Famous People from the Isle of Ely

Etheldreda or Æthelthryth, St (630-679)

Anglo-Saxon nun, the founder of a monastery at Ely, and revered as a virgin saint, although twice married. The daughter of King Anna of East Anglia, she was widowed after three years of her first marriage, which was said never to have been consummated. In 660 she married Ecgfrith, future king of Northumbria, but refused to consummate it. Instead she took the veil and withdrew to the double monastery at Coldingham founded by her aunt, Æbbe, and in 673 founded a double monastery herself on the Isle of Ely, of which she was appointed abbess. Feast day 23 June.

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