24 Facts About St George

1. Pope Gelasius I stated in 494 that St George was among those saints "whose names are justly reverenced among men, but whose actions are known only to God.

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2. St George was apparently martyred there, at the end of the third or the beginning of the fourth century; that is all that can be reasonably surmised about him.

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3. Bishop St George was slain by Gentile Greeks for exacting onerous taxes, especially inheritance taxes.

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4. St George adds that: "the connection of St George with a dragon-slaying legend does not relegate him to the region of the myth".

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5. Tradition tells that a fierce dragon was causing panic at the city of Silene, Libya, at the time St George arrived there.

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6. St George saved the girl by slaying the dragon with a lance.

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7. The king was so grateful that he offered him treasures as a reward for saving his daughter's life, but St George refused it and instead he gave these to the poor.

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8. St George is included in some Muslim texts as a prophetic figure.

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9. St George is described as a rich merchant who opposed erection of Apollo's statue by Mosul's king Dadan.

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10. St George is renowned throughout the Middle East, as both saint and prophet.

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11. St George is very much honoured by the Eastern Orthodox Church, wherein he is referred to as a "Great Martyr", and in Oriental Orthodoxy overall.

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12. The sacred relics of St George were brought to Antioch from Mardin in 900 and were taken to Kerala, India, from Antioch in 1912 by Mar Dionysius of Vattasseril and kept in the Orthodox seminary at Kundara, Kerala.

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13. Exactly 365 Orthodox churches in Georgia are named after St George according to the number of days in a year.

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14. St George is one of the patron saints of the Mediterranean islands of Malta and Gozo.

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15. St George is the protector of the island of Gozo and the patron of Gozo's largest city, Victoria.

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16. The flag of St George was carried by the Portuguese troops and hoisted in the fortresses, during the 15th century.

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17. St George is the unofficial patron saint of the city of Rio de Janeiro and of the city of Sao Jorge dos Ilheus (Saint St George of Ilheus).

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18. Additionally, St George is the patron saint of Scouts and of the Cavalry of the Brazilian Army.

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19. St George is revered in several Afro-Brazilian religions, such as Umbanda, where it is syncretized in the form of Ogum.

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20. St George became the patron saint of the former Kingdom of Aragon and Crown of Aragon when King Pedro I of Aragon won the Battle of Alcoraz in 1096.

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21. Cross of St George, known in Aragon as The Cross of Alcoraz, continues to emblazon the flags of all of Aragon's provinces.

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22. In Valencia, Catalonia, the Balearics, Malta, Sicily and Sardinia, the origins of the veneration of St George go back to their shared history as territories under the Crown of Aragon, thereby sharing the same legend.

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23. Saint St George is the patron saint of Catalonia.

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24. St George is most commonly depicted in early icons, mosaics, and frescos wearing armour contemporary with the depiction, executed in gilding and silver colour, intended to identify him as a Roman soldier.

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