Happy All Saints' Day... Did you know that All Saints' Day used to be celebrated on May 13th?

This video comes from New Jersey's Pat and Mary, a married couple who 'love history'. The dancing brain at the start of their videos shows that they do not take themselves so seriously as to be insufferable. And there is quite a lot of details - and humour - in such a tiny video.


  1. Up to a point, Lord Copper. In researching this question I was told that the connection with the Pantheon, and 13th May, is a bit more tenuous than some of the old commentators suggest. In fact what I got from one scholar was a veritable 'information overload'!

    '13 May was the Dedication of the Pantheon to St Mary and all martyrs (not all saints) by Boniface IV (608-615), presumably in 613 when it was a Sunday; the annual commemoration of the event was always held on a Sunday. Then there is a cluster of references to All Saints on 1 November, all from around 800 – there is no evidence for Gregory III having been involved with the feast 60 years earlier, except that he set up a chapel in St Peter's – dedicated 12 April 732 - for relics of the apostles and “all” holy martyrs and confessors. There is some evidence that Gregory IV (827-844) advised Louis the Pious to institute a feast of All Saints on 1 November in his empire, which he did – but the source is Ado of Vienne who is fairly unreliable. Even so, the feast begins to appear in some liturgical books during the 9th century. Varius other dates are found – 20 April in a 10th century Winchester calendar and occasionally elsewhere. In the Greek Church, it's the 1st Sunday after Pentecost, as already in the time of St John Chrysostom – and in two 7th/8th century Roman lectionaries from Germany.'


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