E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
Patron saint of archers, because he was bound to a tree and shot at with arrows. As the arrows stuck in his body, thick as pins in a pin-cushion, he was also made patron saint of pin-makers. And as he was a centurion, he is patron saint of soldiers.
The English St. Sebastian. St. Edmund, the martyr-king of East Anglia.
He gave himself up to his enemies under the hope of saving his people by this sacrifice. The Danes first scourged him with rods, and then, binding him to a tree, shot arrows at him, and finally cut off his head. A legend tells how a wolf guarded the head till it was duly interred. The monastery and cathedral of St. Edmundsbury were erected on the place of his martyrdom.