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Sunday, 20 September 2020

1400th Anniversary of the death of St Kevin

1,400th Anniversary of the death of Saint Kevin


On May 31, 2018 An Post has commissioned a stamp to commemorate the 1,400th Anniversary of the death of Saint Kevin.

An Post commissioned Vermillion Design to create a stamp in honour of this important Irish saint. The stamp features a woodcarving by renowned artist Imogen Stuart, showing Saint Kevin with Glendalough monastery in the background.

Saint Kevin is among the most revered saints in Ireland, particularly in his native county of Wicklow, on the east coast, just south of Dublin. He is best known for founding Glendalough (‘glen of the two lakes’) monastery in the sixth century – one of the most popular tourist attractions in Ireland today. Glendalough is an area of rich history, abundant wildlife, spectacular scenery and archaeology. 

Born in AD 498 into a noble family in west Wicklow, Kevin studied for the priesthood in Cill na Manach (Kilnamanagh). He moved to Glendalough to be closer to God in solitude and prayer. Kevin chose to live by the shore of the upper lake in a cave that was originally a Bronze Age tomb. This cave became known as Saint Kevin’s Bed and can be seen today from the opposite shore of the upper lake.

Saint Kevin’s Day is celebrated on June 3rd every year. The remains of his monastery include the round tower (a feature unique to Irish monasticism), which stands 30 metres high and has been completely preserved. This round tower has become synonymous with Glendalough