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Medieval Wall Painting
in the
English Parish Church

Earl Stonham, Suffolk (†St Edmundsbury & Ipswich) C.15

St George Fighting the Dragon

St George fighting the Dragon, Earl Stonham

It was obviously an imposing painting once, but most of this combat between the Dragon and St George is now very faint, and the saint’s head has effectively disappeared under the end of a later roof-beam.

Much clearer are two stylized trees in the background and the battlements of a castle at the right. The man in the large hat standing on them and pointing downwards towards the fight below is probably the father of the princess saved by George, and she herself might once have been included somewhere among the now faint details in the lower half of the painting.

A pair of praying hands at the top right hand edge once belonged to another watching figure, probably the mother of the princess, whose part in this story is shown in some other examples of this subject, notably that at Broughton in Buckinghamshire, probably the clearest exposition of the encounter in English wallpainting.

Earl Stonham also has a 15th century Doom over the chancel arch, and once had a remarkable painting of the Journey and Adoration of the Magi, now sadly gone, although a good framed copy of it hangs in the church.

Website for Earl Stonham church