Christ Church Crest

The Shrine

Made in 1289, the Shrine is the oldest monument in the Cathedral, and shows exquisitly carved stone faces peeping out from behind foliage. In its day it was the single most significant object in the church. Pilgrims visited it to venerate the relics of St Frideswide, and to pray for God’s healing and help. It was destroyed at the Reformation in 1538, and today’s re-construction is owed to the discovery of fragments in the college in the 1870s and more recently when the cloister was excavated in 1985. Though it is not certain exactly where the shrine originally stood, the most recent re-construction in 2002 placed it in the Latin Chapel, close to a 14th century stained glass window showing St Frideswide. This re-construction, funded by the Friends of Christ Church Cathedral, won an Oxford Preservation Trust award in 2005.

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