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The Ossuary at St Leonard’s Church

information about united-kingdom  Hythe - United Kingdom

St Leonard’s Church in Hythe is known as “The Church with the Bones” due to the ossuary in the crypt. It is one of only two ossuaries in England (the other being in Rothwell, Northants) and contains 2,000 human skulls, 8,000 thighbones, a few jaw bones and other various artefacts. The skull and thighbones were usually kept as it was believed that it would ensure physical resurrection.

The exact origin of the bones is unclear, legend has it that they are the remains of Saxon soldiers killed in a battle fought nearby that were dug up when the existing church was built in 1080. A more likely explanation is that they were dug up and stored in the Middle Ages when it was customary to re-use burial plots.

Open May-Sept, 10.30 to Midday & 2.30 to 4.00

Address: St Leonard's Church, Church Road

United Kingdom
Phone: + 01303 263739
Price: budget

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