Wednesday, May 4, 2011

England Week - Cathedral

One of the predominate topics from my inspiration for this week’s theme, Sarum: The Novel of England, was Salisbury Cathedral. This amazing structure was built between 1220  and 1258. In trying to find a related book for children, the closest I could come was Cathedral: The Story of Its Construction. It follows the process of building a cathedral in France, so is not based on an English style cathedral (does Westminster Abby come to mind?), but hey, you’ll get the idea.

This book is laden with pen and ink illustrations as is David Macaulay’s custom. He shows us, in amazing detail, 80 years of cathedral creating effort in just about 80 pages. And what an effort it was: design the plans, harvest the wood, quarry the stone, ready the site, build the foundation, erect the walls, hoist the trusses, install the windows and cast the bells and so much more. Like the pyramids, the Great Wall of China, and today’s skyscrapers, Cathedral: the Story of Its Construction will leave you in complete awe of human achievement.

Ages 9-12

Activity: Create your own stained glass window.

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