The Abbey Cross

In the grounds of Dolhyrfyd, a kilometre south east of Denbigh is the Abbey Cross that once stood in the Friary in the town.  According to Elias Owen, it was ‘fortunately’ discovered in the grounds of the Abbey by a Dr Cummings and removed to his home at Dolhyfryd some time at the beginning of the 19th century.  Dr Cummings was likely as not the same individual who is recognised as one of the subscribers of the Book of Common Prayer published by the Clwydian Press in 1823.

 

All that remains of the Abbey Cross is the head-stone, the apex of the cross and shows the crucifixion on one side and, according to Owen, the Virgin and Child on the other.  The crucifixion scene though worn is clear enough, and includes images of pincers, nails, hammer, anvil and two scourges (whips) on the right of the cross, while a ladder, spear (with a sponge on top) and a nail are shown on the left.  The Virgin Mary is shown with hair over one shoulder and wearing a crown.  Unknown ecclesiastics are shown on the other faces.

 

The Coflein website states that the cross is Medieval, but understandably avoids further specifics.  Elias Owen is more forthcoming, claiming the Cross is early 14th Century, possibly contemporary to the foundation of the Friary, which would date the remains to 1289.

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