The Salisbury Giant

Contributed by Salisbury Museum

The Salisbury Giant - Copyright Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum

The Salisbury Giant has witnessed over 500 years of Salisbury's historyThe Salisbury Giant, still standing over 12ft tall, is an unusual survival from the medieval period. He was originally used by the Salisbury Guild of Tailors for their annual celebration on the eve of the feast of St John
(Midsummer Day). As a symbol of the guild he was ideal for exhibiting the clothing that the tailors produced.

The tailors flourished in medieval Salisbury because the town's prosperity was based on the wool trade - cloth manufactured in Salisbury and exported to other parts of Europe through Southampton.

Later the Giant was brought out by the town on occasions of public celebration. He was sold to the Museum in 1873 by the last two surviving members of the Tailors Guild for thirty shillings (£1.50). He was still used for public celebrations until the Museum moved in 1979 and since then has been the centrepiece of our Salisbury gallery.

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