Where Shall I Sit?

Wacton Sedlila

Sedilia at All Saints church, Wacton: 17 April 2019

I’m claiming this photo for #2019picoftheweek challenge title: All in a Row which I’m sure you’ll agree qualifies.

[For details of #2019picoftheweek challenge see MariaAntonia]

But what, you ask, is sedilia?

It is what’s otherwise known as the Priests’ Bench or Priests’ Seats, and is where the officiating persons sat (when not needed) during Mass. The celebrant occupied the highest seat, nearest the altar, the deacon took the next and the sub-deacon the last. I find the sources tangle into confusion where there’s a fourth seat. That sould be that the fourth seat wasn’t a seat at all but, as here, was the piscina (or sacrarium if you’re RC). The piscina was the place for washing communion vessels; the sacrarium being the drain.

It was a particularly English feature (although it is also found in Europe) and flourished during the twelfth and thirteenth centuries.

If you look at that floor and fear for the priests’ hips, bent at such angles, I might just add that the floor of most chancels were raised to set it apart from the nave during all the back-and-forth ideas that erupted during the Reformation and beyond.

All Saints church, Wacton, lies just southwest of Long Stratton in Norfolk

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About crimsonprose

Spinner of Asaric and Mythic tales
This entry was posted in History, Photos and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to Where Shall I Sit?

  1. Violet Lentz says:

    As always I can count on you for a delightful and insightful backstory. Loved it.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Jen Goldie says:

    Fascinating photo! Those poor priests! OUCH! What some will do for ……….. hmm commentary is over. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Dale says:

    You amaze me with your info to go with your great photos.

    Liked by 2 people

    • crimsonprose says:

      But only when there’s something to say about the photo.
      In this case, after many many visits with the camera to old churches, I decided to read up on church architecture. At least enough to know what’s the nave, and the chancel, and the rood-screen, and the stairs to the former rood-loft, and the chances that have happened since their first building. And Norfolk has so many old churches …

      Liked by 2 people

      • Dale says:

        I admit to not knowing all the parts of a church. A few bits but that’s it

        Liked by 1 person

      • crimsonprose says:

        I guess my interest was in how to date the church by its changing features. I had covered some of it at school (I took Medieval History – Roman Occupation through to War of Roses – which naturally covered the foundation of most of today’s churches. So we covered, e.g. the difference between southern/Byzantine style, and northern Gothic, and how English architecture then veered away from Continential. And it stayed with me, And I’ve developed it

        Liked by 2 people

      • Dale says:

        It is fascinating to learn through your stories (much better than sitting on a hard chair at school!)

        Liked by 1 person

      • crimsonprose says:

        See, wait long enough and all aspirations are achieved. 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

      • Dale says:

        Truth! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • crimsonprose says:

        I shall say nothing of my 9th house (of aspirations) having Sagittarius on the cusp (teaching, law, religion).

        Liked by 1 person

      • Dale says:

        😀
        I know nothing of all that stuff. Keep forgetting what my ascendant is, to boot.

        Liked by 1 person

      • crimsonprose says:

        Ah, easy to find (I’m not into this stuff, you understand). What do you do when a relationship ends? Your most typical behavior will be that of the Ascendant. I get sporty-fit, body conscious, new hairstyle etc, think about me. Oh, that’s Aries. Yay, I do have Aries on the Ascendant.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Dale says:

        Ha ha!! I know what you mean. I keep thinking I’m either Scorpio or Sagi descendant but would not wager a bet on either. I suppose I could find out right quick on one of the gazillion sites out there.

        Liked by 1 person

      • crimsonprose says:

        Not unless you know your (close to exact) time of birth. And place. Makes one hell of a difference. Which is why Sun-Signs are crap.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Dale says:

        I know exactly all that.
        Yep. Just went to a site and I am Aries, ascendant Scorpio and while we are at it, my moon is in Gemini.
        Enjoy your analysis 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      • crimsonprose says:

        Your sun to my ascendant, your moon to my sun. Possibly why we gel. Myself, I’ve very littl action in water signs (i’m not emtional), and even less in earth. I’m not practical.
        But, Aries: a focus on the physical, and/or experiencing the new; ambivalent feelings, or periodic swings; like to communicate your emotions, or maybe your emotions communicate for you. Sex is important in relationships, and could be what stops you from breaking up. or could be your retreat in the event.
        All of which is top of the head speculation.
        And my eyes have settled, I can see now. 🙂

        Like

  4. Very interesting stuff! Thanks for sharing. And yes, this works very well for the prompt you chose.

    Liked by 1 person

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