OverviewEditSituated midway between Silchester and Thorns, it rests atop a small rise (150 feet) in a clearing surrounded by a mixed growth of forests and thorn bushes. Built in the early 12th century, the abbey consists of a complex of buildings enclosed by a sturdy stone wall. The head of the abbey, Father Samuel, acts as the de facto prince of Southampton.
The Abbey of the Sacred Crown takes its name from a legend that attributes the origin of the thorn bushes to Joseph of Arimathea's arrival to England in the first century. Popular belief states that he bore with him the crown of thorns that Christ wore on the cross. Local embellishments state that some of those thorns, quickened by the blood of Jesus Christ, took root in the soil near the hill upon which the abbey now stands.
- The abbey appears to be inspired by Glastonbury Abbey, which has a similar myth about Joseph of Arimathea that states that the thorns grow from where he planted his staff into the ground.