Allan, Peter (1799–1849), recluse, was born on 6 September 1799, the son of Peter Allan, shoemaker in Gladsmuir, and Jane Renny, daughter of Archibald Kenley of Tranent. In early life he was in domestic service as a valet to William Williamson. Afterwards he became gamekeeper to the ...
revised by H. C. G. Matthew
J. P. D. Cooper
Appulby, Simon [Symon the Anker of London Wall] (d. 1537), religious recluse and author, was the last anchorite to be attached to the church of All Hallows, London Wall. An ordained priest, Simon made his anchoritic profession at the nearby priory of the ...
D. H. Farmer
Balthere [St Balthere, Baldred, Balther] (d. 756), hermit, is often confused with an earlier saint of the same name. The later and better-known Balthere was described by his near contemporary Alcuin, in his poem on the bishops, kings, and saints of York. The so-called ...
Bartholomew of Farne [St Bartholomew of Farne] (d. 1193), hermit, stands second in reputation only to Godric of Finchale among the hermits of northern England in the twelfth century. Just as Godric's fame depends on the life written by Reginald, a monk of ...
J. M. Rigg
revised by K. D. Reynolds
Bentinck, (William) John Cavendish-Scott- [formerly Lord John Bentinck], fifth duke of Portland (1800–1879), recluse, son of William Henry Cavendish-Bentinck, fourth duke (1768–1854), who in 1795 assumed the additional surname of Scott by royal licence, and Henrietta (d. 1844), eldest daughter and coheir of ...
Maker: Richard Dighton
Billfrith [St Billfrith] (d. 750x800
Borstale, Thomas (supp. fl. 1290), supposed Augustinian hermit, is said by Bale to have come from Norfolk and to have studied in England, and taught theology at the University of Paris c.1290. Bale adds that Borstale died at the Augustinian convent in ...
Susan M. Johns
Briouze, Loretta de, countess of Leicester (d. in or after 1266), noblewoman and recluse, was one of the children of William (III) de Briouze (d. 1211) and Matilda de St Valéry (d. 1210). Her father was a great man in the Anglo-Welsh marches, and four of her five sisters who survived into adulthood married Welsh or marcher lords; notably ...
Caradog (1060x75–1124), hermit and monk, was the son of noble parents from Brycheiniog (Brecon). The principal source for his life is an account in Capgrave's Nova legenda Angliae which probably derives from a life, now lost, written by Gerald of Wales...
Liz Herbert McAvoy
Carpenter, Christina (fl. 1329–1332), religious recluse, was the unmarried daughter of William, a carpenter who lived in the tiny Surrey village of Shere in the second and third decades of the fourteenth century. Of humble birth, Christina was seemingly destined for an unremarkable and historically invisible life. However, in the summer of 1329 she took the serious step of applying to the bishop of ...
Crab, Roger (c. 1616–1680), hermit, appears by his own account to have been 'begotten, and brought forth in the South-West of England' (Crab, Dagons-Downfall, 1). The names of his parents are as yet unknown. He was baptized by a clergyman with the customary two godfathers and a godmother in attendance. ...
Dagmar ó Riain-Raedel
Deicolus [St Deicolus, Deicola] (d. c. 625), Benedictine monk and hermit, was allegedly a companion of St Columbanus of Luxeuil and Bobbio (d. 615), and a half-brother of Gall of St Gallen. His feast day is 18 January.
According to his life, written about 965, sickness prevented ...
Farne, John of [John Whiterig] (c. 1320–1371), Benedictine monk and hermit, was the author of seven Latin meditations. The only surviving manuscript of his work (Durham Cath. CL, MS B.IV.34), written in a late fourteenth-century hand, ascribes them to 'a certain monk, formerly a solitary on ...
Flete, William [known as Brother William of England] (fl. 1352–1380), Augustinian friar and hermit, always called himself Brother William of England. He was first designated 'of Flete', which presumably refers to Fleet in Lincolnshire, when the prior-general of his order granted him conventual status at the priory of ...
Godric of Finchale [St Godric of Finchale] (c. 1070–1170), trader and hermit, was born at Walpole in Norfolk to a poor, Anglo-Saxon, farming couple. His father's name was ?ilward, his mother's Aedwen (Eadwenna), and he was subsequently joined by a brother, William, and a sister, ...
D. J. Oldridge
Greswold, Edward (bap. 1594
Guthlac [St Guthlac] (674–715), hermit, was one of the most famous and influential holy men in the first 120 years of English Christianity, his fame owed in no small degree to the well-structured and vivid life of him written c.740 by the learned East Anglian monk, ...
C. L. Kingsford
revised by Marios Costambeys
Hereberht [St Hereberht, Herebert, Herbert] (d. 687), hermit, resided on the island in Derwent Water which still bears his name. He was a disciple and close friend of St Cuthbert, to whom he paid an annual visit for spiritual advice. The two friends both died on 20 March 687. In 1374 ...
Kentigerna [St Kentigerna, Caintigern] (d. 734), anchorite, was an Irish noblewoman who ended her days as an anchorite on a Scottish island. She owes her fame to her reputation for holiness and to the holiness and status of her male kin: she was the daughter of ...