St Piran’s Day: Top 10 facts about the patron saint of Cornwall

1. March 5 is also the Feast Day of the Irish saint Ciarán of Saigir. Some say these two saints were in fact the same person.

2. St Piran is thought to have lived around the 4th or 5th century AD.

3. The earliest biography of St Piran was written in the 14th century, probably at Exeter Cathedral. It has much in common with the life of St Ciarán.

4. According to legend, he was born in Ireland but tied to a millstone and thrown into the sea.

5. The stormy sea then became calm and St Piran drifted comfortably over to Cornwall.

6. When he landed he is said to have been worshipped by a fox, a badger and a bear.

7. He is said to have rediscovered the ancient art of tin-smelting, which is why he is also patron saint of tin miners.

8. St Piran’s flag is a white cross on a black background.

9. Mount St Piran in Alberta, Canada is named after him because a Cornishman owned a lodge nearby at which early mountaineers stayed.

10. St Piran’s Crab was named after him after being discovered in 2016 in Cornwall.