Mudcat Café message #131484 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #14974   Message #131484
Posted By: T in Oklhaoma (Okiemockbird)
03-Nov-99 - 07:34 PM
Thread Name: BS: St Patrick an Englishman ?
Subject: RE: BS: St Patrick an Englishman ?
St. Patrick was not "English", he was "British". The "English" (whom the British called "Saxons") were only just arriving in Britain in the middle of St. Patrick's lifetime (circa 385 - circa 461--I don't hold to the obiit in 491 theory.) Similarly in his lifetime "Scotus" meant "Irishman" regardless of where the Irishman lived (whether in Ireland or in Britain). So to say that Patrick was kidnapped by "Scots" slavers is true only as long as no connection to Scotland (which did not yet exist) is implied.

St. Patrick, in his writings, considers himself Christian first, Roman second, and British third. So in his lifetime the British were still Roman, even though the Emperor hadn't had any direct authority in Britain since the early 400's. A hundred years after Patrick, St. Gildas, writing his "Grouchy Book concerning the Downfall and Dying Scream of Britain" at Menevia (now St. David's) writes of "the Romans" as if they were foreigners who came to Britain and left long ago. So between Patrick's time and Gildas's time there was a sharp discontinuity in British outlook introduced by the calamitous first war against the English. Not long after Gildas's time the English went on the offensive again and ended up dominating most of what is now "England". It was probably not before this time, circa 600 A.D., that St. Patrick's birthplace of "Bannavem Taburniae" came under English domination so as to be part of "England". If "Bannavem Taburniae" is in Wales or Cornwall, it was long after this time (if ever) that St. Patrick's birthplace could be called and "English" town.