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Orthodox icon of Saint Theodosia. Contemporary icon.
Commemorated May 29.
The Virgin Martyr Theodosia of Constantinople lived during the eighth century. She was born in answer to the fervent prayers of her parents. After their death, she was raised at the women’s monastery of the holy Martyr Anastasia in Constantinople. Saint Theodosia became a nun after she distributed to the poor of what remained of her parental inheritance. She used part of the money to commission gold and silver icons of the Savior, the Theotokos, and Saint Anastasia.
When Leo the Isaurian (717-741) ascended the imperial throne, he issued an edict to destroy holy icons everywhere. Above the Bronze Gates at Constantinople was a bronze icon of the Savior, which had been there for more than 400 years. In 730, the iconoclast Patriarch Anastasius ordered the icon removed.
The Virgin Martyr Theodosia and other women rushed to protect the icon and toppled the ladder with the soldier who was carrying out the command. Then they stoned the impious Patriarch Anastasius, and Emperor Leo ordered soldiers to behead the women. Saint Theodosia, an ardent defender of icons, was locked up in prison. For a week they gave her a hundred lashes each day. On the eighth day, they led her about the city, fiercely beating her along the way. One of the soldiers stabbed the nun in the throat with a ram’s horn, and she received the crown of martyrdom.
The body of the holy virgin martyr was reverently buried by Christians in the monastery of Saint Euphemia in Constantinople, near a place called Dexiokratis. The tomb of Saint Theodosia was glorified by numerous healings of the sick.
Ss. 40 Women Martyrs in Heraclea icon
Orthodox icon of the Forty Women Saints (Martyrs) and the Deacon Ammoun, at Heraclea in Thrace.
Commemorated September 1st.
On the first day of September, which marks the opening of our ecclesiastical year, the Church opens its golden pages of martyrdom by celebrating the resolve of the forty women virgin ascetic martyrs who put to shame the torture mechanisms of Licinius. The forty women virgin martyrs lived in Adrianoupolis of Thrace, in northeast Greece, and they were disciples of Deacon Ammoun.
The name of the Martyrs are: Adamantine, Athena, Akrive, Antigone, Arivoea, Aspasia, Aphrodite, Dione, Dodone, Elpinike, Erasmia, Erato, Ermeneia, Euterpe, Thaleia, Theano, Theano, Theonymphe, Theophane, Kalliroe, Kalliste, Kleio or Clio or Klio, Kleonike, Cleopatra, Koralia or Coralia, Lambro, Margarita, Marianthe, Melpomene, Moscho, Ourania, Pandora, Penelope, Polymnia, Polynike, Sapfo, Terpsichore, Troada, Haido, and Harikleia or Hariklia. Deacon Ammoun was hanged, and had his ribcage opened with knives.
After this, a red-hot iron helmet was placed on his head. The above tortures caused no apparent harm to this athlete of Christ, so he was transported to Heraklea of Thrace, to the tyrant Licinius, along with the holy virgins. Licinius ordered to have ten of the virgin martyrs burned by fire, and another eight beheaded, along with deacon Ammoun. Another ten were put to death by the sword, being struck in the mouth or in the heart, thus giving up their spirit. Of those remaining, six were martyred by being forced to swallow sizzling hot iron marbles, and the last six were cut to pieces by knives.
Ss. Ten of Crete icon
Orthodox icon of the Ten (10) Saints of Crete . Icon of 17th cent. Monastery of Saint Catherine Sinai.
Comemmorated December 23.
Ss. Theodoroi icon (1)
Ss. Theodoroi icon (2)