Illustrated Dictionary of British Churches

History and Architecture

Sanctuary Knocker

Also called a sanctuary ring, a sanctuary knocker was a metal ring attached to the door of a church. A fugitive from the law had only to touch the knocker in order to claim the right of sanctuary. This allowed him to stay in the church, free from prosecution, for a period of time, usually 40 days. The most famous sanctuary knocker in Britain is that at Durham Cathedral, which is quite ornately carved, with a lion's face, but a sanctuary knocker could equally well be a simple iron ring, usually set on a round iron plate affixed to the door. The right of sanctuary was abolished by law in the early 17th century.

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  • Wenhaston, Suffolk

    Wenhaston, Suffolk

Wenhaston, Suffolk

Wenhaston, Suffolk

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This naturalist sailed with Captain Cook 1768-71) and his collections are preserved in the british Museum



25 February, 1308

Coronation of Edward II

In his coronation oath Edward agrees to abide by future laws passed by consent of the realm (i.e. Parliament)

This monarch's sons were called 'The Devil's Brood'



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