Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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JUSTINIAN , SAINT (‘ Stinan Sant ’) ( fl. 6th cent. ).

The only surviving authority for the legend of S. Justinian is a ‘Life’ summarised in the mid-14th cent , by John of Teignmouth from an original which is now lost. A native of Brittany , S. Justinian left his homeland at the bidding of an angel, and eventually landed on the island of Limeneia , now Ramsey Island , off the coast of Pembrokeshire , near S. Davids . There he remained together with the hermit Honorius and many disciples who came to study under him. Hearing of his fame, S. David sent for him and made him his confessor, and granted him land both on the island and on the mainland. Many miraculous deeds are related of S. Justinian . Finally he was killed by three of his own servants , and a chapel was erected over the spot where he was buried, at Porth Stinan on the mainland. S. David subsequently translated his body to a new tomb in his own church. The church of Llanstinan , near Fishguard , is dedicated to S. Justinian . Both 5 Dec. and 23 Aug. are quoted as his feast-day.


  • The Lives of the British Saints , iii, 339-42;
  • Harstman (ed.), Nova legenda Anglie as collected by John of Tynemouth, John Capgrave, and others, and first printed, with new lives, now re-edited with fresh material from MS and printed sources by C. Horstman (1901) , ii, 93-5;
  • Acta Sanctorum Bollandiana (1643) , xxxviii, 633-6.


Hywel David Emanuel, M.A., (1921-70), Aberystwyth

Published date: 1959