Engraved illustration of the interior of Royston Cave.
Though there is little identifying information on the print itself, it is a duplicate of another print held by the museum entitled "A Section of Roisia's Mausoleum at Roston. 19 Oct. 1742.", one of three plates drawn by William Stukeley (1687-1765); engraved by J Mynde for Stukeley's pamphlet Origines Roystonianae, or an account of the Oratory of Lady Roysia de Vere, Foundress of Royston (1743).
In October 1742 the Revd William Stukeley, the pioneering antiquary and discoverer of Avebury, received news of the discovery of a cave full of carved figures in what is now Melbourn Street, Royston. He visited four days later and drew what he saw.
The cave (which can still be seen today) is 25 feet deep and 17 feet in diameter. Around its walls are medieval religious carvings in low relief: Saints Katherine, Christopher, and Laurence, and a Crucifixion. Stukeley published a pamphlet full of bogus history on the subject, but in fact the cave is still something of a mystery; it may have been a religious cell or a hermitage.
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