St. Vaclav's Day

St. Vaclav's Day

September 28
Also known as St. Wenceslas (c. 907-929), St. Vaclav was a Bohemian prince who became the patron saint of the former Czechoslovakia. He was raised a Christian and eventually took over the government, encouraging the work of German missionaries who were trying to Christianize Bohemia. His zeal antagonized his non-Christian opponents, his brother among them, and he was eventually murdered by his brother or his brother's supporters. A few years later, his remains were transferred to the Church of St. Vitus in Prague, which became a popular pilgrimage site in the medieval period.
St. Vaclav's Day is a holiday throughout the Czech Republic. The virtues of "Good King Wenceslas" have been memorialized by the popular 19th-century Christmas carol of that name, though it rests on no historical basis.
SOURCES:
AnnivHol-2000, p. 161
BkFest-1937, p. 90
DictWrldRel-1989, p. 803
EncyChristmas-2003, p. 808
OxYear-1999, p. 391
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