Link to TileWeb Home Page  TileWeb: Paving-tile Watercolours Online The Collections:
The Parker-Hore Archive Collection of Watercolours of Paving-tiles
held in Worcester and in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford


An archive of Paving-tiles in the Parker-Hore Collection, Worcester, and in the Ashmolean Museum. Oxford

Tim Bridges and Maureen Mellor
originally published in The Journal of British Archaeology Association, 2000


Return to Background

A link forged between the Commandery Museum, Worcester and the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford has made possible a review of the contents of fifteen boxes of records of floor tiles made by a Victorian lady and her granddaughter between 1840 and 1940. The women never met, the elder had married John Henry Parker, who was to become the most celebrated Oxford publisher/historian of his age. Her granddaughter was widowed at the age of thirty-nine and went on to pursue her grandmother's mission for almost forty years.


The Parker family's contribution to architecture, archaeology and antiquarian studies in the 19th and early 20th century has left a rich legacy in this country and beyond. "Those were the days, if you were rich enough to have leisure".[1] Research in 1998/1999 for an exhibition in the Ashmolean "Tiles from East and West" led to the re-discovery of 175 tile paintings in Oxford and around seven thousand tile-related items at Worcester. Consequently our knowledge of the Parker-Hore collection and the linked Hore collection and their formation has been greatly enhanced: the places visited; the tiles traced by family and friends; the meticulous cataloguing in notebooks; the accompanying miniature photographs; all this remains "a quarry for researchers".[2]

The year 2000 sees the start of digital indexing of the collections so that they can become universally available, under the Museum Skills Millennium Awards, a scheme funded by the Millennium Commission. The present account pre-empts this work by offering a historiographical background to the collection and its collectors.

Biographical Details of Mrs John Henry Parker

Mrs John Henry Parker was born Frances Mary Hoskyns in Mayfair, London in 1804. She was the oldest of three children born to Frances Jane and Dr James Williams Hoskyns, D.D., Fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford, and rector (1802-44) of the nearby rural parish of Appleton a few miles to the west, then in Berkshire. Her mother died in the winter of 1812, when Fan (as she was known to her family) was eight. This may explain why she went away to school at Richmond, Surrey, while her younger brother, Henry, was attending Eton College. From family letters we learn that she suffered from rheumatic attacks during her early teens.[3]

As the daughter of the rector of a late Norman church (St Lawrence, Appleton), Fan will have been aware of the delights of 12th-century architecture, big stiff-leaf capitals and deep mouldings on round arches, remarkable survivals which capture the romance of the Middle Ages.[4] How she spent her early adult years is unclear, but courtship in her mid-twenties to John Henry (Hal) Parker is perhaps relevant to this account. Her father bitterly opposed the match, and his letter to Parker's Uncle (Charles) is presented here in full:

Appleton June 3,1830.

Dear Sir,

Your letter received yesterday contained a very unexpected Subject.

The candour of it relating to me I fully acknowledge, and your generosity to your Nephew I admire.

I did not doubt that his conduct was good, governed by prudent and thoughtful Principles, from my own observations; and your testimony confirms this opinion, as well as his qualifications for establishing himself with your aid well in the world.

But without attempting to explain or justify my long conceived notions I have ever thought his visits here unpleasant, and even to a Degree of Incivility have discouraged them; which I cannot but think he must have perceived.

Under this impression weighing my Daughter's Happiness I cannot but feel confused that his proposal of marriage would not prove satisfactory. Upon this ground, I cannot but refuse my consent to it - namely the cutting her off from her natural and acquired Friends and acquaintances which appears to me would be the consequence.

I have seen enough life to know that romantic ideas of Happiness do not last long and that the real state of it requires many Helps of social Intercourse to support it. Believe me Sir, with much esteem.[5]

This opposition endured certainly to within three months of the marriage, for Dr Hoskyns wrote on 18 November 1831 "It must not be expected that I should be present to give a show of approbation by consent which are not real".[6] However the couple took their vows on 7 February 1832, when she was twenty-eight years of age.[7] A year later their only child, James (Jas.), was born (see below).

Fan's husband was also a Londoner by birth and her junior by eighteen months. His family tree drawn up by one of his granddaughters, Irene Hore (née Parker, see below), traces the family back to Samuel Parker, president of Magdalen College and bishop of Oxford, who died 1687[8] In 1811 at the age of eighteen John Henry (Hal) came to Oxford to help in his uncle's bookselling business, and eleven years later in the year of his marriage (1832) he took charge of this business.[9] Interestingly these early years of his marriage saw a growth in publications relating to local history, archaeology, architecture and topography, including the first of several editions of his own work A Glossary of Terms used in Gothic Architecture (Oxford 1836). The later editions of this work were to illustrate paving-tiles for the first time (3rd edition), while the 5th edition included twelve full plates. Parker was later to become a prodigious writer on architectural history.

It may be that mutual interest in matters Norman and Gothic brought Fan and Hal together, and that his enthusiasm for the Gothic Revival inspired his wife to begin her national corpus of watercolour paintings of medieval decorated paving-tiles. Tiles at that time were regarded as a branch of decorative arts. Parker certainly understood the significance of systematic documentation of the archaeological record, a concept his wife diligently pursued, recording every example with its provenance in a notebook. By 1840 Mrs Parker had published her first paintings from Helpstone in Northamptonshire, alongside tiles from Oxford Cathedral drawn by Orlando Jewitt, the wood engraver.[10]

Of the quality of Fan's work, Haberly stated that the drawings published by Parker in 1840 were not entirely accurate.[11] However, more recent scholars have been less harsh.[12] Notwithstanding his reservations, Haberly clearly builds on much of Mrs Parker's work executed in parish churches within thirty miles of Oxford,[13] but it is curious that he makes no mention of her granddaughter, Mrs Irene Hore. Mrs Parker ventured as far west as Tintern Abbey, Wales and Exeter, Devon recording tiles, to Beaulieu Abbey, Hampshire, in the south, to Castle Rising, Norfolk, in the east and as far north as Leicester, signing her work "FMP" Amongst the collection are tiles recorded from Gloucester Cathedral, signed "AWF", the initials of Augustus Wollaston Franks, later to become first keeper of the British and Medieval Department of British Museum.

Paintings of armorial tiles from Gloucestershire, Warwickshire and Worcestershire held by the Ashmolean show that while Mrs Parker was not a great draughtsman she worked carefully and was intrigued by heraldry as a branch of archaeology. These paintings may be linked with her husband's A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry published in 1847.

The impression is of a couple drawn together by a passion for antiquarian pursuits, an adjunct to the family enterprise of publishing. Mrs Parker's collection of tile paintings, catalogued in five notebooks, evokes a lady caught up in the fervour of the time; these years saw the appearance of a number of new learned societies including the British Archaeological Association, whose journal was published by Parker. Parker's manner of conducting business caused some dissension amongst the Association's members,[14] but evidently this did no harm to his business interests. Two plates of tiles were also published in the Archaeological Journal (5), 1848, after p. 232. The second half of the century saw the Gothic Revival, which led to a boom in tile-making linked to Victorian church restoration, fuelled by technical innovation. St Lawrence, Appleton was to succumb in 1883, when its floor was lowered by nine inches to its original level, thus removing any vestiges of medieval decorated paving tile.

Fan died at the age of 50 in 1854, following a married life of enormous industry. Her husband was to continue these achievements and become the first Keeper of the Ashmolean (1870) and a champion of the archaeology of Rome, the Eternal City, where he promoted photography to record archaeology. The Department of Antiquities, Ashmolean Museum is thus a fitting repository for some of Mrs Parker's paintings.

Biographical Details of Frances' Son, James (Jas.) Parker

James Parker, born on 5 May 1833, was to inherit his parents' passion for matters historical, but he had also absorbed some of his maternal grandfather's theological scholarship. He was educated at Rose Hill, Oxford, and letters home dated from 1841 to 1844[15] are full of boyish exploits, including a flogging of his cousin, Henry Hoskyns; they also reveal that his spelling needed some remedial attention. Later he attended Winchester College. At seventeen years of age he was helping his mother with her corpus: "I have unfortunately sprained my ankle and was laid up yesterday, so I did one or two Tiles -- and stuck a whole lot into your book."

Earlier in the year Eugène Viollet-le-Duc, the great French medievalist and architect, had visited the Parkers in Oxford, and later that year James accompanied his father to Normandy, sketching items in churches at the request of his father and tracing tiles for his mother, to whom he was devoted. A letter home states that he made tracings from the abbey of Beaufort and St-Pierre-sur-Dive "of about five and twenty, some of which though I am afraid you have got before for I fancy I have seen them in your Book coming from Bayeux or some such place". Father and son were very determined in their research. There is a tile "decidely Early English" and from "a dirty little vaulted chamber in Mont St Michel. The lock was so rusty that we were half an hour before we could get the door open . . ."

As a young man James became a member of the Oxford Architectural and Historical Society, and two years later became their librarian, a post he retained for some fourteen years, before he was finally elected President in 1891-8, following in his father's footsteps.

James was made partner (with his father) in the family business in 1855, aged twenty-two. He married Sarah Caroline Bergman, a kinswomen of Le Keux, the steel plate engraver; they had ten children, the first born in 1860. It is noticeable that the younger children were christened with Saxon names and the youngest child, named Agape, was presumably a play on words, as the previous child had died after one year.

The 1860s saw James branch beyond his parents' medieval interests, excavating on local Roman sites and leading the first excavations at Wookey Hole in Somerset with Boyd Dawkins, followed by research on early flint implements in France. He was becoming a skilled geologist, a subject he stayed with for the rest of his life.[l6] On his father's departure to Rome in the late 1860s James became identified with the study of medieval archaeology in Oxford. In 1865 he was appointed the local Secretary to the Society of Antiquaries of London. He had enormous practical enthusiasm and "in all antiquarian and archaeological questions he was a mine of information and was always ready to impart it".[17]

James was also a good churchman and active in church matters at national and regional level in the 1870s-80s. He was founder and first chairman of the Parish Guild at Fyfield where he brought up his large family. In the 1870s he was involved in a small excavation at Godstow, whose nunnery embraced many medieval decorative tiled pavements.[18] Intermittently James Parker made tile tracings (1883) and like his mother kept a notebook with each drawing numbered and catalogued, but in a style distinct from that used by his mother.

He was to transmit his enthusiasm to some of his family: his eldest daughter was an accomplished illustrator who undertook some 250 paintings for his A Glossary of terms used in Heraldry (1894), which updated his father's work and is still appreciated by scholars today. Another daughter, Irene, was evidently inspired by her grandmother's paintings of medieval paving tiles, though she could never have known her in person; she is our next subject.

Mrs Irene Hore, Frances Parker's Granddaughter

Irene was born 1865, the second daughter and fifth child of Sarah and James Parker. She was brought up at Fyfield manor, Berkshire, a small village some two and half miles from the parish where her grandmother had spent her early life.

We have little information on Irene before her marriage at the age of thirty in 1895 to a retired chaplain to the forces, the Revd Alexander Hugh Hore. He was a writer on church history and a widower, about thirty years her senior. Four years after their marriage we know she gave a lecture on memorial brasses in Herefordshire; after only nine years of marriage she found herself a widow. Her interest in extending her grandmother's collection of tile paintings is evident as early as 1904 when she was lecturing in Cheltenham (her home town) and in Gloucester and Oxford.

Irene Hore focused her attention on the major collections of tiles in her geographical area of interest at the time. In Worcestershire, she produced comprehensive records of tiles in Great Malvern Priory and Worcester Cathedral; describing in her Gloucester lecture of 1904[19] how she had washed the tiles in the singing school at Worcester Cathedral before she was able to trace them. This follows a pattern of her activity across the country as she recorded tiles in most of the larger churches and public collections. Her visits to the British Museum in 1905 are well documented in her correspondence and records and she also visited Leeds Museum, the Minton Collection at Stoke-on-Trent, and the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford, to name but a few.

A newspaper cutting from the Oxford Times of May 1906[20] details Irene's lecture to the Ladies Archaeological and Brass-Rubbing Society on "The Ancient Encaustic Paving Tiles of Oxfordshire". It was illustrated with three hundred full-sized paintings of tiles, made by the lecturer, and two large plans seven feet square, of the old tiles in the New College Muniment Room, Oxford. She drew the audience's attention to the old tiles that had been discarded from many local churches during restoration, where no record had been kept. It was "to prevent this happening to those that were still left that these notes and illustrations had been collected". She spoke about the tiles still in Oxford Cathedral (her grandfather had published many of these) and mentioned the difficulty of finding out the connection for the insertion of the heraldic tile, bearing the cross-keys and sword, still to be seen in the Latin Chapel. Reference was made to the accounts for tiles purchased for Merton College library in 1377-78, and for the Flemish examples purchased for Christ Church Hall in the reign of Henry VIII. Irene Hore was clearly well informed for her day. She credited her grandmother for her foresight in collecting paintings before many of the old designs had disappeared. She also acknowledged the help of some thirty clergymen, churchwardens, and many friends who assisted her.

At this lecture, Irene's father, James Parker was in the audience. After the death of her mother, Irene and her father (now both widowed) toured and made tracings of tiles from Leicester, Malvern, Worcester, Yorkshire, Fountains Abbey, Jervaulx Abbey, Kirkstall Abbey, and Rievaulx Abbey in Leeds Museum. She photographed the meticulous index of this special collection (she will surely have been aware of her grandfather's enormous collection of photographs taken of Rome during its transformation to a modern city).

Top right: Fig. 1. Watercolours from the collectionHer record of tiles in parish churches is wide-ranging but far from comprehensive (Fig. 1). In Worcestershire, she included a range of tiles from Bredon (Fig. 1c), Little Comberton and Salwarpe, with examples showing heraldic devices, animals and inscriptions. She was also drawn to unusual tiles such as the tile depicting an elephant's head at Cotheridge (Fig. 1b), yet many other tiles in that church are not recorded. However, she includes two tiles preserved in the vestry of the remote Victorian church at North Piddle (euphemistically recorded as Poodle). Strangely there is no mention of the substantial groups of tiles at Strensham or Martley, nor of the small but prominently displayed groups at Warndon, Huddington or Middle Littleton. This may reflect difficulties of access, or a recognition of the need to be selective, or indeed it is possible that Irene Hore was unaware of their existence, though this seems unlikely given the range and nature of her contacts. However, her notes reveal that she appealed to the audience at the close of her Gloucester lecture for tracings of tiles to be sent to her for examination.[21] Perhaps her assumption in that same lecture that tiles had been overlooked by church visiting enthusiasts is correct,[22] yet Victorian restorers of medieval churches were often responsible for saving and displaying these tiles, when they came across them during their work on the buildings. The wide cover she afforded to Oxfordshire and Berkshire is perhaps to be expected, considering her family background. Examples of tiles from Reading Abbey were recorded at Reading Museum as well as at the British Museum, and there are tiles from a range of Berkshire churches, of which Binfield, Shottesbrooke, West Hendred and St. Lawrence, Reading are listed with more than three examples each. In the city of Oxford, she concentrated on the Cathedral and colleges, especially New College and Merton. No city churches are featured but a small group from the Post Office site in St Aldates is recorded. Many Oxfordshire churches received attention, several with over ten examples of tiles apiece, namely Brightwell Baldwin, Bloxham, Chinnor, Dorchester, and Goring. A collection from Broughton Castle is also included. A separate folio is devoted to paintings of tiles from the former monastic sites at Eynsham, Godstow, Oseney and Rewley, which are preserved in the Ashmolean Museum.

Cover elsewhere in the country is variable and seems to reflect the location of her contacts and relatives, her ability to travel, and the extent of published research on tiles at the time. Her surveys of Norfolk and Suffolk are very limited, and there are no paintings for Lancashire, though the tracings from Liverpool Museum made by her nephew include Lancashire examples.[23] Indeed, Irene Hore again recorded the tiles, already recorded from Castle Acre Priory in Norfolk at Norwich Castle Museum and the British Museum.

Fig. 2. Details from Irene Hore's notebookIrene Here's lecture notes[24] and her record slips of individual tiles and locations demonstrate a considerable knowledge of the subject and her collected extracts from books and journals along with her archaeological books[25] are evidence of much scholarly research into the subject. She was interested in the processes of manufacture as well as the interpretation of the designs. Her reference keeping was meticulous and her enthusiasm almost boundless. Not only were the tiles traced and references researched, but the watercolours she then produced were photographed to produce her index (Figs 2. and 3)[26] and she used lantern slides to illustrate her lectures. A notebook containing a miscellaneous collection of jottings in Irene Hore's handwriting, also includes details of appropriate lenses and plates for photography, as well as an account for a camera, plates and chemicals for development, suggesting that Irene Hore also undertook her own photography.[27]

Fig. 3. Details from Irene Hore's notebook1911 was a particularly industrious year for Irene. Her father died the following year (1912) and then the Great War intervened, but she still gave the occasional lecture(Gloucester 1918, Bristol 1920). In 1921 she was able to spend time again on her hobby, and she records the purchase of the tiles sold by Sotheby's for ?1400 in 1922. and her attempts to trace the final destination of these items. Some went to the British Museum while others went to the Victoria and Albert Museum. She noted Frank Renaud's images, the list of periodicals included the Gentlemen's Magazine, Archaeologia, The Antiquary and The Reliquary and references to tiles listed in the Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries, the Builder, and specific archaeological journals show the extent of her sources. Her contacts with clergyman, enthusiasts across the country, her visits to museums and churches and her ability to persuade relatives and friends to do the same for her[28] resulted in information on medieval paving tiles from some thirty four counties in Britain as well as examples from Wales, Ireland and France. The letters reveal some dalliances with vicars and she was clearly an attractive personality.

Mrs Irene Hore was still collating and indexing her notebooks up to the outbreak of the Second World War (June 1939). She died in the 1940s at Malvern Link, and her niece Miss Bergman (who had been a witness at her wedding at St Michael at the Northgate, Oxford), carried out her wishes by presenting her archive (some 20,000 items in total) to the Worcestershire Archaeological Society. Elizabeth Eames recalls first learning of the collection in the late 1940s when she was researching the Canynges Pavement, Bristol. The British Museum would not buy them, and Mrs Eames notes that they would have proved useful in her compilation of her national corpus.[29]

Alec Macdonald, the secretary of the society and Elsie Matley Moore, a member with an interest and knowledge of medieval glass, tiles and wall-painting sorted Irene Here's collection of antiquarian material. The majority of the material was placed with the society's library, which at that time was housed in the basement of Worcester's Victoria Institute, where it was kept with the public library reserve collections for some forty years.[30] The remaining papers were deposited with the County Record Office but were returned to the society in 1991. The society's library was transferred to the care of Worcester City Museums in 1983-84. A further collection of quarto folios containing prints, plans, drawings and photographs, which were described in 1941 as having been inherited by Irene Hore[31] was transferred to the society's library in 1990 from the reference section of Worcester public library. Society member Donald Anderton is cataloguing this collection of 121 folios. The eighty-two volumes which cover England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland, including thirteen on Oxfordshire and Oxford alone, are fully listed and work is in progress on the remaining thirty-nine volumes which have material from Europe and the rest of the world. The society's library has been completely recatalogued by the Honorary Librarian, Barbara Ronchetti, since 1984. The small group of reference books belonging to Irene Hore have been added to the shelves, including her volumes of W. J. Furnival, Leadless Decorative Tiles, faience and Mosaic (Stoke-on-Trent 1904) and H. Shaw, Specimens of Tile Pavements drawn from Existing Authorities (London 1858).

Charles Parker

Irene's brother Charles joined his father in the publishing business in 1903. He was a friend of Percy Manning (1870-1917), an enthusiastic field archaeologist ten years his senior, who sometimes stayed with him in Yarnton before the First World War. Manning will have known Charles' father through the activities of the Oxfordshire Architectural and Historical Society, where he had been Honorary Secretary. Manning was himself an enthusiastic collector of decorated medieval tiles, and his collection, now in the Ashmolean, includes tiles from Oxford's Oseney and Rewley Abbeys, Godstow Nunnery and from St Martins Church, Carfax, Oxford. He lent some of his tracings to Irene Hore in 1905, which are now in Worcester City Museums, while other tracings of his are in the Bodleian Library, Oxford, in the Manning archive.[32] Manning's collecting was to provide the Ashmolean with its first truly archaeological medieval and later collections.

The Oxford Connection

By the 1960s the study of medieval decorated paving-tiles was again a neglected area. Alfred Brotherton Emden (1889-1979) recognised this and set in motion a national survey, with Elizabeth Eames, as Director of the Census of Medieval Tiles in Britain. This was to bring together tracings and watercolours of tiles still "in situ" in parish churches from some eighteen counties in England, and also decorated tiles from Wales and Ireland. Emden was echoing sentiments expressed in Mrs Irene Here's lecture in Oxford in 1906 trying to record the designs, their patterns and location as another wave of refurbishment of churches was under way, with churches updating their central heating systems.

Emden's gift to the Ashmolean of drawings in water-colour and ink, pencil tracings, and plans of medieval pavements from various sites in the British Isles and Europe was augmented by some 175 designs executed by Mrs F. M. Parker, Jas. Parker and friends. A report that these had come to him from Miss Matley Moore in Worcester[33] is misleading, because Mrs I. Hore was Mrs F. M. Parker's granddaughter and not daughter as stated in the report.

The Worcester Collection

Between 1990 and 1998, Irene Hore's papers have been sorted, catalogued and indexed by Toni Wale, another member of the society, who has also undertaken much valuable research into the collection and produced extensive notes. Further recent research by museum volunteers, David Morrison and Sheran Cory, has helped to highlight some significant points about this material. The library and the Hore Collection are available for consultation and research by appointment with the Honorary Librarian, Worcestershire Archaeological Society, or the Collections Manager, Worcester City Museums, at the Commandery, Sidbury, Worcester WR1 2HU.


It is fitting that the collection begun by Mrs J. H. Parker in the 1840s and spanning three generations of her family should have been gifted to the Ashmolean where her husband had been the first keeper. The bulk of the collection bequeathed to the Worcestershire Archaeological Society is now curated by Worcester City Museum and Art Gallery. The intention is to bring together this collection again in electronic form and so enable the tiles and their designs to be located more fully in their national context.

Appendix 1

Contents of the Parker-Hore collection at Worcester

Boxes 1-3
Coloured watercolour paintings of tiles listed by county. A more detailed listing appears below of those mainly quarto sized sheets which are kept with the handmade cotton bags in which they were grouped by Irene Hore.
Box 4
Miscellaneous notes, mainly those of Irene Hore. Extracts from books and journals, lecture notes and correspondence of antiquarian interest concerning buildings and places throughout England, including some related to tiles, such as the sale of tiles from Bradwell in Essex in 1922,[35] and notes, tracings and rubbings of tiles in Ludlow Museum.[36]
Box 5
Irene Hore's notes on the tile paintings stored in alphabetical order by county in envelopes and packets, with several sheets of photographs of tile paintings.
Box 6
The primary interest in this box is the seven notebooks in which Irene Hore listed her tile paintings along with miniature photographs. These books are effectively an index to the contents of boxes 1-3, as well as 7, 8 and 9. The box also includes further important papers relating to tiles and Irene Hore's work, including details of tiles seen and traced (and those not seen) at the British Museum during her visits in May 1905. Lists of her tile notes and further notes on tiles seen mainly in England are together with details and tracings of tiles seen in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford.
Box 7
A collection of Irene Hore's tile tracings, mainly listed by county.
Boxes 8-9
A collection of black and white watercolour paintings of tiles, grouped by county, of which those in box 9 include tiles in Ireland, Wales, Scotland and France.
Box 10
Miscellaneous papers, mainly relating to medieval tiles - a mixture of notes, press cuttings, extracts from books and journals, including some loose tracings and small photographs mainly relating to tiles in Worcestershire, along with other tracings including those from the otherwise unidentified "Pigglethorn"
Box 11
Correspondence mainly relating to tiles along with miscellaneous notes on tiles in Britain and France.
Box 12
The collection of Irene Hore's sister, Agape Parker, of details on British parish libraries and chained books, with notes and correspondence, added to by Irene Hore with assorted notes.
Boxes 13
Material related to traders' tokens mainly the collection of J. H. Parker, but also including Irene Hore's correspondence and lecture notes. Amongst the papers are some 17th-century trader's tokens, which are recorded as duplicates from the collection of James Parker.

Appendix 2

Medieval Tiles: The Watercolour Paintings, Tracings, and Notes in the Parker-Hore Collection, Worcester

The basis of the catalogue and index produced by Toni Wale is a full list of the contents of boxes one to three -- the colour watercolour paintings of tiles. These had been produced from tracings made from the tiles mainly by Irene Hore herself, although she also relied on support from acquaintances and relatives. Her nephew Reginald Dhow, for instance made tracings in Liverpool Museum in 1905.[37] Each painting is therefore actual size and is mounted on a quarto sized sheet of paper. The locations are identified mainly in Irene Hore's handwriting on the background sheet. Each has her own unique reference number, and notes on comparisons that are recorded in Toni Wale's catalogue. The paintings are kept in alphabetical order, mainly by county, and are grouped as follows (bracketing indicates countries grouped together by Irene Hore in one folio within the box).

Box 1 Box 2 Box 3
  • {Bedfordshire
  • {Berkshire
  • {Buckinghamshire

  • {Cambridgeshire
  • {Rutland

  • {Cheshire
  • {Cornwall
  • Derbyshire
  • Devon
  • Dorset
  • Essex
  • Gloucestershire
  • Gloucester
  • Hampshire
  • Winchester

  • {Kent
  • {Leicestershire
  • {Lincolnshire
  • {Herefordshire
  • {Hertfordshire

  • {Middlesex
  • {Monmouthshire

  • {Norfolk
  • {Northamptonshire
  • {Nottinghamshire

  • Oxford -- Colleges and Cathedral
  • Oxford -- Eynsham, Godstow, Oseney, Rewley
  • Oxfordshire A-D
  • Oxfordshire E-W
  • Shropshire

  • {Suffolk
  • {Surrey
  • {Sussex
  • {Somerset
  • {Staffordshire
  • {Wales

  • {Warwickshire
  • {Wiltshire

  • Worcestershire
  • Yorkshire
  • France
  • Ireland
  • Queries
  • Illustrations for a talk at Upton

Toni Wale's catalogue cross-references these paintings with the tracings in box 7 and the black and white paintings in boxes 8 and 9. Tracings match approximately 40% of the coloured watercolour paintings and cover across the country is varied. Almost all of the paintings for Lincolnshire and Northamptonshire have tracings, but of more than one hundred Gloucestershire paintings, only five corresponding tracings have been positively identified. The black and white watercolour paintings sometimes duplicate those in colour, and would seem to be a special reference collection of some kind -- almost half of the Shropshire colour paintings, for example, are matched by copies in black and white.


In the winter of 1999 Toni Wale and Maureen Mellor set out the headings for this paper but, sadly, in April of the same year Toni Wale learnt that she was chronically ill and had to withdraw her involvement. For a while the paper hung in balance, but Tim Bridges and John Goodall stepped in to fill the breach. Staff of the Bodleian Library were very helpful in matters relating to the Parker family (see notes below). Worcester City Museums and Worcestershire Archaeological Society are extremely grateful to all those volunteers who have given so freely of their time over a long period to make these collections of Irene Hore more readily available in accordance with her wishes.[34]


1. pers. comm. Elizabeth Eames. Back to Text

2. Transactions Worcestershire Archaeological Society, ns. 18 (1941), 59. Back to Text

3. Letters to Frances Hoskyns (later wife of J. H. Parker) Bodleian Library, MS. Top. Oxon. c 787, fols 35-37. Back to Text

4. N. Pevsner, Berkshire B/E (London 1966), 65-66. Back to Text

5. Bodleian Library, MS Top. Oxon. c. 787, fols 39-40. Back to Text

6. Bodleian Library, MS Top. Oxon c. 787, fols 39-40. Back to Text

7. Bodleian Library, MS Top. Oxon. c. 787, fols 41-87 and Oxfordshire Family History Society Appleton, Berks Parish Register 1569 to 1839 held by the Centre for Oxfordshire Studies, Westgate, Oxford. Back to Text

8. Bodleian Library, MS Top. Oxon. b. 297. Back to Text

9. Bodleian Library, MS Top. Oxon. d. 992. Back to Text

10. J. H. Parker, Glossary of Terms in Gothic Architecture, 5th edn (Oxford 1840) pls 206 no. 6 and 209. Back to Text

11. Loyd Haberly, Medieval English Paving Tiles (Oxford 1937), 315. Back to Text

12. K. Beaulah, "Encaustic Floor Tiles", in Fired Earth 1000 Years of Tiles in Europe (1991), 23. Back to Text

13. Haberly, 3. Back to Text

14. British Archaeological Association, 1 (1846) preface. Back to Text

15. Bodleian Library, MS Top. Oxon. c. 787, fols 52--101. Back to Text

16. Percy Manning, "The late Mr. James Parker, hon. M.A., F.G. S." in Berks, Bucks and Oxon Archaeological Journal, 18 (1913), 109. Back to Text

17. Manning, 109. Back to Text

18. Wessex style; stabbed Wessex types and some Penn types, see E. Eames, Medieval Leadglazed Earthenware Floor Tiles in the Department of Medieval and Later Antiquities, British Museum Publications (1980). Back to Text

19. Worcester City Museum, Worcestershire Archaeological Society Library, Hore Collection, WCM, WAS Library, Hore Collection, Box 11, vii. Back to Text

20. WCM, WAS Library, Hore Collection, Box 11, vii. Back to Text

21. WCM, WAS Library, Hore Collection, Box 11, vii. Back to Text

22. WCM, WAS Library, Hore Collection, Box 11, vii. Back to Text

23. WCM, WAS Library, Hore Collection Box 11, 1, 23a. Back to Text

24. WCM, WAS Library, Hore Collection Hore Collection, Boxes 10b, viii, 11, vii, 11, i, 12. Back to Text

25. Irene Hore's archaeological books are listed in WCM, WAS Library, Hore Collection, Box 10, xvi, 9. Back to Text

26. WCM, WAS Library, Hore Collection, Box 6. Back to Text

27. WCM, WAS Library, Hore Collection, Box 6, xvii. Back to Text

28. Worcester City museum 11/1/23a etc. Back to Text

29. Eames. Back to Text

30. Miscellanea, Transactions of the Worcestershire Archaeological Society, ns, 18 (1941), 59. Back to Text

31. ibid. Back to Text

32. Bodleian Library, Manning collection. Back to Text

33. The Ashmolean Museum Report of the Visitors (1975-76), 20. Back to Text

34. Miscellanea, Transactions of the Worcestershire Archaeological Society, ns, 18 (1941), 59. Back to Text

35. WCM, WAS Library, Hore Collection, Box 4. Back to Text

36. WCM, WAS Library, Hore Collection, Box 4. Back to Text

37. WCM, WAS Library, Hore Collection Box 11, I, 23a. Back to Text

Top right: Fig. 1. Watercolours from the collection
Left: Fig. 2. Details from Irene Hore's notebook
Bottom right: Fig. 3. Details from Irene Hore's notebook
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Copyright of the original drawings is held by
the Ashmolean Museum and by the Worcestershire Archaeological Society respectively.

last updated: jcm/7-jun-2004

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