Other websites and articles related to Reading Abbey



1. Articles about Reading Abbey contained in the on-line Berkshire Archaeological Journal (BAJ)

The first link takes you to the BAJ page of the Archaeology Data Service. This contains a link to 6 index pages to the Journals sorted into Issue Title order. Click on an Issue Title to go to the page of the articles in that Issue, sorted into Article Title order. Click on an Article Title to go to the metadata page for the article. This includes a "Download" button to click to load the article as a PDF file.

The grid below gives the author and title of articles about Reading Abbey in each volume [to 1976].

The BAJ is published by the Berkshire Archaeological Society. A link to their website is also shown.

Berkshire Archaeological Journal (BAJ)

Berkshire Archaeological Society

 Volume Author


1880-81F. AlburyReading Abbey: Historical events, Architecture, Appendix: The Abbey Stone
1889-91J.M.GuildingHenry First’s Tomb in Reading Abbey
1889-91J.O.TaylorReading Abbey
1895-96N.HoneLetters of the last Abbot of Reading
1895-96N.HoneLetters of the last Abbot of Reading from originals from among the state papers
1907-08W.RaverscoftThe Discovery of Human Remains in the Forbury, Reading
1908-09P.H.DitchfieldA Reading Pageant [short dramatic reconstructions of events in Reading’s history. Episodes IV, V, VI, VII, VIII and IX relate to the Abbey]
1909-10J.B.HurryThe Proposed memorial to King Henry the First, Founder of Reading Abbey
1911-12AnonThe pavement of Reading Abbey
1912-13AnonReading Abbey [re discovery of masonry]
1915-16J.B.HurryWilliam the Templar, Abbot of Reading
1916-17J.B.HurryHugh II, Eighth Abbot of Reading
1918J.Holford-ScottThe family of ‘de Essex’
1918AnonTrial by Combat of hentry de Essex and Robert de Montfort at Reading Abbey
1920-21J.B.HurryThe Octicentenary of Reading Abbey
1922-23AnonThe Election of Thomas Clerke to be mayor of Reading by the Abbot John Thorne I AD 1460
1924AnonKing Edward IV & his Queen Elizabeth Woodville, at Reading Abbey
1926J.B.HurryThe Parliament of King Henry VI at Reading Abbey, AD 1455
1933W.A.SeabyDiscovery of Medieval walling in Broad Street, Reading
1935A.E.PrestonThe Demolition of Reading Abbey
1937E.DormerThe Stream called the Hallowed Brook at Reading
1942H.T.MorleyTiles from Reading Abbey
1960AnonArchaeological Notes from Reading Museum [Reference is on Journal p.61, re Greyfriars and Abbot Robert of Burgate]
1961C.F.SladeReading records and a History of Reading [Journal p.45, reference to Abbey records; pages 49 and 50, Mayor’s expenses: wine and must for the lord abbot]
1963-64C.F.SladeReading Records: Documents Concerning Relations Between Town and Abbey c. 1500 A.D.[Journal pp.48-62]
1965-66AnonArchaeological Notes from Reading Museum [Journal p.74, excavations at the Abbey Mill]
1969C.F.SladePaving Tiles of Reading Abbey. [Photos referred to on Journal p.10 are in separate PDF, ‘Plates I & II’ ]
1970B.KempThe Miracles of the hand of St. James
1971-72C.F.SladeExcavation at Reading Abbey 1964-1967 [Photos of Abbey Mill and excavations are in the ‘Plates 1-16’ PDF; photos of Cloister Area excavations and of other artefacts are in the ‘Plates 17-22’ PDF]
1975-76C.F.SladeExcavations at Reading Abbey 1971-73
1975-76E.EttlingerA Romanesque capital from Reading Abbey in the Reading Museum and Art Gallery
2. Wikimedia Commons: Images and links relating to King Henry I, founder of Reading Abbey
Henry I images (i)
Henry I images (ii)
3. Reading Prison Framework
The former Reading Prison, which closed in 2013, is located within the Abbey Quarter and as such is designated a Scheduled Monument. Reading Borough Council set out guidelines in 2015 on the future of the site in this Reading Prison Outline Development Framework document.
Reading Prison Development Framework
4. Magna Carta
The Abbot of Reading was a witness at the 1297 sealing of Magna Carta, when it was "Confirmed by King Edward, in the Twenty-Fifth Year of his Reign". Three of these provisions remain as part of UK law. The link is to current UK legislation, showing the three provisions still in force, with the list of witnesses including the Abbot of Reading (spelt Reding)
Magna Carta (1297 Charter)
5. Reading School
Brief history of Reading School describing its origins in Reading Abbey, by the Old Redingensian Association's archivist Ken Brown. Downloads as a PDF file
Reading School
6. References in books to Reading Abbey
7.1 The Lost Dahlia by Mary Russell Mitford published in The Works of Mary Russell Mitford: Prose and Verse, 1846. A description of Reading Abbey is contained in a note at the end of the story, on pages 542-5 of this volume.
The Lost Dahlia
7. List of books originally in Reading Abbey The Books of Reading Abbey
8. The Siege of Reading 1643
These are the notes (as a pdf file) from the Friends' Spring 2018 lecture given by Simon Marsh, researcher at the Battlefields Trust. The title of the talk was ‘A Place Strongly Fortified – Reading, its Abbey and the Civil War'. Simon Marsh discussed the archaeology relevant to the ruins of Reading Abbey at the time of the Siege. Separate copies of the two maps of Reading in the document are included as jpeg files.
A Place Strongly Fortified.
Maps: John Rocques Map of Reading, 1761 ; Tomkins map, 1802
9. The White Ship disaster, 25th November 1120
Friends of Reading Abbey member Iris Hunt wrote this document to mark the 900th anniversary of the White Ship disaster of 25th November 1120, which changed the course of history. The question posed for your consideration is whether the disaster was in fact arranged. Any comments should be made to the Secretary at secretary@readingabbey.org.uk

A book about the White Ship disaster by Charles Spencer "The White Ship – Conquest, Anarchy and the Wrecking of Henry I’s Dream" has been published to mark the anniversary. Iris kindly agreed to provide a review of this book, link shown.
White Ship disaster

Charles Spencer book review
10. Medieval Warhorse
Link to article "The Horses of the Royal Household under the Three Edwards" on the University of Exeter website. The article includes references to the accounts for expenditure on horses at the royal stable in Reading Abbey.
Medieval Warhorse
11. Reading Abbey's role in fifteenth century politics
Article by Dr Joanna Laynesmith on the part that Reading Abbey played in the events of the fifteenth century at the time of the Wars of the Roses. Article written to mark the 900th anniversary of the foundation of the Abbey.
Reading Abbey and the Wars of the Roses
12. Reading Abbey's most famous manuscript
This on-line exhibition on the Reading Museum website was set up during the 900th anniversary year of the foundation of Reading Abbey. The exhibition describes British Library manuscript Harley 978, which contains one of the oldest songs in the English language, 'Sumer is icumen in'.
Reading Abbey's Most Famous Manuscript
13. Reading Abbey tiles
Tiles from Reading Abbey feature in these two auction lots on Bonhams auctioneers website.
Lot 33     + explanation of kiln wasters
Lot 228
14. Reading Abbey ampulla
This ampulla (vessel for holy water or holy oil) was discovered by a metal detectorist in Wraxall in Somerset in 2020. The inscriptions on the two sides of the ampulla translate as "Image of Saint James the Apostle; of Reading" and "Image of St Philip the Apostle; of Reading".
Reading Ampulla