Dunstan, (Archbishop of Canterbury)

 Born  925   Born At  
 Died  988   Buried At  
Dunstan was born in 925. At the age of eighteen he became the abbot of Glastonbury, rebuilding both the discipline within the monastery and also the church itself. He became an advisor to King Eadred but when the king died in 955 Dunstan fell from favour. Eadwig (Edwy) became king and married Aelfgifu. Dunstan felt that the marriage was illegal and referred to the Queen as Eadwig's mistress. At Eadwig's coronation Eadwig and Aelfgifu retired during the festivities where many important church leaders had gathered. Outraged, Dunstan attempted to drag Eadwig away from Aelfgifu. The dispute led to Dunstan's exile.

In 957 England to the north of the Thames decided that Edgar, Eadwig's brother, should become their king. Eadwig recalled Dunstan to help in the crisis. (More info needed here).

In 959 Eadwig died and Edgar became king. Under Edgar Dunstan was made Archbishop of Canterbury. In 975 Edgar died and was followed by his son Edward (the Martyr). Edward was only fourteen at that time and Dunstan took control of the king's affairs. But his power was not complete and he had to resort to some strange tactics to retain control. It was reported that on one occasion at a council a crucifix spoke to the assembled room. At another that the floor gave way and the only section remaining was that where Dunstan and his followers were sitting. Dunstan's fall from power came on the death of Edward in 978 when Ethelred became king and Dunstan foretold that his reign would be a disaster. Dunstan dedicated the rest of his life, until his death in 988, to cultivating the arts and literature.


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943   18yrsDunstan and Glastonbury
 Dunstan moved to Glastonbury where he placed the monastery under the rule of the Benedictine Order and became the abbot there.[1] 
956   31yrsDunstan sent into exile
 Eadwig sent Dunstan into exile. The reason for this is that Dunstan had caught Eadwig and Aelgifu together before they were married and at a time when Eadwig should have been attending an important meeting. Dunstan must have upset Eadwig at this point and was sent into exile. 
959 Oct 1  34yrsEdgar becomes King of England
 At the death of Eadwig, Edgar became King of England. He appointed Dunstan Archbishop of Canterbury.[2] 
960   35yrsDunstan becomes Archbishop of Canterbury
 Dunstan became Archbishop of Canterbury. 
964   39yrsBenedictines at Winchester
 At the bidding of St. Dunstan Benedictine monks moved from the Abbey of Abingdon to Winchester. Work began on a new Saxon church on the site. 
972   47yrsConsecration of Peterborough Abbey
 Dunstan, the Archbishop of Canterbury, and Oswald, the Archbishop of York, consecrated the abbey at Peterborough in the presence of King Edgar. 
975 Jul  50yrsEdward becomes king
 Edward, the eldest son of Edgar, became the king of the English at the age of fourteen when his father died. Dunstan became his guardian. 
979   54yrsDunstan survives
 The collapse of a building at Calne caused the deaths and injuries of many of the senior witan of England who were on the first floor. Archbishop Dunstan survived as he remained standing on a beam.[3] 
983   58yrsMonastery at Worcester
 Oswald founded a Benedictine monastery at Worcester dedicated to St. Mary the Virgin. Oswald became bishop of Worcester upon the recommendation of Dunstan. 
988   63yrsAthelgar becomes Archbishop of Canterbury
 Athelgar became the Archbishop of Canterbury after the death of Dunstan. 

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