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St Ursula and Eleven Thousand Virgins

The London church of St Mary Axe

Famous for one little-unknown fact

It once held the bloodied battleaxe

Used without mercy to poleaxe

Eleven thousand British virgins

Meriadoc, fabled Celtic commander

All conquering, just like the great Alexander

Friend to Maximus, hopeful Roman emperor

Now he needs to cajole and pander

To eleven thousand British virgins

Recreating his beloved British homeland

On France’s western coastal land

Meriadoc’s Armorica, forged by many a manly hand

Desperate to utilise their engorged glands,

On eleven thousand British virgins

Meriadoc called upon his future wife

Sail to him, save him from this manmade strife

Many of his followers in the prime of their lives

Need more to hold than goodly wives.

They need eleven thousand British virgins

Ursula, initially pilgrimaged to Rome

Her excited virgins mutually chaperoned.

Hoping Pope Siricius under his Vatican dome

Would bless and protect the new home

Of eleven thousand British virgins

Alas, the channel winds had fiercely blown

Captured, mistreated, they had not known

how they found themselves in old Cologne.

Merciless barbaric Huns with erotic overtones,

Desired the eleven thousand British virgins.

‘No!’ said the girls ‘That's the one thing we dread’

‘We’re saved for Armoricans,’ they all said

‘We won’t allow you to confiscate our maidenheads’

So the Huns beheaded everyone. The streets ran red,

With the blood of eleven thousand British Virgins.

They singled Ursula as the leader of this quest

Undebased, they led her away, without protest

she wept to God for all her friends, now at rest,

Then shot her fatally between her parian-like breasts

So died eleven thousand and one British virgins.


Llangwyryfon is a small village in Wales

The name translates as the church of the Virgins

And is the only church dedicated to St Ursula

Christopher Columbus named the Virgin Isles

When he sailed past them on St Ursula’s feast day

of October 21st 1493

On October 21st 1520, Ferdinand Magellan named

The Cape of Virgins on the very tip of South America

After St Ursula and the virgins

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