Illustrated Dictionary of British Churches - Poppy Head Definition

History and Architecture

Poppy Head

Poppy head is a generic term applied to the carved finial of a wooden bench end. Although an actual carving of a poppy head was frequently used, in practice poppy-heads might be carved to represent practically anything, from animals, birds, grotesque mytholigical creatures, angels, saints, religious symbols, and human figures. Some of the more overtly religious carvings were intentionally damaged by iconoclasts during the Reformation, and in some churches you can clearly see where poppy-heads have been lopped off or defaced.

Related: Bench End   Grotesque  

Thompson, Norfolk

Thompson, Norfolk




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This famous architect designed the Crystal Palace for the Great Exhibition of 1851



27 September, 1615

Death of Arbella Stuart

Stuart starved herself to death in the Tower, where she sent for marrying another claimant to the throne, William Seymour

The third son of George III, he ruled after his elder brother died in 1830



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