From the Monster Collection
These charming dragons with intertwining tails are part of a capital decoration in another church in Heiligenstadt, St. Martin.
Dragon relief on a capital in the south aisle
(The photo was taken free hand in a rather dark room)
The architectural history of St. Martin is a bit of a mess. We can see it's a Gothic church in the basilica style (aisles lower than main nave, other than St. Mary), with an annexed crypt in late Romanesque style. The oldest part seems to be the choir and the main nave. One chronicle from 1276 mentions a request for donations to rebuild the old church which obviously was about to crumble. No remains of this older building have been found so far. Another source points to the fact that the choir seems to have been finished in 1316. St. Martin Church, Heiligenstadt; seen from the south
While the nave and choir thus are early Gothic style, the southern aisle is high Gothic, and the west facade with it's rosette window is late Gothic - in England called perpendicular or flamboyant style. But the interior of the church gives the impression of harmony, despite the long time that passed until the building was finished.View from the choir to the south aisle
Our dragons date from 1360-70. Compared to the Italian Romanesque ornaments in Königslutter
, the figures are more twisted with less regard to anatomy, leaves and other ornaments more splendid and wild, and the symmetry sometimes broken.
The hunt had a symbolic meaning in the Middle ages, and so we find the motive here as well. Hunting motive on a capital in the south aisle
Since it was already evening, and I hadn't brought a tripod, it was very tricky to get some useable pics free hand. Flash doesn't work with reliefs, it flattens the outlines so that they look more like paintings. A reason to go back, lol.