An Overview of Devotion to Our Lady of Glastonbury by Dr Timothy Hopkinson-Ball

ECHA Podcast Artwork v2Glastonbury is the oldest shrine dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary in England, pre-dating the better-known Marian shrine of Walsingham by many 100s of years. Since the destruction of Glastonbury Abbey at the Reformation, the shrine’s Marian origins have been overshadowed by the legends surrounding the person of King Arthur and those of St Joseph of Arimathea and the ‘Glastonbury thorn’. With reference to the archeology, architecture, extant medieval texts and artifacts, Dr Timothy Hopkinson-Ball, vice-chairman of the Glastonbury Antiquarian Society and Project Archivist at Downside Abbey, attempts to unpick the legend from historical fact. In this lucid and informative talk, he shows that there is evidence for a very early devotion to the Blessed Virgin at Glastonbury, which, with the canonical restoration of the shrine in 1955, is continuing to flourish today.

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