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So these abbeys—Kelso, Jedburgh, Dryburgh, and Melrose—as close together as the abbeys of Yorkshire, preached the gospel of love in a land of hate. They were situated gallantly in the front line like four padres, helpless to stem the tide of war, nevertheless a comfort to friend and foe.
When you see them one after the other in a day, as I did, you appreciate the horror that must have swept through the Lowlands when men ran panting with the news: ‘Melrose is burning! Jedburgh’s afire! Kelso’s no more!’ (p. 22)
Jedburgh Abbey was founded in 1138; the rounded arches with zig-zag or pointed decorations are a characteristic of Norman architecture.