|When Henry VIll dissolved the English
monasteries, his commissioners were not too sensitive about how they did it.The mother
house of Alcester Priory was Evesham Abbey and a little more is known about that because
of an Alcester man.
Recently, there has been on display in the Almonry Museum in Evesham a 'Matthew Bible'. Inside are written notes by one, John Alcester, which includes an account of the commissioners' soldiers entering the abbey in January,1540, while the community was singing vespers
When John, the abbey's sexton, left the abbey with his belongings, such as they were, his bag included the Bible. some years ago the Bible turned up in a local bookseller's and was purchased, following an appeal, for the museum.
|John, like some others of the monks, were referred to by their christian names followed by their place of origin. John Alcester probably received his early education from Alcester Priory. The Bishop's register would probably tell us in which years John received orders acolyte, sub-deacon and deacon before being priested -- and whether he was already at Evesham Abbey at that time. He was offered, upon the Dissolution, the living of Hampton, near Evesham; his pension of £6.13.4 arranged by the commissioners|
Spring 1992 Index
© G.E. Saville