Saint Maughold

A robber chief learns his lesson.

Saint Maughold

Maughold led a band of robbers in the time of St. Patrick. One day, when he heard Patrick would be passing through his neighborhood, Maughold endeavored to play a prank.

Maughold instructed one of his toadies to lay by the side of the road and pretend he was dead. As Patrick approached, Maughold challenged the Apostle of Ireland to bring him back to life, but the saint said, “I dare not,” and kept walking. Maughold, a bit chastened, told his buddy to get back up. But the man who had feigned death was now quite literally deceased. Panic shook Maughold and he chased Patrick down, begging again for help. This time, with a prayer, the fellow was risen.

But what happened next is just as remarkable.

Filthy Maughold asked Patrick how to atone for all this nonsense. Patrick chained him to a canoe, secured the two ends by padlock, and threw the key into the river. He said he could get out when someone found the key, then Patrick gave the boat a kick.

Next day, Maughold had drifted to the Isle of Man, praying fiercely the whole way. On the shore, a fisherman found the key in the belly of a fish he was cooking for the local priest. The priest let Maughold free and offered to teach him, with great success. Upon the priest’s death, many years later, Maughold was elected Bishop of the Isle of Man, and today’s he’s revered as the island’s patron saint.