St. Patrick of St. Patrick's Day - BIRTHPLACE OF ST. PATRICK

BIRTHPLACE OF ST. PATRICK (Illustration) Biographies Famous People History Tragedies and Triumphs Social Studies Philosophy

No one is sure where St. Patrick was born. The lad—whose birth name was Maewyn Succatt—was kidnapped by Irish raiders. This leads some scholars to believe that he must have been living near the western coast of today's United Kingdom. One such place could have been in Scotland, "between the mouth of the Severn and Clyde" rivers. This image, online via the BBC, depicts the Firth of Clyde as seen from space.


So much, about St. Patrick, is based on legend that we can’t even be sure when, and where, he was born.  He writes (in Latin) about his birthplace, but passing centuries have blurred the true meaning of his words.  He says he was from

...the settlement [vicus] of Bannavem Taburniae. (See The Confession of St. Patrick, point 1.)

Where is that? 

  • On the other hand ... since his father was both a cleric and a Roman official in Britain, maybe scholars who think the future saint was born near the Birdoswald section of Hadrian’s Wall are right.  If so, he spent his early years in Cumbria, part of England's now-famous Lake District.
  • Then, again ... what about the viewpoint (expressed, among others, by David Bercot, in Let Me Die in Ireland, The True Story of Patrick) that Patrick’s village “was probably situated near the southwestern coast of Britain.”  (Bercot, footnote 1, page 4.)

Why is the location of St. Patrick’s birthplace so confusing?  In short ... It’s a matter of history. 

Even in the seventh century, as evidenced by the Book of Armagh (a treasure now maintained at Trinity College, Dublin), no one really knew where Bannavem Taburniae was located.  

What we do know, within a reasonable degree of certainty, is that Ireland’s patron saint was born somewhere in Britain (probably near the end of the fourth century).

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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5183stories and lessons created

Original Release: Mar 01, 2009

Updated Last Revision: Mar 17, 2017

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"BIRTHPLACE OF ST. PATRICK" AwesomeStories.com. Mar 01, 2009. Nov 12, 2019.
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