THE MISSIONS OF THE BRITISH CHURCH
IN THE 5TH TO 7TH CENTURIES CE/AD
THE MISSION TO ALBA
British missions to Alba seem to have started from Whithorn, were continued by Palladius and went on through the 6th Century. When Irish missions to Alba began in the 6th Century, they found that some at least of the Picts were already Christian.
429 - Palladius the Deacon [of Rome] sent by Pope Celestine I to fortify the British and as Bishop to Alba and Hibernia. The mission, despite its Gallic, therefore urban and episcopal source, was faced with creating an ecclesiastical structure in Hibernia and Alba different from that in Gaul, for there were no towns on which to base dioceses. Without bases, clergy were forced to rely on rulers, itinerant with their courts and dependent upon their whims, so there was a need for independent bases, to which problem monasteries were the answer.
431 ? - Palladius with Augustinus and Benedictus, who follow him to Alba but return to their own country [Gaul] after his death goes to Alba. According to Prosper, Palladius arrives among the Picts after he leaves Hibernia. Scottish church tradition holds that he presided over a Christian community there for about 20 years. A cluster of dedications in the Mearns in Scotland, in the village of Auchenblae, are believed to mark his last resting place.
C 450 - [JR] Latinus stone carved in Whithorn.
457 - Bishop Palladius the Deacon of Ireland ‘the elder Patrick’ dies.
C 5 – [JEF] Monastery founded [presumably by British missionaries, the first in Alba] on the Isle of May in the Firth of Forth between the Votadini and the Maiatae or Calidones in Fife.
462 - Nectan Morbet becomes King of the Picts and becomes a Christian.
C 471 - [traditionally C 450 – 460] Coroticus, King of Alt Clut raids Hibernia and attacks Saint Patrick’s converts, occasioning Saint Patrick’s letter to him excommunicating his soldiers [JEL has C 450; PCB quoting Carney has 471; JR has 456 Saint Patrick writes of apostate Southern Picts; but Alt Clut is not Pict but British].
Post 485 - [traditionally C 432] Saint Ninian d at Candida Casa, succeeded as Abbot by Caranoc, later missionary to Ireland [other has Ninian b 362]. Tradition holds that Ninian was a Briton who [JM] was born in Alt Clut and had studied in Rome, that he established an episcopal see at the Candida Casa in Whithorn, that he named the see for Saint Martin of Tours, that he converted the southern Picts to Christianity, and that he is buried at Whithorn. 70 sites in Scotland.
C 528 - Saint Cadog builds monastery at Kilmadock near Stirling. Seven local churches that were built in his name came under the authority of Inchmahome Priory. It is also said that Cadog’s monastery was "below Mount Bannauc" (generally taken to be the hill southwest of Stirling down which the Bannockburn flows). Scottish followers were known as "Gille Dog", the servants of Cadog, which appears as a surname, first as Dog, and later as Doig, Dock, and Doak.
Saint Serf of Culross, Fife C 500-583. Venerated in western Fife, the apostle of Orkney. Connected with Saint Mungo's Church near Simonburn, Northumberland (off the Bellingham Road, north of Chollerford). He travelled to Gaul and Britain after vacating the holy see, arriving in Alba. There he met Adomnán, Abbot of Iona, who showed him Saint Serf's Inch, an island in Loch Leven, in the Pictish kingdom of Fib. Founded St Serf's Inch Priory on the island, where he remained seven years. The centre of his cult (and possibly of his activity) was Culross, which according to tradition, was founded by the saint himself. At Dunning, in Strathearn, he is said to have slain a dragon with his pastoral staff [WSK has Bishop Saint Serf d C 695 - 700]. Stories of a Mediterranean origin [The stories do not fit].
Pre mid C 6 – [JEF] monastery at Portmahomack established with estate on the Tarbat peninsula, in sight of royal capital of Fortriu / Verturiones at Burghead.
C 550 - Saint Noethon ap Gildas b 520 commemorated at Cambuslang, Glasgow, founded by Saint Cadog.
Saint Teneu. C 6 Brittonic princess of the ancient kingdom of Gododdin, mother of Saint Kentigern. She and her son are regarded as Glasgow’s co-patrons. Great-aunt of Saint Winifred. Saint Teneu has been described as "Scotland's first recorded rape victim, battered woman and unmarried mother". Her son was conceived when the Welsh prince Owain mab Urien raped her. She was given shelter at the community of Saint Serf in Culross. There she gave birth to and raised her son Kentigern, whom Serf nicknamed Mungo, "very dear one".
Post 560 – Saint Custennin ab Cado of Dumnonia goes to Ireland, to Columba on Iona, then is sent by Kentigern to preach in Galloway / Kinsale and d after attack by seaborne raiders C 576.
C 570 - [PCB] Saint Cyndeyrn Garthwys / Kentigern / Kyentyern ap Owain Rheged by Saint Denw / Thaney / Tenew ferch Llueddun of Dinas Eidyn b 550. Life by Jocelyn of Furness C 1185 plus an earlier fragment. Pet name Munghu. [JM] Saint Kentigern / Mungo / Mo-Chohe d C 603 [AC has 612 / 614; WSK has C 612]. First bishop of the Strathclyde Britons. Illegitimate son of Owain Rheged and Saint Teneu. Raised by Saint Serf / Servan and hermit near Glasgow. Educated by Saint Servanus / Servan. Met Saint Columba at Molendinar Burn in Culross. Driven into exile after being consecrated a bishop circa 540, went to Saint David in Wales. There he founded St. Asaph Monastery at Llanelwy. Visited Rome, maybe attended councils of Orleans 549 and Paris 557 as Conotigernus / Gonotigernus / Cunautigernus Bishop of Senlis [JM from C 549-C 560/570]. ? Involved in 555 in the deposition of Saffaracus, a British cleric in Paris, for homosexual crimes. [Other has in 553] he returned to Scotland [JM after accession of King Rhiderch Hael to Alt Clut C 573]. Founded Hoddam, Ecclefechan, Dumfries. Preached among the Picts and sent missions to Orkneys. He is venerated as the Apostle of northwestern England and southwestern Scotland.
C 590 - Saint Blane, nephew of Saint Cattan, founder of Kingarth, Bute, contemporary of Saints Comgall d 600 and Cainnech d 598.
Saint Nidan ap Gwrfyw, great-grandson of Urien Rheged [PCB has b 590] saint of Llanidan in Monmouthshire. Went to Scotland with Saint Kentigern, saint of Midmar.
Pre 630 - Saints Nasad, Beoan and Meldan of Tamlach. Meldan Abbot of Inisquin, soul-mate of his pupil Saint Fursey. [The Martyrology of Aengus "three saints from Britain, and are [interred] in one church, i.e. Tamlacht Menand at Loch Bricrend, in Iveagh, in Ulidia"].
THE MISSION TO HIBERNIA
The mission to Hibernia was mounted with Roman input from a focal point in Auxerre using British missionaries and Britain as a base. Its members were Italians, Gauls, Britons and Irish who were already students at Auxerre. It was led by Palladius. The mission began in Wicklow in Leinster, then spread north into Ulster (led by Secondinus, only later assisted by Patrick) and south into Munster. Palladius took some elements further north to Alba. The Isle of Man was evangelised from Hibernia as part of the mission. The early source and shape of Irish Christianity was largely British.
423 - Saint Patrick born [other has 402; IA has340/342/353; GA has 370-390 in Bannarem Taberniae; Ellis has in Aldcluyd, Dumbarton; Welsh have in Gwent; PCB has born in Bannauem Tabernae, son of deacon Calpurnius, son of priest Potitus, son of Odissus. Patrick born C 423 with name Mawn / Magonus].
429 - Palladius the Deacon [of Rome] sent by Pope Celestine I to fortify the British and as Bishop to the Irish Christians and convert the Scotti in Hibernia [other has 430-431; Saint Patrick legend has Palladius soon returning and dying in Britain; WSK and Saint Prosper of Aquitaine have 431]. This is initially a Roman mission from a Gallic base. It is noteworthy that Palladius turns to Germanus to intervene in Britain, ‘inviting’ Germanus and Lupus to visit Britain to deal with Pelagianism. Perhaps they also come to help organise the mission to Hibernia and Alba. The mission, despite its Gallic, therefore urban and episcopal source, was faced with creating an ecclesiastical structure in Hibernia and Alba different from that in Gaul, for there were no towns on which to base dioceses. Without bases, clergy were forced to rely on rulers, itinerant with their courts and dependent upon their whims, so there was a need for independent bases, to which problem monasteries were the answer.
C 430 - Irish disciple of Saint Germanus, Michomerus / Michomairle in Auxerre.
431 ? - Palladius lands at Inver-Dea / Hy-Garchon / Arklow in Wicklow, Leinster and founds three churches [Wikipedia has this in 431; other has 429]. Palladius was accompanied by Sylvester and Solinus, who remain after him in Hibernia and are buried in the Island of Boethin, and Augustinus and Benedictus, who follow him to Alba but returned to their own country [Gaul] after his death.
434 - [other has C 405] Saint Patrick captive in Ireland; IA has 356/357/365; other has C 420- Irish raid Cernyw / Glamorgan coast, kidnapping Saint Patrick Maun from Cor Tewdws / Bangor Tewdws / College or Chief University of Theodosius at Llantwit Major in the region of Gorfynedd in Cernyw; JEL has from Bannaventa north of Towcester, from Bannauem taberniae; PCB follows Carney in saying taken captive 434, escapes 440].
Post 434/C 466 – Saint Carranog, heir of King Ceretic of Ceredigion [r 424-453], renounces his rights and crosses to Meath, and after returning to found Carrum in Dumnonia, returns to Hibernia to die. His pupil Tenenan accompanied Saint Senan to Brittany.
438/439 - Secundinus sent from Gaul with Saint Iserninus to Hibernia [other has with Saint Auxilius].
Saint Secundinus - [other has 456; Bowen has with Palladius and has Secundinus as a bishop founding church at Dunshaughlin in County Meath and Iserninus at Clonmore in County Carlow and Aghade in Kilcullen; Wikipedia has 439 the three bishops arriving in to join Palladius]. [other has 'Secundinus was later 1st Bishop of Ard-Macha / Armagh in Ulster; Secundinus nephew of St. Patrick, the son of Patrick's sister, Darerca, and her husband, Restitutus, a Lombard]. Possibly Italian.
Saint Iserninus is thought to have been a Briton or Irishman, and is associated with the lands of the Uí Cheinnselaig in Leinster. He was originally named Fith, and he may have been ordained a deacon at Auxerre with Patrick and Auxilius. Founder of Kilcullen and Clonmore, inland Leinster – d 465 [JM d 448; PCB has him as Hernin / Hirnin in southwest Wales].
[AU] – Ireland’s civil law, the Senchus Mor, codified.
Post 440 - [other has post 418] Saint Patrick ordained deacon by Bishop Amator of Autissiodorum / Auxerre, where he remains till 431/432 under Bishop (post 418) Saint Germanus. [IA has 376; other source has 425 – Saint Patrick pupil of Saint Germanus, who d C 448; PCB quoting Carney has post 440]. [Saint Amator was bishop of Auxerre from 388 until his death in 418].
444 - ? Founding of Armagh by its first Bishop Saint Secondinus.
Pre 445 - [others have ? 440, C 466] Saint Garmon becomes first Bishop of Man at Sodor [others have C 470 Armorican / British Saint Germanus / Garmon joins Saint Patrick in Ireland and evangelizes Man. Churches in Gwynedd dedicated to Garmon are Capel Garmon, Llanarmon, Llanarmon Dyffryn Ceiriog, and Llanarmon-yn-Ial. ? Garmon d 474 / 488 on the Isle of Man. This is the first mention of a British Armorican Christian, interestingly going to Ireland not the other way. He is more probably a British missionary.
448 – Saint Secundinus Bishop of Armagh d [others have 447 / 450 succeeded by Saint Patrick; dates wrong; Patrick has yet to arrive].
['Synod of Bishops headed by Saints Iserninus, Auxilius and Patrick; traditional, but the latter two had yet to arrive].
Pre 450 / 450 – Italians Saints Romulus and Conindrus, disciples of Saint Patrick, evangelise in the Isle of Man. They succeed Saint Garmon; a British missionary succeeded by Italians.
Saint Maughold founds Duleek, Meath coast [other has Saints Maughold and Cianan found Duleek; JM has Cianan founds Duleek; other has Saint Patrick founds Duleek Abbey in Meath, appointing abbot Saint Cianan; other has 489 Saint Patrick gives Duleek Abbey to care of Saint Cianan].
Saint Maughold prince and captain of a band of freebooters . Moves to the Isle of Man, eventually to succeed Romulus and Conindrus. Founder of Maughold monastery near Ramsey. He d C 488/491/498.
Saint Cianan b C 430 / 440 of Connacht extract but in Munster, d 489 [JM has d 491]. He was a pupil of the monk Nathan. As a youth, he was one of the fifty [JM has 60] hostages whom the princes of Ireland gave to King Lóegaire mac Néill, by whom he was set free at the intercession of Bishop Ciaran / Kieran [this makes no chronological sense]. He then went to Tours, studying in the monastery of Saint Martin, visited Connacht and Leinster, then founder Bishop of Damliag / Duleek.
Saint Colman, Bishop in Munster, founded Kilcolman, Ardmore, Waterford – early C 5, baptized Declan and sent him to study under Dymma. ['Accompanied Aelbe and Declan to Rome'].
453 - Óengus mac Nad Froích King of the Eóganachta in Munster ['baptised by Saint Patrick in Cashel'], the first Christian King of Munster.
456 – [other has C 423; traditional date is 432] Saint Patrick sent to Hibernia and preaches to King Lóegaire. Slave in Ulster baptised by Caranoc? With him is his nephew Saint Auxilius / Usaille one of eight brothers missionaries to Ireland; d 493. Followed Secundinus as Bishop of Armagh in Ulster post 459 - [traditionally C 444 'Saint Patrick founds Armagh' and 'Pope Leo I - Pope 440-461 - approves Saint Patrick’s independence of the British bishops']. Involved in Duleek in Leinster 460s?
Saint Auxilius ordained a deacon at Auxerre with Patrick and Iserninus. Maybe Celt or Italian. He was the nephew of St. Patrick, the son of Patrick's sister, Darerca, and her husband, Restitutus, a Lombard [this is impossible; the Lombards had not arrived on the European scene yet]. He was one of nine brothers, eight of whom became bishops in Hibernia [PCB quoting Carney has arrives as bishop 456; KH has active in Ireland 461-492].
Post 456 - [traditionally C 433] Saint Patrick clashes with High King Lóegaire and Saint Benignus / Beonna, ‘Patrick’s Psalm Singer’, is tied inside a burning timber building with a druid to emerge alone unscathed.
Saint Benignus / Beonna [who was 'sent by St. Patrick in 450 to preach to the tribes of West Munster, later to north Clare and Connacht'; dates are too early]. In 442 Patrick founded a monastery at Druimlias, and three years later made Benignus the abbot [date too early]. He remained there for 20 years, and was then made Bishop of Armagh, d 468 or at Glastonbury.
Saint Lomman, joint founder of Trim, Meath.
Saint Foirtchern / Vortigern, son of Feidelmid, son of King Lóegaire, and daughter of a King of the British [Loegaire was High King 427/428/429 – 463; cf 432 Vortigern marries his daughter to a Scotti king], converted by Saint Lomman and joint founder of Trim, Meath. Educated Finnian of Clonard. [JM] Saint Lomman was Patrick’s nephew, brother of Bishop Munis of Forgney, Longford. Maybe magus Hoam with whom Mocteus’s parents reached Ireland. Trim was the foremost church in the kingdom of the Cenél Lóegairi.
457 - Bishop Palladius the Deacon of Ireland ‘the elder Patrick’ dies [JM has Saint Patrick dies and northern Irish sees established; everything is later tied to Patrick and to his spurious link with Rome and independence from the British church. At the time there was one church only, a Celtic church of the British Isles organized from Britain. Patrick and his relatives were all British. The papacy and Auxerre were the spurs and initial organizers of the evangelisation of Hibernia, but its missionaries were assisted and later replaced by British missionaries].
C 457 - [traditionally C 433] Saint Patrick converts druid Saint Erc of Lilcach at Hill of Slane in Meath.
Saint Erc mac Dega [JM has C 460] founds monastery on the Hill of Slane. He was the only member of King Lóegaire 's retinue, a druid, to pay homage to Saint Patrick during the latter's confrontation with the druids on the Hill of Slane. He came to Kerry soon after the mission of Saint Benignus, and worked in south-west Limerick, in the heart of which lay the convent of Ita at Killeedy, over which he seems to have had jurisdiction. He was the special friend and tutor of Saint Brendan the Navigator, the patron of Kerry. Erc is said to have trained the young Brendan at his church in Ardfert in 512. Saint Erc established the school at Slane, where King Dagobert II is said to have received his early education. Co-adjutor Armagh, 470, d 514.
Post 457 - [traditionally post 433; other has fl C 430] Saint Odran, the charioteer of Saint Patrick, the first Christian martyr in Irish history.
Post 458 – [traditionally 440] When Amalgaid mac Fiachrae King of Connacht dies, a succession dispute breaks out between his sons Óengus and Éndae. Saint Patrick arranges for High King Lóegaire mac Néill and his brother Eógan mac Néill to mediate the dispute. Endae has his son Conall baptised and given to Patrick's service for his support.
Post 458 - The island monastery of Nendrum founded by Saint Mochay / Mo Chaoi, after whom Mahee Island is named. His proper name was Caolán and according to tradition he was appointed by St. Patrick, a favourite disciple. [Annals of Ulster d 496; Annals of Tighernach have 493, other has 497]. Saint Colman, the founder of Dromore and Saint Finian of Moville studied under Mochay, both an abbot and a bishop.
C 459 - Saint Auxilius d [others have 454, 455, 458; PCB has Saint Auxilius d after he and Usyllt pass through Dyfed with Saint Iserninus establishing churches].
Pre 460 - Saint Olcán Irish saint of the Dál Riata, 'disciple of St Patrick' and founder of Armoy / Oirthear Maí in northeast Antrim. Olcan’s mother was St. Patrick’s sister. St Olcan was sent to France ['and returned to Ireland to become the first Christian bishop in Ireland'; if Olcan was Patrick's nephew, Olcan was British, or Patrick's mother was Scotti, which is unlikely and would have been reported].
Saint Oengus Mac Nisse founds Armoy on the northern Ulster coast. Later Founder and first bishop-abbot of Connor, Co. Antrim [he is said to have been 'baptized by Saint Patrick'], d 514.
460 – Saint Ibar of Beggerin, pupil of Briton Moctheus of Louth and two Munster men, Enda and Kebi, 'consecrated bishops in Rome'. Ibar is one of the Quattuor sanctissimi Episcopi / the four most sacred bishops said to have preceded Saint Patrick in Ireland (with Saints Ailbe, Ciaran and Déclán). Ibar travelled to Gaul for education. When he returned from Lérins, he visited Abingdon and 'converted a pagan king'. He and some companions constituted the first community on one of the Aran Islands in Galway Bay. He moved his monastery to plain of Geshille, County Offaly, then settled at Beggerin. Ibar's nephew, St Abbán, as a boy of twelve, came to Beggerin in Ibar's old age 'and accompanied him to Rome'. Baptised Saint Foelan. Saint Moninne is said to have travelled to Leinster to become the disciple of Saint Ibar before founding her monastery in Killeavy; d 501 [JM has 499].
C 460 - Saint Faencha of Rossory, Ferns, sends her brother Saint Enda to Rosnat to study under Maucennus. Enda, Abbot of Killeany, d C 530. Saint Enda was a king of Oriel / Aigialla or Meath, converted by his sister, Saint Fanchea / Faencha, an abbess. C 484 he established 'the first Irish monastery' at Kell Ayne / Killeaney on Aran Mor. Enda is described as the "patriarch of Irish monasticism". Given land in the Aran Islands by his brother-in-law, Angus, King of Munster. At least two dozen canonised individuals had some association with "Aran of the Saints". Among these were Saint Brendan the Voyager, who was blessed for his voyage there; Jarlath of Tuam, Saint Finnian of Clonard, and Saint Columba of Iona who called it the "Sun of the West". Aran became a miniature Mount Athos, with a dozen monasteries scattered over the island, the most famous, Killeany, where Enda himself lived. Saint Ciaran of Clonmacnoise, came there first as a youth to grind corn, and would have remained there for life but for Enda's insistence that his true work lay elsewhere. Killeany was on the Aran Iles off west coast of Munster, preceding Senen’s Scattery to its south and being the first of a group in west Munster.
Saint Declán of Ardmore, son of Erc, stepson of King Angus of Munster, baptized by Saint Colman of Munster, d C 5, converted the Déisi and founded the monastery of Ardmore, County Waterford. Succeeded by Ultan. He was regarded as a patron saint of the Déisi of East Munster. Declan is one of four Munster saints who had Lives written for them claiming that they founded monasteries and preached the Gospel in Munster before their younger contemporary Saint Patrick ever set foot in Ireland [other saints were Ailbe of Emly; Ciaran of Saigir; Ibar of Wexford).
Saint Ciarán of Saigir d C 530, a nobleman of the Dál Birn rulers of Osraige, one of the Twelve Apostles of Ireland, considered the first saint to have been born in Ireland. Ciarán was bishop of Saighir, Ossory, called Saint Ciarán the Elder to distinguish him from Saint Ciarán, Abbot of Clonmacnoise. Like the saints Ailbe of Emly, Declán of Ardmore and Abbán, Ciarán is credited with a pre-Patrician career in Munster. Traditional Irish sources (his Vitae, the Félire Óengusso, etc.) ascribe his missionary activity as before St. Patrick, but assign no dates to his life [JM has ? C 440 - C 520].
460s - Saint Beonna / ? Benignus, 2nd Bishop of Armagh, travels to Glastonbury and becomes hermit 'on Saint Patrick’s advice'.
Saint Iarlaithe - [other has 467] succeeds Saint Benignus as Bishop of Armagh [Wikipedia has b C 439 d 481 and Bishop of Armagh from 468 to 481]. Iarlaithe was a member of the Dál Fiatach, a ruling dynasty centered on Downpatrick; his twin brother was Saint Séadna, his paternal uncle was Saint Laoghaire of Dún, his paternal first cousins were Saint Eoghan of Killchlethe, Saint Niall of Killchlethe, Saint Dichu of Saul, Saint Duthracht of Nendrum, Saint Ailill of Moville and Saint Ross of Dun da Leithglass. After his ordination Saint Iarlaithe was assigned to the church of Clonfeacle, which was founded by St. Patrick. [JM] Went to Rome with Mac Criche and Finnian / Fintan to obtain a ruling against the primacy of Pubeus / ? Kebi.
C 462 - Saint Garmon visits Britain from Ireland.
Pre 465 - Saint Abbán / Moabba, founder of monasteries at Mag Arnaide, County Wexford and at Cell Abbáin, County Loais. Son of Cormac son of Ailill, King of Leinster, who d 435, and Mella, sister of Saint Ibar. Founded 30 cells in Leinster and Munster, 1 in Connacht, 3 in Meath. Baptised Saint Finnian of Clonard, d C 520.
465 – [IA] Saint Iserninus d [KH has d 468].
C 465 – Saint Moninne, founder of Killeavy, inland Ulster C 435-517.
? C 470 – Saint Ternan of Banchory, Kincardine, b C 440. Saint Ternan is venerated as the Bishop of the Picts and may have been consecrated by Saint Palladius. Some scholars believe that he may have been a monk at Culross, which had been founded by Saint Serf [impossible chronologically; Serf d 593 or 695]. Ternan established a small monastery on the north side of the River Dee near the current graveyard in Banchory.
C 471 - [traditionally C 450 – 460] Coroticus, King of Alt Clut raids Hibernia and attacks Saint Patrick’s converts, occasioning Saint Patrick’s letter to him excommunicating his soldiers [JEL has C 450; PCB quoting Carney has 471; JR has 456 Saint Patrick writes of apostate Southern Picts; but Alt Clut is not Pict but British].
480 - Death of British Saint Rioch of Inch Boffin / Inisboffin, Lough Ree, West Meath. He was 'a nephew of St. Patrick' and the brother of Saints Mel, Melchu and Muinis. [JM ? The Riochatus with Saint Faustus of Riez in C 475].
C 480 – Saint Brechan settles on Aran islands at Inismore. Brechan was grandchild of Carthan Fionn, one of the Dalcassian kings who reigned in Munster C 439. His grandfather was baptized by Saint Patrick at what is now Singland, near Limerick. His father, son of the king, was Eochu Balldearg, or Eochu of the Red Spot. It was recorded that Eochu was hopelessly disfigured and diseased when he was born, but was cured through a miracle by Saint Patrick. A poem from C 14 or C 15 says he was a soldier before becoming a missionary. On his first mission to Aran he destroyed a reigning idol named Brecán, and took that name for himself, then converted the idol's sanctuary into a hermitage. Saint Brecan's most important foundations were the Seven Churches of Aran on Inishmore.
481 – Saint Iarlaithe mac Treno, Bishop of Armagh dies, succeeded by Saint Cormac of Armagh, 5th Bishop and first Abbot. Cormac / Corbmac C 430 – 497 [JM has 498].
Saint Bridget / Brigit, founder of Kildare, inland Leinster, 451-525 – 'relative of Patrick'.
Post 485 - [traditionally C 432] Saint Ninian d at Candida Casa, succeeded as Abbot by Caranoc, later missionary to Ireland [other has Ninian b 362]. Tradition holds that Ninian was a Briton who [JM] was born in Alt Clut and had studied in Rome, that he established an episcopal see at the Candida Casa in Whithorn, that he named the see for Saint Martin of Tours, that he converted the southern Picts to Christianity, and that he is buried at Whithorn. 70 sites in Scotland. [JM has ? Bishop of Carlisle. Variations of the story add that 'he had actually met Saint Martin, that his father was a Christian king, and that he was buried in a stone sarcophagus near the altar of his church. Further variations assert that he left for Ireland, and died there in 432'].
Saint Caranoc the Great in tradition evangelized in Hibernia and 'baptized Patrick' there as well as founded monasticism there [other has early C 5; others have 432 Abbot of Whithorn ? baptizer of Patrick; pre 432 individual evangeliser of Hibernia from Britain? Likely to have been in Ulster]. Post 485 Abbot of Whithorn.
486 / 488 – death of Saint Mael, Bishop of Ardagh, Longford, 'first named of Patrick’s bishops'; 'nephew of Patrick', brother of Saint Rioc of Inch Boffin. British [JM has ?Irish]. 'Patrick appointed Mél as one of the earliest Irish bishops and head of the Diocese of Ardagh'. Mél built the monastery of Ardagh where he was both bishop and abbot. He accepted Saint Brigid of Kildare's profession as a nun and served as her mentor while she was in Ardagh.
C 488 - Saint Ailbe of Munster, founder of the see of Emly [Annals of Innisfallen] d 528 [other has d 501; JEL has d C 530] having baptised Dewi Sant. Listed among the pre-Patrician saints of Ireland, in the company of Ciaran, Declan, and Ibar. Abandoned by his parents, he was discovered in the forest by Britons who carried him back with them when they returned to Wales [Welsh sources make him the son of Dirdan of Brittany and Danhadlwen, a descendant of Vortimer the Blessed, making him a cousin of Saints David, Cybi, and Sadyrnin. Saint Ailbe is venerated as one of the four great patrons of Ireland; other has son of Cronan, King of Atrigi, Limerick]. Founder of the see and school of Emly. ‘Second patron of Ireland’ after Patrick. Baptised by a priest sent from Rome before Patrick. Travelled to Rome and visited Saint Samson at Dol [in Brittany 550-560]. Made 'Archbishop' of Munster by King Angus. Teacher of Saint Cianan.
489 - Saint Patrick’s Confessio [PCB quoting Carney has C 489; traditionally 460; JM has C 440-443 Saint Patrick’s Confessio / Declaration].
490 – death of Saint Mac Caille, Bishop of Crogan, Offaly, 'nephew of Patrick', veiled Saint Brigit [others have 456/484/487/489].
C 490 - Saint Natalius, British or Gaulish abbot of Kilmanagh, County Kilkenny, Leinster.
Saint Conlaed of Kildare, co-founder of monastery with Brigit C 490, d 518/519. One of the 3 chief artisans of Ireland (with Tassach and Dageus), skilled worker in gold and silver, and manuscript illuminator. First bishop of Kildare C 490. Baptised Saint Tigernach of Clogher. Died while on pilgrimage to Rome, Italy.
493 – [traditionally 461-2] Saint Patrick d [PCB quoting Carney has 493].
C 495 - Saint Mictheus / Mocteus founded monasteries at Lismhor and Lughmadh, d 533/535/538 [JM has 499]. 'Last living disciple of Patrick', held Armagh briefly between Saints Patrick and Benignus, founder of Louth, coastal Meath, d 535/538. Mocteus was British and emigrated to Hibernia with parents and magus Hoam. Involved in the dispute between Saints Enda and Kebi / Pubeus at end of C 5 about British authority over Aran and probably the whole Irish church. His pupil was Saint Ibar, who disputed Armagh claims. 'During a visit to Rome, Mochta was made a bishop by Pope St. Leo I / was consecrated by St. Patrick'. Adomnán's Life of Columba describes him as "a certain British stranger, a holy man and a disciple of the holy bishop Patrick". Adomnán presents Mochta as having prophesied the birth of Colm Cille.
C 496 – [JM] Death of Mac Cuilin, Bishop of Lusk, Dublin [other has 497].
497 – [other has 496] Saint Cormac of Armagh d, succeeded by Dubthach I, C 450-513, 6th Bishop of Armagh.
C 521 – Death of Italian Saint Boecius, founder of Monasterboice, north of Drogheda, Louth, Meath. Operated in Alba under Nectan Morbet and preached to Dal Riadans in Ireland. Went to Connacht before Monasterboice.
C 530 - Saint Santan of Kilnasantan, Dublin, b C 500; son of King Sawyl Penuchel ? of the Southern Pennines, r 525-560, son of King Saint Pabo Post Pridein, r C 500-525, by his first wife, Deichter the daughter of King Muiredach of Ulster. In Rheged, he founded a number of churches., then crossed the Irish Sea, stopping on Ynys Manw and establishing the church at Santon en route. He composed a hymn whilst seeking out his brother, Saint Madog, on Ynys Matoc, Leitrim. With Madog, Bishop of Cill-da-Les, Kilnasantan in County Dublin C 520. Maybe also Saint Sanctanus of Mount Sanctan, Antrim.
Post 560 – Saint Custennin ab Cado of Dumnonia goes to Ireland, to Columba on Iona, then is sent by Kentigern to preach in Galloway / Kinsale and d after attack by seaborne raiders C 576.
565 - [JM] King Ainmire of Ireland invites Saint Gildas to restore order in the Irish Church after Columba’s departure.
The first evangelism of Hibernia may have been by individuals travelling to Britain and Gaul, eg Michomerus at Auxerre C 430. Deliberate evangelism by Pope Celestine C 429 with assistance of Germanus at Auxerre sends Palladius with Italian, Gallic, British and Irish missionaries: Auxilius, Sylvester and Solinus, Augustinus and Benedictus, Secundinus, Romulus and Conindrus (Italian via Gaul); Iserninus (British or Irish from Auxerre), Garmon (Armorican British), Ailbe (Armorican British or Irish connected with Wales) and later Patrick (British).
Palladius goes on to southern Pictland with at least two companions, so it is probable that his mission included Alba. Tradition has it that Ninnian also evangelised the Picts from Whithorn. British missions continued to Alba in the C 6 before the Irish missions there. Pictish kings were Christian before Columba arrived on Iona and before Patrick reached Ireland.
The converted or accompanying Irish missionaries to the Palladian mission to Hibernia were Benignus, Maughold, Cianan, Ciaran, Declan, Abban, Ibar, Michteus, Beona, Iarlaith and Cormac. Of these, those with Gallic or British connections were: Cianan (Tours and Lerins); Ibar (Armorica and Lerins); Beona (Glastonbury). The Irish link with Glastonbury was maintained till much later and led to dedications there for Patrick, Bridget etc. The last possible British missionary was Ailbe d C 528.
The initial British missionary activity in Alba started in the 4th Century and was home-grown, directed through Whithorn at the British in Galway and Stratchclyde, then the southern Picts and northern Hibernia, where it was ongoing when Patrick was there as a slave. By the time Patrick was back in Ireland, there were southern Picts who were capable of apostasy and the King of Alt Clut could be excommunicated C 471. Alt Clut still needed evangelism by Kentigern’s bishopric in the late C 6.
The period of intense missionary activity in Hibernia seems to have been 420s to 460s, and was carried on during the Saxon revolt in Britain. However, the small number of British figures may have been due to the revolt. The Irish had already been individually converted and took up Christianity without too much help after the 440s.
The Isle of Man was evangelized as an adjunct of the Hibernian mission some 30 years after first missions to Hibernia, interestingly by a British missionary, Garmon, but then by two Romans. At the time, it was ruled by Alt Clut / Galwyddel.
The form of Irish Christianity was very similar to the monastic form British Christianity took after the Saxon revolt, rather than the metropolitan form of Gaul and Rome to which the first missionaries were accustomed. This was due to the tribal, rural, non-urban circumstances of Hibernia and to later British missionary influence. Nevertheless, the links with continental Christianity were strong and continued throughout the period of post-Saxon revolt disruption in Britain.
It is unclear why the kings of the Scotti were so open to Christian missionaries or how the political situation in Hibernia at the time affected the missions. There may be a clue, perhaps, in the connection with British ruler Vortigern’s family (Saint Foirtchern Post 456) in the chief see of the Cenel Lóegaire.
Of the saints listed here, 7 were of British, 10 of Irish, royal families. There was only one ruler in Hibernia or Alba who was considered a saint: Saint Enda, C 460, King of Oriel, Meath.
The real position of Saint Patrick has been obscured. There is no clear evidence that he was Bishop of Armagh. The dates of the other saints who may have been its bishop – Secondinus d 448, Benignus d 468, Michtheus d 495 [‘Coadjutor between Patrick and Benignus’], Erc d 470, Iarleith d 481 and Cormac d 497 do not make much space for Patrick after he arrives in Hibernia 456 unless he succeeds Michtheus and Benignus is a predecessor, not a disciple. He himself does not say that he is Bishop of Armagh. There may not have been such a see at the time.
Alba has recorded the names of very few saints in comparison with Britannia, Hibernia and Armorica. Almost all of the saints recorded as evangelizing Alba were of British or Scotti origin. Alba seems to have produced no great monastic school to train and desptch its own missionaries, either internally or externally. The lack of a record of all but atiny few Pictish clerics at home, and one or two individuals abroad, is all that remains. Either the record and memory were comprehensively destroyed and lost, or Christianity took longer to establish roots in Alba. What roots it did establish seem to have been less vibrant and did not flourish in what was perhaps the economically most backward part of the British Isles. Alba may also have been the final redoubt of paganism, but there is no record of such.
THE MISSION TO ARMORICA
British missions to Armorica started 30 or more years later than those to Hibernia. The 5th Century evangelization did not get fully underway until the British fightback at the end of the Century was succeeding. Most evangelization occurred during the 6th Century peace and tapered off after it. By then, the church in Brittany was making links to become part of the Church in Francia. Most British evangelism was mounted from the regions of south Wales, especially Cernyw / Glywyssing, less from Dumnonia and Cornubia. None came from the north and Irish links were few.
C 250 – martyrdom ? under Decius of brother Saints Donatian and Rogatian at Portus Namnetum / Nantes.
374 – Bishop Emmelius / Emmitus of Portus Namnetum / Nantes attends Council of Valence.
C 440 - Armorican Saint Garmon joins Saint Patrick in Ireland and evangelizes Man.
453 – see of Condate Riedonum / Civitas Riedonum / Rennes established.
Post 455 – Saint Justinian moves from Brittany to Ramsey Island, Dyfed and is welcomed into his cell by Ynyr ap Tyfriog.
460 - Death of Saint Corentin, first Bishop of Quimper. The saint is one of the seven founding saints of Brittany and is also venerated in Cornwall at Cury. [JM] Born in Armorica, hermit at Plomodiern in the Forest of Nevet. Ordained at Tours. Reckoned contemporary with Gradion / Gradlon Mawr / the Great ap Conan, King of Brittany / Vannes [C 400 – C 434]. He signed the Canons of the Council of Angers in 453 as Bishop Chariato [PCB has 480-510]. Succeeded by Saint Conogan, Bishop of Quimper-Corentin. [Chadwick has C 470 diocese of Carhaix transferred to Le Yaudet [later to Treguier, which was first a monastery of Val Trecor, founded by Saint Tudual] and Aquilo [later Quimper].
Tradition has British immigration started under Gradlon Mor C 400-430, who made Saint Corentin 1st Bishop of Quimper and Saint Guénolé 1st Bishop of Landevenec [PCB has pre 453 – post 480].
Earliest mention of British Christians in Armorica naturally coincides with growth of the British kingdoms there. The bishops are often connected with the ruling families.
461 - British Bishop Mansuetus ? of Armorica attends Council of Civitas Turonum / Caesarodunum / Tours [PCB says this is the first tangible evidence of British in Armorica in the neighbourhood of Vannes]. [Chadwick] Bishop Athenius of Condate Riedonum / Civitas Riedonum / Rennes at Council of Tours.
465 – [Chadwick] Council of Vannes attended by Bishop Athenius of Rennes and Bishops of Aleth [in place of earlier Corseul] and Carhaix. Metropolitan presided.
C 468 - Budig I, King of Brittany / Vannes d succeeded by son Maxenri / Meliau ap Budig I [PCB has prince of Cornuaille b 500, r C 530-537. His wife was Aurilla, daughter of Iudoc, prince of Damnonia]. Meliau was father of Melor, and both were slain by brother Rivold, prince of Cornuaille, who first mutilated Saint Melor aged 7 by cutting off his right hand and left foot. Melor was given a silver hand but Rivold bribed his guardian Cerialtan to kill him. Cerialtan’s wife rescued him and sent him to Meliau’s sister, husband of Conomorus in Damnonia [this fact or the dates here are incompatible as Conomorus d 560]. Cerialtan pursued Melor and slew him at Lanmeur. His relics were taken to Amesbury. Three saints may be conflated here: a. Saint Magloire of Dol b 485, first cousin to Saint Samson and Saint Machutes; b. Saint Melar martyr prince, co-patron of Amesbury; c. Saint Meloire, Bishop.
? C 477 - Saint Sezny disciple of St Patrick, met in Rome while the latter was presented to him by the Pope Celestine I. Appointed bishop, he accompanies his master to Ireland to fulfill his episcopal office. He embarks there for Brittany with 70 companions. They dock at the port of Poulluhen, near the present town of Kerlouan , where they found a first settlement. Later, they built a monastery at Guissény. [PCB] Dedications in Cornwall and Brittany, patron of Guisseny in Leon. One of the company of Saint Breaca.
C 478 - Saint Efflam, son of an Irish king, b 448, married very young Enora, he made a vow of chastity. An angel helped him resist temptation, and he fled to Britanny, landing at Plestin in the Trégor in Damnonia, where he lived [pre 455] for a time in the company Saint Gestin / Justinian. He and Enora never consummated their marriage and were dedicated both to God in a forest hermitage; d 512.
480 – Saint Brioc [JM C 468 - C 559; PCB b 460] moves from Ceredigion to Armorica via Cornubia and founds monastery at Landebaeron. [Chadwick Life of St Brioc makes him cousin/ uncle to Saint Tudual. In Damnonia. Studied under and ordained by Germanus at Paris with Patrick and Heltut / Illtud founded Landa Magna / ? Llandyfriog Fawr. Brioc converted Prince Conan in Cornubia - C 500 Cyn-March ap Meirchion / Cunomorus]. He went to Achim in Britanny and established an oratory at Saint-Brieuc [Chadwick] which became bishopric. Bro Sant-Brieg / Pays de Saint-Brieuc is one of the nine traditional bishoprics of Brittany. The saint is one of the seven founding saints of Brittany.
C 490 – Saint Padarn / Paternus [others have 461-490/C 465; other has b 550; PCB has b 480] Bishop of Vannes. [Chadwick] not founder of the see [the see was hitherto part of the old Gallic dicocesan structure and appointed thence [PCB has b 480, son of Petran / Perrwn ap Emyr Ledaw and Guean / Gwen ferch Ceredig ap Cunedda in Letavia]. Padarn joins monks leaving for Britain led by Saints Cadman and Tydecho [both last also grandsons of Emir Ledaw / Budig I High King of Brittany / King of Vannes so Padarn’s cousins]. Visited Ireland. Discomfited Maelgwn Gwynedd. Lost tunic to Arthur so buried him. Post 510 Caradouc Brecbras / Caradog Freichfras extends dominions into Letavia / Armorica [establishing Bro Erec] but people demand he send Padarn before they submit. [PCB] Padarn leaves Guinnius and Guippir as governors of monasteries in Ceredigion and Kinoc at Llanbadarn Fawr. Saint Padarn becomes Bishop of Vannes. Builds monastery near Guenet. Counted among the seven founder saints of Brittany. [PCB] Padarn ap Pedrwn ab Emyr Lydaw, mother Gen ferch Ceredig ap Cunedda. Padarn’s Life written at Llanbadarn Fawr, Aberystwyth.
[PCB] Padarn’s brother Saint Garmonion ap Pedrwn Wledig / Wledic o Lydaw, b 480.
Saint Winwaloe, first abbot of Landévennec Abbey, succeeded by Saint Gwenhael / Gwenael / Gwenhael [Wikipedia has C 460-532; JM has Winwaloe’s death as ? 583 or ? 594; other has d 532]. Winwaloe born C 460 in Cornuaille. Set up a small monastery on the Île de Tibidy, at the mouth of the Faou. However it was so inhospitable that after three years, he miraculously opened a passage through the sea to found another abbey on the opposite bank of the Landévennec estuary in Cornuaille. [PCB St Winwaloe b 480 son of Dumnonian Prince Fracanus / Fracan / Fragan, cousin of King Cadwy who to escape pestilence went to Brittany with wife Alba Trimammis, and sons Wethnoc and Iacob. Wingualoeus b shortly after arrival. 'Gradlon took him as confessor' impossible as only 2 Gradlons / Gadeons: Gradlon Mawr High King / King of Vannes d 434, Gradlon / Gradion ap Alain I / Flam son of King Alain I of Vannetai King of Cornouaille 650; has to be either Budig II, High King / King of Vannes 478-544 or Daniel Drem Red, King of Cornuaille pre 500].
Saint Idunet founded a priory at Châteaulin. [JM] also venerated in Norfolk and Herts. Visited Gradlon in Brittany [impossible as only 2 Gradlons / Gadeons: Gradlon Mawr High King / King of Vannes d 434, Gradlon / Gradion ap Alain I / Flam son of King Alain I of Vannetai King of Cornouaille 650; has to be either Budig II, High King / King of Vannes 478-544 or Daniel Drem Red, King of Cornuaille pre 500].
Saint Wethenoc, son of Prince Fragan of Damnonia and Saint Gwen the Three-Breasted, brothers, Winwaloe and Jacut. Wethenoc may be Bishop of Padstow opponent of Petroc [PCB b 475 ].
[PCB] Saint Gwen Candida Teirbron ferch Emyr Llydaw, wife first of Eneas Ledewig of Lydaw, then mother of Saints Winwaloe, Guethenoc, Iacob, sons of Prince Fracan / Fragan, called Alba Trimammis / White Three Breasts. Saint of churches in Saint-Venec and others in Brittany.
Saint Gwenaël, second abbot of Landévennec Abbey, successor in 532 to the founder, Saint Winwaloe. According to tradition, Winwaloe met Gwenaël in a street in Quimper when he was eleven, and was so convinced of his gifts that he at once obtained permission from Gwenaël's parents for him to study under his direction. Gwenael was son of Comes Romelius of Quimper, a descendant of settlers in the time of Conan Meriadauc. His Vita was written in C 9. Gwenaël is said to have founded monasteries in Britain and Ireland and to have restored several monasteries in Ireland. On return, settled in Cornuaille under ? Rigomalus / Rualo [Iahan Reith ? C 590-607] to ? 600 then moved to Vannetais under Waroc [Waroc II of Bro Erech, usurper of Vannes, C 570-594]. He is also said to have founded a monastery at Caudan (on the territory of the present Lanester), where there is a chapel of Saint Guénaël, and to have died there in about 590/598.
[PCB] Saint Iacob son of Fracan, twin of Guethenoc, educated by Saint Budoc, founded houses including Saint Jacut-de-la-Mer.
Saint Nennocha, 'daughter' of King Brychan Brycheiniog and Meneduc, daughter of Constantine / Custennin Fawr ap Macsen Wledig, settles in Ploer. The Breton king gave the princess land at Ploermel in the Vannetais, and there she founded a monastery. [JM] Saint Ninnoca, daughter of Brychan, crosses from Wales to Vannetais with Bishops Morhed and Gurgallonus, and Ilfon / Elfin Gur Kentelua / commander of the bodyguard. [Chadwick has Saint Ninnoc of royal stock of east Wales].
Post 490 – [PCB] Saint Carannog ap Corun ap Ceredig may have visited Leon.
499 - Saint Eguiner martyred at Ploudery, in Cornuaille. His dedicated parish church is in the lands of Vannetais. Connected with / same as Saint-Thégonnec.
C 500 – [other has C 550; JM has C 547-550] - Saint Brioc returns to Cardigan from Brittany to comfort relatives in plague.
Post 500 - [PCB] Saint Cadog founds monastery on the Ile de St Cadou, Cornuaille, where he leaves Saint Cadwaladr in charge.
Saint Edeyrn C 6 saint related to Vortigern and the royal house of Powys and the brother of Saint Aerdeyrn and Elldeyrn, patron saint of Lannédern in Damnonia, and Llanedeyrn in Wales, where he founded a monastery of over 300 people. Legend holds he was a companion of King Arthur, before moving to Britanny where he became a Hermit. Churches in Glywyssing and Brittany.
C 5 / C 6 – Saint Tudy of Landevennec, a Breton, a hermit who founded monasteries in Brittany and Cornwall. The village of St Tudy in Cornwall is named for him. He may have been a disciple of Saint Maudez. [JM] ? pupil of Saint Winwaloe. His companions may have included Saint Corentinus and Saint Brioc. Île-Tudy, on the mouth of the Odet, is named after him.
C 6 – Saint Gurthiern / Vortigern was a Welsh prince who, according to the Vita sancta Gurthierni, became a hermit in Brittany, and founder of an abbey at Quimperlé. Became a monk as he had killed his nephew in battle. [Chadwick] has royal stock of east Wales. [PCB] he first retired to a valley in northern Britain before crossing to Britanny.
[JM] Irish Saint Vougay / ? Becheve, founder of Lanvenoc and St. Vougay, where Saint Tenenan erected a chapel in his memory. May be Saint Vauk of Carn, Wexford [PCB no entry].
509/521 – British priests Lovocatus and Catihernus in Armorica incur censure of [Chadwick] Metropolitan of Tours for their travelling altar and inclusion of women (con hospitae).
511 - Saint Melaine, second Bishop of Condate Riedonum / Civitas Riedonum / Rennes and successor to Saint Amand / Amandus of Rennes, attends first Council of Orléans. Melaine was from Bro Erech (founded 490). [Caradog Freichfras, founder of Bro Erech, appointed bishops to both Vannes and Rennes].
C 515 – birth of Saint Rumon of Tavistock, brother of Saint Tudual and, therefore, one of the sons of King Hoel I Mawr / the Great of Brittany [exiled in Dyfed C 490 and succeeded his father as King in exile from pre 544, then d]. Tradition says he was educated in Britannia - probably Wales [Dyfed] - but that he later accompanied Saint Breaca on her return from Ireland to her Cornish homeland. In Cornwall, he founded churches at Ruan Lanihorne (on the River Fal), Ruan Major & Minor (near the Lizard Peninsula), a defunct chapel in Redruth and at Romansleigh in Devon; but he moved on to Cornouaille in Brittany, with Saint Senan as his companion. Rumon met Saint Remigius in Rheims. He eventually settled at Hilion in Damnonia, where he lived until his death.
C 516 - Saint Cadfan d C 542, founder-abbot of Tywyn founds Bardsey monastery in Gwynedd, having received lands C 516 from Einion ap Cynglas, ruler of Lleyn. Most of the information is from the awdl by Llywelyn the Bard in the C 12. According to this he sailed from Brittany to Tywyn with 12 other saints, although some suggest that they came instead from Llanilltud Fawr. A Breton nobleman, he was said to be the son of Eneas Ledewig / Aeneas of Brittany and Gwen Teirbron / Gwen Three Breasts, daughter of Budig II of Brittany, High King, ruler of Vannetais and Cornuaille, r C 478, exiled for a while in Dyfed.
[PCB] Saint Cynllo came with Saints Teilo, Cadfan and Padarn and founded churches in Gwrtheyrnion and Ceredigion b 470 [other also Saint Cynllo ap Masgwid / Maeswig Gloff King of Elmet; Wikipedia has either brother of Saint Teilo or grandson of Coel Hen].
[PCB] Saint Cynon came with Cadfan and stayed in Bardsey. Possibly saint of Capel Cynon in Ceredigion and Tregynon in Powys.
[PCB/Wikipedia] Death of Saint Hywyn ap Gwyndaf Hen of Llydaw, periglor / father confessor to Saint Cadfan on Bardsey, saint of Aberdaron.
C 520 - [other has C 558] Saint Brioc gives last unction to dying King Riwal of Damnonia [r C 500-C 520], who had objected to his building monastery at Gouet, River Sanguis, but later treated him as a cousin.
Post 520 – [others have C 502 and C 559] – death of Saint Brioc, first abbot and Bishop of Saint-Brieuc-des-Vaux in Brittany. His second abbey was also in Damnonia.
[PCB] Saint Cungar, founder of monastery in Glamorgan then Cungresbyri in Somerset. Also saint of chapel in Ingonger, Bodmin, St Congard in Morbihan, and Landeda, Leon, Brittany. Perhaps a companion of Cadog and Pedrog. [Wikipedia] C 470-520.
? Post 530 - [JM] Saint Leonorus moves from south Wales / ? Gwent where he had studied under Saint Illtud to Damnonia. Received by King Childebert at Paris. Saved Prince Judual of Damnonia from usurper Conomorus C 540 and sent him to Britain. [PCB has b 490 son of Hoeloc and Alma Pompa [maybe Pompaea the sister of Rigual / Riwal making Leonorius and Tudwal brothers] consecrated by Saint Dubricius. Went to Childebert to confirm lands. Monastery St Lunaire, west of St Malo].
C 537 – Saint Ke Colledauc d 550 returns to Britannia from Armorica to mediate unsuccessfully between Arthur and Modred. Son of Lewdwn of the Hosts ruler of Gododdin d 510 and ? uncle of Saint Kentigern. Had settled in Ros-Ene / ? Roseland, Falmouth, had conflict with Theodoric that was resolved, crossed to Brittany and founded Cléder / Kleder. He was too late to restore peace].
[PCB] Saint Kerian, saint in Exeter, buried by Saint Ke at Cleder in Armorica.
C 540 - [PCB] Saint Meven ap Gerascenus, Vita by Ingomar C 11; b in Orcheus, Ergyng 510. Relative of Samson, ? mother his sister, and went with him to Brittany, helped found Dol, sent on mission to Count Weroc Waroch I of Bro Erech d C 540/550. Meven went to rich man named Cadvon who gave him land (at Saint Meen-le-Grand or at Gael). Count Iudicael of Bro Erech enriched monastery and retired there C 610/640. Prophesied death of godson Saint Austolus / Austell. Both saints of churches in Saint Austell, Cornwall.
C 540-550 - [JM] Saint Paul Aurelian leaves Dumnonia for Armorica, founding Saint Pol-de-Leon and becoming Bishop of the Osismi. Counted among the seven founder saints of Brittany. Vita completed in 884 by a Breton monk named Wrmonoc of Landévennec Abbey, Paul was the son of a Welsh comes named Perphirius / Clad in Purple, from Penychen. He went to Brittany, establishing monasteries in Finistère at Ouessant on the north-west coast of Brittany, at Lampaul on the island of Ushant, on the island of Batz and at Ocsimor, now the city of Saint-Pol-de-Léon, where he is said to have founded a monastery in an abandoned fort. He was consecrated bishop there under the authority of Childebert, King of the Franks. Succeeded by Cetomerinus.
Saint Conoc Welsh missionary who accompanied his abbot fleeing the Scotti to Brittany C 512 and was appointed by Saint Paul Abbot of l’île de Batz. He founded Saint-Thégonnec and is commemorated also in Cornubia.
Pre 544 – Hoel I Mawr, Saint Hywel, son of Budig II, prince of Vannetais / Brittany, in exile in court of Aergol Lawhir, prince of Dyfed, founds Llanhowell. Father of King Tewdr Mawr.
544 - Saint Malo becomes first [Chadwick says not the first as it was the old Roman see of St Peter] Bishop of Aleth, St Malo [other has 552 joins Saint Aaaron at St Malo and becomes second abbot on death of Saint Aaron, the first abbot]. Counted among the seven founder saints of Brittany. Malo was b C 520, probably in Wales. Founder of Saint-Malo in Damnonia. Malo is said to have been baptized by Saint Brendan and to have become his favorite disciple. He is said to have been one of those specially selected by that holy man for his oft-described voyage. It was traditionally from Llancarfan Abbey that Saint Brendan and his disciple, Malo, with numerous companions set forth for the discovery of the "Island of the Blest". He then put to sea on a second voyage and visited the Island of Cézembre. Made Bishop by King Iudhael King of Damnonia [r 585-607]. Later King Hailoc of Damnonia hostile to Saint Malo [r 607-612; if these reports are true, the dates are too wide].
549 - Saint Teilo moves to Dol [other has C 550 Saint Teilo crosses to Brittany from Wales to escape plague].
Saint Melaine, Second Bishop of Rennes dies.
Saint Felix becomes Bishop of Nantes [other has 550; other has 548]. Saint Felix was a nobleman of Aquitaine.
C 550 - Saint Padarn / Paternus Bishop of Vannes dies.
[JM] Saint Mawes, Irish prince, family killed by plague, emigrated to Brittany in time of Deroc II King of Cornuaille C 530-540. Landed on an island near Leon, Ile Modez / Maudez. Many churches in the region are dedicated to him.
? 550s – [JM] Saint Hernin, an Irishman coming from Britain, has a church built for him by Conomorus of Damnonia in Locarn, Carhaix.
550-560 - Saint Samson active in Brittany. [JM] b not much before 490. Counted among the seven founder saints of Brittany with Pol Aurelian, Tugdual or Tudwal, Brieuc, Malo, Patern / Paternus and Corentin. The primary source for his biography is the Vita Sancti Samsonis, written sometime between 610 and 820 and clearly based on earlier materials [TMC says C 7]. It gives useful details of contacts between churchmen in Britain, Ireland and Brittany. Samson was the son of Amon of Demetia and Anna of Gwent, [PCB] sister of Saint Arilde of Gloucestershire, daughter of Meurig ap Tewdrig, King of Cernyw / Glywyssing C 550/571/580. His father's brother married his mother's sister so that their son Saint Magloire was Samson's cousin twice over. Due to a prophecy concerning his birth his parents placed him under the care of Saint Illtud, abbot of Llantwit Fawr, where he was raised and educated. Samson later sought a greater austerity than his school provided, and so moved to Llantwit's daughter house, the island monastery of Caldey off the coast of Dyfed, where he became abbot after the death of Saint Pyr. He was ordained bishop by Bishop Dubricius / Dyfrig on the Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter (February 22) at the beginning of Lent, which can be calculated to have fallen in the year 521. Later he travelled to Cornwall (where he founded a community in either South Hill or Golant), then the Scilly Isles (where the island of Samson is named after him), Guernsey where he is the Patron Saint and Brittany, where he founded the monastery of Dol [Chadwick says in C 521]. He goes on a mission to Bro Erech for King Judicael and organised the excommunication of King Conomor [King of Damnonia 550-560] and successfully petitions the Merovingian King Childebert I d 558 on behalf of Judael / Judual, Conomor's estranged son C 540-60. [JM] The Vita was written late C 6 or early C 7 when Tigernmalus was Bishop of Dol. Samson is recorded as having attended a council in Paris sometime between 556 and 573 [TMC has either 561-562 or 567-573], Sampson peccator Episcopus. [JM] d C 563. He was buried with his cousin Magloire in the cathedral of Dol. He witnessed a charter appended to Life of Cadog. 26 dedications in Britanny, plus in Ireland, Bavaria, Italy. 20 dedications in diocese of Rouen 1738, also in Cricklade and Colesbourne in Gloucestershire. [TMC] has Samson in Francia in reign of Charibert 561-567 or Chilperic 567-584; the latter named his son Samson, born to Queen Fredegund 575 during the siege of Tournai when it seemed Chilperic would be captured or killed. Child baptized by ? Samson.
[PCB] Saint Branwalader with Samson and perhaps Brioc in Britanny, Jersey and Cornwall, venerated in Dorset.
[PCB] Henwg, Deacon, cousin of Saint Samson, ordained by Samson in Cornwall and went with him to Brittany. Composed accounts used in Life of Saint Samson. Returned to one of Samson’s foundations in Britain. Saint of Llanhenwg in Gwent, Samson’s mother’s land.
Pre 551 – Saint Lughtiern of Ennistimon, Clare, migrated to Brittany. Pupil of Ruadan and Columba of Terryglass.
Post 552 – death of Saint Aaron of Aleth Abbot of Cézembre.
554 – Saint Ethbin was of a noble British family, sent into Armorica to be educated by Saint Samson, Bishop of Dol. Saint Ethbin passed into Ireland, where he lived twenty years in a cell at Kildare which he had built for himself in the midst of a forest. He was famous for his austerities and his miracles, and died at the age of eighty-three, towards the close of C 6.
555 - Saint Samson visits King Childebert of the Franks at Paris.
Saint Gildas founds monastery of Saint Gildas-de-Rhuys in Morbihan in Brittany.
556 – death of Saint Hervé b C 521, blind British musician and hermit. C 521–556. At court of Childebert I, who sent him to King Iudwal of Damnonia [C 540-550]. Attended / convened Synod of Menez against Conomorus, who had killed King Jonas of Damnonia C 540, usurped his son Iudwal C 550 and married Trifina, daughter of Weroc [Waroc II of Bro Erech], and killed her child, Saint Tremorus. Along with Saint Ives, he is one of the most popular Breton saints. His birthplace is stated as being Guimiliau / Gwimilio in Cornuaille (and sometimes as Wales), and his legend states that he was the son of a renowned bard named Hyvarnion, a former member of the court of Childebert I.
Post 556 – [JM has C 510 - 520] Theodoric campaigns in Cornwall against and kills Saint Fingar / Gwinear / Guigner / Wymerus, King Germochus / ? Cermait and 770 Irishmen who have invaded / evangelized. Fingar was son of Clito, a king in Ireland. Went to Brittany, returned to Ireland found parents dead, went to Cornwall with sister Piala. Possibly linked with Meriadoc. Possibly Welsh, not Irish.
557 - Saint Samson of Dol is signatory to the Council of Paris as Samson peccator episcopus [Chadwick has between 556 and 573; JEL has 555 0r 557].
Pre 558 - Saint Leonorus [JM] C 510-561 educated by Saint Illtud, confirmed / consecrated by Saint Dubricius emigrated to Brittany at Dinard, enemy of Conomorus of Damnonia, helper of King Judwal. [Chadwick] has relative of King Riwal of Damnonia, and sent on a diplomatic mission to King Childebert I of the Franks d 558.
C 560 - Saint Malo settles in Brittany. Saint Leonorus dies in Brittany.
C 563 - [JM] Saint Samson dies [other has C 565– Saint Samson Bishop of Dol dies, succeeded by cousin Saint Maglorius, who resigns then dispossess Loescon of Sark, then by Saint Budoc; other has ? 568].
Saint Budoc was from Cornuaille but 'thrown into sea in cask ended up in Ireland' and became monk then Abbot of Youghal. [Chadwick] Budoc landed on Lavret C 460; Wikipedia has d 563; PCB has in Life of Saint Winwaloe latter [d 532] a pupil of Budoc, Abbot of Ile Lavret / Laurea. Vita Maudeti / Life of Saint Mawes has his disciples Budoc and Tudy on Gueldenes / Ile de Brehat, across from Lavret, both being an enclave of the See of Dol. Budoc is also saint of Budock in Cornwall, across Falmouth Harbour from Saint Mawes, in Devon and Oxford and may have evangelised near Plymouth, and at Plourin in Brittany. Life of Saint Maglorius has the saint [cousin of Samson d C 560] consecrating Budoc as his successor at Dol.
C 564 – Death of Saint Tudwal founder of Lan Pabu in Damnonia, and Bishop of Tréguier. Breton monk. He is considered as one of the seven founder saints of Brittany, son of Hoel I Mawr [exiled King of Brittany, d pre 550] and [JM] Pompaia, sister of King Rival Deroc of Damnonia C 500-520 ‘the first of the British to emigrate’ pre 558 in King Childebert’s time [Chadwick has nephew of Riwal, a prince of Archenfeld and has the Life of St Lunaire makes Riwal father of Saint Tudual]. Tudwal travelled to Ireland to learn the scriptures, then became a hermit on what is now called Saint Tudwal's Island, off the coast of Llyn, then later emigrated to Brittany [JM in cousin King Deroch II of Damnonia’s time C 520-530], settling in Lan Pabu with 72 followers, under the patronage of his cousin, King Deroch II [PCB with Ulster chieftain’s son Saint Briac, who founded monastery at Bourbriac at Deroch’s request]. Tudwal was made Bishop of Tréguier in Damnonia on the insistence of Childebert I, King of the Franks. [JM] C 560 went to Paris for confirmation as bishop with Albinus Bishop of Angers. Troubled by Ruhut, minister of Conomorus of Damnonia C 550-560. [JM has d 560]. Died at Treguier succeeded by Ruilinus. [PDF] Venerated in many parts of Britain, Wales and Brittany.
567 - [IA] – Saint Gildas dies [IA interpolation has 570; AC has 570/572 Gildas obiit. Ellis has C570 Gildas dies on the island of Houat, Britanny; WSK has d 570].
[Chadwick] Council of Tours.
568 - [Chadwick] Council of Nantes.
570 - Death of Saint Armel, Abbot of Plouarzel. Armel is said to have been a Breton prince, born to the wife of King Hoel while they were living in Glamorgan in Wales in the late C 5 [JM has son of a noble in Pennychen]. He founded the abbey of Plouarzel in Leon, and was, from there, called [JM says fled with Samson of Dol when Conomorus killed Jonas of Damnonia and raided Leon] to attend the court of King Childebert I of Paris. On the journey, he established churches at Ergué-Armel, Plouharnel and Saint-Armel. He remained seven years at the royal court. The king gave him land at Saint-Armel-des-Bochaux in Ille-et-Vilaine where he founded a second monastery. He then removed himself to the Forest of Teil. He died in his monastery C 570. It has been suggested that Saint Armel could have been Arthur, perhaps after the battle of Camlann, retired to be a monk [a highly unlikely story].
575 - Saint Paul Aurelian, Bishop of Léon in Armorica, d, succeeded by Saint Iaoua, son of an Irish prince Tinidorus and a sister of Saint Paul Aurelian, founder of Daoulas.
Saint Magloire / Maglorius of Dol, Abbot of Lammeur and Sark, second Bishop of Dol, d. Magloire was a Welsh monk, b 485 eldest of three sons of Umbraphel, who was brother of Saint Samson’s father Ammon of Dyfed and brother of Derwela, mother of Saint Machutes. Umbraphel’s wife Afrella was sister to Samson’s mother Anna. Magloire was converted by Samson and a pupil with him of Saint Illtud and went to Ynys Byr. He worked with Samson in north Brittany and was made bishop and successor to Samson. He retired at Dol in 565, succeeded by Saint Budoc. Given a lowly spot by King Iudual, he moved to establish a monastery on Sark. Maybe saint of Linkinhorne, Cornwall.
Pre 577 - Saint Martin of Vertou founder of Vertou Abbey, Apostle of the Herbauges. Saint Felix, Bishop of Nantes, created Martin archdeacon of the church of Nantes. C 577, he withdrew into solitude in an area of wasteland on the right bank of the Sèvre Nantaise, Vannes. He built a church and enlarged his hermitage, which became Vertou Abbey. He also founded other religious communities, including Durieu Abbey, where he d in 601.
578 – Eunius Bishop of Vannes, sent by King Waroc II [King of Bro Erech 577-594] to Childeric, King of the Franks, then exiled and died an alcoholic in Paris.
580 – Death of Saint Cadog in Brittany [JM has he d in Calchwynedd in 571].
C 583 - [JM] Saint Winwaloe d in Brittany.
584 - Saint Felix Bishop of Nantes d [other has 583; other has 582].
Post 585 - Saint Malo d 621. [JM has d 559 or 604].
587 – [Chadwick] King Childeberht II gives permanency to all royal donations and Breton bishops seek such till 595.
589 - Saint Isfael, later Bishop of Rhos chosen by Synod convened by Saint Teilo to stand in on the death of Saint David. Isfael was son of Budig ap Cybydan, prince of Cornouaille and eventual king of Brittany as Budig II / Emyr Llydaw / Emperor of Brittany, r C 478-544] and the brother of martyr Tyfei of Pen Alun and Bishop Oudoceus. His mother may have been Arianwedd, the daughter of Saint Issel and the sister of Saint Teilo.
C 589 – Death of Saint Budoc Bishop of Dol.
590 - Saint Gwenhael, Abbot of Landévennec Abbey, d at the abbey of Caudan he had founded in Cornuaille.
Post 594 - Saint Tanguy of Locmazhé founds the Abbey of Saint Matthieu at Le Conquet. Breton monk. Cornuaille.
C 610–615 – Vita Samsonis written at Dol [JM says C or pre 600].
Post C 612 – Saint Ronan of Locronan, Douarnenez settles in Cornuaille under Gradlon (C 612-C 620). Irish hermit, founder of Locronan and co-patron of Quimper.
617 – Saint Meven, founder of Abbey of Saint John the Baptist, later named Abbey of St-Méen at Gael, d [other has 640].
Saint Austol dies within a week after the death of Meven.
C 620 - Saint Tysilio. Welsh bishop, prince and scholar, second son of the King of Powys, Brochwel Ysgithrog r C 530-560, maternal nephew of the Abbot Deniel of Bangor Iscoed. Prince Tyslio / Tyssilio / Sulio was the second son of Brochfael Ysgythrog / of the Tusks. He fled his father's court to Abbot Gwyddfarch Meifod. After the death of Tysilio's brother, his sister-in-law, Queen Gwenwynwyn, desired to marry Tysilio and place him on the throne of Powys. Objecting to both proposals, the saint refused and resolved to leave for Brittany with a handful of followers. Tysilio travelled through Dyfed to the estuary of the Rance, then moved to Saint-Suliac where he established a second monastery. Tysilio d and was buried at the Abbey of Saint Suliac in 640.
621 - Saint Gudwal, an Irish monk and disciple of St. Brendan, becomes second bishop of St. Malo.
635 - Saint Iudicael ap Iudhael (or ap Hoel III), King of Damnonia and Bro Erech, brother of Saint Iudoc, does homage to King Dagobert of the Franks at Clichy, then founds a monastery at Painpont.
Saint Iudoc 600-668 [JM has dies C 668] founder of monasteries in Brittany, Picardy and Flanders. Judoc was the son of Saint Judicael, King of Brittany, and the brother of King Alain II Hir and Saint Winnoc. In approximately 636, Judoc renounced his inheritance and wealth and embarked on a pilgrimage to Rome. He was ordained as a priest during this voyage and subsequently became a hermit in Ponthieu, Saint-Josse-sur-Mer, where he resided until his death.
C 635 – death of Saint Tenenan. Born in Britain [JM has son of an Irish prince]. Travelled to Brittany with priests Senan and Quenan, and became a hermit. Succeeded Goulven as Bishop of Leon. He d at Ploabennec, where he had built a forest hermitage.
640 - Iudicael King of Damnonia and Bro Erech retires to monastery of Meven at Gwazel. His son Alain II succeeds in both and in 658 in Vannes as High King; Alain’s brother is Saint Winnoc.
Saint Tysilio, founder of Saint-Suliac monastery, d.
650-700 – Saint Oudoceus / Euddogwy Bishop at Llandeilo Fawr. [Wendy Davies] bishop C 650 - 700. Oudoceus was born 'when his father Budic II returned to Brittany' [this was in C 550, so this does not fit; PCB denies he was a son of Budig II]. He does not seem to have revisited Brittany.
675 - Saint Goeznovius Cornish-born Bishop of Léon d. According to Legenda Sancti Goeznovii of 1019 he was born in Cornubia and became one of many of his countrymen who moved to the continent, with parents and brother Maian, given land near Brest by Conomorus [this is impossible as Conomorus created Bro Erc in C 557; likely to be by King Sakaun II 612-658]. Succeeded Houardon as Bishop of Leon. The author names himself as William, a Breton chaplain in the familia of the otherwise-unattested Bishop Eudo of Léon, and gives a date of 1019 for the work. The Legenda includes an unusual preface detailing the history of Brittany and including some episodes from Britain's traditional history.
C 5 or C 6 - Saint Herbot. Vita Herbaudi. Undated British saint who settled in Armorica.
C 705-749 - Saint Thuriau of Lanvollen near St Brieuc, succeeded Armel as Archbishop of Dol.
Post C 715/720 – Breton Saint Moran, Bishop of Rennes 703, settles in Lamorran, Cornubia, dies 730.
The dating of Breton saints is very inaccurate.
Of the above, saints whose work was largely in Armorica came from, or were connected with:
South Wales 16 – the vast majority and clearly the source of the mission; source is mostly Cernyw / Glywysing / Gwent but also Demetia and Ceredigion.
The North – 2
Hibernia – 8
Saints moving to Armorica settled in:
Bro Erech 3
Saints born and working in Armorica total 23; Breton saints emigrating to Britannia were 9; Breton saints moving to Hibernia were 4.
There were 16 saints who claimed royal lineage. Only 3 saints were rulers: Saint Melor (a child; posthumous veneration); Saint Iudicael ap Iudhael C 635 King of Damnonia and Bro Erech; Saint Hywel / Hoel I Mawr prince of Brittany. Brittany did not follow Britannia in this regard. There was one prince prelate; Macliau, Bishop of Vannes, King of Bro Erech C 570-577.
The large majority of Breton saints settled in the period of the C 6 peace.
The evangelisation of Armorica proceeded differently from that in Britain (where Christianity was spread from teaching monasteries established by major saints to penetrate large swathes of rural areas with small groups of missionaries or individuals) and in Hibernia and Alba, where missionary activity seems to have proceeded according to plans of evangelizing wholly pagan lands, in Hibernia, in part and initially, geographically-determined plans). The original Gallo-Roman population of Armorica seems to have been to a large degree Christian and had its own clerical organization. As British settlement proceeded in western Armorica, it replaced the old dioceses with British dioceses based on new, large monasteries. In eastern Armorica, including Vannes, Rennes and Nantes, the old dioceses surivived. So the stories of British ecclesiastical foundations follow a different story in the main in Armorica, one more connected with the founding of monasteries and bishoprics.
The lives of Breton saints are often more interested in the political involvements of the saints. Important clerics in the British Armorican principalities seem more connected with their royal families and involve themselves more in their affairs. They are more often involved in diplomacy. They seem to wield more power.
British Armorican princes do not seem to have had as much religious fervor as their mainland counterparts and did not produce saints or princely prelates in similar proportions. Their history indeed seems to have been generally more bloody than that of most of their counterparts in Britannia.
Breton clerics habitually moved frequently backwards and forwards to and from Britannia, especially south Wales. The British church clearly considered Armorica within its sphere of interest, with important clerics like Saints Cadog and Gildas initiating foundations there. Connections with Hibernia were less frequent but maintained.
MISSIONS TO EUROPE
British links with Gaul and in particular Lerins Abbey were followed by a few later missions to Francia.
461 – British / Irish Bishop Mansuetus signs the Council of Tours; possibly Bishop of Touls. Also connected with Meaux, Senlis and Trier.
C 549 – Saint Kentigern visits Rome and attends Councils of Orleans 549 and Paris 557 as Conotigernus / Gonotigernus / Cunautigernus, Bishop of Senlis [JM from C 549 – C 560/570; other has C 550 – Irish Conotigirnus / Kentigern Bishop of Silva Nectensis / Senlis, Paris]. Involved in 555 in the deposition of Saffaracus, a British cleric in Paris, for homosexual crimes.
550 – Queen Radegund of the Franks takes the veil assisted by British hermit John of Chinon.
588 - Winnochus Britto, ascetic monk, who became an alcoholic and insane in 586 and had to be kept in chains, dies at Tours.
645 – death of Picardy noble Richarius, founder of St Riquier, converted by two British priests Caidoc and Fricorius.
C 710 - Saint Oda of Scotland C 680 – C 726 was a woman, supposedly from Alba, who became a holy woman in the Netherlands. Oda was born blind and her father sent her on pilgrimage to Liège to visit the relics of Saint Lambert. While praying at Saint Lambert's grave she was miraculously cured from her blindness. She settled in an open space in the forest, now known as Sint Oedenrode. There is record of only one saint from Alba, Saint Oda, active in the Netherlands.
716-717 - Saint Winnoc, Damnonian Abbot or Prior of Wormhout, C 640 - C 716/717, d. This is the only mention of British clergy on the Germany mission and the only mention of any joint British/English missionary activity.
722 - Saint Boniface in Germany strives against Celtic missionaries from the unreformed British and Breton churches.
The missions to the continent do not seem to have been politically or royally driven in the way that earlier missions were. For once, the missions were initiated and maintained by the Church, which by then had the resources to do so, or by individuals.