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FIFTH SERIES.—VOL. Ill, NO. XII. OCTOBER 1886. TINTERN ABBEY. The Abbey of Tintern is generally allowed to be the most picturesque of all our monastic ruins. It is also the one in which we can best study the architecture and general arrangement of a mediaeval Religious House. The materials for a history of the community that occupied it are few; but the more important of those questions which arise as to the practice of the monastic orders in relation to their buildings may be pretty fully satisfied by a careful examination of these remains. I will, therefore, address myself principally to such questions, and to the position of this Abbey in the history of mediaeval architecture. Tintern was a house of Cistercian monks; so called because they were first established at Citeaux, in Bur¬ gundy, in 1098, as a reformed branch of the Order of St. Benedict. They chose solitary places, and prac¬ tised an exceedingly rigorous discipline, became greatly celebrated for holiness of life, and spread rapidly over Christendom ; this being one of their earlier settle¬ ments, and the third of those established by them in this country. It was founded in 1131 by Walter de Clare, who then held this district. It was further en¬ dowed by his successors, and was their usual burying- place. Although nothing remains of the original build¬ ings, we cannot doubt that they were similar to those 5th SEE., VOL. III. 16