Brigid was probably born at Faughart near Dundalk, Louth, Ireland.
Her parents were baptized by St. Patrick, with whom she developed a close friendship.
According to legend, her father was Dubhthach, an Irish chieftain of Lienster, and her mother, Brocca, was a slave at his court.
as a young girl she evinced an interest for a religious life and took
the veil in her youth from St. Macaille at Croghan and probably was
professed by St. Mel of Armagh, who is believed to have conferred
abbatial authority on her.
She settled with seven of her virgins
at the foot of Croghan Hill for a time and about the year 468, followed
Mel to Meath.
About the year 470 she founded a double monastery at
Cill-Dara (Kildare) and was Abbess of the convent, the first in Ireland.
The foundation developed into a center of learning and spirituality,
and around it grew up the Cathedral city of Kildare.
She founded a
school of art at Kildare and its illuminated manuscripts became famous,
notably the Book of Kildare, which was praised as one of the finest of
all illuminated Irish manuscripts before its disappearance three
Brigid was one of the most remarkable women of her
times, and despite the numerous legendary, extravagant, and even
fantastic miracles attributed to her, there is no doubt that her
extraordinary spirituality, boundless charity, and compassion for those
in distress were real. She died at Kildare on February 1.
The Mary of the Gael, she is buried at Downpatrick with St. Columba and St. Patrick, with whom she is the patron of Ireland.
Her name is sometimes Bridget and Bride.
Her feast day is February 1.