John Dolbel Le Couteur

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John Dolbel Le Couteur
Stained glass expert


John Dolbel Le Couteur worked for Lloyds Bank and, when in 1904 he was forced to stop through ill health, he became an expert in mediaeval painted-glass.

At work in Winchester College mill

John Dolbel Le Couteur (1883-1925), was the son of Philip Edward Le Couteur and Matilda Stratton Brice.


He moved from place to place to further his interest in stained glass and became very familiar with the glass of Canterbury, Exeter, Wells, Bristol, Fairford, the Cotswold churches, Gloucester, Tewkesbury, Salisbury, and Oxford.

Everywhere he made friends with glass painters and specialists. During a stay at Great Malvern he helped to re-lead the windows of the Priory Church. He then settled at Winchester, where he made an exhaustive study of all old glass, ecclesiastical and domestic, in the city and in 1920 published the result in his book, Ancient Glass in Winchester.

At the invitation of the Dean be supervised the rearranging of the mediaeval glass in the great west window of the Cathedral. In the Antiquaries Journal he described how with one of the college boys he discovered and reconstructed part of St Swithin's Shrine in the Cathedral.

At his death on 13 August 1925 he left a second book, English Mediaeval Painted Glass, ready for publication. It appeared in 1926. Though he had no scholar's training, he was recognized as a master of his subject and appreciative notices of his work appeared in many papers.

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