The great Abbey of St. Mary in York was founded by King William Rufus in 1088 and, for four hundred and fifty years, it was the wealthiest and most powerful abbey in the North of England. The monks, who transferred here from the old monastic centre of Lastingham, lived and worked under the Benedictine rule. Religious arguments and desire for reform led to the Prior and a number of monks leaving to found the famous Cistercian Fountains Abbey in 1132. However, St. Mary's continued to thrive until it finally succumbed to the might of the crown in 1539.
The idyllic ruins of the north and west walls of the Abbey Church create a beautiful centre piece for the Museum Gardens, often used as the setting for the famous York Mystery Plays. The plan of the rest of the monastic complex is laid out in the surrounding grass. Though other remnants, such as the Pilgrims' Hospitium, the West Gate and Abbot's House (now King's Manor) can be seen not far away. Excavated finds and architectural features, particularly relating to the chapter and warming houses, are strikingly displayed in the adjoining Yorkshire Museum.
The European award-winning Yorkshire Museum set in 10 acres of botanical gardens located in the historic centre of York displays some of the finest Roman, Anglo-Saxon, Viking and medieval treasures ever discovered in Britain. The Yorkshire Museum, home of one of the most important archaeological collections in Europe also houses the finest piece of medieval gold jewellery found this century - the Middleham Jewel, recently saved from export abroad. Admission includes entrance to the geology gallery 'The Hunters and The Hunted'. Watch out for special exhibitions through the year.
For further information visit the website: www.york.gov.uk
You are viewing panorama No.41 (Saint Marys Abbey, Museum Gardens, York, YO1 7FR), one of 134 Virtual Reality 360 degree views of York.
Map of York showing the location of Saint Marys Abbey, Museum Gardens, York, YO1 7FR at Latitude 53.96155 / Longitude -1.08803.
We have visited York on a number of occasions to produce this tour, this page was created on Wed, 19 Sep 2012 10:49:34 +0100, although the photography may have been obtained on an earlier date.
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