Welcome to our Westminster Abbey history section. You can skip to subsequent pages using the links below or simply continue reading to start at the beginning.
Westminster Abbey, a magnificent building which grew over many centuries, is supposed to have been commenced by the monk-king, Edward the Confessor, for a Benedictine monastery, between 1055-65. It is reputed to occupy the site of a Saxon church built by King Sebert, whose grave is still shown in the abbey, on the so-called Thorn Ey or Isle of Thorns, then surrounded by a branch of the Thames.
Half marsh, half forest, and the haunt of the wild ox and the red deer, its awful solitudes would have made a fitting refuge for monk and priest from the hustle and bustle of ever turbulent London.