Saint David of Welsh or Dewi Sant

Saint David (Welsh: Dewi Sant, Latin: Davidus; c. 500 – c. 589) was born near Capel Non (Non’s chapel) on the South-West Wales coast near the present city of Saint David. Dewi is said to have been of royal lineage. His father, Sant, was the son of Ceredig, who was prince of Ceredigion, a region in South-West Wales. His mother, Non, was the daughter of a local chieftain. Legend has it that Non was also a niece of King Arthur. Dewi was educated in a monastery called Hen Fynyw, his teacher being Paulinus, a blind monk. He stayed there for some years before going forth with a party of followers on his missionary travels.

Dewi travelled far on his missionary journeys through Wales, where he established several stdavid3churches. He also travelled to the south and west of England and Cornwall as well as Brittany. It is also possible that he visited Ireland. Two friends of his, Saints Padarn and Teilo, are said to have often accompanied him on his journeys, and they once went together on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem to meet the Patriarch.

Dewi is sometimes known, in Welsh, as ‘Dewi Ddyfrwr’ (David the Water Drinker) and, indeed, water was an important part of his life – he is said to have drunk nothing else. Sometimes, as a self-imposed penance, he would stand up to his neck in a lake of cold water, reciting Scripture.Read More »