Minster-in-Thanet

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Minster
St Mary the Virgin Minster-in-Thanet 1.jpg
Church of St Mary the Virgin, Minster-in-Thanet
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Minster
Location within Kent
Population3,569 (2011) [1]
OS grid reference TR308645
Civil parish
  • Minster
District
Shire county
Region
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town RAMSGATE
Postcode district CT12
Dialling code 01843
Police Kent
Fire Kent
Ambulance South East Coast
UK Parliament
List of places
UK
England
Kent
51°20′02″N1°18′54″E / 51.334°N 1.315°E / 51.334; 1.315 Coordinates: 51°20′02″N1°18′54″E / 51.334°N 1.315°E / 51.334; 1.315

Minster, also known as Minster-in-Thanet, is a village and civil parish in the Thanet District of Kent, England. It is the site of Minster in Thanet Priory. The village is west of Ramsgate (which is the post town) and to the north east of Canterbury; it lies just south west of Kent International Airport and just north of the River Stour. Minster is also the "ancient capital of Thanet". [2] At the 2011 Census the hamlet of Ebbsfleet was included.

Contents

Toponymy

The name ultimately comes from the Medieval Latin monasterium, denoting the historical presence of an abbey or monastery; such names are common in England and indeed throughout Europe.

History

Archaeology has shown a Bronze Age settlement at Minster-in-Thanet. [3] The area became part of the Roman Empire under the emperor Claudius. Around 450AD, the Jutes arrived in the Minster area and established a settlement. [4]

Anglo-Saxon

In 597 Augustine of Canterbury is said, by the Venerable Bede, to have landed with 40 men at nearby Ebbsfleet, in the parish of Minster-in-Thanet, before founding a monastery in Canterbury; a cross marks the spot of his landing.
Minster itself originally started as a monastic settlement in 670 AD. The buildings are still used as nunneries today. [2] The first abbey in the village was founded by St Domneva, a widowed noblewoman, whose daughter St Mildred, is taken as the first abbess. The tradition is that Domneva was granted as much land as a hind could run over in a day, the hind remains the village emblem, see also Thanet. The abbey was extinguished by Viking raiding. The next abbess after St Mildred was St Edburga daughter of King Centwine of the West Saxons. [5]
The third known abbess was Sigeburh, who was active [6] around 762 AD and is known from the Secgan hagiography and from Royal charters. [7] In 761AD Offa, king of the Mercians, granted Sigeburh a toll-exemption which king Æthelbald had previously granted to Abbess Mildrith. Again in about 763 AD Eadberht II, king of Kent, granted the remission of toll on two ships at Sarre and on a third at Fordwich. [8] It has been stated that in gaining these privileges, she may have been taking advantage of Æthelbald's political weakness. [9]
Vikings attacked the surrounding area in 850 AD. [10]

Norman

The parish church of St Mary-the-Virgin is largely Norman but with significant traces of earlier work, the problems of which are unresolved. The nave is impressive with five bays, and the crossing has an ancient chalk block vaulting. The chancel is Early English with later flying buttresses intended to halt the very obvious spread of the upper walls. There is a fine set of misericords reliably dated around 1400. The tower has a curious turret at its southeast corner that is locally referred to as a Saxon watch tower but is built at least partly from Caen stone; it may be that it dates from the time of the conquest but is built in an antique style sometimes called Saxo-Norman. A doorway in the turret opens out some two metres above the present roof line.

The church was used by both the brethren of the second abbey, a dependency of St Augustine's Abbey in Canterbury, and as a parish church. Socket holes in the piers of the crossing suggest that, as well as a rood screen, there was a further screen dividing nave and crossing, such as still exists at Dunster in Somerset. This abbey surrendered during the dissolution in 1534.

Twentieth century

Minster Abbey is a house incorporating remains of the Anglo-Saxon abbey and alleged to be the oldest continuously inhabited house in England. It now houses the village's third religious community, a priory of Roman Catholic Benedictine sisters that is a daughter community of Eichstätt in Bavaria. It was settled in 1937 by refugees fleeing Nazi Germany and continues to flourish as an international community. [11] The Priory has the care of a relic of St Mildred that had been in the care of a church in Deventer in the Netherlands since the Reformation. [12]

Landscape

The smithy ca.1903, by Fred C. Palmer Fred C Palmer 020.jpg
The smithy ca.1903, by Fred C. Palmer

Generally a flat landscape, the area's main features include marshes, farms and rivers. Thanet District Council has, however, assessed Minster Marshes, south of the village, as being unstable, [13] and some areas of Minster, particularly in the south of the village, have suffered from flooding. [14]

Land reclamation has had a strong history in Minster and Monkton, where the original reclamation was done by the monks themselves. [15]

Education

The Primary School is called "Minster Church of England Primary School", which caters for the village's population. [16] As of 2007, there are 410 pupils attending the school. [17]

Transport

Minster railway station lies to the south of the village, on the line from Canterbury West to Ramsgate and on the junction to the Kent Coast Line.

Bus services are provided by Stagecoach.

Military

Minster has a war memorial dedicated to those lost in World War I and World War II and this is located in St Mary's church.

In 2013, Minster hosted a memorial for Jean de Selys Longchamps, a Belgian fighter pilot who is buried in Minster cemetery. This event was hosted by Minster & Monkton Royal British Legion in conjunction with Minster Parish Council and was attended by such dignitaries as The Lord Lieutenant of Kent and the Chief of the Belgian Air Defense.[ citation needed ]

Notable residents

Related Research Articles

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Eorcenberht of Kent was king of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Kent from 640 until his death, succeeding his father Eadbald.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Hilda of Whitby</span> Christian saint

Hilda of Whitby was a Christian saint and the founding abbess of the monastery at Whitby, which was chosen as the venue for the Synod of Whitby in 664. An important figure in the Christianisation of Anglo-Saxon England, she was abbess at several monasteries and recognised for the wisdom that drew kings to her for advice.

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Minster, Swale Town on the Isle of Sheppey, Kent, England

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Christianity in Anglo-Saxon England

In the seventh century the pagan Anglo-Saxons were converted to Christianity mainly by missionaries sent from Rome. Irish missionaries from Iona, who were proponents of Celtic Christianity, were influential in the conversion of Northumbria, but after the Synod of Whitby in 664, the Anglo Saxon church gave its allegiance to the Pope.

Saints Æthelred and Æthelberht according to the Kentish royal legend were princes of the Kingdom of Kent who were murdered in around AD 669, and later commemorated as saints and martyrs. Their story forms an important element in the legend of Saint Mildrith, because the monastery of Minster in Thanet is said to have been founded in atonement for the crime.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Mildrith</span>

Saint Mildrith, also Mildthryth, Mildryth and Mildred,, was a 7th and 8th-century Anglo-Saxon abbess of the Abbey at Minster-in-Thanet, Kent. She was declared a saint after her death, and later her remains were moved to Canterbury.

Saint Edburga of Minster-in-Thanet was a princess of Wessex, and abbess of Minster-in-Thanet. She is regarded as a saint.

Ebbsfleet, Thanet Human settlement in England

Ebbsfleet is a hamlet near Ramsgate, Kent, at the head of Pegwell Bay. Historically it was a peninsula on the southern coast of the Isle of Thanet, marking the eastern end of the Wantsum Channel that separated Thanet from the Kentish mainland. It is in the civil parish of Minster-in-Thanet.

Cliffsend Human settlement in England

Cliffsend is a village and civil parish situated almost 2 miles (3 km) west of Ramsgate, Kent, United Kingdom, in the Thanet local government district.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Domne Eafe</span>

Domne Eafe, also Domneva, Domne Éue, Æbbe, Ebba, was, according to the Kentish royal legend, a granddaughter of King Eadbald of Kent and the foundress of the double monastery of Minster in Thanet Priory at Minster-in-Thanet during the reign of her cousin King Ecgberht of Kent. A 1000-year-old confusion with her sister Eormenburg means she is often now known by that name. Married to Merewalh of Mercia, she had at least four children. When her two brothers, Æthelred and Æthelberht, were murdered she obtained the land in Thanet to build an abbey, from a repentant King Ecgberht. Her three daughters all went on to become abbesses and saints, the most famous of which, Mildrith, ended up with a shrine in St Augustine's Abbey, Canterbury.

Repton Abbey was an Anglo-Saxon Benedictine abbey in Derbyshire, England. Founded in the 7th century, the abbey was a double monastery, a community of both monks and nuns. The abbey is noted for its connections to various saints and Mercian royalty; two of the thirty-seven Mercian Kings were buried within the abbey's crypt. The abbey was abandoned in 873, when Repton was overrun by the invading Great Heathen Army.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Minster in Thanet Priory</span> Human settlement in England

Minster Abbey is the name of two abbeys in Minster-in-Thanet, Kent, England. The first was a 7th-century foundation which lasted until the Dissolution of the Monasteries. Beside its ruins is St Mildred's Priory, a Benedictine community of women founded in 1937.

All Saints Church, Shuart Church on the Isle of Thanet, Kent

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St Augustines Cross Stone memorial in Kent, England

St Augustine's Cross is a stone memorial in Kent, in a fenced enclosure on the south side of Cottington Road, west of Cliffs End, at Pegwell Bay, Thanet, about 2 miles (3.2 km) west of Ramsgate, 3 miles (4.8 km) north of Richborough Roman Fort, and 12 miles (19 km) east of Canterbury, in the parish of Minster. The cross was erected in 1884 to commemorate the arrival of St Augustine in England in AD 597. It is believed to mark the place where St. Augustine met King Ethelbert for the first time.

The Kentish Royal Legend is a diverse group of Medieval texts which describe a wide circle of members of the royal family of Kent from the 7th to 8th centuries AD. Key elements include the descendants of Æthelberht of Kent over the next four generations; the establishment of various monasteries, most notably Minster-in-Thanet; and the lives of a number of Anglo-Saxon saints and the subsequent travels of their relics. Although it is described as a legend, and contains a number of implausible episodes, it is placed in a well attested historical context.

St Augustines Abbey, Ramsgate

St Augustine's Abbey or Ramsgate Abbey is a former Benedictine abbey in Ramsgate. It was built in 1860 by Augustus Pugin and is a Grade II listed building. It was the first Benedictine monastery to be built in England since the Reformation. In 2010, the monks moved to St Augustine's Abbey in Chilworth, Surrey. The site is now owned by the Vincentian Congregation from Kerala, India. The church of St Augustine, across the road from the abbey site, belongs to the Archdiocese of Southwark and is a shrine of St Augustine of Canterbury.

St Marys Church, Reculver Church in Reculver, England

St Mary's Church, Reculver, was founded in the 7th century as either a minster or a monastery on the site of a Roman fort at Reculver, which was then at the north-eastern extremity of Kent in south-eastern England. In 669, the site of the fort was given for this purpose by King Ecgberht of Kent to a priest named Bassa, beginning a connection with Kentish kings that led to King Eadberht II of Kent being buried there in the 760s, and the church becoming very wealthy by the beginning of the 9th century. From the early 9th century to the 11th the church was treated as essentially a piece of property, with control passing between kings of Mercia, Wessex and England and the archbishops of Canterbury. Viking attacks may have extinguished the church's religious community in the 9th century, although an early 11th-century record indicates that the church was then in the hands of a dean accompanied by monks. By the time of Domesday Book, completed in 1086, St Mary's was serving as a parish church.

References

  1. "Civil Parish population 2011". Archived from the original on 7 October 2015. Retrieved 3 October 2015.
  2. 1 2 Minster-In-Thanet Archived 10 April 2008 at the Wayback Machine ; retrieved on 22 May 2008
  3. Jessup, Frank W., Kent History Illustrated (Kent County Council, 1966) ISBN   9780900947063
  4. ""History", Minster-in-Thanet". Archived from the original on 15 January 2020. Retrieved 15 January 2020.
  5. "Medieval Sourcebook: The Correspondence of St. Boniface". Archived from the original on 19 September 2008. Retrieved 13 September 2008.
  6. William George Searle, onomasticon (Cambridge University Press Archive, 1879) page 418.
  7. David Rollason, ‘Mildrith (fl. 716–c. 733)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, (Oxford University Press,2004 Archived 23 January 2021 at the Wayback Machine ).
  8. Charters of the St Augustine’s Abbey, Canterbury, and Minster-in-Thanet, ed. S. E. Kelly, Anglo-Saxon Charters 4 (Oxford: Published for The British Academy by Oxford University Press, 1995), p. 179.
  9. Johannes Hoops, Reallexikon der germanischen Altertumskunde, Vol. 24 (Walter de Gruyter, 1968) page 298.
  10. A. Forte, R. Oram, and F. Pederson. Viking Empires. 1st. ed. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005), page 67.
  11. "Minster Abbey". Archived from the original on 7 September 2008. Retrieved 13 September 2008.
  12. "Monasticon: Community: Minster in Thanet". Monastic Matrix. University of Southern California. Archived from the original on 27 September 2011. Retrieved 14 September 2008.
  13. "Thanet Plan 13". Archived from the original on 14 May 2008. Retrieved 22 May 2008.
  14. "Thanet Local Plan 2006" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 16 July 2011. Retrieved 22 May 2008.
  15. Curators Introduction Archived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine ; retrieved on 22 May 2008
  16. "Minster CE Primary School". Archived from the original on 3 February 2009. Retrieved 21 June 2008.
  17. "Minster Church of England Primary School". Department for Children, Schools and Families . Retrieved 21 June 2008.[ permanent dead link ]
  18. "Blue Dick Culmer". Archived from the original on 27 March 2010. Retrieved 13 September 2008.