Next Tuesday, 17th May, is the (optional) Memorial of St. Dunstan (909 -988), one of the most formative characters of the tenth century. He was educated by Irish monks at Glastonbury and as a young man spent time in the household of his uncle Athelm, the archbishop of Canterbury. Later, he seems to have suffered a serious illness and in recovering, took monastic vows and was ordained a priest by Alphege, the Bishop of Winchester. Eventually he became the Abbot of Glastonbury and this marked the beginning of the rebirth of English monastic life, after the Scandinavian invasions. Dunstan set about rebuilding and enlarging the abbey and he adopted a strict Benedictine rule. Thanks to the politics of the time, he was for a while exiled to northern Europe but later recalled to become Bishop of Worcester and later Archbishop of Canterbury. He worked closely with the king to revive English monasticism. He died in 988. He is traditionally regarded as a craftsman and several bells, organs, tools and pictures are claimed to be is. He is often shown in art holding the devil by the nose with a pair of tongues, or playing his harp or his goldsmiths’ tools.