What Not to Miss in South Devon

ONE of the best ways to appreciate the beauties of Devon is to use its superb public walkways, though it does mean pushing open gates and climbing over stiles designed to keep cows and sheep from straying.

In Exeter, one comes upon The House That Moved, a quaint old Tudor building (from 1450) that stood in the way of a new development. So they moved it, on rollers, to its current position. Also, don't miss the carved figures on the front of Exeter cathedral. Many depict former bishops and knights. When there is a knight in armor who has his legs crossed, it means that he took part in the medieval Crusades and perished there.

Other highlights of south Devon include:

* The remnants of Exeter's Roman wall, which are in remarkably good condition. It was built largely in AD 200.

* Castle Drogo (near Chagford and Moretonhampstead), built during the early part of this century by the famous architect Sir Edwin Lutyens for Julius Drew, a grocery magnate with delusions of grandeur, as a replica of an old manor house.

* The Hound Tor, a few miles west of Bovey Tracey, is one of the best examples of those astonishing granite colossi on the moors.

* The carvings on the ceiling of the Church of St. Pancras in Widecombe-in-the-Moor. Carved in dark wood and dating back to the 15th century, they teach religion symbolically.

* The little village church of Lustleigh, which dates to the 1st century AD. There is a tall gravestone commemorating David, Son of Conhinoc. It was carved between 450 and 600 AD; he was probably a Christian.

* There is plenty to see at Plymouth, a city much larger than Exeter, badly damaged during World War II. We found the Merchant House museum in St. Andrew Street, housed in a restored Tudor building, particularly evocative of the 17th century, when the Pilgrims set out from here for the New World.

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