Who Was St Piran?
The legend of St Piran stretches far back to the 5th Century. Piran or Peran which is the traditional Cornish pronunciation became a Bishop on his return to Ireland after studying scriptures in Rome. On his return he performed many miracles that endeared the native Irish people but angered the countries Kings. He was subsequently condemned to death and was thrown into the ferocious seas with a millstone tied around his neck. On entering the sea a strange calm fell causing the sea to settle and rather than drown, Piran sailed upon the millstone eventually landing on, ‘Perran’ beach in Cornwall.
One evening Peran lit a fire on a black hearth stone the heat of the fire was such that a white liquid came to the top forming a white cross over the slab. What he had in fact done was set a fire on top of a slab of tin bearing ore and un-knowingly triggered a process known as smelting. Two things occurred this night the first being that Peran became known as the first person to discover tin and secondly the process became the inspiration for the ‘StPiran’ flag.
St Piran remained in Cornwall for the rest of his life as the Patron Saint of tin miners. It is believed that he lived to be 200 years old!
On March 5th St Pirans day will be celebrated in a variety of ways all over Cornwall. For the second year The Cornish Language Fellowship – ‘Kowethas an Yeth Kernewek’, will be organising the celebrations here in Falmouth.
Local school children will dance from The Moor at 10am, up the High Street, down to the Prince of Wales Pier and back to The Moor ending at the Methodist Church. Once back at the church the children will provide entertainment with a Cornish theme.
Further information can be obtained from organiser Vicki Ferguson – firstname.lastname@example.org