19th August 2015

It’s marbleous – but don’t blink!

Charlotte Corday Statue Swindon Town Hall

This post is by way of a share of an article from Barry Leighton of the Swindon Advertiser about the Charlotte Corday statue in Swindon’s town hall.

It’s a fabulous story that concerns the several-years-long and on-off search for ‘the magnificent sculpture of ‘The Angel of Assassination’ which was, as Barry explains ‘stumbled upon quite by accident’.

Charlotte Corday Statue Swindon - in Swindon Town Hall

‘We can only imagine the joy, delight and sheer relief of Borough Arts Officer Terry Court when, after pulling back a crumpled canvas while clearing out an old costume store at the back of the Devizes Road Arts Centre, he was confronted with the elusive, milky white form of Charlotte Corday.’

Barry explains that, during the 1860s, one Pasquale Miglioretti (Italian sculptor 1822-1881) created at least three versions of Charlotte Corday. The lady described as a ‘counter revolutionary heroine’ who acquired infamy (infamy, infamy – they’ve all got it in for me! The BEST movie line ever!) when, in 1793 she stabbed to death Jean-Paul Marat in his bathtub. How very Psycho!

It’s a Marbleous Mystery

To cut a long story short cos you can read the rest of it in the article, it’s a marbleous mystery how one of these wonderful creations landed up in little old Swindon.

But anyway, about a century ago it did! And, since it was found twenty-five years ago the statue has graced the foyer of Swindon’s town hall. As the article says – ‘it’s pretty much unseen by anyone who doesn’t go to Swindon Dance. I’ve seen it though. Yay.

Finally – yes I’m stretching the Dr Who weeping angels‘Don’t blink’ thing a bit but she is referred to as an angel – albeit of assassination. And anyway, tucked away as she is in the town hall – blink and you’ll miss her. Which seems rather a shame really given her infamy.