Nanteos Cup: The Holy Grail?
The Tradition: During the Dissolution
of the Monasteries, a group of monks left Glastonbury for Strata Florida
Abbey, in South Wales, where they hoped to escape
from the ravages of Henry VIII's commissioners.
However, the Royal officials soon reached Strata
Florida too and the monks were forced to flee
over the hills to nearby Nanteos House. Here, the
old Prior of Glastonbury became chaplain to the
local lord, Mr. Powell, and the other monks
became servants around the estate. So things
carried on until the monks eventually started to
die off. On his death-bed, the last monk revealed
to Mr.Powell that his little group had brought
with them, from Glastonbury, the Holy Grail which
had been brought to Britain by their Abbey's
founder, St. Joseph of
Arimathea. This was subsequently
entrusted to the Powell family "until the
church shall claim her own".
History: The "Nanteos
Cup" as the supposed Grail became known
remained at the Manor, attracting many pilgrims
and performing many apparent miracles until 1952.
All this is well documented. At this date, the
last of the Powells died. The house (and the cup)
were then sold to a Major Merrilees, who later
moved to Herefordshire, taking the Nanteos Cup
with him. It is understood that it currently
resides in a bank vault somewhere. It is a small
wooden vessel (5" diameter, 3" deep) in
a very poor state today, due to pilgrims' biting
large chunks out of it, over the years, in order
to aid recovery from their ills.
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