This beautiful window is by Christopher Whall a Pre-Raphaelite stained glass artist/designer and a leader of the Arts and Crafts Movement. It is a jewel in stained glass, showing Arts and Crafts at its most ethereal. The window depicts the three virgin martyrs: St. Barbara, St Cecilia and St Dorothy, but St. Barbara and St. Dorothy are actual portraits of Monica and Dorothea - the window was given to St. Oswald church in Ashbourne by the parents in memory of their daughters.
St. Cecilia is seen falling asleep to the sounds of celestial music - a symbol of death.
St. Dorothy whose symbol is flowers, represents Dorothea the younger sister whose dress caught fire.
St. Barbara carrying the sword of her martyrdom in her right hand - represents Monica, the poet, who rushed to save her sister.
The whole interior of the church is worthy of a visit, no corner is without interest, carved kings and queens, bell ropes, Green Men, and a lush chancel roof. The reredos, depicting the life of Christ, is set within a background showing two local landscapes, namely Dovedale and the Manifold Valley. My next treasure lies in the Cockayne Chapel within the east aisle of the north transept.
Penelope Boothby, daughter of Sir Brooke Boothby, aged 4 by Joshua Reynolds
The Apotheosis of Penelope Boothby by Henry Fuseli
Penelope was the only child of Sir Brooke Boothby and Dame Susannah Boothby. She was born in 1785 and died when she was almost six years old. It is thought that she had a viral infection in her brain (possibly encephalitis), she was treated by Boothby's great friend, Dr. Erasmus Darwin, Grandfather of Charles Darwin. Boothby's life went into decline after his daughter's death. The sad event permanently affected him and he subsequently published a book of poetry - Sorrows Sacred to the Memory of Penelope. After her funeral, his wife returned to her parent's home in Hampshire. She then settled in Dover and her death was recorded under her maiden name.
Sir Brooke Boothby by Joseph Wright of Derby
The tomb that Boothby commissioned from Thomas Banks, RA is exquisite. It is described as being so life like that the child could be sleeping. Sculptured out of Carrara marble and showing the inscription "She was in form and intellect most exquisite. The unfortunate parents ventured their all on this frail bark. And the wreck was total."