Buckfast Abbey: History, Art and Architecture

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As Buckfast Abbey prepares to celebrate its millennium in 2018, this new book chronicles the remarkable history of this famous English abbey, today both home to a self-sufficient community of Benedictine monks and a site that welcomes some half a million visitors to south Devon each year. The first monastery was founded in 1018 and absorbed into the Cistercian order in 1147, but was dissolved during the Reformation. The site fell into disrepair, and in the early 19th century a Gothic-style mansion was built on the abbey ruins. A group of exiled French Benedictine monks settled at Buckfast in 1882 and eventually decided to rebuild the medieval abbey church themselves: the first stone was laid in 1907 and consecration took place in 1932. In this elegant, authoritative book, essays by a dozen distinguished historians explore, among other subjects, the history of the abbey from its Saxon origins to the Dissolution; the architecture of the medieval church; the abbey site without the monks; the Benedictine revival; the rebuilding of the abbey under the architect Frederick Walters; the abbey's silver and metalwork; the art and architecture of the Blessed Sacrament Chapel, built in 1968; and the recent redevelopment of the precinct. Generously illustrated throughout with not only plans, drawings and photographs gathered from the vast Buckfast archive but also new images of the abbey church, the plethora of other buildings on site and the meticulously tended grounds, Buckfast Abbey is a fitting tribute to a unique monastery and community.

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Merrell Publishers Ltd
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