Prince Saint Wenceslas BOHEMIA, I
- Born: Abt 899-907, Stochov, Prague, Bohemia
- Died: 28 Sep 929-936, Stara Boleslav, , Bohemia
Other names for Saint were Vaclav (Czech), Wenceslaus, BOHEMIA Prince, BOHEMIA Duke, CZECH Patron Saint and WENCESLAS Saint.
Ancestral File Number: 8BG3-HD.
Prince/Duke of BOHEMIA Abt 921-936, Martyr/Patron Saint of CZECHS Feast Day
Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1981, Micropaedia, Vol X, p614, Wenceslas Saint: "Also Wenceslaus, Czech Vaclav, Born Abt 907 Stochov Near Prague, Died Abt 936 Stara Boleslav, Prince/Duke of Bohemia, martyr, and patron saint of the Czechs. He was raised a Christian by his grandmotherSt Ludmila, who acted as regent when he became ruler of Bohemia Abt 921. His ambitious mother, Drahomira (Dragomir), a pagan, had Ludmila murdered and acted as regent herself until Wenceslas came of age in 924 or 925. Her court intrigues and the wishes of the people to end the conflicts between Christian and non-Christian factions in Bohemia led Wenceslas to take the reins of government. As duke he was pious, reportedly taking the vow of virginity, and encouraged the work of German missionary priests in the Christianization of Bohemia. His zeal in spreading Christianity exacerbated the hostility of his non-Christian opponents.
"Faced with German invasions in 929, Wenceslas submitted to the German king Henry I the Fowler. His submission provoked some of the nobles to conspire against him, and they prompted his younger brother Boleslav (Boleslaus) to murder him. Waylaid by Boleslav enroute to mass, Wenceslas was killed at the church door. Frightened by the reports of miracles occurring at Wenceslas' tomb, Boleslav had his remains transferred in 932 to St Vitus' Cathedral in Prague, which became a great pilgrimage site during the Middle Ages. Almost from the time of his murder, Wenceslas was regarded as Bohemia's patron saint. His virtues are extolled in the Christmas carol `Good King Wenceslas' (19th century English version from the Czech). Sep 28 is his feast day. F Dvornik's `Life of St Wenceslas' appeared in 1929."
The New ColumbiaEncyclopedia, 1975, p2955, Wenceslaus Saint: "Died 929, Duke of Bohemia. He was reared in the Christian faith by his grandmother, St Ludmilla. He became Duke at an early age, and during his minority his mother, Drahomira, acted as regent. She,like many other Czech nobles, opposed Christianity and persecuted the Christians. She incurred the enmity of the German king, Henry I The Fowler, by aiding the Wends, a Slavic people, against Henry; Henry invaded Bohemia. Wenceslaus, who had then begun to rule, recognized the futility of resistance and negotiated a peace. During his reign Wenceslaus was noted for his piety; he worked vigorously to strengthen Christianity in Bohemia. His religion and his friendly relations with HenryI caused much discontent among the nobles, and he was assassinated by his brotherBoleslav I, who succeeded him. By the beginning of the 11th century, he was already recognized as the patron saint of Bohemia. Vaclav is the Czech form of his name. Feast: Sep 28."
The Story of Civilization, Will Durant, Vol IV, The Age of Faith, BK IV, The Dark Ages, Ch XXV, The Recovery of Europe, Sec V, Border States, p660: "Duke Wenceslas I (928-935) brought prosperity to Bohemia despite this intermittent dependency. He had been given a thoroughly Christian upbringing by his [grand]- mother, St Ludmilla; and he did not cease to be a Christian when he became a ruler. He fed and clothed the poor, protected orphans and widows, gave hospitality to strangers, and bought freedom for slaves. His brother tried to assassinate him as lacking the vices desirable in a king; Wenceslas struck him down with his own hand, and forgave him; but other members of the conspiracy murdered the King on his way to Mass on 25 September 935. The day is annually celebrated as the feast of Wenceslas, Bohemia's tutelary saint."
Ancestral File Ver 4.11 8BG3-HD Vaclav I BOHEMIA Duke Born Abt 899 Praha Praha Died 28 Sep 929.