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Bride was the daughter of the King of Leinster and a slave woman who was sold to a druid with her mother when the king's wife became pregnant. She became Saint Brigid and founded nunneries throuhgout Ireland. A great friend of St Patrick, she was known as a peacemaker and cared greatly for the poor. Miracles were attributed to her during her lifetime. After the king of Leinster gave her the plain of Curragh, in the Celtic tradition, she had a double monastery built in Kildare in 470, known as the Oratory of Brigid. She founded a school of the arts here from which came the Book of Kildare, said to be the finest illuminated manuscript in the land. Sadly it was lost during the reformation. Along with Patrick, Brigid is also known as the patron of beer after a miracle of turning water into beer. She died in 525 and is buried on the right of the high altar in the cathedral. The bottom of the tower, which is the second highest in Ireland, dates from that period.

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