Saints of the Day – Chrysogonus of Aquileia

painting of Saint Chrysogonus, c.1450 by Michele Giambono; San Treviso, Venice, Italy; swiped from Wikimedia CommonsArticle

Died at Aquileia, Italy, c.304. Chrysogonus, one of the saints named in the canon of the Mass, was an official at Rome who was converted to Christianity and in turn converted many others to the same faith. He is said to have been particularly close to Saint Anastasia of Sirmium and become her guide in the Christian faith, but nothing is really know about him.

The historically worthless passio of Saint Anastasia says that the saint’s success as a Christian missionary displeased the authorities who imprisoned him. After festering for many months in squalid conditions, Chrysogonus was beheaded during the persecutions of the Emperor Diocletian. His corpse was thrown into the sea, but rescued by a priest named Zoilus.

Pope Sylvester I built a church over his tomb in the first half of the 4th century. His tomb was excavated in the early 20th century, 20 feet below the present ground level of the church of San Crisogono in Rome, where Chrysogonus has been venerated at least from the end of the 5th century.

San Crisogono contains the head of Chrysogonus and one of his arms, now proudly preserved over the high altar. On the superbly gilded and decorated ceiling of the church, which was created in the 17th century, Giovanni Guencino painted ‘The Triumph of Saint Chrysogonus’ (Attwater, Benedictines, Bentley, Encyclopedia)

Saint Chrysogonus is depicted as a very young knight with a shield bearing IHS. At times his corpse is shown born up by fish (Roeder).

MLA Citation

  • Katherine I Rabenstein. Saints of the Day, 1998. CatholicSaints.Info. 13 August 2020. Web. 21 June 2021. <>