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Amesbury

by Brian Edward Rise
A town near Stonehenge in Wiltshire on the eastern edge of the Salisbury plain. During the Middle Ages there was a monastery and convent there to which, Malory says, Guinevere retired to die. Supposedly there was an early British monastic community there but if true, it was obliterated by the Saxons and it did not continue. Ambres-byrig, the old form of the name may harken back to Ambrosius Aurelianus. He is believed to have founded the original monastery as claimed in a late Welsh triad. More likely, though not known, is the name refers to the encampment of his men, the Ambrosiani. Geoffrey of Monmouth names the monastery's founder as one 'Ambrius,' but his knowledge of the region is scant and confused.

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