St Andrews: the glorious Cathedral

St Andrew’s Cathedral after the ‘rascal multitude’ of John Knox’s followers destroyed it.

The Hazel Tree

In 1160, the Augustinian canons who had taken over the incumbency of St Rule’s church at St Andrews began to lay the foundations for a much larger building on the same site.

The Cathedral took almost 150 years to build, and it was consecrated in July 1318 in the presence of Robert the Bruce.  Bad weather had prolonged the construction work – the west wall was blown down in a storm in 1272 – and during the first War of Independence with England some of the lead was stripped from the roof.  But when it was finally ready to receive worshippers it must have been a spectacular sight, one which I would love to have seen.

St Andrews (3)The new building was ambitious in its magnificence, designed to be worthy of the precious relics of St Andrew which were attracting thousands of pilgrims from all over Europe.   No simple, unadorned walls for…

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