Benedict Biscop

c.628-689. Founder of the monasteries of Wearmouth and Jarrow. Of a noble Northumbrian family, he entered the service of King Oswy. He made a number of visits to Rome, the first in 653 with Wilfrid.* In 666 he made his profession as a monk at Lerins. In 669 he was sent from Rome with Theodore of Tarsus* to Canterbury and was for two years abbot of the monastery of St. Peter and St. Paul. On his return from his fourth visit to Rome in 674, he founded the monastery at Wearmouth (Sunderland in County Durham). In 682 he founded the sister monastery at Jarrow. Bede was a novice in his charge at both monasteries. He was responsible for introducing glaziers and other craftsmen to work in the monastic buildings and for bringing the precentor of St. Peter's, Rome, to teach Gregorian chants. The churches in both places still stand with substantial Saxon parts.