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CHARLES G. ADDISON, ESQ. The history of the Knights Templars, Temple Church, and the Temple

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CHARLES G. ADDISON, ESQ.
The history of the Knights Templars, Temple Church, and the Temple
page 313



and well merits attention. It was constructed for tlie use of the priest who officiated at the adjoining altar, and was intended to receive the water in which the chalice had been rinsed, end in which the priest washed his hands before the consecration of the bread and wine. It consists of two perforated hollows or small basins.inclosed inan elegant marble niche, adorned with two graceful arches, which rest on small marble columns. The holes at the bottomof the basins communicate with two conduits or channels for draining off the water, which antiently made its exit through the thick walls of the church. In the olden time, before the consecration of the host, the priest walked to the piscina, accompanied by the clerk, who poured water over his hands, that they might be purified from all stain before he ventured to touch the body of our Lord. One of these channels was intended to receive the water in which the priest washed his hands, and the other that in which he had rinsed the chalice. The piscina, consequently, served the purposes of a sink.* , Adjoining the piscina, towards the eastern end of the church, is a small elegant niche, in which the ewer, basin, and towels were placed ; and immediately opposite, in the north wall of the edifice, is another niche, which appears to have been a samarium or tabernacle for holding the eucharist preserved for the use of the sick brethren.+ In the centre of the northern aisle of the church, a large recess has been erected for the reception of the organ, as no convenient place could be found for it in the old structure. Below this recess, by the side of the archway communicating with the Round, • Λ targo piscina, similar to the one iu the Temple Church, may be seen in Cowling church, Kent, Arekojolopia, vol, xb pi. xiv. p. 320. t Ib. p. 317 to 359.


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