Westminster Abbey has a history stretching back over a thousand years.
Founded as a Benedictine monastery in the mid-tenth century, it is the coronation church where monarchs have been crowned amid great splendour since 1066.
The present church, begun by Henry III in 1245, is a treasure house of architectural and artistic achievement on which each succeeding century has left its mark. The medieval and Renaissance tombs within the Abbey, though among the most important in Europe, form only a small part of the extraordinary collection of gravestones, memorials and monumental sculpture for which it has long been famous. Ranging from the thirteenth-century shrine of St Edward and the Renaissance splendour of Henry VII's Lady Chapel, to the literary memorials of Poets' Corner and the statues of twentieth-century martyrs on the Abbey's west front, this book describes the stained glass, furniture, sculpture, textiles, wallpaintings and many other historic artefacts found within this remarkable church.