ST. ARBOGASTUS, BISHOP OF STRASBURG, C.
THE Irish challenge this saint as a native of
their island. The Scots also lay claim to him, and are supported by
Richer’s Chronicle of Sens, written in the thirteenth century,
and by the life of St. Florentius, his successor, though his acts say
he was of a noble family in Aquitain. Travelling into Alsace he led
an anachoretical life in the Sacred Forest (for this is the
interpretation of the Teutonic name Heiligesforst), about the year
630. He was often called to the court of king Dagobert II., and by
his interest promoted to the episcopal see of Strasburg. His acts
relate, that not long after his exaltation he raised to life
Dagobert’s son, killed by a fail from a horse; these acts call
this prince Sigebert; his name is not recorded by the historians.
Many other miracles are ascribed to this saint; who, assisted by the
liberality of this king, enriched the Church of Strasburg with
several large estates. King Dagobert bestowed on it, for his sake,
the manor and town of Rufach, with an extensive country situated on
both sides the river Alse or Elle, together with the old royal palace
of Isenburg, residing himself at Kirchem near Molsheim. St.
Arbogastus also founded, or at least endowed, several monasteries,
the principal among which were Surburg and Shutteran: some say also
Ebersheimunster; but the chief founder of this last was duke Athico,
the father of St. Odilia, by the direction of St. Deodatus, bishop of
Nevers. St. Arbogastus died, according to Bosch the Bollandist, in
678, the year before Dagobert offered the bishopric of Strasburg to
St. Wilfrid, who was then on his journey to Rome. Upon his declining
that dignity, it was conferred on St. Florentius. All writers on St.
Arbogastus’s life mention that, in his last will, he ordered
his body should be interred on the mountain which wag the
burial-place of malefactors. His will was complied with; but the
church of St. Michael was afterward built upon the spot, and
surrounded by a village called Strateburg. Near it was founded the
abbey of St. Arbogastus, to which his body was translated with honor
by his successor St. Florentius. See the life of St. Arbogastus which
seems to have been written in the tenth age, published with remarks
by F. Bosch, t. 5, Julij, p. 168.