Butler’s Lives of the Saints – Saint Alcmund, Martyr


He was son of Eldred, and brother of Osred, kings of the Northumbrians. During his temporal prosperity, the greater he was in power so much the more meek and humble was he in his heart, and so much the more affable to others. He was poor amidst riches, because he knew no greater pleasure than to strip himself for the relief of the distressed. Being driven from his kingdom, together with his father, by rebellious subjects, in league with Danish plunderers, he lived among the Picts above twenty years in banishment; learning more heartily to despise earthly vanities, and making it his whole study to serve the King of kings. His subjects groaning under the yoke of an insupportable tyranny, took up arms against their oppressors, and induced the royal prince, upon motives of compassion for their distress and a holy zeal for religion, to put himself at their head. Several battles were prosperously fought; but at length the pious prince was murdered by the contrivance of King Eardulf, the usurper, as Matthew of Westminister, Simeon of Durham, and Florence of Worcester say. Dr. Brown Willis, in his Notitia of parliamentary boroughs, writes, with some ancients, that he was slain by the Danes, about the year 819. His body was interred at Lilleshult, in Shropshire: but afterwards translated to Derby, where he was honoured with great devotion as patron of the town, on the 19th of March. An old manuscript sermon preached in his church at Derby, about the year 1140, extant in a manuscript collection of sermons of that age in my hands, folio 138, gives a particular history of this translation of his relics to Derby, where his church became famous for miracles, and for the resort of pilgrims.

MLA Citation

  • Father Alban Butler. “Saint Alcmund, Martyr”. Lives of the Fathers, Martyrs, and Principal Saints, 1866. CatholicSaints.Info. 18 March 2013. Web. 27 September 2021. <>