Celebrating the 700th Anniversary of the Consecration of St Andrews Cathedral

 

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Image attrib. Smart History, CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0

Seven hundred years ago, on July 5th, 1318, St Andrews Cathedral was formally consecrated. The cathedral had been under construction for 150 years and was already home to its Augustinian community, but a great storm in 1272 had blown down the west front of the building and greatly delayed its dedication. The consecration in 1318 was thus long-awaited, and also came at a significant point in Scotland’s history: only four years after Robert the Bruce’s victory at the Battle of Bannockburn, the opulent consecration of one of the largest cathedrals in the British Isles, and the largest building in Scotland (a title it retained until the construction of Edinburgh’s Waverley Railway Station in the nineteenth century), stated clearly that the Church in Scotland was not subservient to English prelates, and advertised the strong links between Scotland’s political and religious elite. The lavish ceremony was attended by King Robert I, and was one in a continuing line of momentous religious and political events that marked out St Andrews as one of medieval Scotland’s principal burghs.

 

 

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Image attrib. Smart History, CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0

This summer, the celebrations commemorating this important anniversary aim to recreate some of the pageantry and significance of the original event. A range of institutions, societies, and research initiatives have combined efforts to create an exciting line-up of public lectures on the history of the cathedral, historical tours of the burgh, and viewing opportunities with extant manuscripts and objects, to take place throughout June and early July. A free exhibition at the Museum of the University of St Andrews, throughout April and June, will showcase more of the extant material related to the cathedral, and tell the story of the consecration. On Saturday, 30 June, a theatrical pageant will bring to life the cathedral’s long history and its central role in the development of the burgh of St Andrews and of Scotland as a whole. In addition, digital reconstructions of the cathedral and its environs, created by Smart History and made available by Historic Environment Scotland, will be presented as an opportunity to view the cathedral as it might have looked in its glory days: a soaring, atmospheric, busy, and vital centre of religious life, pilgrimage, and lay devotion.

The event schedule includes:

 

The Story of St Andrews Cathedral – 700th Anniversary Historical Pageant

Saturday 30 June at 14:00 in St Andrews Cathedral.

University of St Andrews Service of Thanksgiving – Including Commemoration of the 700th Anniversary of St Andrews Cathedral

Sunday 1 July at 11:00 in St Salvator’s Chapel.

An Exceptional and Prestigious Church – A Walk Celebrating 700 Years of St Andrews Cathedral in Collaboration with Fife Pilgrim Way

Sunday 1 July at 14:00, starts outside St Andrews Museum, Kinburn Park.

Show and Tell of Manuscripts Associated with St Andrews Cathedral – Public Event by the University of St Andrews Library’s Special Collections Division

Wednesday 4 July at 14:00 in the Special Collections Napier Reading Room, Martyr’s Kirk.

Pilgrimage in Honour of Our Lady and St Andrew, Commemorating the 700th Anniversary of the Consecration of St Andrews Cathedral – Organised by New Dawn Conference

Thursday 5 July, begins at 9.30 at St James’s Church, Open Air Mass at 11.30 at St Andrews Cathedral.

Service to Commemorate the 700th Anniversary of St Andrews Cathedral – Organised by All Saints Church

Thursday 5 July at 15:00 in St Andrews Cathedral.

Act of Remembrance and Sung Eucharist – Organised by All Saints Church

Sunday 8 July, remembrance begins at 9.40 in St Andrews Cathedral, and is followed by a sung service at 10 in All Saints Church.

For more information and an updated list of events, see: https://www.openvirtualworlds.org/st-andrews-cathedral-1318-to-2018/

Contact: cathedral700@gmail.com

Thanks go to all the contributing groups including: University of St Andrews, Smart History, Historic Environment Scotland, Kate Kennedy Trust, Fife Pilgrim Way, New Dawn Conference, All Saints Church, BID St Andrews, and Tourism St Andrews.

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Image attrib. Smart History, CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0

 

About standrewshistory
With over forty fulltime members of staff researching and teaching on European, American and Asian history from the dawn of the Middle Ages to the present day, the School of History at the University of St Andrews has one of the finest faculty and diverse teaching programmes of any School of History in the English speaking world. The School boasts expertise in Mediaeval and Modern History, from Scotland to Byzantium and the Americas to South Asia. Thematic interests include religious history, urban history, transnationalism, historiography and nationalism. The School of History prides itself on small group teaching, allowing for in-depth study and supervision tailored to secure the best from each student. Cutting edge research combined with teaching excellence offer a dynamic and intellectually stimulating environment for the study of History.

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