Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online

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According to an ancient hagiographic tradition (BHL 133; BHG 36–37), Agatha suffered martyrdom (Martyrs) in Catania, Sicily, during the persecution of Decius (250–251 CE; Persecution of Christians). Less widespread is the ancient tradition (BHL 134) that places her martyrdom at the time of Diocletian's persecution (303–311 CE). She is celebrated in the liturgical sources on Feb 5, the day of her martyrdom. Her identification with the homonymous Agatha, protagonist of the Symposium by Methodius of Olympus (d. 311 CE), is uncertain.

The earliest testimonies of her cult seem…

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Milazzo, Vincenza, “Agatha”, in: Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online, General Editor David G. Hunter, Paul J.J. van Geest, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte. Consulted online on 09 December 2022 <>
First published online: 2018

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