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Glastonbury

9 8 The LIe OF The LAND the hills and springs sometimes one can stand atop Glastonbury tor in brilliant sunshine when the surrounding levels are completely hidden under a thick blanket of winter mist. the flat white sea below then resembles the inland sea and marshes which once covered the levels and the high ground appears as islands rising from the mists. to the north one can see the line of the Mendips, under which sits the city of Wells, and to the west the distant Quantocks. the Polden Hills run westeast and curve south as a wooded ridge near Dundon Hill, which is capped with an Iron Age hillfort. three miles east is the ridge of Pennard Hill. In that direction, on a clear day, one can just make out a linear earthwork a mile from the tor called Ponter s Ball. of Iron Age origin this probably formed some kind of boundary to the sacred Isle of Avalon. the grounds of the ruined Abbey and the town of Glastonbury can be easily seen half a mile to the west, though chalice Hill, in between, partly obscures the view. Beyond the town rises Wearyall Hill with its special hawthorn tree. 18 miles to the west and north is the coast and the Bristol channel, from which the island of steepholm stands clearly. other prominent landmarks in that direction are Brean Down pointing out to sea and Brent Knoll, a hill with Arthurian connections. there are many springs around Glastonbury to which we shall return later. In particular, the White spring issues from the tor and the legendary Red spring flows out from chalice Hill below.
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