This is our Saint Ursula of Cologne Plaque. According to tradition, St. Ursula (Latin for “little she-bear”) was a princess from Britanny who was martyred in 383 A.D. together with her 11,000 virgin-handmaidens (on the ship in this plaque) in Cologne, Germany. This plaque will make a most fitting gift for a birthday, first communion, confirmation, Christmas (“stocking stuffer”!), and the feast day of St. Ursula on October 21st.
A Solid Bronze Wall Plaque in Three Sizes
This solid bronze plaque is available in three sizes: small (p41k – 2 x 1.8 inches), medium (p51m – 4 x 3.25 inches) or large (p345g – 7.9 x 6.3 inches). This plaque is designed to hang with ease on any wall in study, home or office. Conceived and realized by a world-renowned German bronzesmith, this plaque is a wonderful gift for that special “Ursula” or “Uschi” in your life!
Saint Ursula – Martyred by Attila the Hun
According to the legend, Saint Ursula was a princess of Britanny who set sail with her 11,000 virginal handmaidens to join her future husband, the pagan governor Conan Meriadoc of Armorica. Saint Ursula declared that before her marriage she would undertake a pilgrimage throughout the whole of Europe. She first headed for Rome with her followers and persuaded Pope “Cyriacus” (Pope Siricius?) and Sulpicius, bishop of Ravenna, to join them. They all set out for Cologne together, which at the time was besieged by Attila, King of the Huns. The eleven thousand virgins were slaughtered in a massacre. (Today there are 11 black tips of the tails of ermines – because the coat of arms of Brittany was made of ermine fur – on the Coat of Arms of the city of Cologne in remembrance of their martyrdom.) But Attila was overcome by Ursula’s modesty and beauty and begged her forgiveness if only she would marry him. When Ursula refused his marriage “proposal,” Attila killed her with an arrow. (Saint Ursula is depicted on this plaque holding the arrows of her martyrdom.) Saint Hildegard of Bingen composed many chants in honor of Saint Ursula. The religious order of Ursulines, founded in 1535 by Saint Angela Merici, is especially devoted to the education of young girls and has helped to spread Saint Ursula’s name throughout the world. St. Ursula is now the patron saint of students.