Sunday, September 17, 2006

Saint Lucia/Lucy

After a fairly typical childhood (by early female saint standards) with the usual fanatical religious devotion and an absent parent, Lucy's mother arranged a marriage for her with a pagan groom.

Naturally, Lucy refused and urged that the dowry be spent on alms so that she might retain her virginity. News that the patrimony and jewels were being distributed to the poor came to the ears of Lucy's betrothed, who heard it from a talkative nurse that Lucy had found a suitor of noble stature to replace him.

As revenge, her rejected pagan groom ratted out Lucy as a Christian to the magistrate, who ordered her to burn a sacrifice to the Emperor's image. Lucy replied that she had nothing left to give; "I offer to him myself, let him do with his offering as it pleaseth him." So she was entenced to be defiled in a brothel.

The guards who came to take her away found her rooted to the spot, she had become heavy and stiff. They could not move her even when they hitched her to a team of oxen. All the while, she spoke against her persecutors. Even when they stuck a dagger in her throat, she kept talking. Finally they gouged her eyes out, but she was still able to see. In art she is shown holding her eyes on a plate. In the end God restored her eyes and eyesight, apparently before she was executed.

Her patronage includes; authors; Belgium; cutlers; dysentery; epidemics; eye problems; glaziers; hemorraghes; laborers; martyrs; peasants; Perugia, Italy; saddlers; salesmen; sore eyes; sore throats; stained glass workers; Syracuse, Sicily; throat infections; Villa Santa Lucia, Latium, Italy; writers

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