Queen Eleanor

Effigy of Eleanor, Queen of England, Wife of King Edward I

Edward Blore (1787-1879)


Blore's illustration of Queen Eleanor's effigy in Westminster Abbey is the opening work of The Monumental Remains of Noble and Eminent Persons, Comprising the Sepulchral Antiquities of Great Britain. Queen Eleanor was considered a model queen and wife: "history has handed down her name as coupled with all the domestic virtues, and recorded her as a rare example of active and useful benevolence" (3), while the effigy itself is much praised in the text, as "an excellent specimen of art, both in design and execution. The features are those of a young and beautiful female; the countenance, open, mild, ingenuous, and noble..... The drapery is long and flowing, very tastefully arranged" (7).

The vogue for medieval work continued right through the century, from these early years of the Gothic Revival through the Pre-Raphaelites and into the Arts and Crafts Movement of the later period.

One of the most intricate stone-carvings in London is that of the Eleanor Cross outside Charing Cross Station, recreated in 1863-65, marking the last spot at which Queen Eleanor's bier rested, when her funeral cortège travelled from Nottinghamshire to Westminster Abbey in 1290.

Source of image: the 1826 edition in the Internet Archive, uploaded by the Cornell University Library; text by Jacqueline Banerjee.

[You may use this image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the Cornell University Library and the Internet Archive and (2) link your document to the Victorian Web in a web document or cite it in a print one.]