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Silver, Room 67, The Whiteley Galleries

Chalice

1874-1875 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place of origin

The chalice is known as the ‘Purchas Chalice’. The Rev. John Purchas was curate of St Paul’s, Brighton, when he published his Directorium Anglicanum in 1859, which drew on Pugin’s vision of the pre-Reformation church for many of its ideas. The Ecclesiologist thought it impolitic to reveal so much concern for ritual: ‘we fully believe that this book was meant to be of practical use among the friends of Catholic ritual: we only hope it may not prove to be of more use to our foes’. (vol. xx, 1859, p.32).

Purchas was notoriously involved in a case at the Court of Arches for ritual practices at St James’ Brighton, of which he had been perpetual curate since 1886. In autumn, 1868, Punch published several jokes and cartoons about the case. (Anson, The call of the cloister, 1964, pp.208-09). Purchas was accused of a variety of offences: 'using a cope (otherwise than during a communion service), chasubles, albs, stoles, tunicles, dalmatics, birettas, wafer bread, lighted candles on the altar, crucifixes, images and holy water;…standing with his back to the people when consecrating the elements, mixing water with the wine, censing the minister, leaving the holy table uncovered during the service, directing processions round the church, and giving notice of unauthorised holidays'.

The designer of the chalice is unknown, although it is composed of motifs from several chalices known to be by William Burges. The paten is habitually used with the chalice, but is three years later in date. There is nothing to connect it with Burges, although he did copy similar "agnus dei" motifs. References in Burges' diary suggest that he worked in some capacity for Purchas in the 1860's. The chalice is composed of parts of several chalices known to be by Burges (see Victorian Church Art, cat. no. D9).

Object details

Categories
Object type
Materials and techniques
Silver, parcel gilt with semi-precious stones, raised with applied gilded decorative bands with supports for stones.
Brief description
Silver, parcel gilt set with semi-precious stones, Birmingham hallmarks for 1874-75, mark of John Hardman & Co.
Dimensions
  • Height: 17.9cm
  • Length: 16cm
  • Width: 16cm
Marks and inscriptions
Under rim: Maker JH & Co for John Hardman and Company, duty, sterling, date letter Z for 1874-5, anchor town mark for Birmingham; Under base: maker, duty.
Credit line
Saint Paul's Church, Brighton
Object history
This chalice is known as the ‘Purchas Chalice’. The Rev. John Purchas was curate of St Paul’s, Brighton, when he published his Directorium Anglicanum in 1859, which drew on Pugin’s vision of the pre-Reformation church for many of its ideas. The Ecclesiologist thought it impolitic to reveal so much concern for ritual: ‘we fully believe that this book was meant to be of practical use among the friends of Catholic ritual: we only hope it may not prove to be of more use to our foes’. (vol. xx, 1859, p.32).

Purchas was notoriously involved in a case at the Court of Arches for ritual practices at St James’ Brighton, of which he had been perpetual curate since 1866. In autumn, 1868, Punch published several jokes and cartoons about the case. (Anson, The Call of the Cloister, 1964, pp.208-09). Purchas was accused of a variety of offences: 'using a cope (otherwise than during a communion service), chasubles, albs, stoles, tunicles, dalmatics, birettas, wafer bread, lighted candles on the altar, crucifixes, images and holy water;…standing with his back to the people when consecrating the elements, mixing water with the wine, censing the minister, leaving the holy table uncovered during the service, directing processions round the church, and giving notice of unauthorised holidays'.

The designer of the chalice is unknown, although it is composed of motifs from several chalices known to be by William Burges. The paten is habitually used with the chalice, but is three years later in date. There is nothing to connect it with Burges, although he did copy similar "agnus dei" motifs. References in Burges' diary suggest that he worked in some capacity for Purchas in the 1860's. The chalice is echoes elements of the designs of several chalices known to be by Burges.
Summary
The chalice is known as the ‘Purchas Chalice’. The Rev. John Purchas was curate of St Paul’s, Brighton, when he published his Directorium Anglicanum in 1859, which drew on Pugin’s vision of the pre-Reformation church for many of its ideas. The Ecclesiologist thought it impolitic to reveal so much concern for ritual: ‘we fully believe that this book was meant to be of practical use among the friends of Catholic ritual: we only hope it may not prove to be of more use to our foes’. (vol. xx, 1859, p.32).

Purchas was notoriously involved in a case at the Court of Arches for ritual practices at St James’ Brighton, of which he had been perpetual curate since 1886. In autumn, 1868, Punch published several jokes and cartoons about the case. (Anson, The call of the cloister, 1964, pp.208-09). Purchas was accused of a variety of offences: 'using a cope (otherwise than during a communion service), chasubles, albs, stoles, tunicles, dalmatics, birettas, wafer bread, lighted candles on the altar, crucifixes, images and holy water;…standing with his back to the people when consecrating the elements, mixing water with the wine, censing the minister, leaving the holy table uncovered during the service, directing processions round the church, and giving notice of unauthorised holidays'.

The designer of the chalice is unknown, although it is composed of motifs from several chalices known to be by William Burges. The paten is habitually used with the chalice, but is three years later in date. There is nothing to connect it with Burges, although he did copy similar "agnus dei" motifs. References in Burges' diary suggest that he worked in some capacity for Purchas in the 1860's. The chalice is composed of parts of several chalices known to be by Burges (see Victorian Church Art, cat. no. D9).
Bibliographic references
  • Victorian Church Art. Catalogue of the exhibition held at the Victoria and Albert Museum, November 1971 - January 1972. London: HMSO, 1971.
  • Anson, Peter Frederick. The call of the cloister: religious communities and kindred bodies in the Anglican communion. London: S.P.C.K., 1964.
Collection
Accession number
LOAN:BRIGHTON.1

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Record createdMarch 3, 2004
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