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Eithene, Saint

Sixth-century virgin, visionary

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Errata* for Eithene, Saint:
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* Published by Encyclopedia Press, 1913.


Eithene, Saint, styled "daughter of Baite", with her sister Sodelbia, are commemorated in the Irish calendars under March 20. They were daughters of Aidh, son of Caibre, King of Leinster, who flourished about the middle of the sixth century. The designation "daughters of Baite" usually coupled with their names would seem not to refer to any title of their father, but might be more correctly interpreted as the "children of Divine or ardent love". This interpretation is further strengthened by an account of a vision, accorded the two virgins, in which it is related that Christ in the form of an infant rested in their arms. In one of the legends contained in the "Acts" of St. Moling, Bishop of Ferns, it is told that Eithene and her sister were visited by this venerable saint. The abode of St. Eithene, called Tech-Ingen-Baithe, or the "House of the daughters of Baite" lay near Swords, in the present Barony of Nethercross, County Dublin. This saint is also venerated at Killnais, the former name of a townland in the same locality.

J. B. CULLEN


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