Thursday 9 August 2018

Dunfermline Abbey

Dunfermline Abbey

Dunfermline Abbey is situated in the town of Dunfermline in Fife. The abbey is a parish church but maintains the name of Dunfermline Abbey from the abbey that once stood on the site. The current building sits on the choir of the old abbey and some remnants of the old abbey and palace remain today.

In the 11th century King Malcolm III married Saint Margaret in Dunfermline. It was on this site that in 1070 Margaret founded a priory introducing a small community of Benedictine Monks from Canterbury. In 1128 their son David I made the priory an abbey and built a grand new church. It was named The Benedictine Abbey of the Holy Trinity and St Margaret. The foundations of the earlier church nave, which was built in the 12th century are under the nave. In 1303 the abbey was badly damaged by Edward I but Robert the Bruce (Robert I) had it rebuilt and new buildings added. When he died in 1329 be was buried in the abbey.

In 1560, during the Scottish Reformation the abbey was "sacked", but in 1570  it was repaired and served as the parish church until the 19th century when a new parish church was built on the site of the old choir.

After the reformation Anna of Denmark, the wife of James VI had a new palace created from some of the abbey guest buildings and Dunfermline Palace became their personal residence. King Charles I was born in the palace in 1600 but after James and his family moved to London in 1603 the palace fell into disrepair.

The abbey churchyard became the burial places for Scottish Kings. Robert the Bruce was the last King to be buried in the churchyard in 1329.

Dunfermline Abbey From Pittencrieff Park

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