" ........After the destruction of Athelstan's church, the present cathedral was commenced by Bishop Robert, of Lorraine, and completed by Bishop Raynelm about the year 1115. Since that time several additions have been made to the original structure. The central tower was built about 1200; and a beautiful tower was erected over the W. front, probably in the reign of Edward II. or Edward III. In 1786 this tower fell, destroying the western portion of the cathedral. A new western end was built by Wyatt, in a style not in correspondence with that of the original architecture, which sadly mars the beauty of the exterior. The cathedral is cruciform. The principal dimensions are extreme length, 350 feet; breadth, 174 feet; height of nave, 63 feet; breadth of nave, 28 feet; height of tower, 160 feet. The cathedral contains many beautiful and interesting monuments, some of which are very ancient. The cathedral has been extensively restored by G. G. Scott, Esq., mainly through the dean and chapter. Large contributions have been given by the gentry and landed proprietors towards this object. There is a service held in the Lady chapel for the parish of St. John, as that part of the cathedral is within the parish. In the chapter-room is a very curious old map of the world - one of the most ancient in existence. The college is a quadrangle, containing the residences of the vicars. The library, at the E. end, contains many valuable books and manuscripts. The cloisters connect the cathedral with the bishop's palace, an ancient building situated near the banks of the Wye. The tower, which rises from the intersection of the nave and transept, was formerly surmounted by a wooden spire covered with lead, but this was pulled down at the end of the last century......." [Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868) Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003]
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