Showing posts from November, 2020

St. Laurence O'Toole

St. Laurence O'Toole recently made the news, even though he's been dead for over 800 years. Why? Because of a strange and kind of spooky caper involving the theft of his heart! But Laurence was quite well-known in his own days as well - in fact he was so respected that after his death, his canonization was speed-tracked to appease his many followers. Lifetime:  1128 to 1180 Region:  Ireland Patronages:  Archdiocese of Dublin, Ireland Iconograpy:  Basket of bread; Shield; Dublin architecture Feast Day:  November 14 Laurence O'Toole was known as Lorc├ín Ua Tuathail in Ireland (and St. Laurent in France, which he also visited, and where he died). He was born as a prince, but was the youngest of four sons, meaning he was not likely to inherit the title. When Laurence was 10, he was held hostage for two years by another king opposing his father. He was kept mostly alone and nearly starved. However, eventually the abbot of a nearby monastery intervened to secure Laurence's rel

St. Hubert of Liege

St. Hubert is best known as the patron saint of hunters, but his hagiography, and his cult thereafter, have plenty of points of interest as well. For many years, an item called St. Hubert's Key was used to prevent rabies. And it actually worked! At the time, the cause of rabies was unknown, but the key was a small, metal nail-like object that would be heated and applied to the the bite while invoking the intercession of St. Hubert. It turns out that applying heated metal to a fresh bite wound actually cauterized the wound and sterilized the rabies virus, thus preventing the recipient from contract rabies themselves. Because of this connection to dog bites, St. Hubert has also been invoked as the patron saint of and against Werewolves. (Here I must resist the temptation to derail this post further by going into the Hounds of God, but we must save that for another day...)   Lifetime:  ~656 to ~727 Region:  Toulouse, France Patronages:  Hunters; Mathematicians; Metalworkers Iconograp