SSP: On Patrician Chronology

Pursuing Veritas

This post is part of an ongoing series on the Scriptures of Saint Patrick of Ireland.

saint-patrick-2Apart from the general statements about Patrick noted in my previous post, although much has been written concerning the saint’s life, little has been satisfactorily concluded. This is especially true on the two issues which Charles Thomas terms “The Patrick Problem”: chronology and geography.[1] On the question of chronology, T.M. Charles-Edwards writes, “Not a single date can be given to any event of Patrick’s life. Even relative dates are difficult to find.”[2] For historians, of course, such ambiguity cannot stand. Using a variety of reconstructive methods,[3] scholars have come to three basic positions concerning the dates for Patrick’s death: c. 491 CE, the “Duo-Patrician” Theory, and c. 461 CE.

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