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Ireland's Saint: The Essential Biography of St. Patrick

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Discover how a boy became devoted to the people who enslaved him, returned to their shores, and changed Ireland forever... He was taken from his home in England and dragged across the sea to Ireland. When he escaped, he traveled on the European continent, lived for a while as a monk, and then returned as a missionary to the people who had enslaved him. Many legends surround Discover how a boy became devoted to the people who enslaved him, returned to their shores, and changed Ireland forever... He was taken from his home in England and dragged across the sea to Ireland. When he escaped, he traveled on the European continent, lived for a while as a monk, and then returned as a missionary to the people who had enslaved him. Many legends surround the life of St. Patrick. He competed with Druids and negotiated with tribal leaders. He traveled all over the emerald isle bringing both Christianity and the Roman Empire to its shores. J. B. Bury, the first modern biographer of St. Patrick, sought to find the man beneath the layers of myth and legend. Explore Patrick’s place in history, the influence of earlier Christians on Patrick’s work, the political and social conditions in the Roman Empire at that time, and much more. This new edition of Bury’s classic biography has been re-edited, introduced by Jon M. Sweeney, and includes sidebar notes from other biographers, mystics, historians, and storytellers of Ireland. Praise for Jon M. Sweeney’s biography of St. Francis of Assisi: “There is no sounder introduction to Francis’ life.” – Catholic News Service “This new and updated edition…is nothing short of astonishing in its power to touch the heart and revive the soul.” –St. Anthony Messenger “Sweeney achieves a fine balance between excellent scholarship and sweet accessibility for every average reader.” –Walter Wangerin, Jr.


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Discover how a boy became devoted to the people who enslaved him, returned to their shores, and changed Ireland forever... He was taken from his home in England and dragged across the sea to Ireland. When he escaped, he traveled on the European continent, lived for a while as a monk, and then returned as a missionary to the people who had enslaved him. Many legends surround Discover how a boy became devoted to the people who enslaved him, returned to their shores, and changed Ireland forever... He was taken from his home in England and dragged across the sea to Ireland. When he escaped, he traveled on the European continent, lived for a while as a monk, and then returned as a missionary to the people who had enslaved him. Many legends surround the life of St. Patrick. He competed with Druids and negotiated with tribal leaders. He traveled all over the emerald isle bringing both Christianity and the Roman Empire to its shores. J. B. Bury, the first modern biographer of St. Patrick, sought to find the man beneath the layers of myth and legend. Explore Patrick’s place in history, the influence of earlier Christians on Patrick’s work, the political and social conditions in the Roman Empire at that time, and much more. This new edition of Bury’s classic biography has been re-edited, introduced by Jon M. Sweeney, and includes sidebar notes from other biographers, mystics, historians, and storytellers of Ireland. Praise for Jon M. Sweeney’s biography of St. Francis of Assisi: “There is no sounder introduction to Francis’ life.” – Catholic News Service “This new and updated edition…is nothing short of astonishing in its power to touch the heart and revive the soul.” –St. Anthony Messenger “Sweeney achieves a fine balance between excellent scholarship and sweet accessibility for every average reader.” –Walter Wangerin, Jr.

30 review for Ireland's Saint: The Essential Biography of St. Patrick

  1. 5 out of 5

    Doug Schreiber

    Bury's early 20th century biograhy of the 5th century saint does a good job of telling the saints story while teaching history of the Church, Ireland and the Roman Empire. All of which are relevant to St Patrick's story. Much of the knowledge of the saint is "Myth" and "Legend." Bury does a good job of analyzing the myth and legent to seek the truth and tell the story of one of the greatest evangelist the church has known. THe book is annotated by Jon Sweeney. His insight helps get a victorian e Bury's early 20th century biograhy of the 5th century saint does a good job of telling the saints story while teaching history of the Church, Ireland and the Roman Empire. All of which are relevant to St Patrick's story. Much of the knowledge of the saint is "Myth" and "Legend." Bury does a good job of analyzing the myth and legent to seek the truth and tell the story of one of the greatest evangelist the church has known. THe book is annotated by Jon Sweeney. His insight helps get a victorian era publication up to today and adds great understanding.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Deacon Tom F

    Very Interesting Biography I thoroughly enjoyed this biography of the life of Saint Patrick. It had wonderful stories as you might expect but it was also well documented and footnoted like any good academic undertaking you should be.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sonya

    This is a revised older work. What we know about Patrick would fill one page of this 200 page book. It tells more of the time and legends associated with Patrick (with a lot of speculation) but would be interesting for those who would want to know about what Ireland was like before Christianity. I would have appreciated a map of Ireland (the work does include two small area maps but don't show you how they fit into the broader area) and the dates for when St. Patrick supposedly lived are hard to This is a revised older work. What we know about Patrick would fill one page of this 200 page book. It tells more of the time and legends associated with Patrick (with a lot of speculation) but would be interesting for those who would want to know about what Ireland was like before Christianity. I would have appreciated a map of Ireland (the work does include two small area maps but don't show you how they fit into the broader area) and the dates for when St. Patrick supposedly lived are hard to find. The notes added by the editor are frequent but are included on the page next to the text it refers to. This is sometimes good but perhaps would have been better as footnotes or endnotes.

  4. 5 out of 5

    James

    This is is one of my nerdy religious reads. I read this book on St. Patrick on St. Patrick's Day because it was St. Patrick's day. Yep. I am that guy. In past years, I read the confessions of St. Patrick to redeem the day (because it is about more than just green beer). J.B. Bury's text is over a hundred years old, but this edition combines his text with Jon Sweeney's editorial notes. Bury was a sympathetic-critical reader of the St. Patrick traditions but more work has been done since his origi This is is one of my nerdy religious reads. I read this book on St. Patrick on St. Patrick's Day because it was St. Patrick's day. Yep. I am that guy. In past years, I read the confessions of St. Patrick to redeem the day (because it is about more than just green beer). J.B. Bury's text is over a hundred years old, but this edition combines his text with Jon Sweeney's editorial notes. Bury was a sympathetic-critical reader of the St. Patrick traditions but more work has been done since his original publications. Sweeney helps fill in the gaps. I am not an expert on Patrick and haven't read all the literature on his life (or what we know and suspect about his life) but this text enriched my understanding of this great saint's legacy.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Fredrick Danysh

    Originally published at the beginning of the twentieth century during a period of severe anti-Catholicism, the original Protestant author attacks the legends and beliefs regarding St. Patrick of Ireland. The editor attempts to glorify Burry and justify his history.

  6. 4 out of 5

    John Hanscom

    An annotated update to an earlier work, and well worth reading.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Drew

    Important book from a research or history standpoint. It would have been more interesting if it had included good maps of Ireland so that you could track where Patrick was.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Shalon

    Its so difficult to read a book on St. Patrick because so much is unknown and/or legend. I did learn a lot, though, and am happy to have read it.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Erin

  10. 4 out of 5

    Ryan Francis

  11. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    Very good book about the man who brought Christiantiy to Ireland.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Matt Pitts

  13. 5 out of 5

    Cheyenne Lehto

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kenneth

  15. 4 out of 5

    Kimberly Barker-Brugman

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jen

  17. 4 out of 5

    Bob

  18. 4 out of 5

    Roderick Mackin

  19. 4 out of 5

    Patty

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jon Wiest

  21. 4 out of 5

    The Rudie Librarian (Brian)

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jinx:The:Poet {the Literary Masochist, Ink Ninja & Word Roamer}

  23. 4 out of 5

    Nancy

  24. 4 out of 5

    Libby

  25. 4 out of 5

    Carol B Brown

  26. 5 out of 5

    Ross

  27. 5 out of 5

    Holly

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jack

  29. 5 out of 5

    Ozymandias

  30. 5 out of 5

    Bill B

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