Mount Grace Priory has a reconstructed cell which was quite fascinating as it was so big! I always thought of Monks cells as little rooms in a dormitory with a bed and washbowl and that’s about it. Maybe other types of Monks did but Carthusian Monks lived a very solitary existence as their whole purpose was total withdrawal from the world to serve god by personal devotion and privation. Food and drink were brought to them by lay brothers and passed through a hatch beside the door, without any communication. The cell was rebuilt by Sir Lothian Bell between 1901 & 1905, then refurbished by English Heritage in the late 1980’s, the garden & galleries based on archaeological evidence and plants available in 16th century. It’s furnishings are based on Carthusian illustrations made at the time, or surviving examples. Documents and excavations show the trades the monks followed, there is evidence of a weaver, bookbinder and book copyists.
The cell provided for all their needs, had space to meditate, read & work.
A place for manual work is upstairs,
and also a garden to tend.
That’ll do for today’s post, more from The Priory next time 🙂