Cynehelm

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Saint Kenelm (or Cynehelm) was an Anglo-Saxon saint, venerated throughout medieval England, and mentioned in the Canterbury Tales (the Nun's Priest's Tale, lines 290–301, in which the cock Chaunteecleer tries to demonstrate the reality of prophetic dreams to his wife Pertelote). William of Malmesbury, writing in the 12th century, recounted that "there was no place in England to which more pilgrims travelled than to Winchcombe on Cynehelm's feast day".

In legend, St Cynehelm was a member of the royal family of Mercia, a boy king and martyr, murdered by an ambitious relative despite receiving a prophetic dream warning him of the danger. His body, after being concealed, was discovered by miraculous intervention, and transported by the Monks of Winchcombe to a major shrine. There it remained for several hundred years. The two locales most closely linked to this legend are the Clent Hills, south of Birmingham, England, identified as the scene of his murder, and the small Gloucestershire town of Winchcombe, near Cheltenham, where his body was interred. The small church of St Cynehelm, dating from the 15th century in a village called Kenelstowe, now stands with a handful of houses within the larger village of Romsley in the Clent Hills. For many years, villagers celebrated St Cynehelm's Day (July 17) with a village fair and the ancient custom of "crabbing the parson" - bombarding the unfortunate cleric with a volley of crab apples.

The Legend of St......


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