The History of Leith

May 13, 2011

The Blessed St. Triduana

THE earliest centre of religious life in our Leith district was at Restalrig, where a church or chapel of some kind has existed from very remote times. Legend tells us that among those who came to Scotland with St. Rule, the founder of the first Christian church at St. Andrews, was St. Triduana, who had consecrated herself to the service of God. To avoid the attentions of Nectan, King of the Picts, who ruled from 706 to 732, and who greatly admired the beauty of her eyes, the saint plucked them out and sent them to him skewered on a thorn, after which she was allowed to live unmolested, and spent the rest of her days in devotion and service at Bestalrig, where she is said to have died and been buried.
Her tomb, and holy well adjacent, became the most noted places of pilgrimage in the Lothians, and many reputed miracles were wrought by the beneficent influence of the Blessed St. Triduana, especially on those deprived of sight or who were afflicted with disease of the eyes. Through the offerings of the faithful a chapel is said to have arisen over her grave, a little church, rude and primitive in construction, after the manner of the ancient chapel now uncovered within the foundations of the great Abbey Church of Holyrood.

Source-The Story of Leith

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