Glastonbury Tor and Chalice Well, Somerset, England

Glastonbury Tor (for "conical hill").  The tower is the only remaining structure of the St. Michaels Church which once stood atop the hill.  In ancient times, the hill was an island, or peninsula at low tide; it was drained by the monks of Glastonbury Abby via a series of drainage canals. From above can be seen a spiral labyrinth path to the top, similar in design to many seen throughout the neolithic world, including Crete.

Glastonbury Tor is often thought to be Avalon, land of the fair or fairy folk, and/or Isle of the Dead. The Celtic word for the Tor is "Ynys Witrin", meaning "Isle of Glass".  Author and priestess Kathy Jones discusses her ideas on "The Goddess in Glastonbury" here. (This will take you off-site, use your back arrow to return.)

Fat, healthy sheep enjoy grazing on the slopes of the Tor.

A National Trust sign at the base of it identifies Glastonbury Tor.

Recent creation of a pair of spirals on the side of the Tor.

 

Chalice Well, at the base of Glastonbury Tor

Chalice Well water is rich in iron, leading to the rusty red discoloration of the stones, and partially explaining the long held belief that the waters have healing properties.   Some consider this to be a feminine site, balanced by the nearby and masculine site of Glastonbury Tor.

A richly decorated hatch cover over one of the access points to the well.  The whole area is tended as a beautiful, flower filled garden, with the well waters formed into streams, small waterfalls, fountains, and reflecting pools.   Fairies can easily be imagined here, and wells have long been considered to be gateways to the world of spirits.

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