Our Lady of Walsingham
is a title used for Mary
, the mother of Jesus
. The title derives from the belief that Mary appeared in a vision
to Richeldis de Faverches
, a devout Saxon
noblewoman, in 1061 in the village of Walsingham
. Lady Richeldis had a Holy House built in Walsingham which became a shrine and place of pilgrimage.
In passing on his guardianship of the Holy House, Richeldis's son Geoffrey left instructions for the building of a priory in Walsingham
. The priory passed into the care of Canons Regular
sometime between 1146 and 1174.
Holy House and pilgrimages
The Holy House, containing the simple wooden structure which Richeldis had been asked to build in imitation of the home in which the Annunciation
occurred, became both a shrine
and the focus of pilgrimage to Walsingham. The chapel was founded in the time of Edward the Confessor, about 1053, the earliest deeds naming Richeldis, the mother of Geoffrey of Favraches as the founder. In 1169, Geoffrey granted 'to God and St. Mary and to Edwy his clerk the chapel of our Lady' which his mother had founded at Walsingham with the intention that Edwy should found a priory. These gifts were, shortly afterwards, confirmed to the Austin Canons of Walsingham by Robert de Brucurt and Roger, earl of Clare. By the time of its destruction in 1538 during the reign of Henry VIII, the... Read More