A quick guide to Saint Andrew

The patron saint of Scotland, not much is known about the early life of Andrew.

Andrew was a Galilean fisherman before he and his brother Simon Peter became disciples of Jesus Christ. Patras in Achaea, Greece claims to be the place where the saint was martyred on the cross.

Andrew claimed himself to be unworthy to be crucified on a cross in the same manner as Jesus, so instead insisted to be crucified on an “x” shapped cross, which is why the Scottish flag is a cross.

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The original flag was a silver cross on a blue background, not white.

His original remains that stayed in Greece for hundereds of years were later moved to Constantinople and then, in the 13th century, to Amalfi in southern Italy where they are kept to this day.

Supposedly martyred on November 30, it is now known as St Andrew’s Day in Scotland, and there are two main legends of how the Saint became linked with Scotland.

The first of these is when Andrew was travelling extensively across the world, he came to Scotland and built a church, in Fife - hence the name of the town St. Andrews. This church became a pilgrimage for Christians all over Britain.

The second legend claims that some time in the 4th century, after the death of Andrew, several of his relics - a tooth, a kneecap, arm and finger bones - were brought to Fife by Rule - who was a native of Patras. Although these were supposedly destroyed in the 16th century during the Scottish Reformation.

Although it is unlikely that we will ever know which, if either of these, is true.

It is also said that both William Wallace and King Robert the Bruce made appeals to Saint Andrew in their time of need.

Andrew is also the patron saint of Greece, Russia, Romania, and Barbados.