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Botvid

(d. 1100)


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St Gregory I (c. 540—604)

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(d. 1100),

martyr. A Swedish layman from Sodermannland, Botvid became a Christian in England and then returned to Sweden to help spread Christianity in his native country, where already English missionary monks were at work. Following the policy of Gregory and Aidan, he bought a Finnish slave, instructed and baptized him. He then set him free by rowing him with a companion across the Baltic sea. The freed slave, however, murdered them both and sailed the boat away. According to the legend, a search-party was guided by a bird, singing on the boat until the bodies were found. Botvid was buried at Botkyrka: the Life written by a monk of Bodensee claims him as an apostle of Sweden. Feast: 28 July.

AA.SS. Iul. VI (1729), 635–8;Scriptores rerum Suevicarum, II (part i), 377–87.

Subjects: Christianity.


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