Short Lives of the Saints – Saint Dorothy, Virgin and Martyr

detail of a colour lithograph of Saint Dorothy, date and artist unknown; part of the Wellcome Collection; swiped from Wikimedia CommonsEntry

Saint Dorothy was a noble virgin of the city of Cesarea, in Cappadocia, of exceeding grace and beauty, and devoted to a life of prayer and almsgiving. She was apprehended for the faith, and on her trial expressed her joyful willingness to die for Christ, declaring that in the garden of her Eternal Spouse grew celestial fruits, and flowers which never fade. She was condemned to be cruelly tortured and then beheaded. As she was led forth to death, a young lawyer of the city mocked her, and asked her to send him some flowers and fruits from the wonderful Garden of her Bridegroom. Dorothy gently smiled and assented. And when Theophilus, the lawyer, sat, later, making merry with his friends, an angel appeared to him with a basket of roses and apples, saying, “Dorothea sends thee this.” The result of this miracle was the instantaneous conversion of Theophilus, who was afterwards martyred for the faith. Saint Dorothy suffered in 303.

. . . They remind me, too,
Of martyred Dorothea,
Who from celestial gardens sent
Flowers as her witnesses
To him who scoffed and doubted.
    – Henry W. Longfellow

Favorite Practice – To consider that our spiritual garden must produce not only beautiful flowers but substantial fruits of piety.

MLA Citation

  • Eleanor Cecilia Donnelly. “Saint Dorothy, Virgin and Martyr”. Short Lives of the Saints, 1910. CatholicSaints.Info. 2 April 2021. Web. 17 April 2021. <>