Rosary, 'Langdale' (1500)

All of our prayer beads are based on extant originals or visual examples.  Rosaries in this group are patterned after the Langdale Rosary in the collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Museum number: M.30-1934 

The Langdale rosary dates from around 1500 and is the only medieval English rosary to have survived the Reformation. It is made of enamelled gold, and is made up of 50 oval 'Ave' beads, 6 lozenge-shaped 'Paternoster' beads and a large rounded knop (knob).

Each bead is engraved with two saints or scenes, with the titles written around the edges in black letter.

During the Reformation, rosaries, as part of the cult of the Virgin Mary, were frowned upon. Opposition to the Reformation in England was fiercest in remote places like Cornwall and the north of England, but it is rare for tangible evidence such as this rosary to survive.

This rosary was owned from the 17th century until 1934 by an old Roman Catholic family, the Langdales of Houghton Hall in Yorkshire. It is thought that it may once have belonged to Lord William Howard (1564-1640), third son of Thomas, 4th Duke of Norfolk (1536-1572). The Duke, a devout Roman Catholic and an ancestor of the Langdales, was attainted for treason and beheaded in 1572. The rosary has two extra beads, added around 1600. They depict three St Williams - of Norwich, of Rochester and of Maleval - and St Endellion, a little known Cornish saint. It seems likely that the rosary was owned by Lord William Howard and modified under his patronage, because it depicts several of his name saints as well as the saint dear to his friend Nicholas Roscarrock

Priced individually. Prices are based on materials and details, and range from $14.95 to $16.95. 

  • Item #1 - Red wood beads, black glass gauds, black wood knop beads, black/red cord and tassel
  • Item #2 - Dk. wood cube beads, tan wood gauds, bone skull knop bead, off white cord and tassel
  • Item #3 - Black wood beads, red glass gauds, carved bone knop bead, red/white cord and tassel
  • Item #4 - Tan wood beads, dk. wood gauds and knop, red cord
  • Item #5 - Dark wood beads, gauds and knop, black cord
  • Item #6 - Red gladd beads, silver metal gauds and knop, black cord
  • Item #7 - Blue glass beads, gold metal gauds and knop, blue cord
  • Item #8 - Red glass beads, gold metal gauds and knop, black cord and tassel

Rosary comes with storage bag and information about religion and the use of prayer beads in medieval Europe. Sheet also contains the Pater Noster and Ave Maria prayers in Latin. 

For more general information on our prayer beads, please see the main section page as well as General Information

PLEASE NOTE: These are individually hand made by Gwen and as such are one of a kind items.  If the number does not appear in the drop down menu, it has been sold and is no longer available.  Although it is unlikely that a style can be duplicated exactly, it may be possible to create something similar. Please contact us with your needs and we'll do our best to help.

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Starting at: $14.95

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  • Model: SL-ROS-LANG
  • Shipping Weight: 0.2lbs

This product was added to our catalog on Thursday 14 February, 2013.