St. Erth of Cornwall (of Slane)
(Erc, Ercus, Herygh, Urith)

31 October

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Died c. 512; feast in Ireland is November 2. Saint Erth, the brother of Saint Uny and Saint Ia (Ives) (f.d. February 3), was the only person to give homage to Saint Patrick during the latter's confrontation with the druids on the Hill of Slane. Patrick later ordained him a priest and bishop. A distich ascribed to Saint Patrick relates:

"Bishop Erc,
Whatever he judged was rightly judged:
Whosoever gives a just judgement
Shall receive the blessing of bishop Erc."

Erth is said to have trained the young Saint Brendan the Navigator (f.d. May 16) at his church in Tralee. Saint Erth is also responsible for establishing the famous school at Slane, where King Dagobert II is said to have received his early education. The 12th-century martyrology of Gorman calls him 'Erc of Slane, bishop of Lilcach and from Ferta Fer Feic beside Sid Truim from the West.' He apparently crossed from Ireland to Cornwall, where a church and the village of Saint Erth are dedicated under his patronage (Benedictines, Farmer, Montague).

Troparion of St Herygh
Tone 8
For four score years and ten thou didst grace the Cornish land with thy godly presence, O Father Herygh.
Therefore pray to God for us,
that we may devote every year of our lives to His service,
that at the end we may be found worthy of eternal salvation.

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content © 2008, Ambrose Mooney
layout © 2008, Kathleen Hanrahan and Mo! Langdon
Page last updated: 22 October 2008
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