703.—Walsingham Abbey, Norfolk.details

[Picture: Walsingham Abbey, Norfolk]
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703.—Walsingham Abbey, Norfolk., in Walsingham Abbey, Norfolk, England more

abbeys, ruins, arches


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703.—Walsingham Abbey, Norfolk.

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The village of Walsingham is alive and well; the Abbey itself was largely destroyed in 1538 during the English Reformation and became a private house.

The memory of our “Lady of Walsingham” demands longer pause before the beautiful ruins of the priory at that place. It is difficult to account for the reputation obtained by this monastery. In 1061, a lady, the widow of Richoldis de Favarches, erected a small chapel in honour of the Virgin Mary, in imitation of the Sancta Casa at Nazareth; and to this chapel, the lady’s son added a Priory for Augustine canons, and built a church. In these facts there does not appear to be anything at all unusual or remarkable; not the less, however, did the shrine of our Lady, erected in the chapel, become the most popular place of resort, without exception, that Old England contained. Even Thomas à Becket’s shrine at Canterbury seems to have been hardly so much visited. Foreigners came hither from all parts world, guided, they fancied, by the light of the milky way, which the monks of Walsingham persuaded the people—so Erasmus says—was a miraculous indication of the way to their monastery.

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