Book Series Studies in Medieval and Early Renaissance Art History, vol. 75

King’s College Chapel 1515-2015: Art, Music and Religion in Cambridge

Jean Michel Massing, Nicolette Zeeman (eds)

  • Pages: 422 p.
  • Size:225 x 300 mm
  • Illustrations:250 col.
  • Language(s):English
  • Publication Year:2014

  • ISBN: 978-1-909400-21-4
  • Hardback
  • Available


"Inevitably, so rich and diverse a volume is of particular interest to those associated with or familiar with King's (...). However, even for those in far-scattered places whose encounter with the chapel may be limited to the broadcast carol service on Christmas Eve, this is a book that will richly repay the investment." (John Harper, in: Early Music, 43/3, 2015, p. 528-530)

"Like its subject the book is spectacular, dignified and interesting from a great many points of view. (...) If ever an historian comes to write a monograph on the Chapel, this book will be the major resource. It treats its extraordinary subject, one of the wonders of the world, with the scholarship and interdisciplinary scope to be expected of the College." (John Drury, in: Art and Christianity, 84, Winter 2015, p. 12-13)

« La chapelle du King’s College de Cambridge, l’un des chefs-d’oeuvre du xve–xvie siècle, mérite et presque exige d’être étudiée à la fois de façon rétrospective (dans la complexe stratigraphie de l’édifice) et prospective (dans la persistance de son caractère inachevé). Ce beau volume, édité par les soins de J.M. Massing et de N. Zeeman, et accompagné d’un magnifique apparat de 243 illustrations, relève le défi en adoptant une approche plurielle plutôt que monographique, tant du point de vue des disciplines que des thèmes abordés. » (Nicola Morato, dans Le Moyen Age, 122/1, 2016, p. 189)

“(…) King's CoIIege Chapelis highly recommended for both libraries and individual collectors. Each essay is the work of a specialist and is amply documented. At the same time, as a visually stunning book whose illustrations alone will appeal to the non-scholar it should find its way to many ordinary Anglophiles, especially those of an Anglican ecclesiastical stamp.” (Kevin J. Gardner, in Anglican & Episcopal History, 86/4, 2017, p. 478)


This lavishly illustrated, interdisciplinary volume encompasses many aspects of the Chapel’s history from its foundation to the present day. The essays all represent new research, with a particular emphasis on areas that have not been investigated before: Chapel furnishings and art; the architectural engineering of the building and current state of the glass; the history of the Choir and the life of the Chapel, not least in recent centuries. Essays will engage with politics, drama, music, iconoclasm and aesthetics. This will be a serious academic book, but also a visually stimulating and beautiful one. It will contain two hundred and fifty colour reproductions of images of the Chapel - prints, watercolours, oil paintings, photographs, architectural drawings, plans, maps and even postcards, reflecting the many and varied responses that the Chapel has elicited over time.


Jean Michel Massing and Nicolette Zeeman, Introduction
Fabric and Furnishings
I Jeremy Musson, King’s College Chapel: Aesthetic and Architectural Responses
II John Ochsendorf and Matthew DeJong, The Structure and Construction of the Chapel
III James Simpson, Glassy Temporalities: The Chapel Windows of King’s College, Cambridge
IV Nicola Pickering, Provost Robert Hacumblen and his Chantry Chapel
V Jean Michel Massing, The Altarpieces in the Chapel of King’s College, Cambridge
VI Stephen Clare, The Great Glass Vista: A Condition Survey of the Stained Glass in King’s College Chapel
Life and Visiting
VII Peter Murray Jones, The College and the Chapel
VIII Iain Fenlon, A Spanish Choirbook and Some Elizabethan Book Thieves
IX Nicolette Zeeman, The Chapel Imagined, 1540–1830
X Ross Harrison, The Start and Stop of Simeon
XI Abigail Rokison, Drama in King’s College Chapel
Music and Performance
XII Roger Bowers, Chapel and Choir, Liturgy and Music, 1444–1644
XIII John Butt, The Chapel Organ – A Harmonious Anachronism?
XIV Nicholas Marston, ‘As England knows it’: ‘Daddy’ Mann and King’s College Choir, 1876–1929
XV Nicholas Nash, ‘A Right Prelude To Christmas’: A History of A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols
XVI Timothy Day, ‘The Most Famous Choir in the World?’ The Choir since 1929
Stephen Cleobury and Nicolette Zeeman, Epilogue: The Sound of the Chapel
Notes to the essays – Select bibliography – Contributions- List of illustrations and copyright acknowledgments – Index 

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