Bay 14 - Life and miracles of St Nicholas (II)

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Panel 14 - During a famine, Nicholas begs passing ships for some of their grain

 © Stuart Whatling, 2008

According to the Golden Legend, when the province of Myra is beset by famine, St Nicholas learns that there are some Imperial grain ships moored in the harbour. He begs the sailors to spare one hundred measures of grain from each ship but they tell him their cargo was carefully measured on departure from Alexandria and they are afraid of the consequences should it be found short on reaching Constantinople. Nicholas promises them that no harm will come to them and the crews hand over the much needed grain (see next panel). Sure enough, on reaching the Imperial granaries, the cargo is found to be undiminished, despite each ship having given a hundred measures to the starving people of Myra. According to the legend, the grain given to Nicholas not only fed all his people for the two years of the famine but also provided sufficient for seed corn when the drought ended.