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St. Edward's Chapel, Windsor
Predecessor of St. George's Chapel
 
  • Henry II Door with Gilded Iron Scrollwork from St. George's Chapel, Windsor -  Nash Ford PublishingThe first chapel at Windsor Castle was built by King Henry II in the 1240s. It was a small building on the site of the Albert Memorial Chapel, at the east end of today's St. George's Chapel. It was dedicated to (named after) St. Edward the Confessor.

  • Parts of the walls still exist. So do the wooden doors! They are painted red and covered with beautiful gilded (gold covered) ironwork decoration (see picture).

  • In 1348, King Edward III set up the Order of the Garter for the best knights in the land. He had the chapel rebuilt so that they could meet there. He also set up a college of canons to look after it (like a monastery for vicars - not big guns!).

  • There are still canons (vicars) there today and the buildings that the King built for them are too. This includes two cloisters (gardens with roofed walkways around them).

  • The chapel had choir stalls (posh seats) for every Knight of the Garter. Fixed to the back of the seats were their 'stall plates' (brass plates showing their coats of arms). Some of the first ones of these can still be seen in the chapel today.

  • At this time, the chapel became dedicated to St. George. He was the patron saint of soldiers, and of England. Lots of Royal marriages and christenings have took place there.

  • Later, King Edward IV built a much bigger chapel instead. It is the one that stands in the castle today.

 

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