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Saint Cybi Bishop

Reposed 554 Remembered November 8

Holyhead was the ‘Holy Island’ of Anglesey. St Cybi came here from Cornwall to spread the Gospel. He made his cell inside the old Roman fort by the sea; the island was later called ‘Island of Cybi’. It is now attached to the mainland. He was a friend of St Seriol, and they shared the task of praying for Anglesey between them – as the icon shows. Holyhead provided a good sailing point for Ireland and elsewhere. Dedications to his name are numerous indicating that he may have carried the Gospel far and wide by boat. (see under Cornwall for St Cubert). His 14C ‘eglyws y bedd’, or ‘shrine church’ can still be seen in the grounds of the church. It was used as a school but has now been restored. Holyhead is a place of pilgrimage.

St Cybi has also a holy well at Llangybi near Criccieth on the Lleyn peninsula. It lies in a little wooded valley behind the church. The well is at the back of the buildings, set within a small chamber which feeds a larger pool in the front. This has a paved walk to make it easy to step down into the water. If the eel who dwells there coils around your legs, it is said a cure will surely follow. Cures there certainly were, and a register was made of them. Many came here from far and wide. The old part of the well house has stood here untouched since the 12C; some say it may be the ruin of an earlier bee-hive cell. In the churchyard there is an ancient carved cross.

St Cubi has a holy well at Duloe in Cornwall.

icon M Struve


Holy well: Llangybi

["Saint", "Wales", "Wa0290", "Cent06", "Bishop", "Shrine", "Well", "Cell", "Cross", "Icon", "Miracles", "Pilgrim"]