January 7: St. Canut (father of Valdermar I)

This Danish saint began life as a duke, then become a prince, then a king. We are told that Canut had no truck with his warriors pirating and did not hesitate to order the execution by hanging of said pirates, whether the individuals were of royal blood or not. Nothing whatsoever is said of Canut’s piety, faith in God, or his work on behalf of the poor, but, rather, we are given these two, strangely juxtaposed sentences by Butler:

“Valour, prudence, zeal, and goodness, endeared [Canut] to all. He was slain by conspiracy of the jealous Danes, the 7th of January, 1130, and canonized in 1171.” So maybe not so endeared to everyone was our Canut!

His son, Valdemar I, ascended to the throne of the Danes in 1158, and was instrumental in his father’s canonization during his reign. Now, where Valdemar got his powers of influence from…? Thoughts?

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