The illuminated volume disappeared when Henry VIII broke up the Benedictine community there.
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A rare illuminated 13th-century Bible is back on the shelf of the library of the Canterbury Cathedral, after it disappeared from the cathedral’s monastic book collection almost 500 years ago.
The Lyghfield bible, named after the the 16th-century monk who once owned it, has been unaccounted for since Henry VIII dissolved the Benedictine monastery — and its valuable collection of books — in 1540.
The 690-page pocket-sized Bible is one of only 30 volumes that survived the breakup of the monastery, in which about 30,000 books were destroyed or taken apart for the reuse of their materials, according to a press release from Canterbury Cathedral.
The cathedral plans to display the book in a new exhibition area, according to The Guardian, which noted that its small size may have saved it from being similarly cannibalized.