Look Up for Wise Words from Above
Amongst the many fine buildings in the Wiltshire town of Marlborough’s main street, is one with its upper storey handsomely decorated in brickwork amidst timber framing. A black-framed window is separated by four carved coats of arms with dates of significance to the town or the building: 1408 Henry IV, 1577 Elizabeth I, 1657 Oliver Cromwell and 1687 James II.
But what really caught my eye was the barge board bearing the date 1925 (presumably the date of restoration) and a quotation: “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.” Not hard to track down, it’s from the Book of Proverbs Chapter 25, Verse 11, but why here? Does it refer to some long-gone dispute in the street market below, or a general homily to the good people of Marlborough? Perhaps someone will tell us.
Biblical quotations on high above a shop in Marlborough, Wiltshire.