Rievaulx Abbey

The Story Behind the Image - Rievaulx Abbey

The roofless ruins of medieval Rievaulx Abbey are one of the most popular visitor attractions in the North York Moors National Park. The abbey stands a few miles north of the historic market town of Helmsley, Yorkshire.

Rievaulx was one of the first Cistercian monasteries in England. It was founded in 1131 by Walter Espec. The name Rievaulx is a Norman mangling of Rye Vallis, or Rye Valley. We know it today as Ryedale.

I've visited Rievaulx many times, but the weather never cooperated. It was always a dull day, or the sun disappeared when we arrived. On this occasion, however, the August weather was gorgeous, and I got this photo at the east end of the roofless abbey church.

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