Bede believed in miracles. They were basic to him, both as a practicing Christian and as a working historian. Without accepting this we can understand him neither as a man of the seventh and eighth centuries ncr as the author who carefully constructed the Ecclesiastical History.
One of Bede's warmest admirers, the late Bertram Colgrave, was rather embarrassed by what seemed to be the naíveté of his hero. To rescue Bede from the charge of being either overly credulous or simply simple-minded, Colgrave did a useful study of the use of miracle stories in Bede's works, particularly in the Ecclesiastical History. And yet, despite himself, he always remained a little uneasy. His comments to the British Academy reflect a continuing ambivalence, and his last words on the subject were still apologetic in tone.