Marlow Archaeology Society unearths the secrets of Reading Abbey.
A manuscript, music and a human hand are just some of the subjects to be discussed by Marlow Archaeology Society as they look at the founding of Reading Abbey.
Founded in 1121 by King Henry I to be his burial church, it was built and designed for both monks and pilgrims.
Speakers John and Lindsay Mullaney will use their research to show how Reading Abbey was founded and how Henry set about acquiring a collection of saintly relics that would attract pilgrims to it and increase the economy of the abbey and the town.
Newly discovered evidence by Dr Brian Kemp, dating back to the 12th and 13th centuries relating to the interior design of the abbey, gives a better understanding of where Henry was buried. Examples of music from the time which Dr Kemp’s research revealed were used on early anniversaries of Henry’s death in 1135, will also be used.
And a rare surviving manuscript reveals one of the ‘miracle stories’ about the town’s most famous relic, the ‘Hand of St James’ which possessed powerful healing properties, performing many miracles in the 12th century. Today the hand can be seen at the Roman Catholic Church in Marlow.
Reading Abbey has recently undergone a three-year conservation project, costing some £3.15million under the watchful eye of the restoration team, Friends of Reading Abbey.
Join the archaeology society at Liston Hall on Thursday, 24th January at 8pm to hear all these secrets and more. Members £3, visitors £4.50, pay at the door.