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31 30 sT MIChAeL s ON The TOR all that remains the roofless church tower which stands on the tor today dates from the 14th century and was part of the second of two major churches which occupied the summit. Dedicated to st Michael, this church was closely associated with the abbey and was probably built 50 years after the earthquake of 1275 which destroyed its predecessor. After the dissolution of the monasteries in 1539 the church fell into ruin and the tower is all that is left. the Archangel Michael was often associated with high places and poorly defined carving of him trampling a dragon is still discernible on the southwest face of the tower. the tower and church were aligned nearly 30 degrees off the normal eastwest axis due principally to the fact that the backbone of the tor s summit, and the Michael Line next page, runs in this direction. An ancient prophecy stated that When a fysshe upon ye Torr is caught, then shall ye Abbey comme to naught . We shall see later the grotesque way in which this prophecy was fulfilled. Above The tower of the ruined St Michael s church on the Tor. Right Somewhat fanciful wood engravings by William Barnes of the carvings on the tower. To the left we see St Michael weighing souls. To the right St Brigid is seen milking her cow.
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