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St Andrew




A Galilean fisherman, an apostle, Christ’s first disciple and brother of St Peter, is all that is known about Andrew.  According to The Golden Legend he travelled extensively as a missionary preaching, converting and healing and often dealing with apparently bizarre situations, though more mundane explanations for some of his adventures seem likely. Amongst other exploits he delivered the inhabitants of Nicaea from demons who plagued them in the shape of dogs and rescued a bishop from the devil disguised as a courtesan.  He cured a governor’s wife of an illness and she consequently converted to Christianity, denying her pagan husband his marital rights on Andrew’s advice.  The governor retaliated by throwing Andrew into prison, tying him to a cross and crucifying him upside down.  One account of his life records that his relics were taken to the town of St Andrews in Scotland.


In art his chief attribute is a cross saltire and sometimes a length of rope to signify that he was bound, not nailed, to a cross.


He is the patron saint of Greece and Scotland.

On the figure illustrated, the carver has used the natural medullary rays in the oak to form the pupils of the eye.