Benedict Biscop - Encyclopedia


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BENEDICT BISCOP (628? - 690), also known as BlscoP Baducing, English churchman, was born of a good Northumbrian family and was for a time a thegn of King Oswiu. He then went abroad and after a second journey to Rome (he made five altogether) lived as a monk at Lerins (665-667). It was under his conduct that Theodore of Tarsus came from Rome to Canterbury in 669, and in the same year Benedict was appointed abbot of St Peter's, Canterbury. Five years later he built the monastery of St Peter at Wearmouth, on land granted him by Ecgfrith of Northumbria, and endowed it with an excellent library. A papal letter in 678 exempted the monastery from external control, and in 682 Benedict erected a sister foundation (St Paul) at Jarrow. He died on the 12th of January 690, leaving a high reputation for piety and culture. Saxon architecture owes nearly everything to his initiative, and Bede was one of his pupils.

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