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Tuesday, September 01, 2015

The Yellow Cab Feast Day of St. Fiacre, September 1

St. Fiacre (Fiachra) is not mentioned in the earlier Irish calendars, but it is said that he was born in Ireland and that he sailed over into France in quest of closer solitude, in which he might devote himself to God, unknown to the world. He arrived at Meaux, where Saint Faro, who was the bishop of that city, gave him a solitary dwelling in a forest which was his own patrimony, called Breuil, in the province of Brie. There is a legend that St. Faro offered him as much land as he could turn up in a day, and that St. Fiacre, instead of driving his furrow with a plough, turned the top of the soil with the point of his staff. The anchorite cleared the ground of trees and briers, made himself a cell with a garden, built an oratory in honor of the Blessed Virgin, and made a hospice for travelers which developed into the village of Saint-Fiacre in Seine-et-Marne.

 A "fiacre" is also a a hackney coach; that is, a horse-drawn four wheel  carriage.

"Le fiacre" by Edouard Manet
 From Wikipedia:

The earliest use of the word in English is cited by the Oxford English Dictionaryas from 1699 ("Fiacres" or Hackneys, hung with Double Springs"). The name is derived indirectly from Saint Fiacre; theHotel de Saint Fiacre in Paris rented carriages from about the middle of the seventeenth century. Saint Fiacre was adopted as the cab drivers' patron saint because of the association of his name with the carriage.

Not surprisingly, St. Fiacre is the Patron Saint of Cabdrivers!

Saint-Fiacre in Seine-et-Marne