Boy Jesus visits Glastonbury (color sketch)
(click for larger image)
A Lost Years in Britain image
Did Jesus as a boy travel as far as England? Anecdotal evidence suggests
he might have. The Banner of the Parish Church of Pilton located in Somerset,
England (from which this work is inspired), illustrates this belief. Joseph
of Arimathea, uncle to the boy Jesus, together with their boatman, are
plying up the Brue River channel near Glastonbury Tor.
Laid out before them is the wonder of Ancient Britain.
There are at least four separate traditions regarding Jesuss visit
there.Joseph of Arimathea was a tin merchant who had mining interests
in the Glastonbury region of England. He took the boy Jesus with him on
at least one of his trips to the British Isles. They toured the mines
in Cornwall and Somerset County where the boy Jesus learned how to extract
the tin and purge it from its ore. Inspired by the story , William Blake,
a well known English poet (Ryme of the Ancient Mariner), wrote a poem,
Chariots of Fire,
which later became a well known hymn:
And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England's mountains green:
And was the Holy Lamb of God,
On England's pleasant pastures seen!
And did the Countenance Divine,
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
And was Jerusalem builded here,
Among these dark Satanic Mills?
Bring me my Bow of burning gold:
Bring me my Arrows of desire:
Bring me my Spear: O clouds unfold!
Bring me my Chariot of fire!
I will not cease from Mental Fight
Nor shall my Sword sleep in my hand:
Till we have built Jerusalem,
In England's green and pleasant Land!
William Blake 1757-1827
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