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Saint John Almond (c. 1577 – 5 December 1612) was an English Catholic priest. He was ordained in 1598 and martyred in 1612. Canonized in 1970, John Almond is one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales.

John Almond
Bornca. 1577
Allerton near Liverpool
Died(1612-12-05)5 December 1612
Tyburn, London
Venerated inCatholic Church
Beatified1929, Rome by Pope Pius XI
Canonized1970, Rome by Pope Paul VI, as one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales
Feast5 December
(25 October as part of the 40 Martyrs)

Early years and life as a skilled debaterEdit

John Almond was born around 1577 at Allerton (near Liverpool), and passed his childhood there and at Much Woolton, Lancashire until at the age of eight, he was taken to Ireland.[1] He went to the English College in Rome, at the age of twenty, where he was ordained as a priest, returning to England as a missionary in 1602.[2] He concluded his term there by giving the 'Grand Act' -- a public defence of theses which cover the whole course of philosophy and theology—and was warmly congratulated by Cardinals Caesar Baronius and Francesco Maria Tarugi, who presided.[3]

Return to England and martyrdomEdit

He returned to the dangers of England in 1602 as a secular priest and administered to the faithful there. He was arrested in 1608, and then again in 1612. In November 1612, seven priests escaped from prison. It was alleged that, whilst in prison, Almond had said that "whosoever had killed a king, and were afterward penitent ... and did confesse the same to a priest, might have absolution".[4]

John Almond was hanged, drawn, and quartered on 5 December 1612 at Tyburn, London, England. During his final speech on the scaffold he condemned regicide, discussed the nature of grace and true repentance, and said that he conceded as much authority to James as to any Christian prince.[4]


  1. ^ Pollen SJ, John Hungerford, Acts of the English Martyrs, Burns & Oates, Ltd., London, 1891
  2. ^ Townships: Speke, A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 3 (1907), pp. 131-140
  3. ^ Ryan, Patrick W.F. "Ven. John Almond." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 1. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1907. 2 Feb. 2013
  4. ^ a b Lake, P.; Questier, M. (1 November 1996). "AGENCY, APPROPRIATION AND RHETORIC UNDER THE GALLOWS: PURITANS, ROMANISTS AND THE STATE IN EARLY MODERN ENGLAND". Past & Present. 153 (1): 64–107. doi:10.1093/past/153.1.64. ISSN 0031-2746.

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