New Catholic Dictionary – Saint Lawrence of Rome

detail of a painting of Saint Lawrence of Rome; early 16th century by Creator:Francesco Rizzo da Santacroce; Museum of John Paul II Collection, Warsaw, Poland; swiped from Wikimedia CommonsArticle

Martyr (died 258), a deacon, victim of the Valerian persecution, and one of the most honored of Roman martyrs. Probably a native of Spain, he became one of the seven deacons of the Roman Church, and distributed alms from the monastery of Saint Cyriaca. According to tradition Saint Lawrence was roasted to death on a red-hot gridiron over a slow fire. He was buried in the cemetery of Saint Cyriaca on the road to Tivoli, and his tomb was opened by Pelagius to place in it the body of Saint Stephen, the Protomartyr. Patron of the poor, of cooks, against fire and lumbago; titular of the cathedrals of Genoa, Perugia, Cortona, Kulm, and of the Escorial, the Spanish royal palace. Emblems: gridiron, cross, Book of the Gospels. Relics: head in the Quirinal Chapel, gridiron in San Lorenzo in Lucina, garments in Our Lady’s Chapel in the Lateran Palace, etc. His name occurs in the Canon of the Mass. Feast, Roman Calendar, 10 August.