William Patenson

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Blessed William Patenson
Born Durham, England
Died 1591–2
Tyburn, England
Venerated in Roman Catholic Church
Beatified 1929 by Pope Pius XI
Feast 22 January

William Patenson (born in Yorkshire or Durham; executed at Tyburn, 22 January 1591–2) was an English Roman Catholic priest and martyr. He was beatified in 1929.[1]


Admitted to the English College, Reims, 1 May 1584, he was ordained to the priesthood in September, 1587, and left for the English mission 17 January 1588–9.

On the third Sunday of Advent, 1591, he said Mass in the house of Lawrence Mompesson at Clerkenwell, and while dining with another priest, James Young, the priest-catchers surprised them. Young found a hiding-place, but Patenson was arrested and condemned at the Old Bailey after Christmas. According to Young, while in prison he converted and reconciled three or four thieves before their death. The night before his martyrdom, according to Richard Verstegan, Patenson converted six out of seven felons who occupied the condemned cell with him. Because he did this, he was cut down while still conscious and quartered alive.


 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainWainewright, John B. (1911). "Venerable William Patenson". In Herbermann, Charles. Catholic Encyclopedia. 11. New York: Robert Appleton. p. 542. 

  • John Hungerford Pollen, Acts of the English Martyrs (London, 1891), pp. 115–117
  • John Hungerford Pollen, English Martyrs 1584–1603 (London, 1908), pp. 208, 292
  • Richard Challoner, Memoirs of Missionary Priests, I, no. 94 (London, 1843), pp. 292–293
  • Thomas Francis Knox, Douay Diaries (London, 1878), pp. 201, 217, 222


  1. ^ Saint of the Day, January 22 saintpatrickdc.org. Retrieved 2012-02-29.