William of Malmesbury’s History of Glastonbury

This in preparation for a post on the significance of St Mary’s Chapel in early Christianity and in particular the small round wattle-and-daub building with an intricate pavement, contemporaneous with the Westminster Abbey sanctuary pavement but of a design and a date unknown. Important but often speculative twentieth Century sources are Bligh Bond, John Michell and Keith Critchlow, whilst the earliest historian to record its history was William of Malmesbury.

William’s history of Glastonbury was significantly changed in the century after it was written, to suit the Abbey’s pilgrimage business. Fortunately, the main body of that history lived on unaltered in William’s revision of his History of the Kings of England. The notes below were made using The Glastonbury Legends pages 26-41, by Professor (of History) R.F. Treharne (1901 – 1967), Aberystwyth University.

Introduction

William of Malmesbury wrote a large-scale history of England (Kings of England) by 1125. In it he stated that Glastonbury Abbey had been founded , on the advice of St. Aldhelm, by Ine, King of Wessex (688-726), a statement which he repeated in his Ecclesiastical History also finished in 1125. Later, when writing a Life of St. Dunstan (undated) he realised Glastonbury was much older than that since “Glastonbury had already passed under ecclesiastical authority long before the time of St Patrick, who had died in A.D. 472”. So, impressed by what he had seen and heard at Glastonbury, he wrote a separate monograph on the antiquity of that great abbey, completed by 1135.

Figure 1 Frederick Bligh Bond’s vision of the first church at Glastonbury, based upon the story of Joseph of Arimethea added to William’s History in the century after it was written, as explained below.
Continue reading “William of Malmesbury’s History of Glastonbury”

John Michell’s Perpetual Choirs

15 April 2017 Views: 10450

In 1972  John Michell inferred an enormous ten-sided form nearly sixty three miles across, in which important historical and neolithic sites had been intended as ten vertices around an ancient centre, signified by a Whiteleafed Oak.

Figure 1 The Decagon of Perpetual Choirs, anchored upon Stonehenge, the Solstice sunrise in summer and set in winter

Michell had previously [1991] developed the idea of the enchantment of the land as an actual practice; land areas were enchanted by using a geometrical pattern integrated with myths and ritual calendars, enacted within that framework. This  was long before, around 930, such a pattern was being established of thing-places in Iceland. The idea of thing places is still find-able in English names such as Goring, the centre northeast of Stonehenge, where the summer solstice sun arose.

“Perpetual choirs were a Celtic institution, from pagan into early Christian times. In Iola Morganwg’s Triads of Britain, translated from Welsh, it is stated that ‘in each of these three choirs there were 24,000 saints; that is,
there were a hundred for every hour of the day and the night in rotation, perpetuating the praise and service of God without rest or intermission.’ ”  – The Measure of Albion

“Three of the choirs were located at Stonehenge, at Glastonbury, and near Llantwit Major in Wales. Others appear to have been at Goring-on- Thames and at Croft Hill in Leicestershire, a traditional site of ritual,  legal, and popular assemblies.” The Dimensions of Paradise


Continue reading “John Michell’s Perpetual Choirs”

Metrology of Chartres Labyrinth

first published on my Square Space blog on November 26, 2006

The picture below is a composite of three things

  1. The Chartres eleven level labyrinth discussed in chapter seven.
  2. The iconography of Thoth as Pi within the circle (from Temple of Man).
  3. The hexagonal number 19 as circles
Figure 1 Geometry of Thoth and 19 packed circles overlaid the Labyrinth

The 22 units of the 21 unit sector of Thoth’s fathom correspond to 19 “cogs” of the circumference of the Chartre labyrinth.

It is fabulous that the cogs are used to define, by their centres, the perimeter as the unit called ped manualis by the buildersaccording to John James (the foremost investigator of that cathedral’s construction order – see his website).

Whilst the ped manualis is a Royal Foot, 8/7, in Neal’s Standard Geographical variation (times 126/125 and times 176/175), it is also close to 22/19 feet (different by 8 thousandths of an inch and 99.94% accurate). Thus whilst 19 cogs equal 22 units, the cogs are 22/19 which times 19 is 22 feet – plus 19 is a hexagonal number and there is the motif of six petals in the centre.

The entire circumference is, like the iconography of Thoth, 6 x 22 = 132 feet long. Using Pi at 22/7, the 22s cancel and the result is a diameter of 6 x 7 or 42 English feet. Like the Scottish brochs, the units directly interpret the ideal value of Pi itself as 22/7, employing as it does the prime numbers 11/7 that also define "Ancient Model of the World".