Columba, Saint


Columba, Saint
or Colum or Columcille

born с 521, Tyrconnell
died June 8/9, 597, Iona; feast day June 9

Irish abbot and missionary.

A member of the warrior aristocracy, he was excommunicated for his part in a bloody battle. Exiled, he set out to do penance as a missionary. He founded two famous monasteries in Ireland before taking 12 disciples to the Scottish island of Iona (с 563), where they built a church and monastery that served as a base for the conversion of the Scottish Picts, and thereby Scotland, to Christianity.

* * *

▪ Christian missionary
also called  Colum, or Columcille  
born c. 521, Tyrconnell [now County Donegal, Ire.]
died June 8/9, 597, Iona [Inner Hebrides, Scot.]; feast day June 9
 abbot and missionary traditionally credited with the main role in the conversion of Scotland to Christianity.

      Columba studied under Saints Finnian of Moville and Finnian of Clonard and was ordained priest about 551. He founded churches and the famous monasteries Daire Calgaich, in Derry, and Dair-magh, in Durrow.

      Columba and his 12 disciples erected a church and a monastery on the island of Iona (c. 563) as their springboard for the conversion of Scotland. It was regarded as the mother house and its abbots as the chief ecclesiastical rulers even of the bishops. Columba gave formal benediction and inauguration to Aidan MacGabrain of Dunadd as king of Dalriada.

      Columba accompanied Aidan to Ireland (575) and took a leading part in a council held at Druim Cetta, which determined the position of the ruler of Dalriada in relation to the king of Ireland. The last years of Columba's life appear to have been spent mainly in Iona, where he was already revered as a saint. He and his associates and successors spread the gospel more than any other contemporary group of religious pioneers in Britain.

      Three Latin hymns may be attributed to Columba with some degree of certainty. Excavations in 1958 and 1959 revealed Columba's living cell and the outline of the original monastery.

Additional Reading
The principal source for the life of Columba is that written by St. Adamnan, ninth abbot of Iona, in the 7th century, Adomnan's Life of Columba, ed. and trans. by Alan Orr Anderson and Marjorie Ogilvie Anderson (1961).

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Columba, Saint — • Columba, Saint. Also known as Columcille. Long article on the Irish born monk, founder and abbot of Iona. He died in 597 • Columba, Saint. A nun beheaded by the Muslims in 853 Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006 …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Columba,Saint — Columba also Col·um (kŭlʹəm), Saint. 521 597. Irish missionary who established a monastery on the island of Iona and subsequently Christianized northern Scotland. * * * …   Universalium

  • Columba, Saint — (fl. 543 615)    Born in Tyrconnell, now County Donegal, Ireland. His father grandson of Conall Gulban, from whom the northwest of Ulster takes its name of Tirconaill, and great grandson of Niall Naighiallach, king of Ireland from 379 to 405 was… …   British and Irish poets

  • Saint — 1347 80, Italian ascetic and mystic. died A.D. 731, pope 715 731. died A.D. 741, pope 731 741. died A.D. 352, Italian ecclesiastic: pope 337 352. died A.D. 683, Sicilian ecclesiastic: pope 682 683. died A.D. 855, Italian ecclesiastic: pope 847… …   Universalium

  • saint — saintless, adj. /saynt/, n. 1. any of certain persons of exceptional holiness of life, formally recognized as such by the Christian Church, esp. by canonization. 2. a person of great holiness, virtue, or benevolence. 3. a founder, sponsor, or… …   Universalium

  • Columba the Virgin — Saint Columba the Virgin From stained glass window at St. Columb Major church Virgin Martyr Born very late 5th century possibly Lothian, Scotland probably …   Wikipedia

  • Columba of Sens — Saint Columba of Sens Born c. 257 Died 273 Honored in Roman Catholicism Feast December 31[1] …   Wikipedia

  • Columba of Spain — Saint Columba of Spain Martyr of Córdoba Died 853 Córdoba Honored in Roman Catholicism Major shrine Old Castile, priory of St. Columba and the royal Abbey of Our Lady at Nájera …   Wikipedia

  • Saint Columba — may refer to:* Columba of Scotland * Saint Columba (the Virgin), also known as Saint Columba of Cornwall * Saint Columba of Sens * Columba of Spain * Columba of Terryglass * St Columb * Sancta Columba …   Wikipedia

  • Saint Otteran — Saint Otteran, a descendant of Conall Gulban, is usually identified with Odhron (also called Odhrán or Oran), who preceded Saint Columba in Iona. His death is recorded in 548 and his grave was greatly revered in Iona.According to Irish tradition… …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.