"Shrine of the King, Cradle of the Law" Top 5 Page for this destination Bury Saint Edmunds by Airpunk

Bury Saint Edmunds Travel Guide: 73 reviews and 186 photos

Bury St. Edmunds? St. Edmund's bury? WTF?

Bury St. Edmunds is not an imperative as the Saint we are talking about is called Edmund without the '-s'. Furthermore, to bury St. Edmund, he needs to be dead, but that prerequisite is met as the Danes did their work very well and you usually have to be dead to be a Saint (and buried). But Bury St. Edmunds has nothing to do with the burial place of St. Edmund. Well, indeed it has. St. Edmund was buried here after his martyrdom. But the name does not. Bury St. Edmunds was called St. Edmund's Borough in former times, but that name evolved into St. Edmund's Bury and somehow into Bury St. Edmunds while the borough it sits in is called St. Edmundsbury. And did I mention that St. Edmund was not only a Saint but also a King? Never mind...

Confused?

OK, here is a somewhat lighter entry. Bury St. Edmunds was once called Beodricsworth (in addition to the names mentioned above) and was an important Saxon settlement. It is sometimes even said that it was built on an ancient Roman town but this has not yet been proved .In 633, a monastery was founded which eventually became the burial place of St. Edmund (an English King, martyr and Saint) who was killed by the Danes in 869 and reburied here in 903. The abbey became a centre of pilgrimage and the fourth largest monastery in Europe. Life in medieval Bury St. Edmunds was centred around the abbey. However, there were always tensions between the local folks and the abbey which once even resulted in the destruction of a gatehouse and the theft of a large bronze door. The dissolution of the monasteries put an end to it and today, Bury has other important economic factors: Beer and tourism (which means, a modern form of pilgrimage): The new cathedral (former St. James Pariush church), the abbey ruins and the Greene King brewery attract thousands of visitors every year. And speaking of beer: Bury St. Edmunds has one of the largest pub densities in Britain. With a population of only around 36 000, it had over 300 pubs at the beginning of the 20th century. Today, there are far less (only every 9th survived), but the number of them is still impressive for a town of its size.

And if you are still confused, maybe by the title of this page, just read my tips :)

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Good destination of a Daytrip
  • In a nutshell:History buffs will be happy to meet a French Queen and a Saxon King
  • Last visit to Bury Saint Edmunds: Jan 2011
  • Intro Updated Jan 2, 2011
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Reviews (14)

Comments (2)

  • sourbugger's Profile Photo
    Jan 15, 2011 at 2:50 PM

    i went there once but the saint didn't like it

  • HORSCHECK's Profile Photo
    Jan 4, 2011 at 12:28 PM

    Fabulous start about Bury Saint Edmunds here. Although I have travelled England extensively, I never really made it to this gem of the country. Happy new year 2011.

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