagle?) takes care of the egg which maybe resulted from the encounter above




Link to another Baptism of Jesus relief on the font in St Bridget's, Bridekirk.





Matthew's Angel





Angel's Feet





The Lion of Mark and the Eagle of John the Evangelist











Luke's Bull







Before moving on to the next Herefordshire Romanesque selection, there was time to pop up to Hill Farm and follow a group of Mormon pilgrims down a long wet path to Benbow's Pond.   It was here in 1840 that an American Mormon missionary named Elder Wilford Woodruff baptized nearly 2000 people from the surrounding neighbourhoods, whom he and William Benbow had converted to Mormonism.  William's brother, John Benbow, was at that time the owner of Hill Farm. The pond, and a nearby old Mormon chapel, draw large numbers of Mormon pilgrims.



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