St. Patrick of Ireland (387-461). St. Patrick, (flourished 5th century, Britain and Ireland; feast day March 17), patron saint and national apostle of Ireland, credited with bringing Christianity to Ireland and probably responsible in part for the Christianization of the Picts and Anglo-Saxons. He is known only from two short works, the Confessio, a spiritual autobiography, and his Letter to Coroticus, a denunciation of British mistreatment of Irish Christians. St. Patrick was born in Britain of a Romanized family. At age 16 he was kidnapped by Irish raiders and carried into slavery in Ireland. After six years in servitude, he had a dream of his escape and fled his master. Surviving a harrowing journey back to Britain, he was eventually reunited with his family. There are many legends associated with the life of St. Patrick. According to one, he miraculously drove all the snakes of Ireland into the sea. He is said to have used the three leaflets of the shamrock to explain the concept of the Holy Trinity. He reportedly raised as many as 33 people from the dead.