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Little Saint Hugh of Lincoln
Birth: 1246
Death: Aug., 1255

Folk Figure. Said to have been born in Lincoln either the illegitimate son of a woman named Beatrice, or a widow's son. He disappeared July 31, 1255 after he had been seen with a group of local children. Searches were conducted but no sign of the boy turned up until almost a month later when his body was discovered in a well serving the house of a Jew variously called Copin, Jopin, or Joscefin. In an atmosphere of anti- semitism, Canon de Lexington of Lincoln Cathedral spread the rumor that the Jews habitually ritually murdered Christian children; Hugh was therefore given a burial in the cathedral with the honors of a martyr despite a complete lack of evidence to support the claim. Ninety-three Jews were arrested and Canon de Lexington forced a so-called confession to his pet theory from Copin under torture. Copin and 18 of his fellow prisoners were executed. The others ransomed their freedom, paying hefty fines, in an age when it was a fairly common practice to level accusations at Jews in order to extort money from them. No effort appears to have been made to discover whether anyone else might have murdered the boy, or whether his was a death by misadventure, which is by far the most likely case. French, Scottish, and English ballads of the day all made reference to the story; Chaucer refers to it at the beginning of his "Prioress' Tale." Although revered as a martyr for generations to follow, and called 'Little Saint Hugh' he was never canonized and was never a part of the official Catholic calender of saints. He must not be confused with the twelfth-century bishop of Lincoln, St. Hugh, who was adamantly opposed to anti-Semitism. The shrine built above the boy's tomb did not survive the reformation at which time it was demolished. In 1955, the Anglican Church placed a plaque by the remains of the Little St. Hugh shrine: "Trumped up stories of 'ritual murders' of Christian boys by Jewish communities were common throughout Europe during the Middle Ages and even much later. These fictions cost many innocent Jews their lives. Lincoln had its own legend and the alleged victim was buried in the Cathedral in the year 1255. Such stories do not redound to the credit of Christendom, and so we pray: Lord, forgive what we have been, amend what we are, and direct what we shall be." (bio by: Iola) 
 
Burial:
Lincoln Cathedral
Lincoln
City of Lincoln
Lincolnshire, England
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: julia&keld
Record added: Oct 28, 2006
Find A Grave Memorial# 16356805
Little Saint Hugh of Lincoln
Added by: julia&keld
 
Little Saint Hugh of Lincoln
Cemetery Photo
Added by: julia&keld
 
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- Mellissa Lake Co. Illinois
 Added: Aug. 9, 2013
You are not forgotten.
- R.S.V.
 Added: Jul. 23, 2013
Rest in peace, my beautiful grandfather-in-Christ. I love you very, very much.
- Pinoy Pride
 Added: Jul. 7, 2013
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