St. Wenceslaus, the Duke and Martyr of Bohemia, the Prince of the Czechs (+September 28, 935)
Commemorated on September 28
St. Wenceslaus was a grandson of the Holy Martyr and Princess St. Ludmilla (September 16), and he was raised by her in deep piety. After the death of his father, Prince Bratislav (+920), he began to rule at age eighteen.
In spite of his youthful age, St. Wenceslaus ruled wisely and justly and concerned himself much about the Christian enlightenment of the people. He was a widely educated man, and he studied in the Latin and Greek languages.
St. Wenceslaus was peace-loving. He built and embellished churches, and he had respect for the clergy. Envious nobles decided to murder St. Wencelslaus and, at first, to incite his mother against him, and later to urge his younger brother, Boleslav, to occupy the princely throne.
Boleslav invited his brother to the dedication of a church, and then asked him to stay another day. In spite of the warnings of his servants, St. Wenceslaus refused to believe in a conspiracy. On the following day, September 28, 935, when St. Wenceslaus went to Matins, he was murdered at the doors of the church by his own brother and his brother’s servants. His body was stabbed and discarded without burial.
The mother, hearing of the murder of her son, found and placed his body in a recently consecrated church at the princely court. They were not able to wash off the blood splashed on the church doors, but after three days it disappeared by itself.
Alternative spellings: Vatslav or, Vyacheslav, Svatý Václav
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