Dominic de la Calzada, Priest - Died 1039
A "calzada" is a path or roadway. In
the 11th century the saint restored a section of the ancient Roman
road near his hermitage in the Rioja region of northern Spain, for
the benefit of pilgrims traveling to Santiago de Compostela.
Because of this work a village grew up around the hermitage and
took his name, Santo Domingo de la Calzada. By the 14th century
the village had become an important town and a legend developed
there regarding a miracle of the saint.
According to this legend, a 14th-century pilgrim family stopped in
the town, and the young man of the family caught the eye of the
innkeeper's daughter. Because he spurned her, she hid some silver
in his pack and later had him arrested for theft and condemned to
death by hanging.
But later the young man appeared to his parents in a dream and
told them to come back to the town for him. He was still alive, he
said in the dream, because while he was on the gallows St. Dominic
de la Calzada had saved him by holding up his feet.
When the family returned to the town they went to the magistrate
to ask for their son. Hearing their story during his dinner, he
scoffed and said the young man was no more alive than the roast
chickens on his table. At that, the chickens revived, grew their
feathers back, and walked around. The parents joyously collected
their son and continued their pilgrimage.
To this day, the church in the town keeps a live hen and rooster
which are said to be descended from the chickens that were revived
at that dinner.
St. Dominic de la Calzada's attributes include, naturally, a hen
and a rooster. He also wears a monastic habit and carries prayer
beads and a shepherd's crook, the saint having been a shepherd
before he chose the religious life.
Feast day: May 12
At left, "Santo
Domingo de la Calzada" - Burgos Cathedral.