Polsloe Priory

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Polsloe Priory

Polsloe Priory was a nunnery, founded around the year c. 1160 and dissolved by Henry VIII in 1536. Here a small community of nuns, many of them daughters of local aristocratic families, lived a communal life. The priory consisted of four ranges of buildings surrounding a square cloister. Three of these, including the church, were demolished at the Dissolution of the Monasteries, but one range, with its first-floor hall, was adapted for use as a country house and still survives today. The photograph is taken during excavation from the site of the chapter house in the wet winter of 1976. It looks across the square cloister to the standing west range. The raised platform to the right is the site of the church; to the left stood the refectory. The trenches formerly held the foundations of successive phases of medieval walls.

Acknowledgments: Exeter Archaeology