St Osyth - Priory
St Osyth's Priory was established in 1120 by Richard de Belmeis, Bishop of London, for Augustinian canons. A few fragments of the original Norman building remain, together with several 13th century additions. The Gatehouse seen here was built in the late fifteenth cetury and the abbey was dissolved in 1539. It is now privately owned. Acccording to legend, Osyth was the wife of Sigehere (born 63), King of the East Saxons. She had sworn to remain a virgin. Once he accepted that their wedding would never be consummated he gave her the village on Chich (now St Osyth's) where she founded a nunnery. Later she was captured by Viking raiders and beheaded for her refusal to worship their pagan gods.