Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, No. 276 by Various

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The Project Gutenberg EBook of Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and
Instruction, No. 276, by Various

This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with
almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or
re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included
with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.net

Title: Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, No. 276
Volume 10, No. 276, October 6, 1827

Author: Various

Release Date: May 29, 2005 [EBook #15935]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1


Produced by Jonathan Ingram, David Garcia and the Online
Distributed Proofreading Team.

* * * * *


VOL. X, NO. 276.] SATURDAY, OCTOBER 6, 1827. [PRICE 2d.

* * * * *

Bristol Cathedral.

[Illustration: Bristol Cathedral.]

There is given
Unto the things of earth, which Time hath bent,
A spirit's feelings, and where he hath leant
His hand, but broke his scythe, there is a power
And magic in the ruin'd battlement
For which the palace of the present hour
Must yield its pomp, and wait till ages are its dower.


The cathedral of Bristol is one of the most interesting relics of
monastic splendour which have been spared from the wrecks of desolation
and decay. It is dedicated to the holy and undivided Trinity, and is the
remains of an abbey or monastery of great magnificence, which was
dedicated to St. Augustine. The erection of this monastery was begun
in 1140, and was finished and dedicated in 1148, according to the
inscription on the tomb of the founder, Robert Fitzharding, the first
lord of Berkeley, who, together with others of that illustrious family,
are enshrined within these walls. It was also denominated the monastery
of the black regular canons of the order of Saint Victor, who are
mentioned by Leland as the black canons of St. Augustine within the city
walls. By some historians, Fitzharding is represented as an opulent
citizen of Bristol; but generally as a younger son or grandson of the
king of Denmark, and as the youthful companion of Henry II., who,
betaking himself from the sunshine of royal friendship, became a canon
of the monastery he himself had founded. In this congenial solitude he
died in 1170, aged 75. Such is the outline of the foundation of this
structure, and it is one of the most attractive episodes of the early
history of England; for the circumstance of a noble exchanging the
gilded finery of a court, and the gay companionship of his prince, for
the gloomy cloisters of an abbey, and the ascetic duties of monastic
life, bespeaks a degree of resolution and self-control which was more
probably the result of sincere conviction than of momentary caprice.

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