Easterwine (or EOSTERWINI), Abbot of Wearmouth, was the nephew of St. Benedict Biscop; b. 650, d. March 7, 686. Descended from the noblest stock of Northumbria, as a young man he led the life of a soldier in the army of King Egfrid, the son of Oswy. When twenty-four years old he gave up the soldier’s profession to become a monk in the monastery of Wearmouth, then ruled over by St. Benedict Biscop. He is described as a noble youth, conspicuous for his humility and bodily activity, but withal infinitely gentle; a most exact observer of rule and one who loved to perform the lowliest work. He was ordained priest in the year 679, and in 682 St. Benedict appointed him abbot of Wearmouth as coadjutor to himself. As superior “when he was compelled to reprove a fault, it was done with such tender sadness that the culprit felt himself incapable of any new offense which should bring a cloud over the benign brightness of that beloved face”. In the year 686 a deadly pestilence overspread the country; it attacked the community at Wearmouth and the youthful abbot was one of its victims. He bade farewell to all, the day before he died, and passed away on March 7, when only thirty-six years old. St. Benedict was absent in Rome at the time of his death and Sigfried was chosen by the monks as his successor. Easterwine is not known to have been the author of any works.
G. E. HIND