Cadfael is a dramatic series about a medieval monk, Brother Cadfael, who solves mysteries in the Old English town of Shrewsbury. The monk is played by Derek Jacobi. Cadfael is helped in solving crimes by his loyal assistant, Brother Oswin. One night a man named Clemence is murdered, and Cadfael resolves to find the killer. This is complicated by the fact that nobody seems to have liked Clemence.
Cadfael has no proper investigatory authority. He is simply very smart, and people trust him because he is a man of God. He also has an immense knowledge of botany which allows him to use science to help solve murders. Sergeant Warden is the head of the local police department, and he and Cadfael get into things often.
Sometimes even the fellow brothers in Cadfael's order find themselves wrapped up in murder. The medieval time was a very difficult time for people to live in, and they lacked the creature comforts of many modern-day people. The show depicts how the brutal time period affects those around Shrewsbury.
Cadfael is not a typical monk, however. Before he joined his order, he was a warrior on the Crusades in Palestine. He has chosen to leave that violent life behind, but he still retains the instinct that he once had. Many people in Shrewsbury underestimate Cadfael.
Radulphus is the leader of the abbey where Cadfael lives. He does not believe that Cadfael is a great crime solver at first, but over time he begins to support him. Brother Robert is the prior of the abbey, and he and Cadfael often find themselves in disagreement. Brother Jerome is the gossip of the abbey, and he is always in Cadfael's way, trying to find out what he is doing. Brother Oswin is a bumbling klutz. Throughout it all, Cadfael manages to solve crimes and protect the people from Shrewsbury.
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A sack is found near the Abbey and it contains the dead body of an old man who appears to have been murdered. The suspects in the crime come from a group of pilgrims that includes two known thieves.
When a potter's wife suddenly passes away, the man gives up his old life to become a monk at the Abbey. Unfortunately, he is suspected by the other monks of having killled his wife so Cadfael is assigned to investigate things.
A smokin' hot serf girl and the remains of Saint Winifred are stolen from Shrewsbury Abbey. It's up to Brother Cadfael to recover them both.
Cadfael is faced with the task of solving two murders: a pregnant young woman and the priest who refused to take her confession.
At the yearly St. Peter's Fair, the Shrewsbury locals come into conflict with the Abbey's stewards and a group of traveling stewards. Eventually, a murder ensues and Cadfael is called upon to solve things once again.
Cadfael tries to solve the murders of a monk and the suitor of a well-to-do Shrewsbury widow.