|York Minster in 1751 - a handsome Venetian print
The Cathedral of St Peter
, or York Minster
, is the chief religious seat of the See of York, a diocese which in the Church of England is second in consequence only to Canterbury. A fine ancient building in the gothick style, it was the location of The stones of York
, a majestic piece of magic performed by Gilbert Norrell
in February 1807. This was the first occasion on which Mr Norrell publicly put forth his powers and shewed something of his ability to an astonished world. Having been challenged to demonstrate his skill as a magician, he very effectually did so by causing the many statues contained in the minster to speak.
The effect of this, in the gloom of a bitter winter's day, was tremendous! It certainly daunted the members of the Society of Magicians
gathered there to witness the display, for the statues did not merely make incoherent sounds but burst into impassioned tales of events they had witnessed during their dusty centuries of stillness. It seems this eerie magic lasted for some half-an-hour before the images lapsed again into stony silence.
The Cathedral also has a Wikipedia article
, although its involvement in English Magic is inexplicably left out.