St Augustine’s Abbey

Our final stop was at the ancient Canterbury Abbey, home to St Augustine in the mission which established Christianity in Britain, dating to the 6th century CE. It fell victim to Henry the VIII’s dissolution of the monasteries in the 1530s, alluded to by Shakespeare in the highlighted line of the sonnet below, and fell into ruin. It was subsequently rebuilt as a royal palace, a poorhouse, a gaol and a school, before lapsing again into ruin.

This concludes our trip to Canterbury and Margate of a month ago (!) Click any of the images to see all of them full-sized.

Sonnet 73
By William Shakespeare

That time of year thou mayst in me behold
When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang
Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,
Bare ruin’d choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.
In me thou see’st the twilight of such day
As after sunset fadeth in the west,
Which by and by black night doth take away,
Death’s second self, that seals up all in rest.
In me thou see’st the glowing of such fire
That on the ashes of his youth doth lie,
As the death-bed whereon it must expire,
Consum’d with that which it was nourish’d by.
This thou perceiv’st, which makes thy love more strong,
To love that well which thou must leave ere long.

Published by

Adam Isler


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