Oops, no results. Check out what we have on All Shows.

History Unplugged Podcast

with Scott Rank

St. Patrick Didn't Get Rid of Any Snakes, But He Is The Patron Saint of Exterminators

00:00 42:28
More Ways to Listen
However you tune in, don't forget to subscribe so you'll never miss an episode.
Nearly 1,600 years after Patrick arrived on Ireland (first as a slave, then as a missionary who brought Christianity to the island), he is celebrated as the patron saint of the Emerald Isle and apocryphally believed to have eliminated snakes from the island (which he didn't, but the belief makes sense if you replace snakes with pre-Christian paganistic beliefs).

But what exactly are patron saints? Why is a deceased man or woman somebody who receives prayers related to travel, taxes, marriage, and telling a joke? To sort out these questions, we are joined by Michael Foley a three-time guest and a Professor of Patristics in the Great Texts Program at Baylor University in Texas.

But more than tell us about the history of patron saints, Michael includes his stories with mixology, making drinks dedicated to these men and women of the cloth. Michael is author of the new book Drinking with Your Patron Saints: The Sinner’s Guide to Honoring Namesakes and Protectors. Have a problem with the IRS? Pray to St. Matthew and mix up a classic Income Tax cocktail to toast the tax collector apostle. Afraid of a snake in your basement? Imbibe an Irish whiskey and ask St. Patrick for his extermination advice. Wish there were better choices for political candidates? Plead with St. Thomas More, who presides over statesmen, as you sip on cognac to honor his nobility.
March 17, 2020
Share this episode
See all episodes
Meet Your Host
Scott Rank is the host of the History Unplugged Podcast and a PhD in history who specialized in the Ottoman Empire and modern Turkey. Before going down the academic route he worked as a journalist in Istanbul. He has written 12 history books on topics ranging from lost Bronze Age civilizations to the Age of Discovery. Some of his books include The Age of Illumination: Science, Technology, and Reason in the Middle Ages and History’s 9 Most Insane Rulers.. Learn more about him by going to
Home Shows About Us Contact Us How to Listen