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SAINT ALBAN

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V01, Page 481 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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SAINT
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ALBAN
  , usually styled the protomartyr of Britain, is said to have been born at
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Verulamium (the
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modern St Albans in Hertfordshire) towards the close of the 3rd century, and to have served for seven years in Rome in the army of the emperor Diocletian . On his return to Britain he settled at his native place and was put to
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death as a Christian during the persecution of Diocletian (c . 286-303) . According to tradition, when peace was restored,
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great honours were paid to his tomb . A church was built on the spot, c . 793, by King Offa of
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Mercia . A monastery was subsequently added, and around it the
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present
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town of St Albans gradually grew up . Pope Adrian I.V., who was born in the neighbourhood, conferred on the abbot of St
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Alban's the, right of precedence over his
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fellow abbots, a right hitherto attached to the abbey of
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Glastonbury . St Alban is commemorated in the
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Roman
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martyrology on the 22nd of
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June; but it is impossible to determine with certainty whether he ever existed, as no mention of him occurs till the
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middle of the 6th century . See U . Chevalier, Repertoire
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des
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sources historiques (19os);i, 95; D . Hardy, Descriptive Catalogue, (18¢2), I. i .

3-34, ii . 688 .

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