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St Columba (c. 521—597) monastic founder


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[Ir., hypocoristic for Colum].

Name borne by several early Irish saints, the most notable of whom is Cuimmíne Fota, Fata, Foda, Fada [Long, Tall] (c.590–c.665), the founder of an abbey at Kilcummin, Co. Offaly. Cuimmíne's most important historical distinction is the introduction of the Roman computation of Easter; for this he was rebuked by the abbot of Iona, who wished Christians to follow the Celtic computation favoured by Colum Cille. A surviving hymn is attributed to him. In popular tradition he is thought to have been the product of an incestuous union between his father, Fiachna (3), king of west Munster, and Fiachna's daughter, Mugain (4). He is also the spiritual adviser of Liadain who forbids her lovemaking with Cuirithir.

Subjects: Religion.

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