Images of Medieval Art and Architecture

Saint Eustace and Others, MM.

General Information

In Latin, Sanctus Eustatius;
In Italian, Sant Eustachio
In French, St. Eustache

: Roman Martyrology. Almost all the Roman Martyrologies, but not always on the same day. In the ancient Roman Calendar, published by Fronto, on Sept. 11; by the Copts on Sept. 15. but by the Greeks and Romans on Sept. 20. Authority:- The Greek Acts which are, however, fabulous.

Text from The Lives of the Saints
by Rev. S. Baring-Gould
New and Revised Edition.
Edinburgh; John Grant:, 1914. BR> Volume 10, Pages 319-20.

Headings added by J. Vadnal

Eustathius, or Eustace, was a Roman general under Trajan, ig any trust whatever may be placed in his Acts. Before his baptism he was called Placidus, and his wife formerly Tatiana, at her baptism received the name of Theopista. They had two sons, Agapius and Theopistus. Eustace went out hinting one day, when a heathen- so runs the fanciful tale- when he saw a stag coming towards him with a crucifix between its horns; and the stag cried to him, "Placidus, Placidus, why persecutest thou me. I am Jesus Christ." Thereupon he believed and was baptized, with all his house, The Emperor was so exasperated at his conversion that he had him, his wife, and children placed inside a brazen bull, and a fire was lighted under it, so that they burned to dearth when the brass became hot.

Not satisfied with these wonders legend makers have constructed the pedigree of St. Eustace, which is this:- Faustinus Octavius was the father of St. Clement I, and from him descended Agapitus Octavius, who was the father of Eustace. The place of the miraculous vision is Guadagnolo, between Tibur and Praeneste, The body of St. Eustace was given, in the 12th century, to the Abbey of St. Denis, near Paris. It was burnt and scattered about in 1567 by the Hugenots, but fragments are shown as belonging originally to it in the church of St. Eustache in Paris. Other relics at Donai, Prague, Epternach, Cologne, Madrid, ect..

St. Eustace was a favorite subject with Medieval painters. He is represented as a huntsman kneeling before the miraculous stag. ...

St. Eustace, as well as St. Hubert, is the patron of huntsmen.

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Updated by Jane Vadnal, September, 1998