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Joseph of Arimathea [59891]
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Anna of Arimathea [59892]

Joseph of Arimathea [59891]

  • Born: Abt 0005 B.C., Arimathea, Judea
  • Marriage: Anna of Arimathea [59892]
  • Died: 27 Jul 0082, Glastonbury, Wales about age 87
  • Buried: Glastonbury, Somerset, England
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bullet  General Notes:

http://www.rpi.edu/~holmes/Hobbies/Genealogy/ps19/ps19_233.htm

http://www.rpi.edu/~holmes/Hobbies/Genealogy/ps31/ps31_433.htm

http://www.allaboutjesuschrist.org/joseph-of-arimathea-faq.htm

Joseph of Arimathea - Who was he? Note that the information presented in this article is acquired from various sources - not strictly biblical manuscripts. The stories have been passed down through traditional documents and can not be proved as accurate.

Joseph of Arimathea was quite an enigma! From history we learn that he was previously known as Joseph de Marmore as he lived in Marmorica in Egypt before he moved to Arimathea.1 There is speculation that Joseph of Arimathea, or Joseph of Glastonbury as he later became known, was the uncle of Mary, mother of Jesus. The relationship to Mary made him a Great Uncle of Jesus. From this, we may presume that he was an elderly man at the time of the crucifixion. We have few verifiable details about Joseph except that he was he was quite wealthy. Some claim that Joseph of Arimathea was a merchant in metals and took young Jesus with him on his business trips to England, India, and even to South America. It is a well documented fact that Britain led the world at this time with its tin mining. Joseph of Arimathea was referred to by the Romans as 'Nobilis Decurio' or Minister of Mines to the Roman Government.

Joseph of Arimathea was not one of the original 12 apostles, but he was a disciple of Jesus and was an important man in his own right. He is mentioned in all four gospels (Matthew: 27:57-60; Mark 15:43-46; Luke 23:50-55; John 19:38-42). He was a high counselor, a voting member of the Sanhedrin2 which officially wanted Jesus condemned to death. We may speculate that he had not consented to, or agreed with, the decision to push Pontius Pilot to impose the death penalty upon Jesus. In spite of his relationship with Jesus, his loyalty to Him was largely kept secret (John 19:38). Jesus was obviously unpopular with the elders of the church, and to outwardly support Him did not bring favor in their eyes (John 19:38).

Even though Joseph of Arimathea had attempted to keep his love for Jesus a secret, he boldly went to Pilot and asked for the body of Jesus to be placed in his trust. This is significant in and of itself. Joseph of Arimathea, not Mary Jesus' mother, not Mary Magdalene, or any of the apostles were entrusted with the act of taking Jesus down from the cross. Most of the apostles had fled anyway. Joseph took the body and put it in his own tomb. According to various historical sources, Joseph's actions provoked both the Roman and Jewish elders and he eventually did spend time in prison for his support of Jesus.3

Other historical sources report that Joseph of Arimathea went on a preaching mission to Gaul with the apostle Phillip, Mary Magdalene, Lazarus, and others sometime between the years A.D. 37 and A.D. 63 (the year is in dispute). At Marseilles, Lazarus and Mary parted company with the main group who continued on further up North. When Joseph's party reached the English Channel, Phillip sent Joseph with 12 disciples to the furthest corner of the Roman Empire, the Island of the Britons. Legend has it that Joseph sailed around Land's End at the southern tip of England with the intent of catching up with old business acquaintances in the lead and tin mines. They ran aground in the Glastonbury marshes. Once again, it is reported that after climbing a nearby hill to survey the countryside, they were exhausted and Joseph thrust into the ground a staff made from the 'Holy Crown of Thorns' worn by Christ. He announced that he and his traveling companions were all weary. It is legendry that the thorn staff immediately took root and the thorn bush can still be seen today on 'Wearyall Hill.' Joseph built a church (Vetusta Ecclesia)5 of mud and wattle on the site and decreed that 12 monks should always reside in that most sacred place. It is interesting to note that a spirited shrub which grows near the now ruined Abbey is of the same type that grows in the Eastern Mediterranean and flowers only twice a year - Christmas time and Easter.6

It is also claimed that Joseph collected some of the blood and sweat of Christ after His side was pierced as He hung on the cross. The chalice or cup which Joseph used to collect the fluids is reported to be the same one used during the last supper. Joseph took the cup with him on his voyage to England and is said to have hidden it on the site at Glastonbury, at the bottom of a deep well, called the 'Chalice Well', or the 'Blood Well.' The well is a rather curious place, 25 thousand gallons of red-tinted water pass through the well area each day. The red tint is caused by high iron content in the water.3.

http://www.britannia.com/history/biographies/joseph.html

Joseph of Arimathea was a wealthy disciple of Jesus, who, according to the book of Matthew 27:57-60, asked Pontius Pilate for permission to take Jesus' dead body in order to prepare it for burial. He also provided the tomb where the crucified Lord was laid until his Resurrection. Joseph is mentioned in a few times in parallel passages in Mark, Luke and John, but nothing further is heard about his later activities.
Apocryphal legend, however, supplies us with the rest of his story by claiming that Joseph accompanied the Apostle Philip, Lazarus, Mary Magdalene & others on a preaching mission to Gaul. Lazarus & Mary stayed in Marseilles, while the others travelled north. At the English Channel, St.Philip sent Joseph, with twelve disciples, to establish Christianity in the most far-flung corner of the Roman Empire: the Island of Britain. The year AD 63 is commonly given for this "event", with AD 37 sometimes being put forth as an alternative. It was said that Joseph achieved his wealth in the metals trade, and in the course of conducting his business, he probably became acquainted with Britain, at least the south-western parts of it. Cornwall was a chief mining district and well-known in the Roman empire for its tin. Somerset was reknowned for its high quality lead. Some have even said that Joseph was the uncle of the Virgin Mary and therefore of Jesus, and that he may have brought the young boy along on one of his business trips to the island. Hence the words of Blake's famous hymn, Jerusalem:
And did those feet, in ancient time,
Walk upon England's mountains green?

It was only natural, then, that Joseph should have been chosen for the first mission to Britain, and appropriate that he should come first to Glastonbury, that gravitational center for legendary activity in the West Country. Local legend has it that Joseph sailed around Land's End and headed for his old lead mining haunts. Here his boat ran ashore in the Glastonbury Marshes and, together with his followers, he climbed a nearby hill to survey the surrounding land. Having brought with him a staff grown from Christ's Holy Crown of Thorns, he thrust it into the ground and announced that he and his twelve companions were "Weary All". The thorn staff immediately took miraculous root, and it can be seen there still on Wearyall Hill. Joseph met with the local ruler, Arviragus <arvirag.html>, and soon secured himself twelve hides of land at Glastonbury on which to build the first monastery in Britain. From here he became the country's evangelist.
Much more was added to Joseph's legend during the Middle Ages. He was gradually inflated into a major saint and cult hero, as well as the supposed ancestor of many British monarchs <../articles/josanc.html>. He is said to have brought with him to Britain a cup, said to have been used at the Last Supper and also used to catch the blood dripping from Christ as he hung on the Cross. A variation of this story is that Joseph brought with him two cruets, one containing the blood and the other, the sweat of Christ. Either of these items are known as The Holy Grail <http://www.britannia.com/history/arthur/grail.html>, and were the object(s) of the quests of the Knights of King Arthur's Round Table. One legend goes on to suggest that Joseph hid the "Grail" in Chalice Well <http://www.britannia.com/history/arthur/chalwell.html> at Glastonbury for safe-keeping (Photo <../well.html>)
There is a wide variance of scholarly opinion on this subject, however, and a good deal of doubt exists as to whether Joseph ever came to Britain at all, for any purpose.

http://www.britannia.com/history/articles/josanc.html

Early Welsh Genealogies show us that most of the Early British Monarchies claimed descent in one way or another from Beli Mawr (the Great) who can be identified with the Celtic God, Belenos <http://www.britannia.com/celtic/gods/beli.html>. However, in his mortal form, Beli was said to have been the husband of Anna, the daughter of St. Joseph of Arimathea <http://www.britannia.com/history/biographies/joseph.html>.
At first sight, this claim may seem quite extraordinary. St. Joseph was the man who had taken Christ's body down from the cross and given up his own tomb for Christ's last resting-place. Apocryphal legend tells us that Joseph of Arimathea was the Virgin Mary's paternal uncle. After the resurrection, he left Palestine with Saints Philip, Lazarus, Mary Magdalene & others, and sailed through the Mediterranean to Southern France. Lazarus & Mary stayed in Marseilles, while the others travelled north. At the English Channel, St.Philip sent Joseph, with twelve disciples, to establish Christianity in the most far-flung corner of the Roman Empire.
Joseph had been chosen for such a task, because he knew Britain well already. He was a merchant by trade and had conducted business with the Dumnonian tin-miners and Durotrigian lead-miners of Britain many times before. Some even say that he sometimes brought his nephew, Jesus, with him on these trading missions. Hence the words of Blake's famous hymn, Jerusalem:
And did those feet, in ancient time,
Walk upon England's mountains green?

West Country legend has it that Joseph sailed around Land's End and headed for what was to eventually become Glastonbury <http://www.britannia.com/history/gbury.html> in Somerset <http://www.britannia.com/history/somerset>. Here his boat ran ashore and, together with his followers, he climbed a nearby hill to survey the surrounding land. Having brought with him a staff grown from Christ's Holy Crown of Thorns, he thrust it into the ground and announced that he and his twelve companions were "Weary All". The thorn staff immediately took miraculous root, and it can be seen there still on Wearyall Hill.
Joseph met with the local ruler and soon secured himself twelve hides of land at Glastonbury on which to build the first monastery in Britain. From here he became Britain's evangelist. So it is not surprising that the monarchies of that country wished to establish themselves as St. Joseph's descendants: especially considering the more pagan ancestors already claimed in their pedigrees. By marrying Joseph's daughter to a pre-Christian deity, the royal genealogists were able to show that Christianity had been victorious over the old pagan ways. But why specifically choose Beli Mawr as Anna's husband?
Chronologically speaking, if Anna married a Briton after her father arrived in this country, then we must assume that she was nearer to Jesus' age than her cousin, Mary (ie. born c. 0). Beli is recorded in the Mabinogion and Welsh Genealogies as having been the father of Caswallon (or Cassivellaunus), the leader of the Celtic tribes who repelled Cæsar's invasions of 55 & 54 bc. He could, therefore, not possibly have married Anna of Arimathea. Moreover, the local ruler whom Joseph received his land gift from, is said to have been Arfyrag (or Arviragus), Beli & Anna's supposed great great grandson.
In fact, here we have another case of pagan gods taking on the guise of Christian saints in order to smooth the path of conversion. For Celtic mythology tells us that Beli (or Belenos) did not marry a lady named Anna, but the great Celtic Goddess named Anu. Anu appears in the Celtic World under several names but they all stem from the same route: Anu, Danu, Dana, Don. She was a Mother-Goddess particularly associated with the founding and prosperity of Ireland. She was especially popular in Munster, though her most lasting memorial is a mountain in County Kerry called the "Breast of Anu" (Dá Chích Anann). St. Anne probably owes her popularity in Brittany to this goddess, as do the names of numerous St. Anne's Wells throughout Britain.
However, the claims of the British Kings cannot be quite so easily dismissed. The Celtic God-King, Bran Fendigaid <http://www.britannia.com/celtic/gods/bran.html> (the Blessed), who may or may not have been an early King of Siluria, is also often accredited with being the man to have brought Christianity to the British Isles. Unfortunately, this is due to a confusion with the historical Cunobelin (Arfyrag's father) who, though he died prior to the Roman Invasion of AD 43, was thought to have been taken captive to Rome where he became converted to Christianity. He appears to be the same figure as the Ancestral Fisher-King of Arthurian legend, Bron or Brons, said, in late legend, to have been given the Holy Grail <http://www.britannia.com/history/arthur/grail.html> by St. Joseph of Arimathea. This was, in reality Bran's magic cauldron of Celtic myth. Brons was also thought to have been a relative of St. Joseph: the husband of his sister, Enygeus. The mythical Bran was Beli Mawr's grandson: just the right age to marry St. Joseph's daughter; and Enygeus is a Latin form of Anna. Could Bran have been her husband? Was he blessed by his father-in-law?

http://www.asis.com/users/stag/josephar.html

In Christ in Britain <http://asis.com/~stag/chrstbrt.html> we established that a man named Joseph of Arimathea was the Virgin Mary's uncle. It was he, along with St. John who buried Jesus after the crucifixion. Joseph, in the tin trade, made a lot of trips to Britain, where being a rich merchant made close contact with British Royalty; namely Kings Beli, Lud, Llyr and Arviragus, who gave Joseph and his companions some 2000 acres of land, tax free. On these trips to Britain, Joseph took Jesus, as we showed through many geographical, historical and traditional references. The details of this study are taken mainly from "The Drama of the Lost Disciples", by George F. Jowett.

The four main topics of this page are God's plan of Trusteeship, Joseph's Company of disciples coming to Britain, the outflow of Missionaries from Glastonbury, and why England was chosen for the sanctuary of Christanity.

Historians William of Malmesbury, Maelgwyn of Llandaff and Polydore Vergil all place Joseph of Arimathea at Glastonbury. Even the four Church councils of Pisa 1409, Constance 1417, Sienna 1424 and Basle 1434, mention that "the Churches of France and Spain must yield in points of antiquity and precedence to that of Britain as the latter Church was founded by Joseph of Arimathea immediately after the passion of Christ."





GOD'S TRUSTEE PLAN


God works in the long term. He often takes centuries to set up certain events or circumstances. A neat little study is listing God's Trustees or Protectorates throughout the last four thousand years. First came Joseph, the eleventh son of Jacob. God sent him to Egypt twenty-one years before Jacob came with his family from famine ravaged Canaan. Twenty-one years! !
Jeremiah was given Trusteeship of the Throne and the bloodline of David. He brought King Zedekiah's daughter Tea Tephi to Ireland in order to join the two lines of Judah, the Pharez line in Tea and the Zarah line in Eochaidh, high king of Ireland. This happened in 583 BC and was part of God's preparation of the land to which the House of Israel would migrate. The Davidic bloodline would be woven through all the kings and queens of northwest Europe as a result of the marriage of those two. But five hundred years earlier, God had already placed Brutus in England. He founded New Troy (London) about 1100 BC. Talk about planning ahead!
We could also talk of Tobit, and especailly Queen Esther, whom God placed in Persia to protect the captive Jews. We might even mention English kings Arviragus and Caradoc. Arviragus would become God's "Protectorate" for the Cradle of Christianity, Glastonbury. It was Arviragus who gifted Joseph and his companions twelve 160 acre parcels of land, tax free forever. Caradoc, Pendragon of England, would become God's "Protectorate" of the fledgling Roman Christian Church; the church Paul wrote to. Caradoc spent seven years "house arrest" before returning to Britain. It was his children <http://asis.com/~stag/royalty.html> who were the core of the Roman church.

There are volumes be said about the pioneering of the Tribe of Dan, as they (the Phoenicians) established trade routes from China to south America, and reconoitered the migration route of the Lost Tribes west across Europe. Look at all the "Dn" names on the rivers. There's the Danube, the Dneiper, the Don, and on. Why there are three Don rivers in the British Isles! Those Danite\\Phoenicians tacked up their name everywhere they went. Just like they did in the Bible when they conquered a town and changed the name to Mahanedan (Judges 18:12)
Lastly, let me point to Daniel. God set up Daniel to run the Babylonian government during the time of the Exile.

God sticks to a winning plan. He set up a Trustee for Christianity as well. And please notice that these Trustees are highly educated, highly situated, and most of them were pretty good looking, too. Joseph of Arimathea has been called one of the richest men in the world. He inherited that tin trade from his fellow Israelites; the Phoenicians. They had been bringing ore from England for centuries. Joseph was well educated, a member of the ruling political body of the whole country. He was well placed as "Noblis Decurio", a miniter of mines for the Roman empire, with direct access to Pilate himself. Joe was no slouch. How better to protect Jesus, after Joseph the carpenter died, and insure the seeding and growth of the Gospel in England; the place to which the scattered House of Israel would continue to migrate for the next eleven centuries! ! ? The prophecies of this migration are in just about all the prophetic books of the Old Testament. But read the book of Hosea if you want to see the history of the Celts and Scythians/House of Israel/Lost Tribes. Or you can link to They Went Thattaway <http://asis.com/~stag/migratio.html>





JOSEPH AND COMPANY


The average person is so well inoculated with the belief that Christianity was first established by the Roman Catholic Chruch at Rome, and that Britain first received the faith through St. Augustine, AD 597, that they take it for granted. Wasn't the Roman Catholic Church established in the fourth century, well after the death of Constantine? Between Christ's death and the establishment of the Roman Catholic Church lay centuries. Was Christianity waiting around for Constatine to Christianize the Roman Empire and then die? Surely the missionary work begun by the Apostles continued. But where? The history of the Roman Catholic Church itself testifies that England preceded itself in the establishment of Christianity.

The basic story of Joseph's trip to England varies in some details from account to account. But the bare facts are that Joseph, with many disciples travelled from the holy land by boat and landed at Marseilles, in the Vienoise province of the Gauls (France). From there he went on to England established seminaries, sent out missionaries, and helped in the conversion of the Royal family. In his "Ecclesiastical Annals", Cardinal Baronius, Curator of the Vatican library, gives this account. "In that year the party mentioned was exposed to the sea in a vessel without sails or oars. The vessel drifted finally to Marseilles and they were saved. From Marseilles Joseph and his company passed into Britain and after preaching the Gospel there, died." The reason for the boat having been set adrift, was that the Jews wanted to get rid of these Christians, but couldn't get away with murder.
How many of the disciples were with Joseph of Arimathea during his short stay in Gaul, before going on to England, is hard to say. Various existing records agree in part with the Cardinal Baronius record, naming among the occupants of the castaway boat Mary Magdlene, Martha, the hand-maiden Marcella, Lazarus whom Jesus raised from the dead, and Maximin the man whose sight Jesus restored. Other records state that Philip and James accompanied Joseph. Others report that Mary, the wife of Cleopas, and Mary, the mother of Jesus, were also in the boat. Here's Baronius' complete list of passsengers:
St. Mary, wife of Cleopas
St. Martha
St. Lazarus
St. Eutropius
St. Salome
St. Cleon
St. Saturninus
St. Mary Magdalene
Marcella, the Bethany sisters' maid
St. Maximin
St. Martial
St. Trophimus
St. Sidonius (Restitutus)
St. Joseph of Arimathea

And true to God's way, Philip was waiting for the travellers in France. There is a wealth of uncontroversial testimony asserting his commission in Gaul, all of which alike state that he received and consecrated Joseph, preparatory to his embarkation and appointment as the Apostle to Britain.





ENGLISH MISSIONARIES


Although there are some who would agrue for France being first, most records agree that Britain, at Glastonbury was the Root of the Christian movement. One would expect that history would show that the missionary activities would flow out of the well-spring of Christianity. And well does history record this. The Gaulic records state that for centuries the Archbishops of Treves and Rheims were all Britons supplied by the mother church at Glastonbury-Avalon. St. Cadval, a famed British missionary, going out from Glastonbury, founded the church of Tarentum, Italy, A.D. 170. Did you notice that this was four hundred years before St. Augustine? And as we'll see later, even this date was at least fourteen years after King Lucius Christainized all of Britain in A.D. 156! ! ! Nobody really wants to play "Who was First" with the British.

Converts literally flooded into Glastonbury for conversion, baptism, instruction and missionary assigment. Philip sent, from Gaul alone, one hundred sitxy disciples to assist Joseph and his team with the crowds. And it is surely known that helpers were sent from other places beside France.
One of the first to go out from Glastonbury was Mary and Martha's brother Lazarus. He headed straight back to Marseilles where he held the Bishopric for seven years. But that was only natural. France was a Family Thing for the Bethany household. Mary and Martha both lived out their lives, preaching and teaching in the south of France. "The Coming of The Saints," by Taylor is a good book on the subject.

Many famous names are recorded as having been associated with Glastonbury-Avalon.

Sidonis, Saturninus, and Cleon taught and supported other missionaries in Gaul, then returned to Britain.
Martial's parents, Marcellus and Elizabeth were there along with St Zacchaeus. Many faithful Judeans moved to Britain.
Parmena, disciple of Joseph, was appointed the first Bishop of Avignon.
Drennalus, helped Joseph found the church at Morlaix. He was then appointed to Treguier as it's first Bishop.
Beatus founded the church in Helvetia, after receiving his baptism and education at Avalon.
Beatus was baptised by St. Barnabas, the brother of Aristobulus, sent in advance by St. Paul to Britain. He is referred to in scripture as Joses, the Levite.
Mansuetus was consecrated the first Bishop of the Lotharingians A.D. 49, with his See at Toul. He also founded the church at Lorraine.


Historical note:
Mansuetus was a constant visitor at the Palace of the British at Rome after Claudia had married Pudens. He was a friend of Linus, the first Biship of Rome, and brother of Claudia. After the death of St. Clement, Mansuetus became the third official Bishop of the British Church at Rome. Thus we have three disciples of Avalon, instructed by St. Joseph, to become, in succession, Bishops of Rome.
Iltigius, in "De Patribus Apostolicis", quotes St. Peter as saying; "Concerning the Bishops who have been ordained in our lifetime, we make known to you that they are these. Of Antioch, Eudoius, ordained by me, Peter. Of the Church of Rome, Linus, son of Claudia, was first ordained by Paul, and after Linus's death, Clemens the second, ordained by me, Peter."





WHY ENGLAND?

There are some very good superficial reasons why all this took place in England. Because of Joseph's merchant business it was a known location, where Royal friends could help, and far from persecution. The deeper levels of meaning require broader levels of perspective.
Without going into detail again, I'll mention that the Lost Tribes were headquartered in Britain. Ephraim and Judah, were already running the country. These folks, and their cousins that would come in later, are the very ones who God drafted to take His message to the world. We're looking at a plan that God set up to run almost four thousand years ago.
He called Abraham to father the nation that would supply the stock and the wealth for the Zarah line to precede the Israelites into europe, from whence they would take the Message of Christ to the rest of the world. Please remember when reading the following Bible references that the House of Israel is distinct from the House of Judah. All are Israelites (descendents of Israel/Jacob), but only the Tribe of Judah are the Jews.
Althoug many of the Jews were scattered, Jeremiah, in 50:17 is talking about the House of Israel. We know from the context, in which he clearly separates "the children Israel", from the "children of Judah." (v.4,20)
Hosea echoes the scattering in chapter 1 verse 4.
First Peter is addressed to the "scattered expatriates." The places he names are just the locations of Israelite groups of the northeast Mediterranean.
An astounding prophecy is made by the High Priest Caiaphas in John 11:51-52. Jesus would die for the Jewish nation AND the ones scattered abroad
Jesus says he has other sheep "not of this (geographical Israel) fold." John 10:16
Jesus says that he is sent, and he sends his apostles to the "lost sheep of the House of Israel." Why not just say Israel? Jesus was specifying a particular group of Israelites.
Looking up the word gentiles in Strong's reveals the definition, "a tribe; specifically a foreign(non-Jewish) one." The Jews of Jesus' time called the Celts and Scythians Gentiles, along with all the other folks that didn't worship God. Yet a few understood. Like Peter and Paul.
Paul writes to the Roman Church. The church that was headed up by the Royal British family, a few of which were related to him by law. He says in, Romans 15:8-12, that Jesus, as well as minister to "the circumcision", but also came that the Gentiles might Glorify God.

Can there be any doubt that Christianity flowed out of Britain in the first century after the crucifixion? But remember, Joseph of Arimathea was tied into the Royal British family. And as you can see on Royal Soap <http://asis.com/~stag/roylsoap.html> and Royal House of Britain, <http://asis.com/~stag/royalty.html>the ties went straight into the Royal Roman family as well.
It's just an impossible piece of history. The Roman Emporer who decrees death to all Christians, becomes the wing under which the Church at Rome flourishes. He gives his daughter in marriage to the former British King, then adopts the daughter of his fiercest enemy, the British king Caradoc. And all this in the midst of the bloody war with


A Discussion of Joseph of Arimathea's Legendary Descent
By David Nash Ford
ST. JOSEPH
OF ARIMATHEA
Ancestor of Kings?
Early Welsh Genealogies show us that most of the Early British Monarchies claimed descent in one way or another from Beli Mawr (the Great) who can be identified with the Celtic God, Belenos <http://www.britannia.com/celtic/gods/beli.html>. However, in his mortal form, Beli was said to have been the husband of Anna, the daughter of St. Joseph of Arimathea <http://www.britannia.com/history/biographies/joseph.html>.
At first sight, this claim may seem quite extraordinary. St. Joseph was the man who had taken Christ's body down from the cross and given up his own tomb for Christ's last resting-place. Apocryphal legend tells us that Joseph of Arimathea was the Virgin Mary's paternal uncle. After the resurrection, he left Palestine with Saints Philip, Lazarus, Mary Magdalene & others, and sailed through the Mediterranean to Southern France. Lazarus & Mary stayed in Marseilles, while the others travelled north. At the English Channel, St.Philip sent Joseph, with twelve disciples, to establish Christianity in the most far-flung corner of the Roman Empire.
Joseph had been chosen for such a task, because he knew Britain well already. He was a merchant by trade and had conducted business with the Dumnonian tin-miners and Durotrigian lead-miners of Britain many times before. Some even say that he sometimes brought his nephew, Jesus, with him on these trading missions. Hence the words of Blake's famous hymn, Jerusalem:
And did those feet, in ancient time,
Walk upon England's mountains green?

West Country legend has it that Joseph sailed around Land's End and headed for what was to eventually become Glastonbury <http://www.britannia.com/history/gbury.html> in Somerset <http://www.britannia.com/history/somerset>. Here his boat ran ashore and, together with his followers, he climbed a nearby hill to survey the surrounding land. Having brought with him a staff grown from Christ's Holy Crown of Thorns, he thrust it into the ground and announced that he and his twelve companions were "Weary All". The thorn staff immediately took miraculous root, and it can be seen there still on Wearyall Hill.
Joseph met with the local ruler and soon secured himself twelve hides of land at Glastonbury on which to build the first monastery in Britain. From here he became Britain's evangelist. So it is not surprising that the monarchies of that country wished to establish themselves as St. Joseph's descendants: especially considering the more pagan ancestors already claimed in their pedigrees. By marrying Joseph's daughter to a pre-Christian deity, the royal genealogists were able to show that Christianity had been victorious over the old pagan ways. But why specifically choose Beli Mawr as Anna's husband?
Chronologically speaking, if Anna married a Briton after her father arrived in this country, then we must assume that she was nearer to Jesus' age than her cousin, Mary (ie. born c. 0). Beli is recorded in the Mabinogion and Welsh Genealogies as having been the father of Caswallon (or Cassivellaunus), the leader of the Celtic tribes who repelled Cæsar's invasions of 55 & 54 bc. He could, therefore, not possibly have married Anna of Arimathea. Moreover, the local ruler whom Joseph received his land gift from, is said to have been Arfyrag (or Arviragus), Beli & Anna's supposed great great grandson.
In fact, here we have another case of pagan gods taking on the guise of Christian saints in order to smooth the path of conversion. For Celtic mythology tells us that Beli (or Belenos) did not marry a lady named Anna, but the great Celtic Goddess named Anu. Anu appears in the Celtic World under several names but they all stem from the same route: Anu, Danu, Dana, Don. She was a Mother-Goddess particularly associated with the founding and prosperity of Ireland. She was especially popular in Munster, though her most lasting memorial is a mountain in County Kerry called the "Breast of Anu" (Dá Chích Anann). St. Anne probably owes her popularity in Brittany to this goddess, as do the names of numerous St. Anne's Wells throughout Britain.
However, the claims of the British Kings cannot be quite so easily dismissed. The Celtic God-King, Bran Fendigaid <http://www.britannia.com/celtic/gods/bran.html> (the Blessed), who may or may not have been an early King of Siluria, is also often accredited with being the man to have brought Christianity to the British Isles. Unfortunately, this is due to a confusion with the historical Cunobelin (Arfyrag's father) who, though he died prior to the Roman Invasion of AD 43, was thought to have been taken captive to Rome where he became converted to Christianity. He appears to be the same figure as the Ancestral Fisher-King of Arthurian legend, Bron or Brons, said, in late legend, to have been given the Holy Grail <http://www.britannia.com/history/arthur/grail.html> by St. Joseph of Arimathea. This was, in reality Bran's magic cauldron of Celtic myth. Brons was also thought to have been a relative of St. Joseph: the husband of his sister, Enygeus. The mythical Bran was Beli Mawr's grandson: just the right age to marry St. Joseph's daughter; and Enygeus is a Latin form of Anna. Could Bran have been her husband? Was he blessed by his father-in-law?

http://www.britannia.com/history/articles/josanc.html



Arviragus King of Siluria: It is claimed that he was the King who welcomed Joseph of Arimathea to Britian in 63 b.c. and granted him land at Flastonbury for his church.


picture

Joseph married Anna of Arimathea [59892] [MRIN: 551616529].




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