saffron walden

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Saffron Walden Footpath by Bob Radlinski
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Audley End is largely an early 17th-century country house just outside Saffron Walden, Essex, England.  It was once a palace in all but name and renowned as one of the finest Jacobean houses in England.  Audley End is now only one-third of its original size, but is still large, with much to enjoy in its architectural features and varied collections.  It is currently in the stewardship of English Heritage though remains the family seat of the Lords Braybrooke.

Photo by Yatesmon.

A spectacular gold ring around 1,400 years old went on display with other archaeological treasures at Saffron Walden Museum.

The ring is highly decorated with Anglo-Saxon motifs including birds and interlaced ornament, but it is the engraving on the bezel which has really excited the experts. This shows a belted human figure with a cross below a bird of prey, an intriguing mix of pagan Anglo-Saxon and Christian symbols. It has been dated it to 580 - 650 AD, around the time of the Sutton Hoo burial, when the new Anglo-Saxon kingdoms, including the kingdoms of Kent, Essex and East Anglia, were choosing between traditional beliefs and Christianity.

Herb of the Week-Saffron

COMMON NAMES

Saffron

Saffron, also known as Crocus sativus, is a plant that grows from a bulb and belongs to the family of Sword Lily. This is actually a spice with an intense aroma and is used extensively in a variety of cuisines. In fact, saffron is among the most expensive spices available.

This yellowish spice is obtained from the blooms of the species called Crocus sativus, which is widely called saffron crocus, The saffron crocus plant grows up to a height of anything between 20 cm and 30 cm and each plant produces a maximum of about four flowers. Each flower of this species has three bright crimson stigmas that are located far away from the point of attachment of a carpel. In conjunction with the stalks or styles which are connected to the stigmas to the plant hosting them, the dried out stigmas are mostly used in a variety of cuisines in the form of a seasoning as well as coloring agent.

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Audley End House:

An early 17th-century country house just outside Saffron WaldenEssex, south of CambridgeEngland. It was once a palace in all but name and renowned as one of the finest Jacobean houses in England. Audley End is now only one-third of its original size, but is still large, with much to enjoy in its architectural features and varied collections. It is currently in the stewardship of English Heritage though remains the family seat of the Lords Braybrooke.

Audley End was the site of a Benedictine monastery (Walden Abbey), granted to the Lord Chancellor Sir Thomas Audley in 1538 by Henry VIII. It was converted to a domestic house for him, known as Audley Inn. This dwelling was later demolished by his grandson, Thomas Howard (the first Earl of Suffolk and Lord Treasurer), and a much grander mansion was built, primarily for entertaining King James I.