St. Bartholomew the Great

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St. Bartholomew the Great

This is one of London's oldest churches. Construction on the church and the hospital nearby was begun in 1123 by Henry I's favorite courtier, Rahere, who, surviving malaria, dedicated his life to serving the saint who had visited him in his fevered dreams. With the dissolution of the monasteries—by which Henry VIII violently dismantled the Catholic Church in England—most of the building was torn down; the Romanesque choir loft is all that survives from the 12th century. In more recent times, this ancient church has become a bit of a movie star, having appeared in The Other Boleyn Girl, Four Weddings and a Funeral, and Shakespeare in Love, to name a few.

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