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Coordinates: 51 ° 9 ′  N , 2 ° 43 ′  W

Map: United Kingdom
United Kingdom

Glastonbury is a small town in Somerset in the United Kingdom . The small town in the Mendip district has around 8,800 inhabitants. It is known for the ruins of Glastonbury Abbey and the myths and legends surrounding the nearby hill Glastonbury Tor , which is why Glastonbury claims to be the legendary Avalon . The Iron Age pile-dwelling settlement excavated by Bulleid and Gray is also significant.

Origin of name

The George and Pilgrims Inn , one of the oldest buildings in the city
Glastonbury Tor

According to William of Malmesbury , who is based on traditions from the 12th century, the name Glastonbury goes back to a certain Glast , a son of Cas and the youngest of twelve brothers. He was the swineherd of the King of Hirnath and reached the island in search of a runaway pig.


The annual Glastonbury Festival , a music and performing arts festival, also known as the UK Woodstock Festival, takes place on a farm near Glastonbury .

Glastonbury in Music, Literature, Film, Series and Video Game

  • Glastonbury is mentioned indirectly in the poem And did those feet in ancient time by William Blake from the preface to his work Milton (1804). The poem is known today with the music of Hubert Parry (1916) as the hymn "Jerusalem". It is the penultimate part of the Last Night of the Proms before the national anthem and "Auld Lang Syne" . The poem was inspired by the legend that as a young man Jesus Christ, accompanied by Joseph of Arimathea , visited Glastonbury and brought the Holy Grail there. The legend goes back to the historian Johannes Glastoniensis , who wrote a chronicle of Glastonbury (Antiquitates Glastoniensis) in the first half of the 15th century (see also Arthurian legend ).
  • The 1933 novel A Glastonbury Romance by John Cowper Powys is set in Glastonbury . This epic monumental work sketches a panorama of the life of the provincial residents in the 1920s, but takes up the myths about King Arthur and the Grail in a variety of ways.
  • Glastonbury is Handlungsort of Fantasy -Romans At the Dawn of Darkness series world twilight of Mark Chadbourn .
  • The place is also the setting for the feature film The Gathering (2002), which refers to the history of the place and the legends associated with it.
  • Glastonbury also appears in the 3D adventure game Baphomet's Curse: The Sleeping Dragon . One of the main locations in the game is the place with the conical hill “Glastonbury Tor”. There is also a strong reference to the Arthurian legend.
  • Furthermore, Glastonbury is the location in the radio play series "Don Harris" and at the same time the birthplace of the main actor.
  • In the science fiction series Stargate SG-1 , the episode "The Search, Part 2" (Season 10, Episode 11) is about the search for the Sangreal, the centerpiece of an important weapon.


Glastonbury is said to be an intersection of several ley lines .


  • William A. Nitze: Glastonbury and the Holy Grail. In: Modern Philology. 1/2, 1903, pp. 247-257.
  • Monika Rice: Vessel Of The Fish . iUniverse, 2007. (A novel set in what is now Glastonbury)
  • Deborah Crombie: From another hand . Goldmann-Verlag, 2002. (A crime novel set in Glastonbury)
  • Antara Reimann: Glastonbury: Spiritually traveling to the places of power of Avalon. Schirner Verlag 2015, ISBN 978-3-8434-1212-4 .
  • Isabel Laack: Religion and Music in Glastonbury. A case study on current forms of religious discourse on identity. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen 2011, ISBN 978-3-525-54011-4 .

Web links

Commons : Glastonbury  - collection of images, videos and audio files