Digital Text

Symbolism of Animals and Birds Represented in English Church Architecture

By Arthur H. Collins, MA

McBride, Nast & Company, New York, 1913

About this Text

This text is a description of how animal and bird carving and sculpture was used symbolically in the architecture of English churches and monasteries. The period covered is primarily the Middle Ages, though there are a few later examples. Collins appears to have been an English clergyman; little else is known about him. His Christian church background is evident in his writing, which has a decidedly religious flavor. Collins apparently also took most of the photographs, of which there are 120. The photography is unfortunately quite poor in terms of composition and lighting, and the limitations of early 20th century photographic printing technology reduced their quality further. Still, many of the images are at least interesting, and some are very good. The digitized photographs have been enhanced to bring out what detail they contain; their content has not been edited.


The print edition of this text was published in New York in 1913; the digital edition was created from the original in 2003 by David Badke. The original print edition by Arthur H. Collins is believed to be in the public domain.