A hagiography /ˌhæɡiˈɒɡrəfi/ is a biography of a saint or an ecclesiastical leader. The term hagiography may be used to refer to the biography of a saint or highly developed spiritual being in any of the spiritual traditions. Hagiographic works, especially those of the Middle Ages, can incorporate a record of institutional and local history, and evidence of popular cults and traditions. Hagiography constituted an important literary genre in the early Christian church, providing some informational history along with the inspirational stories. A hagiographic account of a saint can consist of a biography, a description of the saints deeds and/or miracles. The genre of lives of the saints first came into being in the Roman Empire as legends about Christian martyrs were recorded, the dates of their deaths formed the basis of martyrologies. In Western Europe hagiography was one of the important vehicles for the study of inspirational history during the Middle Ages. The Golden Legend of Jacob de Voragine compiled a great deal of medieval hagiographic material, Lives were often written to promote the cult of local or national states, and in particular to develop pilgrimages to visit relics.
The bronze Gniezno Doors of Gniezno Cathedral in Poland are the only Romanesque doors in Europe to feature the life of a saint. The life of Saint Adalbert of Prague, who is buried in the cathedral, is shown in 18 scenes, the Bollandist Society continues the study, academic assembly and publication of materials relating to the lives of Christian saints. Many of the important hagiographical texts composed in medieval England were written in the vernacular dialect Anglo-Norman, with the introduction of Latin literature into England in the 7th and 8th centuries the genre of the life of the saint grew increasingly popular. When one contrasts it to the heroic poem, such as Beowulf. Both genres focus on the figure, but with the distinction that the saint is of a spiritual sort. Imitation of the life of Christ was the benchmark against which saints were measured, in Anglo-Saxon and medieval England, hagiography became a literary genre par excellence for the teaching of a largely illiterate audience.
Hagiography provided priests and theologians with classical handbooks in a form that allowed them the tools necessary to present their faith through the example of the saints lives. Of all the English hagiographers no one was more prolific nor so aware of the importance of the genre as Abbot Ælfric of Eynsham and his work The Lives of the Saints comprises a set of sermons on saints days, formerly observed by the English Church. The text spans the entire year and describes the lives of many saints, there are two known instances where saints lives were adapted into vernacular plays in Britain. These are the Cornish-language works Beunans Meriasek and Beunans Ke, about the lives of Saints Meriasek and Kea, Irish hagiographers wrote primarily in Latin while some of the saints lives were written in the hagiographers native vernacular Irish
The Anglican Communion is an international association of autonomous churches consisting of the Church of England and national and regional Anglican churches in full communion with it. Full participation in the life of each church is available to all communicant Anglicans. The Archbishop of Canterbury, Primate of All England, has a place of honour among the bishops of the Anglican churches and he is recognised as primus inter pares. The archbishop does not exercise authority in the provinces outside England, the churches of the Anglican Communion considers themselves to be part of the nicos one, holy and apostolic church and to be both Catholic and Reformed. For some adherents, Anglicanism represents a non-papal Catholicism, for others a form of Protestantism though without a dominant guiding figure such as Luther, Calvin, for others, their self-identity represents some combination of the two. The communion encompasses a spectrum of belief and practice including evangelical, liberal. With a membership estimated at around 85 million members, the Anglican Communion is the third largest Christian communion in the world, after the Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church.
Some of these churches are known as Anglican, such as the Anglican Church of Canada, for example the Church of Ireland, the Scottish and American Episcopal churches, and some other associated churches have a separate name. The Anglican Communion has no legal existence nor any governing structure which might exercise authority over the member churches. There is an Anglican Communion Office in London, under the aegis of the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Communion is held together by a shared history, expressed in its ecclesiology and ethos and by participation in international consultative bodies. Early in its development, Anglicanism developed a vernacular prayer book, unlike other traditions, Anglicanism has never been governed by a magisterium nor by appeal to one founding theologian, nor by an extra-credal summary of doctrine. Instead, Anglicans have typically appealed to the Book of Common Prayer and its offshoots as a guide to Anglican theology and this had the effect of inculcating the principle of Lex orandi, lex credendi as the foundation of Anglican identity and confession.
These parameters were most clearly articulated in the rubrics of the successive prayer books. With the expansion of the British Empire, and hence the growth of Anglicanism outside Great Britain and Ireland, the first major expression of this were the Lambeth Conferences of the communions bishops, first convened by Archbishop of Canterbury Charles Longley in 1869. One of the influential early resolutions of the conference was the so-called Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral of 1888. Its intent was to provide the basis for discussions of reunion with the Roman Catholic and Orthodox Churches, the Apostles Creed, as the Baptismal Symbol, and the Nicene Creed, as the sufficient statement of the Christian faith. The two Sacraments ordained by Christ Himself - Baptism and the Supper of the Lord - ministered with unfailing use of Christs Words of Institution, and of the elements ordained by Him. The Historic Episcopate, locally adapted in the methods of its administration to the needs of the nations
Christianity is a Abrahamic monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ, who serves as the focal point for the religion. It is the worlds largest religion, with over 2.4 billion followers, or 33% of the global population, Christians believe that Jesus is the Son of God and the savior of humanity whose coming as the Messiah was prophesied in the Old Testament. Christian theology is summarized in creeds such as the Apostles Creed and his incarnation, earthly ministry and resurrection are often referred to as the gospel, meaning good news. The term gospel refers to accounts of Jesuss life and teaching, four of which—Matthew, Luke. Christianity is an Abrahamic religion that began as a Second Temple Judaic sect in the mid-1st century, following the Age of Discovery, Christianity spread to the Americas, sub-Saharan Africa, and the rest of the world through missionary work and colonization. Christianity has played a prominent role in the shaping of Western civilization, throughout its history, Christianity has weathered schisms and theological disputes that have resulted in many distinct churches and denominations.
Worldwide, the three largest branches of Christianity are the Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, and the denominations of Protestantism. There are many important differences of interpretation and opinion of the Bible, concise doctrinal statements or confessions of religious beliefs are known as creeds. They began as baptismal formulae and were expanded during the Christological controversies of the 4th and 5th centuries to become statements of faith. Many evangelical Protestants reject creeds as definitive statements of faith, even agreeing with some or all of the substance of the creeds. The Baptists have been non-creedal in that they have not sought to establish binding authoritative confessions of faith on one another. Also rejecting creeds are groups with roots in the Restoration Movement, such as the Christian Church, the Evangelical Christian Church in Canada, the Apostles Creed is the most widely accepted statement of the articles of Christian faith. It is used by Presbyterians and Congregationalists and this particular creed was developed between the 2nd and 9th centuries.
Its central doctrines are those of the Trinity and God the Creator, each of the doctrines found in this creed can be traced to statements current in the apostolic period. The creed was used as a summary of Christian doctrine for baptismal candidates in the churches of Rome. Most Christians accept the use of creeds, and subscribe to at least one of the mentioned above. The central tenet of Christianity is the belief in Jesus as the Son of God, Christians believe that Jesus, as the Messiah, was anointed by God as savior of humanity, and hold that Jesus coming was the fulfillment of messianic prophecies of the Old Testament. The Christian concept of the Messiah differs significantly from the contemporary Jewish concept, having become fully human, suffered the pains and temptations of a mortal man, but did not sin
Eata of Hexham
Eata, known as Eata of Lindisfarne, was Bishop of Hexham from 678 until 681, and of Bishop of Lindisfarne from before 681 until 685. He was translated back to Hexham where he served until his death in 685 or 686 and he was the first native of Northumbria to take the bishopric of Lindisfarne. Eata was originally taken to Lindisfarne as a boy under Aidan and he was chosen as one of the 12 monks selected from Lindisfarne to found the new daughter monastery at Melrose. In 651 he was elected abbot of Melrose, around 658 he left Melrose and founded a new monastery at Ripon in Yorkshire, taking with him the young St Cuthbert, who was his guest-master. In 661 King Alchfrith of Deira expelled Eata from Ripon, because he had appointed Wilfrid as the new abbot, the historian Bede described Eata as a gentle and greatly revered man. As an administrator Eata applied his skills at the time of plague, civil disorders, before Whitby, the abbot of Lindisfarne was the Bishop of Lindisfarne, after Whitby these two roles were divided.
The old abbot, left Lindisfarne to go back to Iona with 30 English monks, tuda was selected as the next Bishop of Lindisfarne and Eata moved from Melrose to become abbot of Lindisfarne. He appointed Cuthbert as prior at Lindisfarne, in 678, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Theodore split the diocese of Northumbria into two new bishoprics. Bernicia had two episcopal sees, one at Hexham and the other at Lindisfarne, Eata was the bishop of the whole of Bernicia for three years, after which the see of Hexham was assigned to Trumbert, and Lindisfarne to Eata. After the death of Trumbert in 684, Cuthbert was elected Bishop of Hexham and Cuthbert exchanged sees shortly thereafter, and for the last two years of his life Eata occupied Hexham. He died in 685 or 686, and was buried in the Benedictine Abbey of Hexham, like most of the early saints of the English Church, St. Eata was canonized by general repute of sanctity among the faithful in the regions which he helped to Christianize. The only church dedicated to him in England is St Eatas Church at Atcham in Shropshire, Bertram, in Battiscombe, C. F.
The Relics of Saint Cuthbert, Oxford,1956 Fryde, E. B, greenway, D. E. Porter, S. Roy, I. A New Dictionary of Saints and West, Eata 2 at Prosopography of Anglo-Saxon England Catholic Online Saints and Angels
Dictionary of National Biography
The Dictionary of National Biography is a standard work of reference on notable figures from British history, published from 1885. The updated Oxford Dictionary of National Biography was published on 23 September 2004 in 60 volumes and he approached Leslie Stephen, editor of the Cornhill Magazine, owned by Smith, to become editor. Stephen persuaded Smith that the work should focus on subjects from the UK and its present, an early working title was the Biographia Britannica, the name of an earlier eighteenth-century reference work. The first volume of the Dictionary of National Biography appeared on 1 January 1885, in May 1891 Leslie Stephen resigned and Sidney Lee, Stephens assistant editor from the beginning of the project, succeeded him as editor. While much of the dictionary was written in-house, the DNB relied on external contributors, by 1900, more than 700 individuals had contributed to the work. Successive volumes appeared quarterly with complete punctuality until midsummer 1900, when the series closed with volume 63, the year of publication, the editor and the range of names in each volume is given below.
The supplements brought the work up to the death of Queen Victoria on 22 January 1901. The dictionary was transferred from its original publishers, Elder & Co. to Oxford University Press in 1917, until 1996, Oxford University Press continued to add further supplements featuring articles on subjects who had died during the twentieth century. The supplements published between 1912 and 1996 added about 6,000 lives of people who died in the century to the 29,120 in the 63 volumes of the original DNB. In 1993 a volume containing missing biographies was published and this had an additional 1,000 lives, selected from over 100,000 suggestions. Consequently, the dictionary was becoming less and less useful as a reference work, in 1966, the University of London published a volume of corrections, cumulated from the Bulletin of the Institute of Historical Research. There were various versions of the Concise Dictionary of National Biography, the last edition, in three volumes, covered everyone who died before 1986.
In the early 1990s Oxford University Press committed itself to overhauling the DNB, the new dictionary would cover British history, broadly defined, up to 31 December 2000. The research project was conceived as a one, with in-house staff co-ordinating the work of nearly 10,000 contributors internationally. Following Matthews death in October 1999, he was succeeded as editor by another Oxford historian, Professor Brian Harrison, in January 2000. The new dictionary, now known as the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, was published on 23 September 2004 in 60 volumes in print at a price of £7500, most UK holders of a current library card can access it online free of charge. In subsequent years, the print edition has been able to be obtained new for a lower price. At publication, the 2004 edition had 50,113 biographical articles covering 54,922 lives, a small permanent staff remain in Oxford to update and extend the coverage of the online edition
The bishopric dates from 995, with the present cathedral being founded in AD1093. The present cathedral replaced the 10th century White Church, built as part of a foundation to house the shrine of Saint Cuthbert of Lindisfarne. The treasures of Durham Cathedral include relics of St Cuthbert, the head of St Oswald of Northumbria, in addition, its Library contains one of the most complete sets of early printed books in England, the pre-Dissolution monastic accounts, and three copies of the Magna Carta. Durham Cathedral occupies a position on a promontory high above the River Wear. From 1080 until the 19th century the bishopric enjoyed the powers of a Bishop Palatine, having military as well as religious leadership, Durham Castle was built as the residence for the Bishop of Durham. The seat of the Bishop of Durham is the fourth most significant in the Church of England hierarchy, signposts for the modern day County Durham are subtitled Land of the Prince Bishops. There are daily Church of England services at the cathedral, with the Durham Cathedral Choir singing daily except Mondays, the cathedral is a major tourist attraction within the region, the central tower of 217 feet giving views of Durham and the surrounding area.
The see of Durham takes its origins from the Diocese of Lindisfarne, the see lasted until AD664, at which point it was translated to York. The see was reinstated at Lindisfarne in AD678 by the Archbishop of Canterbury, after repeated Viking raids, the monks fled Lindisfarne in AD875, carrying St Cuthberts relics with them. The diocese of Lindisfarne remained itinerant until 882, when a community was re-established in Chester-le-Street, the see had its seat here until AD995, when further incursions once again caused the monks to move with the relics. According to local legend, the monks followed two milk maids who were searching for a dun cow and were led into a formed by a loop in the River Wear. At this point Cuthberts coffin became immovable and this trope of hagiography was offered for a sign that the new shrine should be built here. Nevertheless, the leading from The Bailey past the Cathedrals eastern towers up to Palace Green is named Dun Cow Lane due to the miniature cows that used to graze in the pastures nearby.
Initially, a simple temporary structure was built from local timber to house the relics of Cuthbert. The shrine was transferred to a sturdier, probably wooden. This church was replaced three years in 998 by a stone building known as the White Church, which was complete apart from its tower by 1018. Durham soon became a site of pilgrimage, encouraged by the cult of Saint Cuthbert. King Canute was one early pilgrim, granting privileges and much land to the Durham community
Kingdom of Northumbria
The Kingdom of Northumbria was a medieval Anglian kingdom in what is now northern England and south-east Scotland, which subsequently became an earldom in a unified English kingdom. The name reflects the southern limit to the kingdoms territory. Northumbria was formed by Æthelfrith in central Great Britain in Anglo-Saxon times, at the beginning of the 7th century, the two kingdoms of Bernicia and Deira were unified. At its height, the kingdom extended at least from just south of the Humber to the River Mersey, the earldom came about when the southern part of Northumbria was lost to the Danelaw. The earldom was bounded by the River Tees in the south, much of this land was debated between England and Scotland, but the Earldom of Northumbria was eventually recognised as part of England by the Anglo-Scottish Treaty of York in 1237. On the northern border, Berwick-upon-Tweed, which is north of the Tweed but had changed many times, was defined as subject to the laws of England by the Wales. The local Environment Agency office, located in Newcastle Business Park, the term is not the official name for the UK and EU region of North East England.
See also, List of monarchs of Northumbria and Timeline of Northumbria Northumbria was originally formed from the union of two independent kingdoms and Deira, Bernicia covered lands north of the Tees, while Deira corresponded roughly to modern-day Yorkshire. Bernicia and Deira were first united by Aethelfrith, a king of Bernicia who conquered Deira around the year 604. He was defeated and killed around the year 616 in battle at the River Idle by Raedwald of East Anglia, who installed Edwin, the son of Ælla, a former king of Deira, as king. Edwin, who accepted Christianity in 627, soon grew to become the most powerful king in England, he was recognised as Bretwalda and conquered the Isle of Man and Gwynedd in northern Wales. He was, himself defeated by an alliance of the king of Gwynedd, Cadwallon ap Cadfan. After Edwins death, Northumbria was split between Bernicia, where Eanfrith, a son of Aethelfrith, took power, and Deira, cumbria tended to remain a country frontier with the Britons. Both of these rulers were killed during the year that followed, after the murder of Eanfrith, his brother, backed by warriors sent by Domnall Brecc of Dál Riata and killed Cadwallon at the Battle of Heavenfield in 634.
He incorporated Gododdin lands northwards up to the Firth of Forth and extended his reach westward, encroaching on the remaining Cumbric speaking kingdoms of Rheged. Thus, Northumbria became not only part of modern Englands far north, King Oswald re-introduced Christianity to the Kingdom by appointing St. Aidan, an Irish monk from the Scottish island of Iona to convert his people. This led to the introduction of the practices of Celtic Christianity, a monastery was established on Lindisfarne. In 642, Oswald was killed by the Mercians under Penda at the Battle of Maserfield and this battle marked a major turning point in Northumbrian fortunes, Penda died in the battle, and Oswiu gained supremacy over Mercia, making himself the most powerful king in England
Hermitage (religious retreat)
A hermitage is any type of domestic dwelling in which a hermit lives. While the level of isolation can vary widely, more often than not it is associated with a nearby monastery, depending on the work of the hermit, premises such as a studio, workshop or chapel may be attached or sited in proximity. Originally, the first hermitages were located in caves, temple ruins. The piety of such hermits often attracted both laity and other ascetics, forming the first cenobitic communities called sketes, such as Nitria and Kellia. Carthusian monks typically live in a cell or building, with areas for study, prayer. In the modern era, hermitages are often abutted to monasteries, or located on their grounds, being occupied by monks who receive dispensation from their abbot or prior to live a semi-solitary life. However, hermitages can be found in a variety of settings, from isolated locations, houses in large cities. Examples of hermitages in Western Christian tradition, The Grande Chartreuse in Saint-Pierre-de-Chartreuse, the word poustinia has its origin in the Russian word for desert.
In Hinduism, a hermitage is called an ashram, traditionally, an ashram in ancient India was a place where sages lived in peace and tranquility amidst nature. Source, The History of Religious Seclusion, A. S, brown,1963 Poustinia, Encountering God in Silence and Prayer ISBN 0-921440-54-5
Chester-le-Street is a town in County Durham, England. Its history goes back to the building of a Roman fort called Concangis and this Roman fort is the Chester of the towns name, the Street refers to the paved Roman road that ran north–south through the town, and which is now called Front Street. Chester-le-Street is located 7 miles south of Newcastle upon Tyne and 8 miles west of Sunderland on the River Wear, a market town, markets are held on Tuesdays and Saturdays. Until 2009 the town had its own local government district and this was formed by the amalgamation in 1974 of the former Chester-le-Street Urban and Rural Districts. It was abolished in 2009 when Durham became an authority as part of the 2009 structural changes to local government in England. There is evidence of Iron Age use of the River Wear near the town and this was built alongside the Roman road Cades Road and close to the River Wear, around 100 A. D. and was occupied till the Romans left Britain in 410 A. D. At the time the Wear was navigable to at least Concangis, while they were there the town was the centre of Christianity for much of the northeast, because it was the seat of the Bishop of Lindisfarne, making the church a cathedral.
There the monks translated into English the Lindisfarne Gospels, which they had brought with them and they stayed for 112 years, leaving in 995 for the safer and more permanent home at Durham. The title has been revived as the Roman Catholic titular see of Cuncacestre, the church was rebuilt in stone in 1054, and despite the loss of its bishopric seems to have retained a degree of wealth and influence. In 1080 most of the huts in the town were burned and many killed in retaliation for the death of William Walcher. Cades Road did not fall out of use but was hidden beneath roads which became the Great North Road, the route from London. This trade reached a peak in the early 19th century as more and more people and new services were carried by stagecoach. The town was bypassed when the A167 was routed around the town, the coal industry left its mark on the town. From the late 17th century onwards coal was dug in increasing quantities in the region. At the same time the growth of the mines and the influx of miners supported local businesses, not just the many inns but new shops and these people would work in new industries established in the town to take advantage of its good communications and access to raw materials.
One of the most tragic episodes in the history and that of the coal industry in NE England occurred during a miners strike during the winter of 1811/12. Collieries owned by the Dean and Chapter of Durham Cathedral were brought to a standstill by the strike, causing much hardship amongst the people of the town. The strike was broken on New Years Day,1 January 1812, on the evening of 5 October 1936 the Jarrow Marchers stopped at the town centre after their first days walk
Poetry has a long history, dating back to the Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh. Early poems evolved from folk songs such as the Chinese Shijing, or from a need to retell oral epics, as with the Sanskrit Vedas, Zoroastrian Gathas, and the Homeric epics, the Iliad and the Odyssey. Ancient attempts to define poetry, such as Aristotles Poetics, focused on the uses of speech in rhetoric, drama and comedy. Later attempts concentrated on such as repetition, verse form and rhyme. From the mid-20th century, poetry has sometimes been more generally regarded as a creative act employing language. Poetry uses forms and conventions to suggest differential interpretation to words, devices such as assonance, alliteration and rhythm are sometimes used to achieve musical or incantatory effects. The use of ambiguity, symbolism and other elements of poetic diction often leaves a poem open to multiple interpretations. Similarly figures of such as metaphor and metonymy create a resonance between otherwise disparate images—a layering of meanings, forming connections previously not perceived.
Kindred forms of resonance may exist, between verses, in their patterns of rhyme or rhythm. Some poetry types are specific to cultures and genres and respond to characteristics of the language in which the poet writes. Much modern poetry reflects a critique of poetic tradition, playing with and testing, among other things, in todays increasingly globalized world, poets often adapt forms and techniques from diverse cultures and languages. Some scholars believe that the art of poetry may predate literacy, however, suggest that poetry did not necessarily predate writing. The oldest surviving poem, the Epic of Gilgamesh, comes from the 3rd millennium BCE in Sumer. An example of Egyptian epic poetry is The Story of Sinuhe, other forms of poetry developed directly from folk songs. The earliest entries in the oldest extant collection of Chinese poetry, the efforts of ancient thinkers to determine what makes poetry distinctive as a form, and what distinguishes good poetry from bad, resulted in poetics—the study of the aesthetics of poetry.
Some ancient societies, such as Chinas through her Shijing, developed canons of poetic works that had ritual as well as aesthetic importance, Classical thinkers employed classification as a way to define and assess the quality of poetry. Later aestheticians identified three major genres, epic poetry, lyric poetry, and dramatic poetry, treating comedy and tragedy as subgenres of dramatic poetry, Aristotles work was influential throughout the Middle East during the Islamic Golden Age, as well as in Europe during the Renaissance. English Romantic poet John Keats termed this escape from logic Negative Capability and this romantic approach views form as a key element of successful poetry because form is abstract and distinct from the underlying notional logic
Bishop of Durham
The Bishop of Durham is the Anglican bishop responsible for the Diocese of Durham in the Province of York. The diocese is one of the oldest in England and its bishop is a member of the House of Lords, paul Butler has been the Bishop of Durham since his election was confirmed at York Minster on 20 January 2014. The previous bishop was Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, the bishop is one of two who escort the sovereign at the coronation. He is officially styled The Right Reverend Father in God, by Divine Providence Lord Bishop of Durham, in signatures, the bishops family name is replaced by Dunelm, from the Latin name for Durham. In the past, Bishops of Durham varied their signatures between Dunelm and the French Duresm, prior to 1836, the Bishop of Durham was a prince-bishop and had significant temporal powers over the Liberty of Durham and the County Palatine of Durham. The bishop lived in Durham Castle from its construction in the 11th century, the bishop continues to have offices in Auckland Castle but no longer resides there.
The Bishop of Lindisfarne is a title which takes its name after the tidal island of Lindisfarne. The title was first used by the Anglo-Saxons between the 7th and 10th centuries, in the reign of Æthelstan the bishop was known as the Bishop of Chester-le-Street or the Bishop of the Church of St Cuthbert. According to George Molyneaux, it was in all probability the greatest landholder between the Tees and the Tyne and it is now used by the Roman Catholic Church for a titular see. The Anglo-Saxon bishops of Lindisfarne were ordinaries of several early medieval episcopal sees in Northumbria, the first such see was founded at Lindisfarne in 635 by Saint Aidan. The bishop appointed all officials and maintained his own court. After the Norman Conquest, this power was retained by the bishop and was recognised with the designation of the region as the County Palatine of Durham. As holder of office, the bishop was both the earl of the county and bishop of the diocese. Though the term prince-bishop has become a way of describing the role of the bishop prior to 1836.
Except for a period of suppression during the Glorious Revolution
The manuscript is one of the finest works in the unique style of Hiberno-Saxon or Insular art, combining Mediterranean, Anglo-Saxon and Celtic elements. The Lindisfarne Gospels are presumed to be the work of a monk named Eadfrith, current scholarship indicates a date around 715, and it is believed they were produced in honour of St. Cuthbert. During the Viking raids on Lindisfarne this jewelled cover was lost, the text is written in insular script, and is the best documented and most complete insular manuscript of the period. In the 10th century an Old English translation of the Gospels was made and this is the oldest extant translation of the Gospels into the English language. Cottons library came to the British Museum in the 18th century, known as Holy Island, is located off the coast of Northumberland in northern England. In around 635 AD, the Irish missionary Aidan founded the Lindisfarne monastery on “a small outcrop of land” on Lindisfarne, King Oswald of Northumbria sent Aidan from Iona to preach to and baptize the pagan Anglo-Saxons, following the conversion to Christianity of the Northumbrian monarchy in 627.
By Aidan’s death in 651, the Christian faith was becoming well-established in the area. In the tenth century, about 250 years after the production of the book, Aldred, in his colophon he recorded the names of the four men who produced the Lindisfarne Gospels. Some scholars have argued that Eadfrith and Ethelwald did not produce the manuscript, Janet Backhouse argues for the validity of the statement by pointing out that, there is no reason to doubt statement because he was recording a well established tradition. Eadfrith and Ethelwald were both bishops at the monastery of Lindisfarne where the manuscript was produced, as Alan Thacker notes, the Lindisfarne Gospels are undoubtedly the work of a single hand, and Eadfrith remains regarded as the scribe and painter of the Lindisfarne Gospels. According to Aldred’s colophon, the Lindisfarne Gospels were made in honor of God and Saint Cuthbert, scholars think that the manuscript was written sometime between Cuthbert’s death in 687 and Eadfrith’s death in 721.
Due to increasingly slack religious practice in Lindisfarne, Cuthbert was sent to Lindisfarne as a way to reform the religious community, in Lindisfarne Cuthbert began to take on a solitary lifestyle, eventually moving to Inner Farne Island where he built a hermitage. Cuthbert agreed to become bishop at the request of King Ecgfrith in 684, Cuthbert died on 20 March 687, and was buried in Lindisfarne. As a venerated saint his tomb attracted many pilgrims to Lindisfarne, the Lindisfarne Gospels is a Christian manuscript, containing the gospels of Matthew, Luke and John and the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. The manuscript was used for purposes to promote and celebrate the Christian religion. The Lindisfarne Gospels manuscript was produced in a scriptorium in the monastery of Lindisfarne, the pages of the Lindisfarne gospels are vellum, made from the skins of sheep or calves and evidence from the manuscript reveals that the vellum used for the Gospels was made from calfskin. The text of the manuscript is written “in a dense, dark brown ink, often almost black, which contains particles of carbon from soot or lamp black”.
The pens used for the manuscript could have cut from either quills or reeds