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Scottish saints and towns

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St Andrew: Scotland and St Andrews
More details below on St Andrew

Towns/Cities/Places in alphabetic order

St Nicholas: Aberdeen
St Blane: Dunblane
St Mary: Dundee
St Margaret: Dunfermline
St Giles: Edinburgh
St Mungo/Kentigern: Glasgow
St Molaise: Holy Isle off Arran
St Columba: Iona (formerly Scotland as well).
St Cuthbert: Kirkcudbright
St Magnus: Kirkwall
St Baldred: North Berwick
St Mirren: Paisley
St John: Perth
St Ninian: Whithorn

Sources: Scottish Traditions & Festivals, Raymond Lamont-Brown,
W & R Chambers, Edinburgh, 1991

St Andrew

St Andrew became the patron saint of Scotland as the result of a foreign monk/hermit (Greek if my memory serves) named Rule or Regulus coming to what is today the town of Saint Andrews in 732 bearing with him the purported bones of St Andrew. The religious foundation which grew up around these relics was not originally Catholic, but Culdee. Even this association with St Andrew is tenuous as there are other places which claim to possess the bones of St Andrew. In any case, the town of St Andrews became in consequence the premier religious site in the east of Scotland and remained such when the Catholic Church attained ascendancy over the Celtic Churches. In the west of Scotland, less importance was attached to St Andrew than to the various local saints such as Columba, Mungo, Maelrubha etc. Ultimately when the Scottish court became dominated by Scots speakers, St Andrew became their principal patron while the Gaelic areas chose Columba as their principle champion and I don't think that they ever held St Andrew in great esteem. There has always a lot of obscure politics going on in Scotland over the selection of national saints and symbols and I suspect that the medieval kings were delighted to have St Andrew, an apostle, as the patron of Scotland which vicariously made Scotland "superior" to England who only had St George, a popular but rather mythological patron and gave the east coasters a chance to sneer at Strathclyde's St. Mungo as small potatoes.

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