Talk:Saint Ninian

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Clancy versus the MacQueens: the interim result[edit]

Barbara Yorke (Conversion of Britain, 2006) seems to prefer Clancy's take to that of the MacQueens c. 1990. If nothing else, Clancy's negative toponymic evidence line (where are the churches dedicated to "St Nynia" ?) is hard to beat. Clancy is ahead on points at least. Angus McLellan (Talk) 21:56, 14 November 2006 (UTC)

I think Barrow too has his reservations, but even the people at the Whithorn Trust seem to be behind Clancy, Fraser, Broun, et al. The balance of current consensus seems firmly behind the Uinniau view. MacQueen republished his book in an attempt to refute it, but it didn't really work. Calgacus (ΚΑΛΓΑΚΟΣ) 22:00, 14 November 2006 (UTC)

Both and

link to this page, saying St Ninian's day is August 26th, yet this page itself makes no mention of this.

Sanna 20:53, 22 January 2007 (UTC)


I have deleted this snippet from the page as the kingdom of Rheged was not established until well after Ninian's lifetime:

probably Rheged

Psammead (talk) 11:21, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

Largely a replacement[edit]

I've included more information on the traditional stories, including their originators. It would be hard to mention the specific hypotheses (modern and otherwise) without giving undue weight and bloating the article, so I didn't include particulars (though I read through a lot of them). I think that the map is more informative than a partial list of dedication sites (I did use the references to place them on the map). I'm not sure that a WikiProject Biography connection is entirely appropriate here, but left it in. And I removed the quality scale assignments so that the article can be assessed, if desired. Comments welcome. Regards, Notuncurious (talk) 01:28, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

Tone / POV?[edit]

The article in its present form seems a bit odd to me. Maybe it is the constant repetition of phrases like "there is no unchallenged historical evidence", but it reads like it is making an argument. Also I don't remember seeing another Wikipedia article with a "Summary" section. — Eoghanacht talk 16:11, 21 September 2010 (UTC)

I'm afraid that I'm the guilty party. Let me say first that if I wrote it, then you can safely assume that it could stand improvement. For the {{Says who}} tag you added, this is the intro paragraph of the section, and the question is answered individually in the following sections for the individuals discussed. But perhaps I could have made the intro better? Also, see Vita Sancti Niniani for some background on Ninian/Uinniau and the possible relation to Finnian of Moville. The "Summary" section here pre-dates the existence of this article, and perhaps should now be removed or at least changed. Regarding "essay" and "pov", there has been past discussions on Ninian's historicity and origins, including contributions from a site in Galloway that (understandably) promotes their connection to a saint ... I think I was trying to dance around all the issues without stepping on anyone's toes. Parenthetically, I think an article specifically on the historicity of Ninian/Finnian would be a useful addition. Regards, Notuncurious (talk) 17:07, 21 September 2010 (UTC)

Thanks for taking a second look. I don't mean to be the POV-nazi. I am looking for some consistency among the tone of various pages. In all honesty, I never heard of St. Ninian before today, and for all I know he could be either be the holiest man prior to St. Francis of Assisi or a figment of some hagiographer's imagination. — Eoghanacht talk 02:35, 22 September 2010 (UTC)

Ninian, Finnian and Uinniau[edit]

Hello colleagues, how about inserting a notion of the following text by a well-respected historian, the Picticist James E. Fraser:

The nature of 'minuscule' handwriting made misreadings of the letter u in manuscripts as n common in the Middle Ages. Such mistakes transformed uinniau into Finnian (that is, vinnian), and also created Iona out of ioua. A different transformation of uiniau into niniau makes surprisingly good sense of the surviving evidence of veneration of St Uinniau in south-west Scotland.
In the eighth century a Life of a saint called nyniau was written at the Northumbrian monastery at Whithorn, or somewhere associated with it. The saint was cast in this lost work as a reformist British forerunner to the apostolicist Northumbrian Church in Galloway. He was also portrayed as extending his influence north of the Forth, as the Northumbrians had done in the prior two generations. Towards the end of the eighth century, this lost Life was roughly rendered into verse in Miracula Nynie Episcopi, 'the Miracles of Bishop Nyniau'.
Half a century earlier Bede wrote in Historia ecclesiastica that the southern Picts, 'as they testify', had received Christianity from Nyniau 'a long time before' the northern Picts.
By the twelfth century, yet another misreading of u had transformed Nyniau into the more familiar Ninian. That the famous St Ninian is to be regarded as an unhistorical doppelganger of Uinniau (whose historical existence is irrefutable) can be a bitter pill to swallow.
(J.E. Fraser (2009): From Caledonia to Pictland. Scotland to 795, Edinburgh University Press, p.71.)

I would suggest to insert this idea into the article. Probably the pill is not so bitter after all. Glatisant (talk) 18:50, 30 December 2012 (UTC)

Brian Jacques' Redwall[edit]

Is there a good place to mention Brian Jacques' Redwall books here? There's a "Saint Ninian's Church" referenced multiple times in the series, as part of setting it in a pseudo-medieval time. I can't think that it's an accidental reference. CarpeGuitarrem (talk) 22:14, 20 July 2013 (UTC)