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Cross of St. Martin / Iona

10K Cross of St. Martin / Iona


Availability: In stock

10K Cross of St. Martin / Iona is available for purchase in increments of 1
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Quick Overview

This featured High Cross, is a miniature work of art and is an authentic copy, back and front, of the east and west side of the original cross found in it's particular area of the country.

Our Celtic crosses are handcrafted in our workshop by our master Goldsmiths, who take great care in reproducing the detail and originality of these ancient monuments.


Iona is a small island off the Isle of Mull in western Scotland. It has been a ‘holy isle’ since time immemorial. One of its early Gaelic names was ‘Isle of the Druids’. St. Columba (Columkille) went to Iona in 563 and founded a settlement in the Celtic style, where monks living in separate cells, coming together for meals and community prayer. They travelled from Iona to mainland Scotland, to preach the Gospel and establish other settlements. Columba returned to Ireland in 575 to defend the poets of Ireland at the Council of Drumcaet. When in Ireland he visited some of his earlier settlements and founded the monastic settlement at Drumcliffe. He then returned to his ‘home’ in Iona, and died there in 597. Iona continued to grow and flourish. During the 7th Century it had the largest library in Europe and up to 300 Celtic Crosses. Repeated Viking invasions led to the destruction of the library and almost all the crosses - there are now only three remaining. The most famous of the three is the cross dedicated to St. Martin of Tours, which was probably carved at the end of the 8th Century. Martin lived in France in the last years of the 4th Century. He was a Roman soldier who became a Christian but remained in the army to complete his appointed term. There is a famous El Greco painting of St. Martin sharing his Roman cloak with a beggar. At some point in his life he read about St. Antony of Egypt who had left city life to live as a hermit in the desert. This appealed to Martin and when he left the army he set up a hermitage near Poitiers in France. Each monk/hermit had his own cell. They all met for meals and communal prayers and were bound in obedience to the head of the settlement. When Martin was appointed Bishop of Tours he moved his fellow hermits to a settlement outside Tours and continued to live among them. No one knows how a cross on Iona in Scotland, an island that had such close and continuing connection with the Columbian monasteries in Ireland, came to be dedicated to this French saint. Irish monks were familiar with the ‘desert fathers’ St. Antony and St. Paul and perhaps it was the fact that St. Martin also turned his back on life’s comforts to live a life of contemplation and prayer that drew them to celebrate him.

Jewelry featured on our website is manufactured in Ireland by hand and assayed and hallmarked by the Assay Office at Dublin Castle. You can be assured of a stunning, quality product which will be admired by all!

Additional Information

SKU XP60-10
Custom tab N/A
Dimensions 4.4 cm x 1.1 cm
Manufacturer No

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