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Felix of Burgundy
StFelix
Historical Figure
Nationality: Born in Burgundy, modern France; died in East Anglia, modern England
Date of Birth: Unknown
Date of Death: 8 March 647 or 648
Cause of Death: Apparently natural causes
Religion: Christianity
Occupation: Clergyman
Turtledove Appearances:
Shared Universe Story
"Nine Drowned Churches"
Fantasy Set in OTL
Type of Appearance: Posthumous references
Felix of Burgundy, also known as Felix of Dunwich (died 8 March 647 or 648), was a saint and the first bishop of the East Angles. He is widely credited as the man who introduced Christianity to the kingdom of East Anglia. What little that is known about Felix originates from The Ecclesiastical History of the English People, completed by Bede in about 731, and the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle.

Felix, who originated from the Frankish kingdom of Burgundy, traveled from his homeland to Canterbury before being sent by Honorius to Sigebert of East Anglia's kingdom in about 630, (by sea to Babingley in Norfolk, according to local legend). On arrival in East Anglia, Sigebert gave him a see at Dommoc (possibly Walton, Suffolk or Dunwich in Suffolk). According to Bede, Felix helped Sigebert to establish a school. He died on 8 March 647 or 648, having been bishop for seventeen years. His relics were translated from Dommoc to Soham Abbey and then to the abbey at Ramsey.

After his death, Felix was venerated as a saint: several English churches are dedicated to him. Felix's feast date is 8 March.

Felix in "Nine Drowned Churches"Edit

Through his research into Dunwich, England, musician Alistair learned that St. Felix of Burgundy had restored Christianity in Dunwich in the seventh century, even crowning Sigebert as king of East Anglia. He also learned of the legend that three holy crowns were buried along the coast to ward off invasion, and that one of these crowns is supposed to be Sigebert's.[1] While visiting a museum in Dunwich, Alistair noticed a small crucifix allegedly from the time of St. Felix with strange markings. When he inquired about the markings, the museum's owner, Silas Bishop suggested that they might be octopus tentacles to reference the fact that St. Felix came from the sea. The owner pointed out other exhibits had the tentacle motif.[2]

Later, while viewing the remains of the nine drowned churches in the North Sea, Alistair saw the largest octopus he had ever seen or imagined. Alistair thought he saw a crown atop the octopus's head before it retreated back out of sight.[3]

Literary commentEdit

The tentacle motif associated with St. Felix and the fact that St. Felix "came from the sea" seem to suggest that St. Felix was related to H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu or some similar creature. The crown atop the octopus's head, which is implicitly Sigebert's, seems to bolster this inference.

ReferencesEdit

  1. That is Not Dead, loc 3484, ebook.
  2. Ibid., loc., 3508-3520.
  3. Ibid., 3618-3630.
Religious titles
(OTL)
Preceded by
Office created
Bishop of the East Angles
c. 630-c. 647 or 648
Succeeded by
Thomas

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