St. Agatha

Young woman from Sicily, who was forced to work at a brothel, and then had her breasts cut off, as a punishment for her refusal to deny her faith.

St. Peter appeared to her in prison and cured her, but nevertheless she died there.

St. Agatha is believed to have saved her home town Catania from the eruptions of Mt. Etna, earthquakes and fires. She is also the patroness of wet-nurses, bell-founders, gold smiths, weavers, the hungry, those with inflammations or diseases of the breasts.

One of the many superstitions about her is that if you drink holy water on her day, you will not be snake bitten.

In art she is depicted holding a plate with her breasts on, and also with a knife or shears.

Orthodox nameday: 5/2.

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