Davidson, Archbishop (biog)

Randall Davidson (1848-1930) served as Archbishop of Canterbury from 1903 until 1928 – the first Archbishop to have resigned the office (he was then 80 years old). His memorial is strictly a cenotaph as he was buried in the cloister garth.

What to see (Images 1 and 2):

  • a reclining bronze effigy of Davidson wearing a cope and giving the blessing, upon a bed of Hopton Wood stone (a cream coloured limestone from Derbyshire with crystalline speckles). The effigy is by the Australian sculptor Cecil Thomas (see also the Coligny cartouche)
  • the surrounding coats of arms represent sees where he had served as bishop

This figure seems certain to be the last of the modern ‘medieval-style’ memorials – subsequent Archbishops have generally chosen refurbishment of a chapel (Temple and Fisher) or ashes buried in the cloister with a simple memorial tablet (Ramsey and Coggan).

Sources:  see standard cathedral sources