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Germanus of Man

(c. 410—475)


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St Germanus of Auxerre (d. 437) bishop of Auxerre

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Illtud (fl. c. 465—535) abbot of Llantwit Major

 

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(c.410–475),

bishop. The presence of a number of dedications in North Wales and Cornwall, sometimes wrongly attributed to Germanus of Auxerre, together with references to German in Lives of Celtic saints which are chronologically impossible for Germanus, has led Celtic scholars to seek at least one other German to explain them. Baring-Gould summarizes the life of Germanus of Man as follows. He was born in Brittany c.410; went to Ireland to stay with Patrick in c.440; came to Wales and lived in the monastery of Brioc and Illtud c.450; left Gaul to meet Patrick in Britain c.462, where he engaged in a magic contest with Gwrtheyrn; returned to Ireland and became bishop of Man c.466. These dates are highly conjectural. The areas of Garmon dedications are Caernarvonshire, Denbighshire, Montgomeryshire, and Radnorshire. Leland mentioned a pilgrimage to Garmon (‘Armon’) at Llanarmon yn Ial, where offerings were made to a statue in sacerdotal vestments. Feast: (in Man) 3 July, but in Wales 31 July or 1 October, through confusion with Germanus of Auxerre.

Baring-Gould and Fisher, iii. 60–79; J. Leland, Itinerary in Wales, pp. 70–1.

Subjects: Christianity.


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