Ancient Monuments

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Wayside cross at Nanjarrow

A Scheduled Monument in Constantine, Cornwall

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Latitude: 50.1241 / 50°7'26"N

Longitude: -5.1698 / 5°10'11"W

OS Eastings: 173524.830961

OS Northings: 29699.737543

OS Grid: SW735296

Mapcode National: GBR Z7.L73Y

Mapcode Global: FRA 081P.KR9

Entry Name: Wayside cross at Nanjarrow

Scheduled Date: 22 March 1932

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1006676

English Heritage Legacy ID: CO 159

County: Cornwall

Civil Parish: Constantine

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: Constantine

Church of England Diocese: Truro


The monument includes a wayside cross, situated beside a track leading to Nanjarrow on the steep northern valley side of a tributary to the Helford River. The cross survives as a decorated wheel-head and part of the shaft measuring up to 1.2m high set into a large field wall. One face of the head is decorated with a Latin cross in relief within an incised circle which continues down the shaft. On the back is an incised St Andrews cross within a circle. It was found by Langdon fallen in a field beside its base. It had been repaired before this with a wrought iron dowel. Langdon re-erected the cross in its current position and the base was later broken and re-used as building stone.

Sources: HER:-
PastScape Monument No:-427124

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Wayside crosses are one of several types of Christian cross erected during the medieval period, mostly from the 9th to 15th centuries AD. In addition to serving the function of reiterating and reinforcing the Christian faith amongst those who passed the cross and of reassuring the traveller, wayside crosses often fulfilled a role as waymarkers, especially in difficult and otherwise unmarked terrain. The crosses might be on regularly used routes linking ordinary settlements or on routes which might have a more specifically religious function, including providing access to religious sites for parishioners and funeral processions. Wayside crosses vary considerably in form and decoration but several regional types have been identified. The Cornish wayside crosses form one such group. The commonest type includes a round, or `wheel', head on the faces of which various forms of cross were carved. The design was sometimes supplemented with a relief figure of Christ. Less common forms include the `Latin' cross, where the cross-head itself is shaped within the arms of an unenclosed cross and, much rarer, the simple slab with a low-relief cross on both faces. Over 400 crosses of all types are recorded in Cornwall. Wayside crosses contribute significantly to our understanding of medieval routeways, settlement patterns and the development of sculptural traditions and their survival is somewhat differential because of periods of religious turbulence during the Reformation when many were subject to damage or partial destruction by iconoclasts. Despite restoration and the loss of its base, the wayside cross at Nanjarrow is close to its original location and the decoration is well preserved and clear.

Source: Historic England

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