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The Lindisfarne Gospels is one of the world's greatest books.

It was probably made between 680 and 720, in the island monastery of Lindisfarne. It is the work of a very gifted artist who merged words and images to create a beautiful, enduring symbol of faith.

The monastery at Lindisfarne was founded by Irish monks in 635. It lies off the coast of the former Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Northumbria (NE England). Although remote, it was certainly not cut off culturally. The Lindisfarne Gospels reflect many influences: native British, Celtic, Germanic, Roman, Early Christian, Byzantine, North African and Middle Eastern.

This was a time of great change. Britain was a land of many cultures, with an emerging national identity and vigorous new forms of learning, literature and art. The Lindisfarne Gospels was a stunning creation of this new 'insular' (or island) culture.

The Lindisfarne Gospels is certainly a book of its time - a fusion of the beliefs, politics and challenges of the day. But it is also timeless. It offers us clues to the past and inspiration for the future.



Lindisfarne Priory
Introduction The book Its creation The Gospels' world Meaning Turning the Pages
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