Butler’s Lives of the Saints – Saints Gordian and Epimachus, Martyrs


These two holy martyrs are named in all calendars of the western church since the sixth age. Saint Epimachus suffered at Alexandria under Decius, in the year 250, with one Alexander. They had been long detained in a hideous dungeon, were beaten with clubs, their sides were torn with iron-hooks; lastly, they were both burnt in lime. This is related by Saint Dionysius of Alexandria, quoted by Eusebius.

Saint Gordian was beheaded at Rome for the faith, under Julian the Apostate, in the year 362. His name occurs in the ancient Martyrologies. His body was laid in a cave, in which was deposited that of Saint Epimachus, which was brought from Alexandria to Rome a little before Saint Gordian’s martyrdom. The relics of both these martyrs are now possessed by the great Benedictin abbey of Kempton, in the diocess of Ausbourg.

MLA Citation

  • Father Alban Butler. “Saints Gordian and Epimachus, Martyrs”. Lives of the Fathers, Martyrs, and Principal Saints, 1866. CatholicSaints.Info. 12 May 2013. Web. 18 May 2021. <>