(d. 740)

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St Cuthbert (d. 687) bishop of Lindisfarne

Billfrith (c. 675—775) anchorite


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(d. 740),

monk, bishop of Lindisfarne. A Northumbrian who became a monk at Melrose, Ethilwald was a disciple of Cuthbert and became prior and later abbot of Melrose. On the death of Edfrith, bishop of Lindisfarne, and scribe of the Lindisfarne Gospels, Ethelwald was chosen as his successor. His interest in Edfrith's work is shown by his patronage of the hermit Billfrith, who made at his request a binding for it of gold and precious stones (now lost). His reputation for sanctity is shown by his relics being removed from Lindisfarne with those of St Cuthbert, whose peregrinations they shared. A stone cross with his name on it also came from Lindisfarne eventually to Durham. A compilation by him called Ymnarius Edilwaldi may be a source of the Book of Cerne. Feast: 12 February; translation (to Westminster by King Edgar) 21 April.

Bede, H.E., v. 12 (and Plummer, ii. 297); B. Colgrave, Two Lives of St Cuthbert (1940), pp. 13–14, 331–2;T. D. Kendrick and others, Codex Lindisfarnensis (1960);M. Brown. The Book of Cerne (1996).

Subjects: Christianity.

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