It has been suggested that Grouville Church was consecrated in 1322, but the first written record of the church dates from 1149. It comprises a nave and chancel with two transepts, or rather aisles and a central tower, surmounted by a quadrilateral broach spire. The west end of the nave, which is undoubtedly the oldest portion of the church, probably dates from the 12th century, and still contains many water-worn stones, laboriously conveyed from the neighbouring sea beach for its construction. In plan, this church differs from the form characteristic of most Jersey churches, which usually consists of a chancel and long nave, with short transepts. It, however, does not depart altogether from the cruciform plan, inasmuch as the aisles, running parallel with the chancel, may be regarded as substitutes for a transept.
The traditional date of consecration, 1322 AD, probably applies to the completion of the chancel, tower, and spire. These were added in the late 14th or early 15th century, chiefly through the generosity of the Mallet family, whose bearing (3 buckles) is probably represented on the gable south of the east window, in proximity to a patriarchal or 'trefide' cross.
Should this supposition be correct this stone would have been inserted at the time of the enlargement of the church by the Mallet family. This family held the 'Fief and Seigneurie de la Malletiere' in the parish of Grouville, as far back as the reign of King John in the 12th century. The aisles, or chapels, adjoining the chancel are of late 15th century date.References:
Derbent is the southernmost city in Russia, occupying the narrow gateway between the Caspian Sea and the Caucasus Mountains connecting the Eurasian steppes to the north and the Iranian Plateau to the south. Derbent claims to be the oldest city in Russia with historical documentation dating to the 8th century BCE. Due to its strategic location, over the course of history, the city changed ownership many times, particularly among the Persian, Arab, Mongol, Timurid, Shirvan and Iranian kingdoms.
Derbent has archaeological structures over 5,000 years old. As a result of this geographic peculiarity, the city developed between two walls, stretching from the mountains to the sea. These fortifications were continuously employed for a millennium and a half, longer than any other extant fortress in the world.
A traditionally and historically Iranian city, the first intensive settlement in the Derbent area dates from the 8th century BC. The site was intermittently controlled by the Persian monarchs, starting from the 6th century BC. Until the 4th century AD, it was part of Caucasian Albania which was a satrap of the Achaemenid Persian Empire. In the 5th century Derbent functioned as a border fortress and the seat of Sassanid Persians. Because of its strategic position on the northern branch of the Silk Route, the fortress was contested by the Khazars in the course of the Khazar-Arab Wars. In 654, Derbent was captured by the Arabs.
The Sassanid fortress does not exist any more, as the famous Derbent fortress as it stands today was built from the 12th century onward. Derbent became a strong military outpost and harbour of the Sassanid empire. During the 5th and 6th centuries, Derbent also became an important center for spreading the Christian faith in the Caucasus.
The site continued to be of great strategic importance until the 19th century. Today the fortifications consist of two parallel defence walls and Naryn-Kala Citadel. The walls are 3.6km long, stretching from the sea up to the mountains. They were built from stone and had 73 defence towers. 9 out of the 14 original gates remain.
In Naryn-Kala Citadel most of the old buildings, including a palace and a church, are now in ruins. It also holds baths and one of the oldest mosques in the former USSR.
In 2003, UNESCO included the old part of Derbent with traditional buildings in the World Heritage List.