Dark History

St Mechell Raises Giant from the Dead!

St Mechell Raises Giant from the Dead!
The Spooky Isles staff writers

Spooky Saints


Far from being a giant of a man, yet to this day St Mechell is recorded as the most determined missionary to the dead! JACOB MILNESTEIN reports


Running HareThe 17th century Welsh poem, Cywydd i Fechell Sant records St Mechell as a man so steeped in miraculous doings that he rose a giant from the dead solely with the intention of converting him to Christianity!

Not only was this saint, reputed to have been born in Brittany during the 6th century, capable of resurrecting the defiant dead but he is also accredited with having turned thieves to stone and following a divine hare about a field so as to define the boundaries of what is now the parish of Llanfechell in Anglesey.

Imagine a man so determined to make his point that he not only brought back to life one of the felled giants whose ill repute these lands were once famed for. Imagine this preacher so assured of his faith that he was capable of bringing back from the darkness one of Celtic Christianity’s greatest enemies and then talking the giant around to conversion to the new faith.

Sadly the Cywydd i Fechell Sant does not tell of the giant’s fate or what he saw whilst amongst the dead, but it certainly makes for a good story!

Recorded as a missionary to the peoples living in Wales, little is known of Mechell’s life prior to his arrival in Anglesey. Even the belief that he was a Breton is a construct more of 17th century romance than a historical fact.

There is some suggestion that this man who made it his mission to save the souls of giants was also named Macutus and was the son of the Bishop of St Maloes. In this telling of his life, Macutus perished in a massacre that took place at Stonehenge.

Yet like so many of these stories it is important to take them with a pinch of salt, to enjoy them for the imagery they often excite and the imaginative way in which they underline their message.

The notion of Mechell marching into Wales like some hero of the Wild West intent on ‘cleaning up the town’ with a magic hare and a monastery is an idea so absurd that it can only make you smile.

Yet regardless of the absurdity, modern Llanfechell (the name being a portmanteau of the Welsh word for church, llan, and Mechell’s own name) remains a testament to his achievements.

 


JACOB MILNESTEIN writes stories. His most recent story, “lecteur de tarot” can be found here.


Click to add a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Dark History

More in Dark History

Bram Stoker

Bram Stoker and the Legend of the Bisley Boy

Nia Jones20th January 2015
Florence Marryat

Florence Marryat on Vampires and Mediums

Andrew Garvey30th November 2014
Battle of Killiecrankie

Ghosts of the Battle of Killiecrankie

MJ Steel Collins30th November 2014

Professor Pepper’s Ghost

Andrew Garvey16th November 2014
Big Rachel

Some Glasgow Eccentrics

MJ Steel Collins14th November 2014
Order Zombie Bites from Amazon

Zombie Ireland: A Bite of Superstition

Ann O'Regan14th November 2014
Bloody British History Buckinghamshire

6 gory moments from Britain’s blood-soaked history

The Spooky Isles staff writers12th November 2014
known as Gan Ceann

Ireland’s Headless Horseman – The Dullahan

Ann O'Regan11th November 2014
Robert-Carlyle-in-28-Weeks-Later

Fast versus Slow Zombies

The Spooky Isles staff writers10th November 2014