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Ely Cathedral

Listed under Churches & Abbeys in Midlands, United Kingdom.

  • Photo of Ely Cathedral
  • Photo of Ely Cathedral
Photo of Ely Cathedral
Photo by flickr user edbrambley
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Founded by St Etheldreda as a convent and monastery in 673, the Cathedral was begun in the 11th century under the leadership of Abbot Simeon and completed in 1109 on the site of her shrine in an earlier Saxon monastery church. Popular as a pilgrim destination in the middle ages, the Cathedral towers over the small town, testament to the power and sanctity of a now largely forgotten saint.

The monastery survived at Ely until dissolved by Henry VIII in 1539 - St Etheldreda's Shrine was destroyed. The Cathedral church, however, survived, and attracts over 250,000 visitors each year.

Written by  James Dunford Wood.

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