, 637-735 a.d. Cannonized in 1899, The Venerable Bede was a monk at the English monastery
of Wearmouth and Jarrow, in Northumbria.
He was the first person to write scholarly works in the English language, although unfortunately only fragments of his English writings have survived. He translated the Gospel of John into Old English, completing the work on the very day of his death. He also wrote extensively in Latin. He wrote commentaries on the Pentateuch and other portions of Holy Scripture.
His best-known work is his History of the English Church and People. It gives a history of Britain up to 729, speaking of the Celtic peoples who were converted to Christianity during the first three centuries of the Christian era, and the invasion of the Anglo-Saxon pagans in the fifth and sixth centuries, and their subsequent conversion by Celtic missionaries from the north and west, and Roman missionaries from the south and east. His work is our chief source for the history of the British Isles during this period.
In addition to his historical writings were his works on chronology and astronomy. He was aware that the Earth is a sphere, and he is the first historian to date events Anno Domini, and the earliest known writer to state that the solar year is not exactly 365 and a quarter days long, so that the Julian calendar (one leap year every four years) requires some adjusting if the months are not to get out of step with the seasons.
The Feast of St. Bede is May 25th.
Excerpted from http://justus.anglican.org/resources/bio/169.html by James E. Kiefer