Inspiring Stained Glass Windows

by blackspanielgallery

Stained glass can be inspiring. Large stained glass windows illuminate in beauty, and allow colors to penetrate to the area within the structure of which they are part.

Stained Glass Cathedral and Church Windows

Churches, and especially cathedrals, often have stained glass windows. The older the church or cathedral, the better, because artisans centuries ago took great pride in their work. If the result of that work was for the glory of God, the artisan would do his best.

True, newer churches can have stained glass windows, but they are often smaller, and less detailed, than the great works from a time gone by. The older pieces were sometimes huge, and the number of stained glass windows in one cathedral might be many. Entire walls of these high ceiling structures often were lined with stained glass.

Stained Glass Window Art

A Story Had to Be Told

Before the invention of the printing press, books were rare, and images had to be drawn in by hand.  So, people did not learn from school as is the current norm.  It was the obligation of the clergy to teach religion, but how?  This was done by preaching from the pulpit, and by picturing many Biblical and Saints’ stories.  And, the best place to tell these stories in graphical form was the church, or in the cathedral.  Here, large stained glass windows could portray a single scene, or a cluster of related scenes.  So, the stained glass window was a teaching tool.

On the Ceiling

Some Round Stained Glass Windows Were Placed Above the Altar

Often, a round stained glass window, especially one over the altar, would signify Heaven, with scenes of angels, sometimes clouds, and often some depiction of God.  These were atop the church, and allowed the scene to fall onto the congregation.

Stained Glass

My Favorite Stained Glass Windows

Personal Preferences

My favorite panel style stained glass window is the one from Notre Dame Cathedral.  I like the multitude of colors and the detail.  My favorite round stained glass window is the one in Bethlehem, in the Church of Saint Catherine.  Of course, hese are from the list provided.  My really favorite windows were in Saint Mary’s Assumption Church, which was in my parish when I grew up. They all fascinated me, and there were many.  Of course, you may have other preferences.  Let’s just say there are many that are worth viewing.

Stained Glass Inspires

The Light Gives a Feeling of a Place of Reverence

Stained glass windows, especially older works where the glass was thick and the colors were rich, when illuminated give a special feeling of reverence.  The light patterns falling on the surfaces within the church cannot be painted, they must be from the windows, changing in intensity as the clouds pass beneath the sun, and moving with the sun’s movements.  

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Updated: 12/11/2019, blackspanielgallery
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blackspanielgallery on 07/14/2015

The older ones were very detailed, and I can remember them. when a small piece broke it had to be ordered from Italy, and the wait for the precise piece could take quite a long time.

DerdriuMarriner on 07/14/2015

blackspanielgallery, Thank you for sharing. Almost all old stained glass windows are my favorites. It's beautiful when they're maintained and sad when they're not because they're such an accomplished, colorful way of inspiring and instructing us.

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