St. Beornwald of Bampton – 21 December 2016

St. Beornwald of Bampton

St Mary's Anglican Church Bampton

St Mary’s Roman Catholic Church Bampton

8th century? Little is known for certain about the priest Beornwald, whose memory was venerated at Bampton until the Reformation, and some of his shrine remains in the north transept marked by a brass depicting a figure clothed in vestments with a crozier but no mitre. His name is listed in the litanies of the 11th century and in martyrologies of 12th and 15th centuries. There is other evidence of his existence, but no details. He may have founded the large Mercian minster church in Bampton (Farmer).

Source: Celtic and Old English Saints – 21 December

Saint Beornwald of Bampton by John Blair

Extract chapter I

Few Anglo-Saxon saints can still have escaped all historical inquiry. The subject of this note, however, is such a saint, venerated though he was in his own area throughout the middle ages. ]f still largely mysterious, St. Beornwald of Bampton deserves rescuing from oblivion. Bampton parish church seems to have been one of those collegiate churches, lesser than cathedrals but greater than the ordinary run of churches, which were known by the 10th century as the ‘old minsters’. I In the 13th century it still controlled a huge parish covering nearly half of Bampton hundred and containing several daughter churches; it had a large ‘rectory manor’; and it was served by a team of three vicars, perhaps the direct successors of pre-Conquest minster priests, whose houses stood around the churchyard. In the late Anglo-Saxon period this must have been the mother church of the whole low-lying region between the Thames, the Windrush, and the Cotswold foothills. 1 Hampton church first appears in the hands of Leofric, bishop of Exeter, who had probably acquired it from Edward the Confessor during his years as a royal clerk (1042–6). Leorric gave it to Exeter Cathedral, and in 1069 William I confirmed this girt by a chaner.’ The document includes an English boundary-clause to which the scribe has added an opening phrase: ‘these are the bounds or the land which King Eadwig gave to the holy man at Bampton and the community’

Full article in pdf form 8 pages

  • Blair,John,.St. Beornwald of Bampton pdf, publication, publisher and date unknown, downloaded 21st december 2016
  • Celtic and Old English Saints – 21 December . 2016. Celtic and Old English Saints – 21 December . [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 21 December 2016]
  • Farmer, D. H. (1997). The Oxford Dictionary of Saints.
    Oxford: Oxford University Press.