Preserved heart of Dublin's patron saint returned home

Preserved heart of Dublin's patron saint returned home
Copyright  REUTERS
By Emily Commander

The heart, preserved in a wooden box sealed with iron for over eight centuries, has no monetary value, but is a priceless relic for Christ Church Cathedral in Dublin, from where it was stolen six years' ago.

It was an unusual robbery:in 2012 a thief disregarded the valuable artefacts in Dublin's Christ Church Cathedral in favour of a preserved heart, eight centuries old. It belonged to the patron saint of the city, St Laurence O'Toole, and had been stored in a heart-shaped wooden box and enclosed in a metal cage ever since his death in northern France in 1180.

"I'm absolutely delighted to be able to bring [the heart] home to Christ Church."

Patrick Leahy Assistant Police Commissionner, Dublin

The heart was returned home to a packed congregation in celebratory mood. A choir led the singing of the Hymn of Saint Laurence. Dean Dermot Dunne professed himself "thrilled" that the heart was still intact.


A police spokesman declined to comment on reports that the heart was found in Dublin's Phoenix Park and did not say whether or not the thief had been identified.

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