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Rev. Alban Butler (1711–73). Volume XI: November. The Lives of the Saints. 1866.

November 12

St. Livin, Bishop and Martyr

THIS saint was a learned and zealous Irish bishop, who went over into Flanders to preach the faith to the idolaters. To enter upon that work by dedicating himself a holocaust to God, he spent thirty days in prayer at the tomb of St. Bavo, at Ghent, and offered there every day the holy sacrifice. After this solemn consecration of himself to his Redeemer, he began to announce the word of life, and converted many about the country of Alost and Hautem. Having cultivated the study of poetry in his youth, he composed an elegy on St. Bavo, who died only six years before him. 1 St. Livin was massacred by the pagans, at Esche, in the year 633, according to Colgan, who mentions him to have been bishop of Dublin before he went to the mission of Flanders. His death is placed by others in 656. He was buried at Hautem, three miles from Ghent; and his relics were translated to the great monastery of St. Peter’s at Ghent, in 1006. In a shrine by that of St. Livin are preserved the relics of St. Craphaildes, a lady in whose house St. Livin was martyred. She was murdered by the same barbarians, for lamenting his death, and her infant son Brictius, whom St. Livin had lately baptized. The infant martyr’s bones are kept in the same shrine with those of St. Livin. St. Brictius is commemorated in a collect with other saints of this monastery. Usher 2 and Mabillon have also published a letter of St. Livin, whose name occurs in the Roman Martyrology on this day. See his life written by one Boniface in the same age, in Mabillon, Sæc. 2, Ben. p. 251; Cointe, Annal. Fr. ad an. 651; Fleury, l. 38, n. 58; Miræus, in Fastis Belg. Sanders, Rerum Gandav. l. 4, p. 342; and Colgan, Trias Thaum. p. 112, n. 69.  1
Note 1. This elegy it published by Usher, and Mabill. Sæc. 2 Ben. p. 461, and read in the old office of St. Bavo, at Ghent, published by Gerard Salenson. [back]
Note 2. Hybern. Epist. Sylloge, p. 19. [back]