Kentigern of Glasgow

Other names

Mungo; Ma-cha


Kentigern, the patron saint of Glasgow, may originate in a British bishop whose death in 612 is recorded in a set of Welsh annals dating in their present form to perhaps the mid 10th century. It has been argued, however, that his cult largely reflects the much later rise in power of the Diocese of Glasgow from the 12th century onwards (Broun 2004, Davies 2009), as is reflected in most of his dedications. These occur in Cumbria and Wales, as well as around Glasgow. A rich store of legends grew up about the saint, many recounted in Jocelin of Furness’s ‘Vita Sancti Kentigerni’ of c 1180, drawn, says Jocelin, from at least two sources. Kentigern is given several conflicting genealogies, and was known by a number of related names: Kentigern (from *cuno tigernos, ‘hound lord’), Mungo (a pet form, containing ‘my’ and a compressed form of the original name), and a Gaelic equivalent, Mo Choe. The last of these names is easily confused with the pet forms of completely unrelated Gaelic names such as Coelán. Thus it is not clear who was the original dedicatee in a place-name such as Kilmaho.



Associated places



Possibly 612, if the Kentigern commemorated as Bishop of Glasgow has his origins in the Contigern who appears in Annales Cambriae: Conthigirni obitus et Dibric episcopi. (Annales Cambriae, appended to a MS of the Historia Brittonum in BL MS Harl. 3859, s.a [612]).


Various. There are two Kentigerns in Achau y Saint (Rees 1853, 265-268): 10 Kyndeyrn m. Kyngar m Garthauc m Keredic m Kuneda Wledic 18 Kyndeyrn m Garthwys m Owen m Urgen a Deny verch Leudun Luydauc o Dinas Eidyn yn y gogled y vam, ‘Cyndeyrn was the son of Garthwys, the son of Owain, the son of Urien; and Deny, the daughter of Llawddyn Llueddawg, of the city of Edinburgh in the north, was his mother’.

Sources for saint


'The Welsh identity of the kingdom of Strathclyde c.900-c.1200'


Broun, D, 2004 'The Welsh identity of the kingdom of Strathclyde c.900-c.1200' in IR vol 55 no 2.


‘Bishop Kentigern among the Britons’


Davies, J R, 2009, ‘Bishop Kentigern among the Britons’ in Boardman et al 2009, 66-90

Related Saints

Belongs to the group Kentigern, Mungo, Mo Choe (ns) (certain)

Related Personal Names


Cyndeyrn (probable)


Kentigern (certain)


Mo Cha (certain)