Brother Cadfael

The twenty Brother Cadfael mediaeval murder mysteries by Ellis Peters are among my favourite reading, and Beryl also liked them: when she was having her tint at the local hairdresser she used to read them while it was setting, so a tint day was called a Brother Cadfael day.

Brother Cadfael was the herbalist at the Benedictine Abbey of Shrewsbury during what when I was at school we called the reign of King Stephen but which today historians call the Anarchy. Ellis Peters researched them very carefully, and all of the places and many of the people, but not of course Brother Cadfael himself, are historically accurate. We had a Brother Cadfael holiday at Shrewsbury, when we visited many of the places mentioned in the books and were shown a reproduction of the room where Ellis Peters wrote the books.

This painting shows Brother Cadfael surrounded by his herbs with the Abbey in the background.

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