70 Soldiers martyred at Apamea in Syria

These seventy soldiers suffered in the year 305 under the emperor Maximian Galerius (305-311) with St Maurice, a military commander of Syrian Apamea. Only two of the soldiers’ names are known, Theodore and Philip.

The martyrs were led to a swampy place full of mosquitoes, wasps and gnats, and they tied them to trees, having smeared their bodies with honey. The insects fiercely stung and bit the martyrs, who were weakened by hunger and thirst.

The saints endured these torments for ten days, but they did not cease praying and glorifying God until finally the Lord put an end to their sufferings. The wicked torturer gave orders to behead them and leave their bodies exposed without burial, but Christians secretly buried the venerable relics of the holy martyrs by night at the place of their horrible execution.