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Lindisfarme Priory

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HISTORY

It was founded in AD 635 by the Irish monk Aidan, originally from the island of Iona, who had been invited by King Oswald of Northumberland to be Bishop in his kingdom.

On June 8, 793, it was devastated by the Vikings, and this incursion was considered a divine punishment for the sinful behavior of its inhabitants, as the noble Sicga, who had murdered King Aelfwald of Northumberland and then committed suicide despite his sins he had been buried on the island just six weeks earlier.

After its destruction, the Priory was reestablished from 1069-70, after the Norman conquest, as a Benedictine home and remained active until its closure in 1537, due to the religious Reformation promoted by King Henry VIII of England.

 

WHY THIS PLACE

It was the heart of Christianity in Anglo-Saxon times, spreading its teachings throughout the ancient kingdoms of Brittany, on the continent. It is a truly unique place, with a remarkable history for such a small piece of land. Separated from the mainland by the tides twice a day, the island can be accessed by residents and visitors, during low tide, thanks to an elevated road. Nowadays it is still possible to see the elegant arcades and pillars of the old priory built in the 11th century, and the rooms of the monks who lived there.

CURIOSITIES

• Served as the setting for several films, including Roman Polanski's The Tragedy of Macbeth (1971), in which he played the role of Glamis Castle
• The most famous artifact associated with the site is the Lindisfarne Gospels, an 8th-century Latin manuscript that contains stunning illustrations.
• In the 18th century it was briefly occupied by Jacobite rebels and then used as a coastal watch post.
• In 1901, it became the property of Edward Hudson, advertising mogul and owner of Country Life magazine, who hired architect Sir Edwin Lutyens to be refurbished in the Arts & Crafts style, an aesthetic movement that emerged in England, which advocated creative crafts as an alternative series mechanical production.

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