< Back to blog

St David: The patron saint of Wales Posted On 01 March 2019

People around the world celebrate St David’s Day on the 1st March every year. But, who is St David and why is he celebrated?

 

St David is the patron saint of Wales. His exact date of birth is unknown but is believed to have been around 500 AD. The legend goes he was born on the Pembrokeshire cliffs during a fierce thunderstorm. His mother was a nun named Nonnita and his father was Sant, King of Ceredigion; thus, he came from a royal lineage and is believed to be related to King Arthur.

As a young man, he became a monk and founded a monastery close to where he was born. That area is now known as St David’s, and it is believed that St David’s Cathedral and St David’s Bishop’s Palace are built on that original site. St David’s is officially Britain’s smallest city, with a population of just 1,600.

As a monk he lived a modest life, surviving on only bread, vegetables and water, earning him the nickname Dewi Dyfrwr, ‘David the Waterdrinker’. During his life, St David founded a further 12 monasteries including Glastonbury and was named the Archbishop of Wales.

St David is said to have performed several miracles; including restoring a blind man’s sight and bringing a child back to life. The most well-known miracle was when while preaching to a large crowd, the people were struggling to hear him when a white dove landed on his shoulder and the ground on which he stood rose to form a mighty hill.

The dove became St David’s emblem, alongside the leek which, according to legend, became a tradition after St David advised the Welsh to wear a leek in their caps to recognise each other on the field of a great battle with the Saxons.

It is said St David lived for over 100 years and died on Tuesday, 1st March 589 AD. After his death, a shrine was built in his honour at the cathedral and by the 12th century, over 60 churches in Wales had been dedicated to him. His death has been recognised annually since his canonisation in the early 12th century by Pope Callixtus II.

Every year a National St David’s Day parade is held in the centre of Cardiff, with exciting performances by Welsh theatre groups, a parade with traditional dress and a food festival. Many children will wear traditional Welsh clothing to school and take part in school concerts.

St David’s day is the first patron saints day of the year, followed by St Patrick’s Day on the 17th March, St George’s Day on the 23rd April and St Andrews Day on the 30th November.

< Back to blog

Connect with us

Recent Posts

Government Update – Lockdown measures review

Yesterday evening, the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson led the daily news briefing with an update on the lockdown rules. Mr Johnson confirmed that the five tests that needed to have been met during lockdown have now been met. The five tests included: 1. Making sure the NHS could cope. 2. A sustained fall in the …

Read more...

Non-essential retailers to reopen

Boris Johnson announced on Monday that all non-essential retailers will be allowed to reopen in England from the 15th June. Retailers will have to adhere to new guidelines to protect their workers and their customers, and it is ‘contingent on progress in the fight against coronavirus.’ This goes alongside outdoor markets and car showrooms which …

Read more...

Greatest FA Cup Finals ever!!!

  This weekend should have been the final of the Emirates FA Cup Final. However, with sport suspended until mid-June, we thought we would look back at some of the greatest FA Cup finals ever… The FA Cup is the ultimate knockout football competition. Originally beginning in 1871-72, the tournament is open to all clubs …

Read more...

Mac’s the way to do it! Burger giants to reopen 32 drive-throughs

The signs that Britain is continuing to take tentative step to life after lockdown increased today when it was revealed McDonald’s is to re-open 32 of its drive-through takeaways. Days after announcing it was to open 15 of its 1,270 branches for delivery orders, the fast-food giant has announced more than 30 restaurants, largely in …

Read more...

Destination home

You may not be able to enjoy days out with the kids right now, but there’s still plenty of fun that can be had at home! Baking Cooking and baking are great activities for children of all ages. Of course, depending on the age of the child, they will be able to undertake different cooking …

Read more...