History of the Old Carthusians

History of the Old Carthusians

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In the 18th century football was played by most of Britain's leading public schools. There is documentary evidence that football was played at Eton as early as 1747. Westminster started two years later. Harrow, Shrewsbury, Winchester and Charterhouse had all taken up football by the 1750s.

The Football Association was established in October, 1863. The aim of the FA was to establish a single unifying code for football. The first meeting took place at the Freeman's Tavern in London. The clubs represented at the meeting included Barnes, Blackheath, Perceval House, Kensington School, the War Office, Crystal Palace, Forest (later known as the Wanderers), the Crusaders and No Names of Kilburn. Charterhouse also sent an observer to the meeting.

In 1871, Charles W. Alcock, the Secretary of the Football Association, announced the introduction of the Football Association Challenge Cup. It was the first knockout competition of its type in the world. Four years later former pupils of Charterhouse School established the Old Carthusians Football Club. This including the English international, Charles Wreford Brown. They entered the FA Cup and won the competition in 1881 by beating Old Etonians 3-0 in the final.

Old Carthusians also won the FA Amateur Cup in 1894 and 1897. The club still exists and currently play in the Arthurian League.

The Carthusians in Ireland

JUST eighteen years ago, in his excellent History of the Charterhouse, Dom Lawrence Hendriks, monk of St. Hugh's Charterhouse, Sussex,[1] devoted one paragraph to the &lsquoIrish Charterhouse,&rsquo as follows:&mdash

The Irish Charterhouse is the next in chronological order. Its situation and its founder are both unknown. It seems to have been simply an unsuccessful attempt to establish the Order in Ireland. It is said to have lasted about forty years but all that we know for certain is its suppression by order of the General Chapter of 1321. The monks were transferred to various houses.

Brief and unsatisfactory as this reference was, I determined to pursue my researches as to the founder, situation, and fortunes of this solitary house of the sons of St. Bruno in Ireland, but it was only within the past year that I pieced together the fragments collected from various authentic sources, for the purpose of this article.

Considering that the very existence of any house of the Carthusians has not been alluded to by any of our Irish historians, a sketch of Kinalehin Priory&mdashfor such is the name of the foundation&mdashin the early years of the fourteenth century will doubtless prove of interest to many readers of the I. E. record.

Let me at once state that the Carthusian Priory of Kinalehin (Cenel-Fechen), was an ideal foundation, according to the teachings of St. Bruno, and was situated on the declivity of Sliabh Echtge (Slieve-Aughty) in South Connacht, in the diocese of Clonfert.

Sliabh Echtge is famed as the native place of Flann mac Lonain, &lsquothe Virgil of Ireland,&rsquo who flourished in the tenth century.

In one of his poems he describes the travels of Ilbrechtach, the harper, over the mountains along with Mac Liag, the bard of Brian Boru and the poem, beginning Aoibhionn aoibhinn Echtge ara, consists of one hundred and thirty-two lines.[2]

But, before going further, it may be well to say something of the founder of the Carthusians, and of the Order itself&mdashan Order that has produced many saints like St. Hugh of Lincoln, Pope St. Urban II, and others, including the eighteeen Carthusian martyrs beatified by the late Pope.

St. Bruno was a native of Cologne, where he was born in 1038, but was sent to France at an early age, becoming a Canon of Rheims, in 1070, on which account he has often been claimed as a Frenchman.

In 1080 he felt impelled to adopt a life of solitude and silence, far from the turmoil of the world, and in 1083, got together six disciples who proceeded with him to Grenoble, where they were given a foundation by St. Hugh in the desert of Chartreuse.

Thus, in 1084, was begun the monastery of Chartreuse, a name which has been corruptly anglicized to &lsquoCharterhouse.&rsquo

St. Bruno founded a second monastery in the desert of Calabria, and there he died on October 6, 1101.

The Carthusian rule is very much akin to the old Irish monastic rule of St. Carthach of Lismore.

The Order is strictly contemplative&mdashprayer, study, spritual reading and manual labour filling up the intervals of the canonical hours.

Practically, the Carthusian day begins with the singing of the Divine Office at midnight.

Their &lsquooffice&rsquo is longer than any now used in the Church, and the chant is slower and more severe than the Cistercian.

After a private office in their cells each monk retires to rest at 2.30 and is up again at 5.30.

Mass, meditation, spiritual reading, and portion of the office occupy the time from 5.30 to 10.

From 10 to 2.30 p.m. is given over to intellectual and manual work, except a half hour for dinner.

Vespers are sung at 2.45, and the monks retire to their cells at 6.30.

Such is the Carthusian day.

As is generally known, the Carthusian is a solitary, living in his cell all the time, save thrice daily (at Matins, Mass and Vespers), when he goes to the monastic church.

On certain greater feasts this solitude is mitigated, as he then sings all the canonical hours with his brethren in choir, and on these occasions, too, dinner and supper are served in the refectory. A weekly walk, or Spatiamentum, outside the enclosure has been permitted since 1265.

Witham, on the borders of Selwood Forest, was the first priory, or Charterhouse, established in England, founded by King Henry II, in 1178, of which St. Hugh of Lincoln was the third prior, in 1184.

The second English house was at Hinton, in Somersetshire, founded by Earl William de Longespee, in 1227.

Beauvale, in Nottinghamshire, was the third, in 1343, due to the munificence of Nicholas de Cantelope.

In chronological order the Carthusian annals place the Irish foundation as after that of Hinton, and its dissolution as some years before that of the establishment of Beauvale.

No other scrap of information is to be found in any of their writers, except that embodied in the paragraph at the commencement of this paper.

Hinton Priory, as has been stated, dates from 1227, and was endowed by Ella, Countess of Salisbury, widow of William de Longespee, in 1248. This Ella founded Lacock Abbey, of which she became abbess, and died there in 1263. Her husband was a Crusader, and it is remarkable that to this day the Carthusian monks continue to say special prayers daily for the restoration of the Holy Land to the Christians.

Now, William's brother, Stephen de Longespee, was married to Emmelina, Countess of Ulster, in 1244, whose son was Walter de Burgh. In right of his wife's dowry, this Stephen obtained, in 1249, a third part of five cantreds of land in Ireland. He was appointed Justicary of Ireland in 1258. Walter de Burgh, Earl of Ulster, died at Galway Castle, July 26, 1271, and was succeeded by his eldest son Richard, popularly known as the Red Earl, Lord of Connacht.

In 1280, Richard de Burgh was virtually ruler of Connacht, and on June 28, 1283, there was a grant given him and his wife, Margaret, of the land which Emmelina, late Countess of Ulster, held in Ulster.

It is therefore more than probable that Emmelina, Dowager Countess of Ulster, suggested to the Red Earl, to make a foundation for the Carthusian Order in Connacht.

Anyhow, in or about the year 1280, Richard de Burgo established a monastery for the Chartreuse brethren at Kinalehin, doubtless, colonized from Hinton.

King Edward I was favourably disposed towards the new foundation, and, on July 27, 1282, issued letters, dated from Rhuddlan, guaranteeing English protection &lsquofor the prior, monks, and lay brothers of the Carthusian Order, de Domo Dei, in Kinalehin.&rsquo

It is not a little remarkable that whilst Hinton Priory was named Locus Dei by the Carthusians, Kinalehin Priory is written Domus Dei, as appears from the Calendar of Patent Rolls.[3]

John de Alatri, Bishop of Clonfert, Papal Nuncio and Collector, was a munificent patron of the Kinalehin house from 1281 to 1295, in which latter year he was translated by Pope Boniface VIII to the Archbishopric of Benevento.

His successor, Robert, an English Benedictine monk of Canterbury, was consecrated at Rome by Gerard, Bishop of Sabina, in December, 1295.

It is evident from the State Papers that these two bishops of Clonfert were in the favour of the Holy See and of Edward I, and both were on intimate terms with the Red Earl.

The Carthusians had also a friend in Stephen de Fulburn, Archbishop of Tuam, who was Lord Justice of Ireland in 1286.

William Bermingham, his successor, was also a generous patron, to the detriment, as it would seem, of the English Dominicans of Athenry.

In 1300, Richard de Burgo founded the Carmelite Priory of Loughrea, which soon became one of the most important foundations of that Order in Ireland.

It was colonized from England, as were the other Irish Carmelite houses, which were all under the jurisdiction of the English province.

Not long afterwards the founder was summoned by King Edward I to take part in the Scottish campaign, and he set out for Scotland in the spring of the year 1301, remaining in that country for twelve months.

In 1305 he endowed twenty-four priests with lands to celebrate daily Mass (for his own soul and the souls of his ancestors) at Loughrea and Tipperbride (Ballintobber, Co. Roscommon), in a chapel to be newly built and for this purpose he granted them the advowsons of the Churches of Loughrea, Portrush, Carrickfergus, Greencastle, Ballymoney, Dieucross, Loughguile and Tipperbride.

The church of Loughrea was then valued at £20 a year, and Tipperbride (Ballintober) at six marks annually.

The next entry we meet with concerning Kinalehin is in the ecclesiastical taxation made by order of Pope Boniface VIII, in 1302, which, however, was not completed till the year 1307, under Pope Clement V.

In this taxation, the Carthusian Priory of Kinalehin, written &lsquoKenaloyn,&rsquo is valued at £6 13s. 4d., the tenth being given as 13s. 4d.

It is stated to be in the deanery of &lsquoDondery&rsquo &mdashnow Duniry&mdashin which there were then five rectories, namely, those of Duniry, Lickmolassy, Kinalehin, Lickerrig, and Kilconickny&mdashand six vicarages, viz., Duniry, Lickmolassy, Kinalehin, Kilcorban, Kilmalinoge and Drummackee.

The vicarage of Kinalehin is valued at £1 7s. 4d. yearly, and the tenth at 2s. 8¾d.&mdashthe sum total of the deanery of Duniry being given as £22 2s. 8d.

Richard de Burgo, Earl of Ulster, was almost at the pinacle of his power in 1307, and on June 15, 1308, he was appointed for a time as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland.

In November, 1307, Robert, Bishop of Clonfert, died, and a licence to elect was issued by Edward II on December, 7 of the same year.

The chapter elected Gregory O'Brogan Dean of Clonfert, to the vacant see, who received restitution of temporalities on March 22, 1308. A few months later, Edward de Burgo was provided by Pope Clement V as Provost of Tuam.

The Bruce invasion occasioned considerable unrest in the years 1315-1318, and though the fortunes of war seemed to favour Edward Bruce (who was joined by his brother Robert, in 1317), the victory of Faughart, near Dundalk, on October 14, 1318, established the English power more securely than before.

In Connacht, the death of Felim O'Connor at the battle of Athenry, led to a civil war, and in 1318, Turlough O'Connor had a rival in Cathal O'Connor.

The Red Earl, weary of war alarms, retired to the Abbey of Athassel, Co. Tipperary, leaving his vast estates to his grandson William.

The English in Thomond got a crushing defeat at Dysert O'Dea, on May 10, 1318.

No wonder that the Carthusian monks of Kinalehin felt insecure.

What with the retirement of the Red Earl, the constant attacks on Sir William de Burgo, and the internecine feuds of the Irish, the year 1320 found the brethren of the Domus Dei on the slope of Sliabh Echtge, in a pitiable plight.

The worthy Bishop of Clonfert died in 1319, and no election of a successor could be made for two years, &lsquoowing to the fighting in these parts,&rsquo as stated in the brief appointing his successor, John (Archdeacon of Kilmacduagh), in 1322.

Accordingly, in 1321, the priory was suppressed by order of the General Chapter of the Grande Chartreuse, and in the same year the Carthusians left Kinalehin for ever.

Sir William de Burgo died in 1324, and the Red Earl died penitently with the Augustinian monks of Athassal, on July 29, 1326, being succeeded in his title and possessions by his grandson William, murdered in 1333.

It only remains to add that in 1371 the Franciscans were given the ruinous priory of Kinalehin by Pope Gregory XI, and the friary was built in 1372. It flourished till 1740.

Yet, though the Carthusians left Ireland in the fourteenth century, it was an Irish monk of that Order, Father John Tynbegh, Prior of the London Charterhouse, who gave the habit of St. Bruno to Blessed John Houghton in 1516, and may thus be regarded as a link with the Carthusian house of Kinalehin.

Video: Cartujano-Andalusian Horse

Very little is known about the development of these horses with very little documentation found in English. They are one of the world’s oldest studbooks belongs to the Carthusian Horse. It was in the 18 th century that this breed developed from an Andalusian foundation sire named Esclavo. This dark grey stallion was considered to be immaculately perfect except for the presence of warts under the tail. In the latter years, it is this feature that came to be the mark of the Carthusian bloodline.

However, other than these warts, the sire passed its genetic traits like the presence of ‘horns’ (actually a small horny wart of deposited by calcium in the middle of the forehead) down the line, giving birth to a number of colts in no time.

In 1736, a few of these mares were gifted to a Carthusian monastery, while the rest of the horses were absorbed into the original Andalusians.

Credit goes to the monks belonging to the monastery since it was for their effort that these remaining horses retained the pure bloodline and continued to breed the next generation of Carthusian horses.

In the next few centuries, the monks refused to introduce the genes of the other breeds into their bloodline, and thus, practically kept them segregated from the Andalusians.

At present, only 3% of the Andalusian line is purely Carthusians. Continued measures have been adopted along with selective breeding so as to retain the old bloodlines of these horses. They are being bred and raised in the stud facilities around Jerez de la Frontera, Cordoba, and Badajoz, which are all owned by the state. Unfortunately, they only comprise around 3% of the Andalusian population, and their numbers are rare.

Though they do not have a separate registry, an individual must be validated by the Association of Cartujano Breeders in cooperation with the University of Cordoba, in order to be labeled as a “pure Cartujano”.


Today the Charterhouse is home to a community of Brothers who benefit from the charity established by Thomas Sutton early in the seventeenth century. However, our story is much more than the story of the almshouse. For we have been living the nation’s history since 1348.

Peer closely through the half light of the Master’s Court at dusk and you might make out the ghosts of Victorian physicians or plague victims, catch a glimpse of Elizabeth I commanding one of her courtiers – or spy the fourteen-year-old John Wesley kneeling at prayer.

The story begins in 1348 during the Black Death, when the land was used as a burial ground for victims of plague. In 1371, the Charterhouse was built – a Carthusian monastery, which flourished throughout the later medieval and early Tudor period.

With the dissolution of the monasteries, the Charterhouse became a mansion for wealthy noblemen and a refuge for royalty. Elizabeth I met the Privy Council here in the days before her coronation in 1558 and James I used the Great Chamber to create 130 new Barons before he was crowned. But it was in 1611 that Thomas Sutton bought the Charterhouse and established the foundation that now bears his name.

Thomas Sutton’s will provided for up to 80 Brothers: ‘either decrepit or old captaynes either at sea or at land, maimed or disabled soldiers, merchants fallen on hard times, those ruined by shipwreck of other calamity’ as well as Charterhouse school. James I retained his connection with the Charterhouse, becoming the first Royal Governor of Thomas Sutton’s foundation.

Since then, the Charterhouse story has continued. Wellington, Gladstone and Cromwell have all been Governors. The Charterhouse appears in the writings of Daniel Defoe, Charles Dickens and William Makepeace Thackeray. Indeed, Thackeray, Robert Baden-Powell and John Wesley attended school here. When the school moved to Godalming in 1872, the Brothers remained at the Charterhouse in Clerkenwell.

The Charterhouse Charterhouse Square London - EC1M 6AN - Charity registered in England – No. 207773

Old Carthusian Club

Dating back to 1874, the OC Club is a volunteer-led alumni body, which helps to enable Old Carthusians to remain in touch with one another through a range of professional, social and sporting clubs and societies.

The Club supports a tremendous network of peer-to-peer activity amongst our OCs and we want every OC's connection between the School and your fellow alumni to be a life-long one. We very much hope that you will find both social pleasure and professional benefit from maintaining your link throughout your life.

Following the completion of their time at Charterhouse all young OCs become a member of the OC Club (following the payment of their subscription).

A full list of clubs and societies currently on offer is available below. If you would like to become a member of any of our clubs, please visit Charterhouse Connect. Charterhouse Connect also gives you the ability to search for fellow OCs and reconnect, and keeps you updated on all the latest events and news from the clubs and the School.

Please click the link below to view an online Roll of Honour to 695 Old Carthusians and teachers who perished in the First World War.

The &lsquoCharterhouse Registers&rsquo, which give biographical details of scholars (boys on the foundation) and of all known pupils from 1769 to 1975 have been published, and are now available online, together with the School magazines and various other key historical resources. Click the link below to request a username and password for the digitised Archive.

An Elixir From the French Alps, Frozen in Time

GRENOBLE, France — When the world went into lockdowns this year, the monks of Chartreuse simply added another tick to their 900-year record of self-imposed isolation.

The Chartreux, also known as Carthusians, embrace a deeply ascetic existence in the western French Alps, observing customs that have barely changed since their order, one of Christianity’s oldest, was founded. They pass the days alone, praying for humanity and listening for God in the silence that surrounds them.

Frugal meals of bread, cheese, eggs, fruits, vegetables, nuts and fish arrive through a cubby in their individual cells. With few exceptions, the monks do not enter one another’s quarters, and they rarely interact — save for midnight and daytime church services, where no musical instruments are allowed. And once a week, they stroll in pairs through the forests fortifying the monastery.

This internal lifestyle has survived centuries of external turmoil — avalanches, landslides, terrible fires, religious wars, pillaging, evictions and exile, military occupation, the French Revolution and, yes, plagues. Through times of earthly chaos, the Chartreux thrive in accordance with their Middle Ages-era motto: Stat crux dum volvitur orbis (“The cross is steady while the world turns”).

“This order has lasted because they know how to live beyond time, and they know how to live, also, in the present,” said Nadège Druzkowski, an artist and a journalist who spent almost five years putting together a documentary project on the monastery and its surrounding landscapes. “It’s humbling.”

In 2020, the Chartreux philosophy worked in reverse: As Covid-19 ground the world a halt, the Carthusian way of life went on, unchanged.

The Carthusians sustain this isolated lifestyle largely through the production and sale of Chartreuse, a liqueur the monks developed centuries ago. Like its mountainous namesake and the hue named after it, Chartreuse is sharp, bright, profoundly herbal.

In Evelyn Waugh’s novel “Brideshead Revisited,” Anthony Blanche compares it to ingesting the rainbow: “It’s like swallowing a sp-spectrum.” A Baltimore bartender and Chartreuse superfan, Brendan Finnerty, says it tastes “like Christmas in a glass,” or “grassy Jägermeister.” To me, it has the color and flavor of summer sunlight striking a canopy of leaves — impossibly vibrant, sparkling with life, green beyond belief.

When France went into pandemic confinement in mid-March and again this fall, little changed at the Chartreuse monastery or its production site — even as the country’s winemakers and producers of other liquors, such as Cognac, Cointreau and Armagnac, struggled.

France’s shutdowns, along with shelter-in-place orders across the United States and Europe, did, however, close the bars and restaurants that usually function as the secular conduit for the monastic liqueur. Chartreuse sales dropped to two-thirds their usual level, according to a press officer for the distilling company, Chartreuse Diffusion.

“That world sank in a dramatic way,” said Philippe Rochez, the brand’s export director, “so we turned to what was open.” This year, the enterprise has pivoted from the service industry to wine merchants and liquor stores, hoping to place Chartreuse in household cabinets and bar carts.

The enterprise has also upheld its founding mission of good will and benevolence throughout the pandemic, donating a portion of sales to a bartender relief program and gifting 10,000 liters of pure alcohol to Grenoble’s hospital for much-needed sanitizer. The monks also sacrificed their weekly social walks, in solidarity with the outside world.

“We’re separated from all but participate through our prayer,” said Michael Holleran, a Catholic priest in New York City and a former Carthusian who was at the Grande Chartreuse, the order’s head monastery, during other world-shaping moments, including the Challenger space shuttle explosion and the fall of the Berlin Wall.

For now, the liqueur company has to follow the path of its founders and remain patient. “We have to learn to live with the virus,” Mr. Rochez said, and that will take time. At Chartreuse, luckily, there’s nothing but.

“The Carthusians have a wonderful perspective,” Father Holleran said. “The days pass very quickly when you’re immersed in the shadow of eternity.”

The Order Today

In 1984 we celebrated the 900th anniversary of the day Master Bruno, our Father, entered the desert of the Chartreuse with his companions, and engaged himself in the path with the help and grace of God that we are still trying to live and follow today.

The uninterrupted existence of our Order transcends the twists of history, a sign of Gods pleasant disposition towards the Order.

Today, there are 19 Charterhouses with approximately 370 monks and 5 Charterhouse with approximately 75 nuns. The latter can be found in France, Italy, and Spain. The homes of the monks are found in Europe, the United States and in South America, where one house is in the early stage of its foundation in Argentina: inception in September 1997. Charterhouses Around the World.

Actually, we hold it very dear to our heart that John-Paul II encourages contemplative orders to establish themselves in communities in the younger church. We are actively pursuing the possibility of the presence of the Order outside of the western world and a presence in Korea has been decided by the last General Chapter of the Order.

Government of the Order

Supreme authority of the Carthusian Order belongs to the General Chapter , which meets every two years at "La Grande Chartreuse", "mother and font of the Order."

During the Chapter, the Definitory , eight monks elected by the priors of the Charterhouses, form an executive branch and " Plenary Assembly " forms the legislative branch. In between the General Chapters, the Order is run by the Prior of La Grande Chartreuse called " Reverend Father ", aided by a Council . One last important element of the Carthusian government is the institution of Visitors : every two years, each house is visited by two Fathers, usually priors at other homes.

The Statutes

Bruno was a living model, but he never wrote down monastic rules for his brothers. Bruno and his first successors, « &hellipbelonged to the school of the Holy Spirit, letting themselves be forged by experience, elaborated a unique hermitical way of life, transmitted from one generation to another, not by the pen, but by example. »

Guigues put to paper the Customs in use at La Grande Chartreuse: it was the first text of Carthusian rule. In time, additions and modifications were made as necessary. We had to adapt to conditions of new times and locations.

Early on, the Carthusian named their Rules of life the Statutes.

After the council of Vatican II, the " Renewed Statutes of the Carthusian Order " were written in 1971 and 1973. IN order for them to be in order with Canon Law in 1983, these statutes were further revised and became the " Statutes of the Carthusian Order ", approved by the General Chapter of 1987.

These statutes, a real work of monastic spirituality, are for us the transmission of a voice of prayer . They lead us to contemplation or the "savoring knowledge" of God, to which our lives are entirely consecrated ("Savoring Knowledge" : expression of Guigues II, Carthusian author of the 12 th century).

Delicious Italy

Today, the words Padula and Certosa are inseparable. The latter is the Carthusian Monastery of San Lorenzo and should not to be confused with the quaint town of Pertosa which also nestles in the National Part of Cilento and Vallo di Diano.

The area where Padula rises was already inhabited in far off times. Prehistorical finds and a form of primitive civilization have come to light amidst traces of a settlement which practised cultivation.

In fact, it was an important trading centre of ancient Lucania .

A square tower and parts of megalithic walls have been found on the hill of Civita as well as an indication of the presence of an Acropolis. The latter suggests the site was inhabited as far back as the 6th century BC.

As the Rome declined this original centre suffered Saracen raids forcing the inhabitants to move to a neighbouring hill, the one on which today's Padula was built between the end of the 9th and beginning of the 10th century.

The urban layout still perfectly corresponds to this settlement with its medieval village in the part of the old town with its arches, narrow streets and balconies looking out through stone portals.

In the 12th century, Padula became the feudal estate of Gisulfo, founder of the family 'de Padula'. It then passed to other families such as the Sanseverino, Grimaldi, d' Avalos and Ja Pontem before being ceded to the Carthusian Monastery of San Lorenzo (Certosa di Padula).

Padula also served as French headquarters during the Napoleonic Wars then as a base of Garibaldi's Southern Army during the Risorgimento. Finally, as an internment camp for prisoners during the World War 1 and World War 2.

The town is also the birthplace of Joe Petrosino, the policeman who became the symbol of the struggle against the Italo-American mafia. His family had emigrated when he was only 13 years old but returning to Italy in March 1909 he was killed on his arrival.

Perhaps begin your exploration in Piazza Umberto I which represent a hinge or physical link between the ancient and new 'Padula'.

From here, pass the Church 'Fuori Mura' of Annunziata with its panoramic belvedere to reach Largo Municipio in front of the former Convent of S. Agostino.

Continue on to the Church of S. Angelo al Cassaro (probably built in the same period of the first inhabited nucleus) and then onto the Trichora of S. Nicola (there is architectonic evidence of a Greek-Oriental Christian cult) with its fragments of frescoed walls. Finally, you arrive at the Baptistery of S. Giovanni.

Back in the old centre visit the Church of S. Michele and Church of Annunziata, but also medieval buildings such as the Church of S. Martino which lies in a typical setting of the time.

The ancestral house of Joe Petrosino, which is now a permanent museum, is in via Giuseppe Petrosino.

The Byzantine Church of S. Nicola has a wonderful wooden statue of Madonna delle Grazie while the cloister of the Convent of S. Francesco is marvellous. Also entrancing are the stairs of the Church of S. Giovanni which are built into the rock with an inscription "dell'Auliva".

The Church of S. Michele Arcangelo is home to unique and very interesting "Regesti". These are 147 parchments documenting five centuries the social and religious life of Padula and its inhabitants from February 1371 to until December 1829.

They allow us to reconstruct aspects of the social and religious life of the town and its inhabitants from dealings and religious tasks to characteristics of properties, collection of rentals, extent of donations and even a 'marriage agreement' dated 22nd January 1491.

Finally, do not to miss the early Christian Baptistery of S. Giovanni in Fonte dating from the 5th century A.D. and 11th century Rupestrian frescoes of S. Michele alle Grottelle.

There is also the Archaeological Museum of West Lucania in the Carthusian Monastery of San Lorenzo.

Mount Grace and the Bell Family

Lowthian Bell (1816–1904), who lived at nearby Rounton Grange, had been approached by the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings to form a trust to acquire the Arncliffe estate, in order to protect the fragile ruins of the charterhouse and the 17th-century mansion that had succeeded it. Such was his interest, however, that he bought the estate himself. He began the repair and extension of the house and stabilisation of the ruins in 1900.

The Bells were to own Mount Grace until 1953, when it was accepted by the Treasury in lieu of death duties and given to the National Trust, which placed the priory ruins in the guardianship of the state in 1955.


Watch the video: Into great silence