Thursday, October 29, 2015

Eulalia and Eucratis

Below are two accounts of inspiring women who resisted unto blood striving against sin:


At this time there was a Christian maiden, called Eulalia, not more than twelve or thirteen years old, who was filled with such a desire and ardor of the spirit, to die for the name of Christ, that her parents had to take her out of the city of Merida, to some distant country seat, and closely confine her there. But this place could not extinguish the fire of her spirit, or long confine her body; for, having escaped on a certain night, she went very early the following day before the tribunal, and with a loud voice said to the judge and the whole magistracy, "Are you not ashamed to cast your own souls and those of others at once into eternal perdition by denying the only true God, the Father of us all, and the Creator of all things? O ye wretched men! do you seek the Christians, that you may put them to death? Behold, here am I, an adversary of your satanical sacrifices. I confess with heart and mouth God alone; but Isis, Apollo, and Venus are vain idols."

The judge before whose tribunal Eulalia spoke thus boldly, was filled with rage, and called the executioner, commanding him to take her away speedily, strip her, and inflict various punishments on her; so that she, said he, may feel the gods of our fathers, through the punishment, and may learn that it will be hard for her, to despise the command of our Prince (that is, of Maximian).

But before he allowed matters to proceed so far, he addressed her with these soft words-, "How gladly would I spare thee! O that thou mightest renounce before thy death thy perverse views of the Christian religion? Reflect once, what great joy awaits thee, which thou mayest expect in the honorable state of matrimony. Behold, all thy friends weep for thee, and thy sorrow-striken, well-born kindred sigh aver thee, that thou art to die in the tender bloom of thy young life. See, the servants stand ready to torture thee to death with all sorts of torments; for thou shaft either be beheaded with the sword, or torn by the wild beasts, or singed with torches, which will cause thee to howl and wail, because thou wilt not be able to endure the pain; or, lastly be burned with fire. Thou canst escape all these tortures with little trouble, if thou wilt only take a few grains of salt and incense on the tips of thy fingers, and sacrifice it. Daughter, consent to this, and thou shaft thereby escape all these severe punishments."

This faithful martyr did not think it worth the trouble to reply either to the entreating or the threatening words of the judge, but, to say it briefly, pushed far away from her and upset* the images, the altar, censor, sacrificial book, etc.

Instantly two executioners came forward, who tore her tender limbs, and with cutting hooks or claws cut open her sides to the very ribs.

Eulalia, counting and recounting the gashes on her body, said,

"Behold, Lord Jesus Christ! Thy name is being written on my body; what great delight it affords me to read these letters, because they are signs of Thy victory! Behold, my purple blood confesses Thy holy name."

This she spoke with an undaunted and happy countenance, evincing not the least sign of distress, though the blood flowed like a fountain from her body. After she had been pierced through to her ribs with pincers, they applied burning lamps and torches to the wounds in her sides, and to her abdomen. Finally the hair of her head was ignited by flames, and taking it in her mouth, she was suffocated by it. This was the end of this heroine; young in years, but old in Christ, who loved the doctrine of her Saviour more than her own life. A. Mell., 1st book, fol. 105, col. 4, and fol. 106, col. 1, 2, compared with 1. Gys., fol. 23, col. 3, ex Prudent. Steph. Hym. 3.

This happened in Lusitania, at Emerita, now called Merida or Medina del Rio Sacco, in the uttermost or lowest part of Spain, under the Emperor Maximian and the Proconsul Dacian, as may clearly be seen in ancient writers, and also in the afore-mentioned authors.


After the death of Eulalia an account is given (from Prudentius) of another Christian maiden, called Eucratis, who by her steadfastness in suffering, and the violence with which she took the kingdom of heaven, put to shame the spirit of this world, at Caesar Augusta. The ancients tell us in what manner this heroine of Jesus Christ was martyred, namely, that she was not only tormented on her sides with rods and other iron instruments, but that her breasts were cut off, so that her liver could be seen; hence, having been put back into prison, she very miserably died (yet with a glad hope), in consequence of the putrefaction of: the wounds, which she had received for the name of Jesus Christ. See Mell. as cited above, from Steph. Hym. 4. Flos. Sanct. His(. Mart. Rom., 16 April.

No comments:

Post a Comment

“Reason dictates that persons who are truly noble and who love wisdom will honor and love only what is true. They will refuse to follow traditional viewpoints if those viewpoints are worthless...Instead, a person who genuinely loves truth must choose to do and speak what is true, even if he is threatened with death...I have not come to flatter you by this written petition, nor to impress you by my words. I have come to simply beg that you do not pass judgment until you have made an accurate and thorough investigation. Your investigation must be free of prejudice, hearsay, and any desire to please the superstitious crowds. As for us, we are convinced that you can inflict no lasting evil on us. We can only do it to ourselves by proving to be wicked people. You can kill us—but you cannot harm us.” From Justin Martyr's first apology 150 A.D. Martyred A.D. 160