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Photographs supplied by Nancy Alford

The stained glass window commemorates politician and Premier of Victoria, Sir Charles Sladen. The window was placed in the church by his friends in 1885 as a memorial to his high christian character and his labours for the welfare of the colony.

In November 1855 Sladen was nominated to the Victorian Legislative Council, and was appointed acting Treasurer. When Victoria gained responsible government in 1856, Sladen was elected to the Victorian Legislative Assembly as Member for Geelong, and became Treasurer in the ministry of William Haines, a position he held until March 1857. He advocated the creation of a public bank and increased immigration.

A firm conservative, Sladen lost his seat in the liberal election victory of 1861, but re-entered politics in 1864 when he was elected to the Legislative Council for Western Province. When the liberal Premier James McCulloch resigned in May 1868 during the conflict between the government and the Council over the proposed grant to retiring Governor Charles Darling, Sladen was asked by the new Governor, Sir John Manners-Sutton, to form a government.

This window, for which a public subscription was raised in March or April of last year, is now fixed in its place at Christ Church in the south transept. Funds came in cheerfully from all quarters, from members of different denominations and all shades of politics, so that the committee entrusted with the matter were in a position to give an order to Messrs Burlison and Grylls, of London, for a window designed and executed in the highest style of art. These eminent glass-stainers have done their work thoroughly well and in the most artistic manner. The subject is the Ascension, the Saviours figure being represented in the upper part of the large centre light, whilst on either side in the four other lights the eleven disciples are arranged in a divided group gazing intently on the figure of the Master as clouds receive Him out of their sight. These men of Galilee are drawn not with the medieval stiffness common in stained windows, but in strict accordance with nature, as though their attitudes and looks had been borrowed from the cartoons of Raphael.  Each figure is a study in itself, whilst the group preserves a unity of action, secured by masterly composition. The village of Bethany is an important feature in the background, and, on the foreground of the picture, the artist has made good use of the flora of Palestine to give a finish to the whole. A stained window admits of being studied from various points of view; and of this successful work this is eminently the case. Seen from the opposite side of the church, the beautiful balance of colors is discernible; the ruby and blue tints of the drapery being specially effective. The upper part of the window exhibits the highlight helped by the bright sky beyond, the lower part is in deep shade. By this arrangement, the obscuration of daylight is reduced to a minimum. It should be added that the upper or celestial half of the entire composition, which is made very cleverly to contrast with the lower or terrestrial portion, is filled with angels exquisitely drawn, and which bear the closest inspection. The text containing the angelic appeal—" Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven?''—is worked with great skill into a wreath or ribbon entwining itself around the angelic figures. At the base of the window is the inscription, "To the Glory of God, and in loving memory of Sir Charles Sladen, K.C.M.G., trustee and churchwarden, who died February 22, 1884, aged 67."

Underneath the window is a monumental brass tablet, beautifully engraved and ornamented, from the factory of Messrs Thomason, of Birmingham, with the following in scription :—"This window, the gift of numerous friends of Sir Charles Sladen, K.C.M.G., is here placed as a memorial of his high Christian character, his patriotic and self devoted labours for the welfare of this colony, and his untiring zeal in the cause of Religion. Christus nobis factus Sapientia." The window has been admirably placed in position by Mr Wm. Nash, paperhanger etc. of Malop-street; very great care in the execution of the work having been exhibited by Mr P. Slevin, an employe at Mr Nash's establishment. The outside part of the window is protected with a neat network of copper wires. The Anglican Bishop of Ballarat will conduct the the services at Christ Church next Sunday morning, when the window will be unveiled to the public for the first time. 
Geelong Advertiser (Vic),  5 June 1885.


Address:Moorabool & McKillop Streets, Christ Church Anglican Church, Geelong, 3220
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -38.153245
Long: 144.358311
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Window
Monument Theme:People
Sub-Theme:Government - Colonial
Designer:Burlison & Grylls (London, England)


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Sunday 7th June, 1885
Front Inscription

(Underneath Window)

To the glory of God

And in loving memory of Sir Charles Sladen, K.C.M.G., Trustee and Churchwarden, who died February 22,1884, aged 67.

Plaque :

This window, the gift of numerous friends of Sir Charles Sladen K.C.M.G., is placed here as a memorial of his high Christian character, his patriotic and self-devoted labours for the welfare of this colony and his untiring zeal in the cause of religion.

Christus Nobis Factus Sapientia.



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