Butler’s Lives of the Saints – Saint Keyna, Virgin


Braghan, prince of part of Wales, who has left his name to Brecknockshire, was happy in an offspring of saints. The most famous were Saint Canoc, who founded many monasteries in Ireland; and Saint Keyna, surnamed by the Welch, The Virgin, who lived a recluse in a wood in Somersetshire, at a distance from her own country, near the town of Cainsham, which seems so called from her, and stands on the Avon not far from Bristol. Spiral stones in the figure of serpents have been found in that country, which some of the people pretend to have been serpents turned into stones by her prayers. They seem either petrifactions or sports of nature in uncommon crystallizations in a mineral soil. Saint Keyna is said to have died in her own country in the fifth or sixth century. Many places in Wales are filled with monuments of the great veneration which was formerly paid to this saint. See her Acts in Capgrave, Alford, etc.

MLA Citation

  • Father Alban Butler. “Saint Keyna, Virgin”. Lives of the Fathers, Martyrs, and Principal Saints, 1866. CatholicSaints.Info. 27 August 2014. Web. 19 January 2019. <>