Opposite the Vicars desk stands the pulpit, a magnificent Stuart creation complete with tester or sounding board. It was given to the original church by Stephen March, local merchant and Mayor of Newport in about 1631. It is his crest you can see carved on the backboard. It is a fine example of the work of the Flemish woodcarver Thomas Caper.
The outer face is made up of fourteen panels of carvings in two tiers: The upper tier contains the three theological virtues of Faith, Hope and Charity, plus the four Cardinal virtues of Justice, Prudence, Temperance and Fortitude.
Beneath this are the seven liberal arts and sciences, made up of Grammar, Logic, Rhetoric, Music, Arithmetic, Geometry and Astronomy.
Under the headboard you can see a golden dove, which flies above the head of the vicar and represents the Holy Spirit. Whilst Oliver Cromwell ruled the Kingdom, the dove was hidden away and only replaced at the Restoration in 1660. It would still have been a very rich pulpit but perhaps survived due to the Puritan emphasis on preaching?
Look for the text from Isiah 58, Verse 1painted around the top: "Cry aloud and spare not; lift up thy voice like a trumpet"
Did you know?
In September 1653, during the Puritan regime, the church minister William Martin was dismissed by the Town Corporation for mumbling; they complained about "the lowness and weakness of his voice, whereof very few of the congregation could hear his doctrine or receive benefit by his public ministry".