Showing posts with the label St. Cuthbert

The Magic of the Inner Farne Islands

In the afternoon of 10th June, we had booked a trip to Inner Farne, home of a multitude of seabirds - one of the best locations in the British Isles. This time of year, most breeds are plentiful, as they are busy raising young. So, blessing the calm day, we made our way to Seahouses, our point of embarking. The trip visits some of the outer islands, just for a brief look. This was interesting as we skirted the island housing the lighthouse from where Grace Darling and her father made their heroic rescue. Then passed large numbers of gray seals lazily watching us sail past. Finally, we landed on inner Farne to be dive bombed by Terns who were nesting near the landing point. Guillemot covering the rocks as we approached by the island. Longstone Lighthouse - our closest approach. Some trips actually land - but not ours. Grace Darling became a national heroine after risking her life to save the stranded survivors of the wrecked steamship Forfarshire in 1838.

Lindisfarne or Holy Island

Holy Island has a very special place in history as the birthplace of the Lindisfarne Gospels, among the most celebrated illuminated books in the world.  According to an inscription added in the 10th century at the end of the original text, the manuscript was made in honour of God and of St. Cuthbert by Eadfrith, Bishop of Lindisfarne, who died in 721.  Eadfrith played a major part in establishing Cuthbert's cult after his relics had been raised to the altar of the monastery church on 20th March, 698, the eleventh anniversary of his death. The Gospels may have been made in honour of that event. The book's original leather binding was provided by Ethelwald, who followed Eadfrith as bishop and died about 740. He had been associated with Cuthbert in his lifetime. An outer covering of gold, silver and gemstones was added by Billfrith the Anchorite, probably about the middle of the 8th century.  Both covers have long since vanished but the manuscript itself has survived the