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(handwritten on back of image): Othery, Somerset: Church of St. Michael: bench end, date taken 1956 (AA57/2256)

The word misericord, sometimes also miserere, derives from the Latin for pity or compassion. It is the name for projecting shelf found on the underside of hinged choir stall seats. When these are turned up the shelf provides the occupant with support while standing for long intervals of time. In this secluded position woodcarvers placed some of…

A misericord or miserere is the projecting shelf found underneath hinged choir stall seats. In the raised position it affords the occupant some support while standing during long services. Often the misericord is decorated with fine carvings of heads, figures, monsters, myths and legends, or scenes from everyday life such as this one of musicians…

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