Born in Hungary and raised in Italy where his father, a member of the Imperial House Guards, was stationed, Martin was named in honour of Mars, his father’s patron deity.
Despite his pagan heritage and against the wishes of his parents, Martin began attending a Christian church at the age of 10. Not wanting to completely dishonour his father, though he no longer shared his religious beliefs, Martin joined the Roman army at the age of 15. Like his father, he rode in the cavalry and was an elite member of the emperor’s bodyguard. In military prowess he did not disappoint, many stories are told of his heroism. Unlike most of his comrades in arms, Martin had a soft side when it came to the common man. One touching and famous story tells how Martin sliced a part of his military cloak and gave it to a beggar who was freezing on the road.
Over time, Martin came to believe that being in the Roman army was incompatible with how he viewed Christianity, so he left the military, founded the first European monastery and became the bishop of Tours.
Saint Martin Caballero is a magickal manifestation of Saint Martin of Tours. Rather than being venerated as a healer and miracle worker this manifestation is the patron of small businesses, and many implore him to bring success to their endeavors. The shrines of Saint Martin Caballero are not found in lofty places but hidden behind bars to encourage people to drink more.
Legend has it that even greater blessings are bestowed upon those who care for Saint Martin’s horse. In addition to the offerings left for Saint Martin, hay and water must be left for his horse. Those who faithfully offer both food and drink to master and horse will find their kitchens will never run out of food and drink. For those not too selfish to upgrade the hay to grass and the water to wine, they can also add domestic happiness to their ever full kitchen.