Canterbury, England, a city in Kent. It is on the Stour River, about 55 miles (90 km) east-southeast of London. Canterbury is a trade center, and has tanneries, breweries, and flour mills. Its principal feature, however, is its Anglican cathedral. A monastery occupied the site as early as 602, and several succeeding churches were destroyed by fire. The present structure was begun by Archbishop Lanfranc in 1070. In the following centuries various architects altered and enlarged the building.
Canterbury was a town in both Roman and Saxon times, and was the capital of the early kingdom of Kent. When St. Augustine arrived in 597 to convert the English, Canterbury became the headquarters of the Christian church in England. Augustine was consecrated as the first Archbishop of Canterbury. Thomas Becket was murdered in the cathedral in 1170.
Canterbury was heavily bombed by German planes in World War II, but the cathedral escaped with slight damage.
Population (district): 135,283.