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Bewcastle cross

Bewcastle cross (Cumbria). This carving is a major example of Anglo-Saxon sculpture. Stylistically it is closely linked to the nearby Ruthwell cross and can be similarly dated to the first half of the 8th cent. Panels of vine-scroll, interlace, and key-pattern cover three sides of the now-headless monument, whilst on the west face there are depictions of John the Baptist and Christ in Majesty. These are set over a lengthy runic inscription whose damaged text shows that the cross was commemorative; the falconer depicted at the bottom of this face may be a portrait of the deceased.

Richard N. Bailey

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