Crispin and Crispinian

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Crispin and Crispinian
Crépin et Crépinien (Kalkar).jpeg
SS. Crispin and Crispinian
Martyrs at Rome
Born3rd century AD
Venerated inRoman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Church
Church of England
Major shrineSoissons
FeastOctober 25
Attributesdepicted holding shoes
Patronagecobblers; curriers; glove makers; lace makers; lace workers; leather workers; saddle makers; saddlers; shoemakers; tanners; weavers.
San Crispin, San Pablo City, Philippines

Saints Crispin and Crispinian are the Christian patron saints of cobblers, curriers, tanners, and leather workers. They were beheaded during the reign of Diocletian; the date of their execution is given as 25 October 285 or 286.


Born to a noble Roman family in the 3rd century AD, Crispin and Crispinian fled persecution for their faith, ending up at Soissons, where they preached Christianity to the Gauls while making shoes by night. It is stated that they were twin brothers.[1]

They earned enough by their trade to support themselves and also to aid the poor. Their success attracted the ire of Rictus Varus, governor of Belgic Gaul,[2] who had them tortured and thrown into the river with millstones around their necks. Though they survived, they were beheaded by the Emperor c. 286.[3]


The feast day of Saints Crispin and Crispinian is 25 October.[4] Although this feast was removed from the Roman Catholic Church's universal liturgical calendar following the Second Vatican Council, the two saints are still commemorated on that day in the most recent edition of the Roman Church's martyrology.

In the sixth century, a stately basilica was erected at Soissons over these saints' graves, and St. Eligius, a famous goldsmith, made a costly shrine for the head of St. Crispinian.[1] Their remains were afterwards removed, partly by Charlemagne to Osnabrück, and partly to the church of San Lorenzo in Panisperna in Rome.[4][1]

They are the patron saints of cobblers, glove makers, lace makers, lace workers, leather workers, saddle makers, saddlers, shoemakers, tanners, and weavers.[5] Especially in France, but also in England and in other parts of Europe, the festival of St Crispin was for centuries the occasion of solemn processions and merry-making, in which guilds of shoemakers took the chief part.[4] Crispin and Crispinian are remembered in the Church of England with a commemoration on 25 October.[6]

Cultural references[edit]

The Battle of Agincourt was fought on Saint Crispin's feastday. Shakespeare's St. Crispin's Day Speech (sometimes called the "Band Of Brothers" Speech) from his play Henry V has immortalized the day. Also, for the Midsummer's Day Festival in the third act of Die Meistersinger, Wagner has the shoemakers' guild enter singing a song of praise to St. Crispin.

A 16th century legend links them to the town of Faversham, Kent, England.[7] A plaque at Faversham commemorates their association with the town.[8] They are also celebrated in the name of the old pub "Crispin and Crispianus" at Strood in Kent.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Meier, Gabriel (1908). "Sts. Crispin and Crispinian". The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 4. New York: Robert Appleton Company.
  2. ^ See: Jones, Arnold Hugh Martin; Martindale, John Robert; Morris, J. (1971). The Prosopography of the Later Roman Empire: V. 1 A.D. 260–395. Vol. I. Cambridge University Press. p. 766. ISBN 978-0-521-07233-5. "He is most probably a fictitious character since there was no persecution of Christians in N. Gaul; this area was subject to the Caesar Constantius."
  3. ^ "Saints of the day: Crispin and Crispinian". Angelus News. October 25, 2022.
  4. ^ a b c  One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Crispin and Crispinian". Encyclopædia Britannica. Vol. 7 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 468.
  5. ^ "St. Crispin and St. Crispinian". Catholic News Agency.
  6. ^ "The Calendar". The Church of England. Retrieved 2021-04-08.
  7. ^ Ridgway, Claire (October 25, 2020). "25 October - Twin saints and a local legend - The Tudor Society".
  8. ^ Plaques, Open. "Crispin and Crispianus grey plaque".
  9. ^ "CRISPIN AND CRISPIANUS Pub of Strood".

External links[edit]