Yorkshire, England - Fountains Abbey 

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Sunday started out sunny and a little frosty. I took a short walk to see farm properties located further down the driveway.   

note - you can enlarge any part of a picture by left-clicking in and then out again.

cottage property Nellie enjoyed some apple slices  the owner lives to the left of the two rental cottages cottage property

Fountains Abbey near Rippon, about an hour's drive from Kilburn Park, is described as "the most complete Abbey ruin in England."  

In 1132, thirteen Cistercian monks rebelled against an increasing trend towards more luxury in food & clothing at the huge St. Mary's Abbey in York, stating that they felt they were not following the original precepts of the Rule of St. Benedict strictly enough. 

The Rule, written in 540, formed the basis of monastic life throughout Europe for a thousand years.  Benedict envisioned self-sufficient communities, located far from urban or worldly influences, where a life of simplicity & contemplation of religious truth was possible.        

Because these break-away monks used the Benedictine doctrinal basis for their complaints, they were given protection by the Archbishop of York.  Shortly thereafter, Robert De Roos, Lord of nearby Helmsley Castle, who was extremely land rich, gave the Cistercians 6,000 acres on the River Skell, near the small Market Town of Ripon. The Abbey was completed in 1160, made of sandstone quarried on the property.  

Abbey the Keep; estate manager kept his locked good here the river Skell runs through it and behind it  
  Refectory, or  dining room (see note below)

contemplation continues...

former rooms Lins in purple with tour group & guide
the Nave visitors provide perspective floor tiles


stairway to the past

note - The guide book said the monks at first lived on a daily ration of coarse bread, ale & fish.  You were only given meat if you were sick and in the Infirmary.  Later on the monks had meat on a more frequent basis, perhaps to keep the Infirmary from being over-burdened. 

Studley Royal Garden

In 1767 William Aislabie, MP for the town of Ripon, inherited Studley Manor & garden from his father, and then vastly improved it, purchasing the adjacent Abbey ruin property, in the process creating a beautiful and romantic garden with 'old world' atmosphere. 

Studley Royal Garden is a UNESCO World Heritage site.  (for some reason, the Abbey is not part of that designation)

The Docent said that for Wm. Aislabie, the Garden and Abbey were "a demonstration of great personal wealth."    

downstream view classical elements - the Temple of Piety Drum Dam tour guide group in Studley Royal Garden  
  an informative & entertaining Docent Jackdaw (crow)      
a gift California redwood, planted in the 1800s our last look at the Abbey          

Being our first day out touring in the rental car, I got off at the wrong exit at two traffic circles.  At a more important traffic circle on the way back I put us on the freeway heading north, away from the intended destination. 

But no harm done and I guess I was 'refreshing' my UK driving skills from the fall 2013 and fall 2015 trips.  I had a lot more confidence after a few days. But at least twice I pulled out of a gas station or some store and started driving in the wrong lane, like at home, and Linda always caught it immediately; she was a skilled co-pilot, clueing me in to things to watch out for.  Really, it takes two (more is better) to drive here. 

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