Sigismund of Burgundy

From Academic Kids

Sigismund (died 523) was king of the Burgundians from 516 to his death. He was the son of king Gundobad.

Sigismund was a student of bishop Saint Avitus of Vienne, the Catholic bishop of Vienne who converted Sigismund from the Arian faith of his Burgundian forebears. Sigismund was inspired to found a monastery dedicated to Saint Maurice at Agaune in Valais in 515. The following year he became king of the Burgundians.

The 6th century, Christian or not, was a violent age: when his son opposed him in 517, and insulted his new wife, Sigismund had him strangled. Then, overcome with remorse, Sigismund retreated to the monastery that he had founded.

In 523, he led the Burgundians against the invading Franks. Though he put on a monk's habit and hid in a cell near his abbey, he was captured, taken to Orléans and put to death. Afterwards, he was honoured by the Burgundians as a martyr. His bones were recovered from the well at Columelle where his body had been thrown, and a shrine developed near Agaune. Eventually Sigismund was canonized.

Correspondence has survived between Avitus, who was a poet and one of the last masters of the classical arts, and Sigismund.

In the 14th century, Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor, transferred Sigismund's relics to Prague, hence he has become a patron saint of the Czech Republic.sv:Sigismund av Burgund

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