Beatified Ivan

Ivan is a legendary hermit, supposedly the first one in the Czech Lands, and a Czech patron. He lived in the Beroun Region in the second half of the 9th century. It is believed that he was the son of a Croatian prince. He lived in asceticism with a doe that provided milk for him. According to legend, he met Prince Bořivoj and his wife St. Ludmila. After his death (around the year of 882), he was buried in his hermitage in Svatý Jan pod Skalou by Beroun. Soon after, a chapel and later a provostship and Benedictine monastery were built there. Many pilgrims used to go to his grave in the 16th - 18th centuries. He is usually portrayed as a hermit with a long beard and a hood over his head. His attributes are a doe or stag (or only antlers) and a staff. In honor of Beatified Ivan, a group of Czech hermits (Ivanites) was founded in 1725 but ceased to exist in 1782.


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