Saint Gertrude-by-the-Tarn is a school where Sister M. Fiorello teaches Political Science (Saint Fidgeta and Other Parodies, 45).


Gertrude the Great (1256–1302) was a German Benedictine, mystic, and theologian.  Parishes are dedicated to Gertrude in Missouri, Ohio, Texas, and Chicago, Illinois[1].

The Tarn (Latin: Tarnis, possibly meaning 'rapid' or 'walled in') is a 237 mile long river in southern France[2].

As to the name of the school, it's common for Catholic colleges to have both a saint and a location in their name. This naming convention includes Bellairs's alma mater, whose official name is Notre Dame du Lac ('Our Lady of the Lake').


  1. Wikipedia: Gertrude the Great
  2. Wikipedia: Tarn (river)

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