Holy Forty-two Martyrs from Amoria
Celebration Date: 06/03
The Holy Forty-two Martyrs lived during the reign of Theophilos the iconoclast (829 – 842 AD) and were generals and brigade commanders, rich and noble. Saint Theodore was a general and pioneer, Saint Theophilus a general and patrician, Saint Callistos the tourmarch, Saint Constantine the Drungarian, Saint Vassoi the runner, Saints Melissanos and Aetius the generals, Saint Crateros the eunuch, the other Saint Crateros the general and St. Cyril also a general.
At that time, after Amiras had come out of Syria with an innumerable army, against the eastern parts of the Roman territory, soldiers were sent by the king to protect the city of Amorium, the capital of Phrygia. And when they saw the infinite multitude of the Saracens, they entered the inner part of the castle fighting with skill. There, after they were arrested, in the year 838 AD, by the caliph Motassem, they were taken to Samara in Mesopotamia and imprisoned. The caliph promised to restore them to their offices if they would convert and become Mohammedans. But the Holy Martyrs bravely refused and confessed their faith in Christ. And after suffering much suffering and inhuman torture, they were beheaded, in the year 842 AD. and so they sealed their confession of Christ with their blood.
Emperor Basil II (976 – 1025 AD) erected a church in the name of the Saints and forty-two of these Martyrs in the palace of Pigi.