Hhadash Hamishcan
Rev Titus Knight

When the Square Chapel was built for Titus Knight in 1773, there was much criticism of what was thought to be the excessive expense of constructing the building.

Knight wrote a poem entitled Hhadash Hamishcan - which is Hebrew for New Tabernacle - in response to the critics. This was published anonymously.

The following is a fragment of the poem

What is this Building so magnificent,
With Spacious Area and this grand Ascent:

With Pillars on each Hand? One might suppose
The one was Jachin, and the other Boaz.

The Door-Steads built with architectural Grace,
Pilasters rising from the solid base.

Within, what Flow'ry work, of purest Paste,
and all things finish'd in a superb Taste!

'Tis sure a Pantheon of the present Age,
Or pompous theatre, to set off the Stage.

Forebear your Taunts, this Structure is design'd
An Habitation for th'eternal Mind

But why such Beauty and Magnificence?
You might have built, and sav'd a vast Expense?

A House sufficient; but you here expend
Large Sums, in Ornaments, and to no end

But if a House is to be built for God,
Each Penny's precious, as a drop of Blood

But since you deem this House too large and fine,
I'll lead your envious Thoughts to Palestine.

View foolish Solomon, at vast Expense,
Erect a House, which for Magnificence,

For Elegance, and Ornament, as far
Excell'd this House, as doth the Sun, a Star.

Repent not of the Sums that you have giv'n,
Done for his Sake, 'tis Treasure lodg'd in Heav'n

© Malcolm Bull 2021
Revised 18:25 / 13th April 2021 / 3276

Page Ref: MMK27

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