Mærwynn

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Mærwynn, also known as St. Merewenna or Merwinna, was a 10th-century saint and abbess of Romsey Abbey. [1][2][3]

Life[edit]

Legend has it that she was born in Ireland and educated by St. Patrick, but five centuries separate them. She is known more historically from a Charter of Edgar the Peaceable,[note 1] the Liber Vitae of the New Minster[4] and the Secgan Manuscripts Hagiography.[5]

Romsey Abbey

She was the Abbess of Romsey (fl 967 – 975 AD), and there is some certainty that she was appointed to the position of abbess by King Edgar the Peaceable on Christmas day in 974.[6]

King Edgar sent Aelfflaed, his daughter,[7] to Mærwynn for care, and she became like a foster mother to the princess.[8][9]

Legacy[edit]

The foundations of Mærwynn's abbey (destroyed by Vikings in 1003 AD)[note 2] have been found under the tower, choir stalls and part of the nave of the current Norman church.[10]

She was buried at Romsey Abbey and was venerated post-mortem. Her Feast Day is 13 May, but was originally 10 February.[11][12]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Charter, King Edgar to Romsey Abbey
  2. ^ Mærwynn's Abbey was the second of the four church buildings to be built on the site.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "St. Merewenna". Eucharist and Truth. 
  2. ^ David Hugh Farmer (2011). The Oxford Dictionary of Saints (5 rev. ed.). Oxford University Press. p. 307. 
  3. ^ Alban Butler, Paul Burns, Butler's Lives of the Saints, Volume 10 (Alban Butler, Paul Burns, A&C Black, 1995) page 30
  4. ^ The Liber Vitae of the New Minster, Winchester Fol 26r.20.ix
  5. ^ The secganManuscript II.34
  6. ^ Thomas Perkins, Bell's Cathedrals: A Short Account of Romsey Abbey (Project Guttenberg, 2007) p. 70.
  7. ^ The Abbey Church of St. Mary & St. Aethelfla
  8. ^ The Liber Vitae of the New Minster, Winchester Fol 26r.20.ix
  9. ^ The secgan Manuscript II.34
  10. ^ Thomas Perkins, Bell's Cathedrals: A Short Account of Romsey Abbey (Project Guttenberg, 2007) p17.
  11. ^ merewenna at Saints SQPN.org.
  12. ^ Book of Saints, by the Monks of Ramsgate