Monday, 30 November 2015

Saint Regulus and the Relics of Saint Andrew

November 30 is the feast of Saint Andrew the Apostle and last week I attended a lecture by Scottish historian Michael Turnbull on Saint Andrew and the Emperor Constantine. It was a fascinating account of the links between Constantine's vision of a cross in the sky and the adoption of the saltire as the symbol of Scotland due to the celestial visions of a ninth-century King of the Picts. There is a useful summary of the author's thinking here. There is also an Irish connection in the legends surrounding the coming of the relics of Saint Andrew to Scotland, as I explained in a post first made on my former blog a few years ago:

In a post made for the feastday of Saint Riaghail of Mucinis on 16 October here, it was mentioned that this Irish saint was caught up in the later medieval legend of a Saint Regulus or Rule, said to have brought the the relics of Saint Andrew the Apostle to Scotland.  As November 30 is the feast of Scotland's patron I thought it might be interesting to take a look at this legend, as recorded in Bishop Forbes' work on the Scottish Kalendars:

The Regulus legend, as believed in Scotland, first occurs in the Colbertine MS. in the Bibliotheque Imperiale. There is also a legend, apparently of the early part of the fourteenth century, in the Harleian Collection in the British Museum, and the last form is that given in the Breviary of Aberdeen. With reference to these various forms of the legend, Mr. W. F. Skene has the following remarks :

"In comparing these three editions, it will be convenient to divide the narrative into three distinct statements.

"The first is the removal of the relics of S. Andrew from Patras to Constantinople. The Colbertine account states that St. Andrew, after preaching to the northern nations, the Scythians and Pictones, received in charge the district of Achaia, with the city of Patras, and was there crucified; that his bones remained there till the time of Constantine the Great, and his sons Constantius and Constans, for 270 years, when they were removed to Constantinople, where they remained till the reign of the Emperor Theodosius.

"The account in the MS. of the Priory of S. Andrews states, that in the year 345, Constantius collected a great army to invade Patras, in order to avenge the martyrdom of S. Andrew, and remove his relics; that an angel appeared to the custodiers of the relics, and ordered Regulus, the bishop, with his clergy, to proceed to the sarcophagus which contained his bones, and to take a part of them, consisting of three fingers of the right hand, a part of one of the arms, the part of one of the knees, and one of his teeth, and conceal them, and that the following day Constantius entered the city, and carried off to Rome the shrine containing the rest of his bones; that he then laid waste the Insula Tyberis and Colossia, and took thence the bones of S. Luke and S. Timothy, and carried them along with the relics of S. Andrew to Constantinople.

"The Aberdeen Breviary says that, in the year 360, Regulus flourished at Patras in Achaia, and was custodier of the bones and relics of S. Andrew; that Constantius invaded Patras in order to avenge the martyrdom of S. Andrew; that an angel appeared to him, and desired him to conceal a part of the relics, and that after Constantius had removed the rest of the relics to Constantinople, this angel again appeared to him, and desired him to take the part of the relics he had concealed, and to transport them to the western region of the world, where he should lay the foundation of a church in honour of the apostle. Here the growth of the legend is very apparent. In the oldest edition, we are told of the removal of the relics to Constantinople, without a word of Regulus. In the second, we have the addition of Regulus concealing a part of the relics in obedience to a vision; and in the third, we have a second vision directing him to found a church in the west. This part of the legend, as we find it in the oldest edition, belongs, in fact, to the legend of S. Andrew, where it is stated that, after preaching to the Scythians, he went to Argos, where he also preached, and finally suffered martyrdom at Patras; and that, in the year 337, his body was transferred from Patras to Constantinople with those of S. Luke and S. Timothy, and deposited in the church of the apostles, which had been built some time before by Constantine the Great.

"When I visited Greece in the year 1844, I was desirous of ascertaining whether any traces of this legend still remained at Patras. In the town of Patras I could find no church dedicated to S. Andrew, but I observed a small and very old-looking Greek monastery, about a mile to the west of it, on the shore of the Gulf of Patras, and proceeding there, I found one of the caloyeres or Greek monks, who spoke Italian, and who informed me that the monastery was attached to the adjacent church of S. Andrew built over the place where he had suffered martyrdom. He took me into the church, which was one of the small Byzantine buildings so common in Greece, and showed me the sarcophagus from which, he said, the relics had been removed, and also, at the door of the church, the spot where his cross had been raised, and a well called S. Andrew's Well. I could find, however, no trace of S. Regulus.

"The second part of the legend in the oldest edition represents a Pictish king termed Ungus, son of Urguist, waging war in the Merse, and being surrounded by his enemies. As the king was walking with his seven comites, a bright light shines upon them ; they fall to the earth, and a voice from heaven says, 'Ungus, Ungus, hear me, an apostle of Christ called Andrew, who am sent to defend and guard thee.' He directs him to attack his enemies, and desires him to offer the tenth part of his inheritance in honour of S. Andrew. Ungus obeys, and is victorious.

"In the S. Andrews edition, Ungus's enemy is said to have been Athelstane, king of the Saxons, and his camp at the mouth of the river Tyne. S. Andrew appears to Ungus in a dream, and promises him victory, and tells him that the relics will be brought to his kingdom, and the place to which they are brought is to become honoured and celebrated. The people of the Picts swear to venerate S. Andrew ever after, if they prove victorious. Athelstane is defeated, his head taken off, and carried to a place called Ardchinnichan, or Portus Reginae.

" The Breviary of Aberdeen does not contain this part of the legend.

" The third part of the legend in the oldest narrative represents one of the custodiers of the body of S. Andrew at Constantinople, directed by an angel in a vision to leave his house, and to go to a place whither the angel will direct him. He proceeds prosperously to 'verticem montis regis id est rigmond.' Then the king of the Picts comes with his army, and Regulus, a monk, a stranger from the city of Constantinople, meets him with the relics of S. Andrew at a harbour which is called 'Matha,id est mordurus,' and King Ungus dedicates that place and city to God and S. Andrew 'ut sit caput et mater omnium ecclesiaram quae sunt in regno Pictorum.' It must be remembered here that this is the first appearance of the name of Regulus in the old legend, and that it is evidently the same King Ungus who is referred to in both parts of the story. The S. Andrews edition of the legend relates this part of the story much more circumstantially. According to it, Regulus was warned by the angel to sail with the relics towards the north, and wherever his vessel was wrecked, there to erect a church in honour of S. Andrew. He voyages among the islands of the Greek sea for a year and a half, and wherever he lands he erects an oratory in honour of S. Andrew. At length he lands in 'terra Pictorum ad locum qui Muckros fuerat nuncupatus, nunc autem Kilrymont dictus; and his vessel having been wrecked he erects a cross he had brought from Patras. After remaining there seventeen days or nights, Regulus goes with the relics to Forteviot, and finds there the three sons of King Hungus, viz. Owen, Nectan, and Finguine, who, being anxious as to the life of their father, then on an expedition ' in partibus Argatheliae,' give the tenth part of Forteviot to God and S. Andrew. They then go to a place called 'Moneclatu, qui nunc dicitur Monichi,' and there Finchem, the queen of King Hungus, is delivered of a daughter called Mowren, who was afterwards buried at Kilrymont; and the queen gives the place to God and S. Andrew. They then cross the mountain called Moneth, and reach a place called 'Doldancha, nunc autem dictus Chondrochedalvan,' where they meet King Hungus returning from his expedition, who prostrates himself before the relics, and this place is also given to God and S. Andrew. They return across the Moneth to Monichi, where a church was built in honour of God and the apostle, and thence to Forteviot, where a church is also built. King Hungus then goes with the clergy to Kilrymont, when a great part of that place is given to build churches and oratories, and a large territory is given as parochia. The boundaries of this parochia can still be traced, and consisted of that part of Fife lying to the east of a line drawn from Largs to Nauchton. Within this line was the district called the Boar's Chase, containing the modern parishes of S. Andrews, Cameron, Dairsie, Kemback, Ceres, Denino, and Kingsmuir; and besides this district, the following parishes were included in the parochia,—viz. Crail, Kiagsbams, Anstruther, Abercromby, S. Monance, Kelly, Elie, Newburgh, Largo, Leuchars, Forgan, and Logie-Murdoch.

" It is impossible to doubt that there is a historic basis of some kind for this part of the legend. The circumstantial character of the narrative is of a kind not likely to be invented. The place beyond the Moneth or Grampians, called Chondrochedalvan, is plainly the church of Kindrochet in Braemar, which was dedicated to St. Andrew. Monichi is probably not Monikie in Forfarshire, as that church was in the diocese of Brechin, but a church called Eglis Monichti, now in the parish of Monifieth, which was in the diocese of S. Andrews, and Forteviot was also in the diocese of S. Andrews.

"According to the account in the Breviary, Regulus, after the relics had been removed to Constantinople, takes the portion he had concealed, and sails with them for two years till he arrives 'ad terram Scottorum,' where he lands and enters the 'nemus porcorum,' and there builds a church, and preaches to the neighbouring people far and wide. Hungus, king of the Picts, sees a company of angels hover over the relics of the apostle, and comes with his army to Regulus, who baptizes him with all his servants, and receives a grant of the land, which is set apart to be the chief seat and mother church of Scotland."—(Skene's Notice of the Early Ecclesiastical Settlements at S. Andrews, in Proceedings Soc. Antiq. Scot. vol. iv. pp. 301-307.)

Alexander Penrose Forbes, D.C.L. Bishop of Brechin, Kalendars of Scottish Saints, (1872), 437-440.

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Sunday, 29 November 2015

Naomh Columbán san Eoraip

We conclude the octave of posts in honour of the 1400th anniversary of the death of Saint Columbanus with a review of his life and legacy from the late Cardinal Tomás Ó Fiaich, whose collection Columbanus in his Own Words introduced me to the saint. For those who don't read Irish it provides an overview of the saint's missionary endeavours, compares him with other great historic travellers, hails his contribution to Irish and European history and concludes with the view of Robert Schumann, also mentioned in yesterday's post, that he may be regarded as the patron saint of those trying to build a united Europe. In these times when the Christian foundations of European civilisation are under such pressure, this is indeed the moment to rediscover him as an intercessor for this continent, 1400 years after his passing from it:

...Leanbh de chuid Laighean, dalta de chuid mhanachas na hÉireann ina óige, d'fhág sé a thír dhúchais mar aon le dosaen deisceabal timpeall 590 agus thug aghaidh na loinge soir ó dheas. Chaith sé tamall beag sa Bhreatain Mhór ar an bhealach agus tháinig i dtír ar chósta thuaidh na Fraince. Bhunaigh sé trí mhainistir sa Bhurgainn go gasta i ndiaidh a chéile–Annegray, Luxeuil agus Fontaine.

Níorbh fhada go raibh na sluaite ag teacht chuige go Luxeuil, daoine a tháinig faoi dhraíocht a phearsantachta láidre féin nó a d'éirigh geallmhar ar an riail bheatha a leag sé amach dóibh. Ansin d'fhill cuid acu ar a gceantair dhúchais agus thug siad in éineacht leo blúirín éigin de spiorad agus de riail bheatha Luxeuil. Ní raibh glúin amháin imithe go raibh tionchar Luxeuil le mothú i ngach cearn den Fhrainc agus i bhFlondras féin. Bhí mainistreacha nua a mbunú ag manaigh Fhrancacha a oileadh i Luxeuil, agus bhí cuid de na seanmhainistreacha ag cur athchóiriú orthu féin, ag iarraidh féiníobairt agus pionós na rialach nua a shnaidhmeadh leis an chóras eile a tháinig anuas chucu ó aimsir Mháirtín Tours.

Ní raibh Columbán féin beo leis an fhómhar iontach seo a fheiceáil. Ruaigeadh as an Bhurgainn é i 610, agus rinneadh seachránaí ar son Chríost de feasta. Trí Besançon, Avallon, Auxerre, Nevers, Orleans, Tours, Nantes, thrasnaigh sé féin agus a chomplacht bheag Éireannach an Fhrainc go hiomlán, agus iad ar a mbealach chuig an chósta chun go gcuirfí ar bórd loinge iad a thabharfadh ar ais go hÉirinn iad. Ach tháinig an doineann i gcabhair orthu agus d'éalaigh siad. Ansin thug Columbán aghaidh ar an cheantar níos faide ó thuaidh, an Ile-de-France inniú. Chuala Páras a ghlór agus ceantar an Brie, agus má breacadh an limistéar seo le mainistreacha sa chéad ghlúin eile–Faremoutiers (627), Jouarre (630), Rebais (c. 636)–is ó Cholumbán a fuair lucht a mbunaithe an dreasú.

Faoi dheireadh shroich sé an Réin i gcomharsanacht Mainz. Lean sé bealach na n-abhann agus na loch feasta–suas an Réin, isteach san Aar agus sa Limmat, thart timpeall ar Loch Zurich agus Loch Constance agus ar aghaidh go Bregenz sa chúinne thoir den loch. Chaith sé tamall sa cheantar sin, atá ar theorainn na hEilvéise agus na hOstaire agus na Gearmáine inniú; ansin thug a aghaidh ó dheas ag tarraingt ar an Iodáil. Ní raibh fonn ar Ghall, duine den dáréag a d'fhág Éire in éineacht leis, dul ar thuras eile agus d'iarr sé cead ar a mháistir fanacht san áit a raibh sé agus leanúint ar aghaidh ag craobhscaoileadh an tsoiscéil ar bhruach Loch Constance. Rud nach bhfuair sé, mar bhí eagla ar Cholumbán gurbh í an leisce roimh an turas a thug ar Ghall an cead a iarraidh. Ach d'fhan Gall, agus d'imigh Columbán agus a chomplacht ina éagmais. Trasna na nAlp agus síos trí mhachairí na Lombáirde leis, gur bhunaigh sé a eaglais dheireanach i mBobbio. Is ann a d'éag sé ar an 23 Samhain 615.

Bhí turas déanta aige ab fhiú a chur ar aon chéim le haistir mhóra na staire, le anabasis Xenophon, le taisteal Marco Polo chun na Síne, le marcaíocht Tschiffely thar na hAndes, le turasanna Stanley agus Livingstone san Afraic. Ach bhí rud níos mó ná sin déanta aige. Bhí ré nua oscailte aige i stair na hÉireann agus i stair na Mór-Roinne. I stair na hÉireann, mar ba cheannródaí é i measc na nGaelnaomh a d'imigh thar sáile. I stair na Mór-Roinne, mar ba as a shaothar a shíolraigh cuid de na tréithe ba láidre i manachas na Fraince, agus ba as an mhanachas céanna a gineadh cultúr Críostaí na hEorpa.

Go dtí sin ba bheag den obair thréadach a dhéanadh manaigh na Fraince i measc na dtuataí, agus is sna bailte móra amháin a bhí na mainistreacha le fáil. Columbán agus a chuid deisceabal a cheangail an mhisinéireacht leis an mhanachas, agus a chuir tús le bunú na mainistreacha faoin tuath, ar thalamh a bhronn an uasalaicme orthu, sa dóigh go bhféadfadh siad leas a bhaint as an talmhaíocht mar shlí bheatha. 'Dá mhéad solas a ligtear isteach ar dhorchadas na meanaoise', a scríobh an Pápa Pius XI i 1923, 'is ea is soiléire a éiríonn sé go bhfuil athbhreith na heagnaíochta agus na sibhialtachta Críostaí i gcodanna éagsúla den Fhrainc, den Ghearmáin agus den Iodáil le cur i leith shaothar agus dúthracht Cholumbán'. Nasc idir náisiúin éagsúla a bhí sa naomh de bharr a shaothair agus a thaistil; is dócha gur ar an ábhar sin a dúirt Robert Schumann faoi, dornán blianta ó shin: 'Is é Columbán naomhphatrún na ndaoine go léir atá ag iarraidh an Eoraip aontaithe a thógáil'.

An Cairdinéal Tomás Ó Fiaich, Gaelscrínte san Eoraip, (Baile Átha Cliath, 1986.)

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Saturday, 28 November 2015

Saint Columbanus: a divisive figure?

Although there is no doubt of the historic importance of Saint Columbanus, it must also be acknowledged that he was in some ways a controversial figure. To my yellowing copy of Columbanus in his Own Words mentioned in the first of this series of posts, I have now added a nice crisp copy of a new title on the same lines, Alexander O'Hara's Saint Columbanus - Selected Writings, which you can preview on the publisher's website here. Dr O'Hara will also be bringing out a complete English translation of the Life of Columbanus by Jonas of Bobbio, inevitably alas, a rather more expensive tome of which details can be found here. Below is a short extract from the introduction to the Selected Writings in which the author looks at some of the differing reactions which the strong personality of Saint Columbanus has provoked:

The Irish saint and monastic founder, Columba the Younger, or Columbanus ('the Little Dove') as he was more affectionately known (c.550-615), can appear a stern and unsympathetic character. He was a man of extremes who provoked mixed reactions both from his and from our own, more recent, contemporaries. The Oxford medieval historian, J.M. Wallace-Hadrill dismissed him as a 'savage old saint' while Robert Schumann, one of the architects of the European Union, lauded him as a pioneer of European civilization and unity. More recently, Pope Benedict XVI spoke of him as being 'one of the Fathers of Europe'. In his day many regarded Columbanus as a saint, but others vilified him as a troublesome upstart who dared to speak out on Church affairs. Although a divisive figure, he is nonetheless one of the most enigmatic and fascinating figures from the early medieval 'Age of Saints'.

Alexander O'Hara, ed., Saint Columbanus - Selected Writings, (Dublin, 2015), 16.

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Friday, 27 November 2015

Saint Columbanus at Annegray

We continue the octave of posts in honour of the 1400th anniversary of the death of Saint Columbanus with a portrait of the way of life he pursued at Annegray. It reveals a tension familiar to the saints, torn as they are by the needs of others and a desire for solitude:

During the sojourn of Columbanus at Anegrai which lasted for two or three years, he lived in the continual practice of prayer and contemplation. Oftentimes, his course of life was interrupted by the wits of those, who came from afar, being attracted by the reputation of his virtues and many miracles wrought through the efficacy of his prayers. Numbers of sick and infirm persons were brought to him, and through his intervention they were miraculously restored to health and strength. Numbers of pious persons sought the direction and advice of this experienced instructor. These unavoidable interruptions did not however prevent our Saint occasionally retiring from public observation, to avoid the distractions caused by his visitors. Although he could not always shun intercourse with men, on account of the laborious duties of the ministry he was called to exercise; yet, he was accustomed, before all great festivals, to withdraw himself for a few days to the most retired parts of the desert, where, by a sort of retreat, he devoted himself entirely to fasting, prayer and holy contemplation.

Rev. John O'Hanlon, ' Life of Saint Columbanus, Abbot of Luxeu' in The Irish Harp: a monthly magazine of national and general literature: Volume 1, 1-4 (1863), 154.

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Thursday, 26 November 2015

Saint Columbanus and the Miracle of Water from the Rock

Canon O'Hanlon brings us another vignette from the Life of Saint Columbanus, this time heavily-laden with Old Testament allusions, as he describes how our saint is able through his prayers to make water flow from a rock:

On the occasion of his many retreats to the solitudes of the forest, the Saint suffered the extremities of hunger for whole days. He lived upon wild herbs and berries, which the woods furnished, and he often remained altogether apart from his companions. His drink was water. A certain youth, named Domoaldis, was commissioned by Columban and his monks to bear messages between them, and this boy was alone witness to many of the austerities of our Saint. Columban remained for several days on the brow of a precipitous rock, very difficult of access, and Domoaldis, who chanced to be with him, complained in an undertone of voice, that they should be obliged to procure water at a distance, and that it must be conveyed with great toil up the side of the steep. Upon this, Columban desired the boy to scoop out a hollow in the rock, and he obeyed. The holy man knelt down, and besought the Lord, that he would look upon them with a favourable eye. Thereupon, a rill of water issued from the rock, and the spring continued perpetually running from that time. Hence we may admire the wonderful condescension of Almighty God, to the requests of his chosen servants, who with faith and hope prefer their petitions to him. For he himself has given the assurance, "All things whatsoever you ask, believe that you shall obtain and they shall be rendered unto you." This consolatory promise to the holy man was often realized, even in the presence of multiplied difficulties.*

* Jonas, Vita S. Columbani. n. 16.

Rev. John O'Hanlon, ' Life of Saint Columbanus, Abbot of Luxeu' in The Irish Harp: a monthly magazine of national and general literature: Volume 1, 1-4 (1863), 112.

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Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Saint Columbanus and the Dangers of the Forest

We continue the octave of posts in honour of the 1400th anniversary of the death of Saint Columbanus with a glimpse into how the saint dealt with the dangers of life in the forests. I am particularly pleased that the author here is none other than dear old Canon O'Hanlon, as he did not live to publish a November volume of his Lives of the Irish Saints. He did, however, begin the serialisation of what I am sure would have formed his chapter on Saint Columbanus in a short-lived Irish literary magazine, alas it doesn't seem like he got the chance to conclude it. Here he brings us a vignette from the biography of Saint Columbanus by the monk Jonas of Bobbio:
It was a custom of the Saint to make solitary excursions through the forest, and on a certain occasion, when taking with him the Sacred Scriptures, he fell into a reverie of thought, whether it would be preferable for him to suffer violence from men or wild beasts. He concluded at length, that it would be more desirable to sustain the rage of beasts rather than that of men, since the latter sort of violence could not take place, without the loss of immortal souls. Thereupon, he prayed and armed himself with the sign of the cross. No sooner had he performed these actions, than a troop of twelve wolves rushed towards him and surrounded him on every side. The Saint cried out, "O Lord incline to my aid, O Lord hasten to my assistance." He remained immoveable and intrepid, although the wolves caught hold of his garments. They at length left him, and fled into the recesses of the forest. Scarcely had Columban escaped this danger, when he overheard the voices of certain Swiss robbers, who were lurking in the woods. He passed the forest unobserved by them, and thus escaped a second danger. Taking a longer ramble than usual from his cell, he one day penetrated a hitherto unexplored recess of the forest, where he discovered a large cave, in the side of a precipitous rock. Upon entering, he found a bear, which had here taken up its place of concealment. Columban drove the animal away, without its attempting the least injury against him, and what was still more remarkable, it dared not return afterwards to the den it formerly occupied. This occurred at a place about seven miles distant from Anegrai.*

* Jonas, Vita S. Columbani. n. 15.
Rev. John O'Hanlon, ' Life of Saint Columbanus, Abbot of Luxeu' in The Irish Harp: a monthly magazine of national and general literature: Volume 1, 1-4 (1863), 112.

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Tuesday, 24 November 2015

The Tomb and Relics of Saint Columbanus

Below is a short paper by Margaret Stokes on the tomb and relics of Saint Columbanus written in the late 1880s. As we are dealing with scholarship well over a century old I would treat the theories of the origins of the artistic styles offered here with caution, but the description of the relics is most interesting:

Miss MARGARET STOKES, through the Director, communicated a paper on the tombs at Bobio of St. Columbanus and his followers, Attalus, Congal, Cummian, and others, whose names are given by Padre Rossetti in his Catalogue of the followers of Columbanus, but in their Latin forms, the Irish equivalents to which are omitted.

The tomb of Columbanus is a white marble sarcophagus, formerly surmounted by a marble recumbent statue of the saint, the front and sides of which were adorned with bas-reliefs illustrating events in the life of the saint. Among the interesting features in these bas-reliefs should be noted the booksatchell carried by St. Columbanus in the first, and the watervessel presented by Gregory the Great to the saint at the consecration of his monastery in the central compartment. This sarcophagus stands as an altar in the crypt of the old Lombardic church dedicated to the saint at Bobio, while the tombs of those disciples who followed him from Ireland to Italy are ranged in the walls around that of their master.

The sculptures on five of these sarcophagi offer fine examples of the interlaced work described by Canon Browne at the meeting of the Society on February 19th, as found in Italy at this period and before it, even in the time of imperial Rome. Such patterns were spoken of by Miss Margaret Stokes in her paper read upon the same occasion as gradually introduced with Christianity into Ireland, and there engrafted on a still more archaic form of Celtic art. Thus an Irish variety of such pattern sprang into life. The fact that there is no trace of such Irish individuality in the decorations on the tombs of the Irish saints at Bobio, that there is nothing to differentiate these designs from those that prevailed throughout Lombardy in the seventh century, goes far to prove that this style did not come from Ireland into Italy. Whether, on the other hand, it reached the Irish shore borne directly from Lombardy by the passengers to and fro from Bobio to its parent monastery in Bangor, Co. Down, is yet matter for future research.

The next monument described was the marble slab inscribed to the memory of Cummian, bishop in Ireland at the beginning of the eighth century. We learn from the epitaph itself that Liutprand, king of Lombardy from A.D. 720 to 761, had the monument executed of which this slab was the covering, the artists's name, Joannes Magister, being given at the foot. The inscription consists of nineteen lines, twelve of which are laudatory verses in hexameters, the remaining portion being a request for the saint's intercession.

The knife of St. Columbanus, described by Mabillon in 1682, as well as by Fleming, is still preserved in the sacristy of the church. It is of iron, and has a rude horn handle. The wooden cup out of which the saint drank is also preserved, and in the year 1354 it was encircled by a band of silver, with an inscription stating that it had belonged to St. Columbanus. The bell of the saint is another relic, and it is known that on the occasion of the translation of the saint's relics to Pavia this bell was carried through the streets of that city at the head of the procession.

The vessel brought by pope Gregory the Great from Constantinople, and given by him to St. Columbanus at the consecration of his monastery, agrees in form with that which is represented in the bas-relief on the saint's tomb, and is said to have been one of the water vessels used at the wedding feast at Cana in Galilee. A silver bust representing the head of St. Columbanus completes the list of relics connected with this saint, which are still preserved in the sacristy of his church at Bobio.

In the discussion that followed, Professor Browne said he was convinced, after careful examination of Miss Stokes's careful drawings and diagrams, that the Hibernian theory of the Irish origin of interlacing ornament in Italy was now quite dead.

With regard to the date of a remarkable vase preserved at Bobio, and said to have been given to St. Columbanus by St. Gregory, the President thought the vase was quite as early as if not earlier than St. Gregory's time, and probably of Greek origin.

Thanks were ordered to be returned for these Exhibitions and Communications.

Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of London, 2nd ser. Vol XIII, (1889), 270-271.

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