St. Columba of Cornwall, Virgin Martyr

13 November

Date unknown. Columba, the patron saint of two parishes in Cornwall, is said to have been a Christian maiden put to death by a heathen king of Cornwall (Benedictines).

Like the majority of Cornish Churches the Parish Church of St Columb is dedicated in the name of a Celtic Saint-Columba the Virgin. She was a holy women who probably came from Ireland to preach the Gospel to fellow Celts here and in Brittany. According to tradition Columba was pursued up the river by a heathen tyrant who wished her to marry his son, and was martyred at Ruthvoes, about 2 1/2 miles from St Columb Town. (Columba in Latin means a Dove- the emblem of tenderness and purity.)

The church occupies a splendid position at the head of the Vale of Lanherne. The site was quite possibly a large tumulus or burying place in pre-Christian times. but we know that a church has occupied it for at least 1000 years.

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