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South East England

Burgate 59
(Catholic Church of St. Thomas of Canterbury)

Saint Gregory the Great with an Anglian Slave in the Roman Forum

St. Gregory the Great, pope 590-604
artist unknown

Canterbury /  Saint Gregory the Great with an Anglian Slave in the Roman Forum   Canterbury /  Saint Gregory the Great with an Anglian Slave in the Roman Forum


Stone relief showing Saint Gregory and a boy within an arch in the shape of a boat stood on its stern. St Gregory is in robes with a cross hung around his neck. His right hand is raised in a symbol of peace and his left had rests on the boy's left shoulder. The boy is dressed in peasant clothes of the day and has his chained arms crossed across his stomach.


In the top of the arch:

non angli sed angeli si christiani

(Not Angles but angels, if they were Christian)
Words attributed to Gregory (the Great) in 573 when some British children reduced to slavery were shown him at Rome.

Information Sign

St Gregory the Great with an Anglian slave
in the Roman Forum

This relief was transferred within the Catholic Parish
of Canterbury from St Gregory's Catholic Chapel,
Chartham (on the closure of St Augustine's Hospital,
Chartham in 1994)
to St Thomas' Catholic Church Canterbury

where it was blessed
on the feast of St Augustine of Canterbury,
Tuesday, 27th May, 1997

by the Most Reverend Michael G Bowen, STL, PhL,
Archbishop of Southwark and Metropolitan

during the celebrations to mark the 1400th anniversary
of the arrival of St Augustine in Kent in AD 597

who was sent by Pope St Gregory the Great
to convert the English


Sources & Information


Location (N 51°16'42" - E 1°4'58")

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Item Code: gbse063; Photograph: 12 August 2015
Of each statue we made photos from various angles and also detail photos of the various texts.
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© Website and photos: René & Peter van der Krogt

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