Saint Christopher
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Basic Information

Saint Christopher, according to legend, was a giant (and/or a cynocephalus) called Reprobus and a great warrior, accounted fearless in battle. Seeking a master appropriate to his own talents, he set out in search of the greatest and most fearless king he could find, in order to serve as his champion. After several adventures, he found himself in the service of a great, but unspecified, King and thought himself well placed until he saw the monarch cross himself one day at the mention of The Devil. Deciding that someone that inspired fear in such a great king must be an even more prestigious master, Reprobus sought out and found someone who claimed to be the Devil himself, and travelled with him until he saw his new master shy away from the cross on a wayside shrine. This showed him that even the devil feared Christ and so Reprobus left his current employment to find this new lord. For a long time he searched in vain, until he came upon a holy hermit who suggested that Christ would come to him if he set about services that pleased him. The hermit first advised prayer and fasting, but Reprobus found these unsuited to his nature and felt that he was not using his talents effectively, so the hermit instead directed him to a dangerous ford on a might river where many travellers were being drowned in their attempts to cross, and suggested that God might be pleased if he helped people to cross. Reprobus found that his size and strength were a great benefit in this work and the job suited him, so he stuck at it until one stormy night he was called upon to carry a small boy across the ford. What might have been a relatively simple job became extremely hard as the boy grew heavier and heavier with every step, so that it was only with great difficulty that he was able to carry his passenger to the other side. Collapsing on the bank, he put the boy ashore and wondered aloud, what manner of boy it was that seemed to weigh as much as the whole world. The boy replied that Reprobus had carried not just the weight of the world, but that of He who made it, and having carried Christ on his back, would now be called Christopher (bearer of Christ).

Christopher then set about as an apostle and found his way to Lycia, where the local Christians were being marytred - he continued to preach and convert people to Christianity and refused to submit to the heathen king, who sent him a variety of bribes, including two prostitutes, whom he instead converted as well. Eventually Christopher was himself martyred by beheading.

The Church of Rome venerates his martyrdom on July 25 and considers him the patron saint of a wide variety of things, including bachelors, transportation workers, travellers and (for some reason) toothache. Medallions bearing his icon are a popular form of amulet amongst Romanists, said to provide protection from dangers during travel and, in terms of art and statuary, he is one of the most widely depicted Saints, only regularly exceeded by Mary the mother of Jesus. He is normally not depicted with a dog's head, but as a giant with a boy on one shoulder and a staff in his hand.


1. full source reference

Game and Story Use

  • Clearly something of an enigmatic minion given his quest for the most powerful and fearless master.
  • Probably something of a shock to anyone who had encountered Reprobus, the King's enforcer or Reprobus the Devil's henchman, to meet Christopher, apostle of Christ, about his preaching.
  • Theurgically, Christopher might well be invoked against any mishaps during a voyage - especially, we would presume, during river crossings. Given his history he might also provide special assistance when fighting bandits.
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