The Christmas Rose Frontal and Markers

Our Verger, Sara Klingner, provided this information about the lovely antique altar frontal and markers in use at Easter (the bold type below was added).

“Another Trinity treasure is the Christmas Rose.  A photograph in the upstairs hallway shows it as it was in 1887, some sixteen years after the consecration of the sanctuary. Notice the frontal on the altar, the bible markers, and the pulpit fall in the photograph. This is the frontal as it survives today, its embroideries and fringe applied to a new silk brocade ground. (note that we removed the rotting fringe last year when we did some repair work on frontal). The pulpit fall and book marks were recently found in an old box in a sacristy cupboard.

This is a Christmas set, as can be seen in the use of the hardy Christmas rose both on the central motif, on the hand-embroidered orphrey bands, and on the medallions on the superfrontal. These medallion motifs also display the fleur-di-lis, the most popular and enduring symbol for the Virgin Mary. The vase of irises is also a reference to Mary and show up paired with the Messianic rose in a sunburst on the pulpit fall, while the Bible markers pair the rose on one marker with the fleur-di-lis on the other. These symbols on the Bible markers are exquisite embroideries that are barely an inch-and-a-half high and less than an inch wide.”