Saint Blathmac (Latin: Blathmacus, Florentius) was a distinguished Irish monk, born in Ireland about 750 AD. He was killed and became a martyr in Iona, about 825.[1] His biography written by Strabo, the Benedictine Abbot of Reichenau (824–849), and thus the story of his martyrdom has been handed down.[2][3]

Saint Blathmac
Bornc. 750 AD
Diedc. 825
Venerated inEastern Orthodox Church
Roman Catholic Church

Early lifeEdit

Blathmac, the scion of a noble family, early showed a religious turn of mind and longed to be enrolled in the noble army of martyrs, a wish which was afterwards fulfilled. His name was Latinized Florentius (from the Irish word blàth meaning "flower").


He became an abbot. In 824 he joined the community of Columban monks at Iona and not long afterwards the Danes ravaged the island. One morning, as he was celebrating mass, the Scandinavian rovers entered the monastic church. Blathmac refused to point out the shrine of St. Columba, which was the object of plunder. He was hacked to pieces on the altar step.[1][4]

His body was afterwards reverently interred at the scene. Miracles are claimed to have been wrought through his intercession. The date of his death is given by the "Annals of Ulster" as 825, although Mabillon places it thirty-six years earlier.[1]


  1. ^ a b c "St. Blathmac". Catholic Encyclopedia.
  2. ^ "A Folklore Survey of County Clare by Thomas Johnson Westropp". Retrieved 11 February 2016.
  3. ^ "Catholic dictionary". Retrieved 11 February 2016.
  4. ^ Forte, Angelo; Oram, Richard; Pedersen, Frederik (2005). Viking Empires. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 55–58. ISBN 9780521829922.

External linksEdit

Omnium Sanctorum Hiberniae