Monday, 11 June 2018

Mosaic tile detail, Kirkstall Abbey

Most of the floor of Kirkstall Abbey is earth, gravel or grass and I was surprised to find these tile fragments in one small cell. The cell (in a row of two or three similar small rooms, though the others had no tiles) had what appeared to be a washing area in the wall, so may have been where the monks washed before meals or prayers. (I may be completely wrong!) 

I don't know if the tiles are medieval originals or a later addition - they looked a bit random - but I thought they had a certain charm. So much of Kirkstall's structure has been damaged over the years, though some vaulting and pillars survive. 


  1. Those tiles certainly have a medieval "feel" to them. It's always exciting to find something that the guidebooks have overlooked.

  2. great catch...I immediately thought of the craftsman/men who made them, and how decorations weren't necessary to protect wet floors (if that's why they were installed, and I kind of think so) but there they are centuries later, still showing someone wanted beauty underfoot!


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