Image from page 163 of "The greater abbeys of England" (1908): happi ness

Image from page 163 of “The greater abbeys of England” (1908)

Image from page 163 of

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Identifier: greaterabbeysofe01gasq
Title: The greater abbeys of England
Year: 1908 (1900s)
Authors: Gasquet, Francis Aidan, 1846-1929
Subjects: Abbeys
Publisher: New York, Dodd, Mead and company
Contributing Library: The Library of Congress
Digitizing Sponsor: The Library of Congress

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n, escapedcomplete destruction at the hands of the Danes, whopassed over the country wrecking and plundering monas-teries and churches and overthrowing the Christian altars.It suffered, however, greatly: and it was at this period,at the lowest depth of his ill-fortune, that King Alfredsought shelter in the neighbourhood and, at least accord-ing to legend, found strength and courage to make hissuccessful stand against the dreaded Dane in a visionwhich came to him in the sanctuary at Glastonbury. lln the tenth century the abbey was ruled by one whonot only shed a glory over it by the holiness of his life andby his abilities, but who was also called upon to shapethe destinies of his country. This was the celebrated St.Dunstan, who, born almost under the shadow of the mon-astery, in his youth became a monk there. He subse-quently as abbot did much to rebuild the walls of thesanctuary, and to implant in the souls of his brethren alove for the true principles of the Benedictine method [140]

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GLASTONBURY of life. For a while Dunstan, destined for a more ex-tended sphere of usefulness, found peace and true happi-ness in the secluded cloister life at Glastonbury. Hisbiographers picture him for us as sitting in the corridorsof the abbey with the brethren; as walking with a com-panion about the enclosure leaning on a staff; as visitingthe cells and offices to see that all was in order; as super-intending the building and ornamentation of the abbeywhich under his care was then rising from its ruins; aseven personally watching over the arrangements of thekitchen and other domestic concerns; or as rising beforethe day had dawned, to copy, study or revise the manu-scripts of his house, or to kneel motionless in the churchwith hands lifted heavenwards and face moist with tears.All agree in describing his kindly genial demeanour toothers, his gentle yet firm method of teaching and hisspecial love for boys. After a period of perhaps fifteenyears spent in his beloved home at Glastonbu

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