Image of the feature "IV. Interior Features: 4. Vaulting/Roof Supports: Chancel (apse)" at Kilpeck.
by Ron Baxter.
The apse has a barrel vault over the straight bay and a semicircular rib on responds at the E end of this. From the centre of this rib, two quadrant ribs descend onto responds between the apse windows. All ribs are broad with lateral chevron angle rolls to either side and cogwheel edges. The soffit between the chevron thus forms a row of lozenges and these are emphasised by narrow grooves outlining the zigzags. At the apex of the vault, where the four quadrant arches meet, is a keystone carved with four lion masks, one to each rib and all positioned with the tops of their heads towards the apex. They are broad with leaf-shaped ears and rows of curls across their foreheads. The eyes are oval and drilled, and surrounded by concentric ridges. Their noses are straight, and their upper lips are indicated by curved reeding.
The responds are pilasters with angle shafts to each side and a flat fillet between. Each shaft is carried on its own bulbous base, with a spur and a triple-roll necking. The bases stand on a cuboidal block at the foot of the pilaster, and this on a chamfered plinth. At the top of each pilaster, the three elements (two angle rolls and the fillet between) share a chamfered necking, a capital and an impost block. The capitals and imposts are described below from N to S.
N capital: Multi-scallop with six scallops on the main face and two on each side. There are triangular wedges between the cones, and each shield is outline below with a double groove. The impost in chamfered with two grooves on the face.
SE capital: Multi-scallop. Some attempt has been made to reflect the three elements of the respond in the capital, so that above each is a triple cone but only two shields. The impost is quirked hollow chamfered but badly eroded.
S capital: Similar to the SE capital, but above each element except the easternmost is a double scalloped section. The E section has three cones below two shields. The impost is quirked hollow chamfered.