«« Saint Margaret of Antioch

Saint Margaret of Antioch Web

two panels each 54 x 42, oil on canvas, 2010        SOLD

Margaret was tending a heard of sheep when the provost Olybrius passed by and was immediately smitten with the girl.  When Margaret refused Olybrius’ offer of marriage, and if not that a place as his concubine, he was overcome with anger and in turn reported her to the local authorities for the crime of Christianity.

The tortures for Margaret at the hands of her persecutors were many and bloody: beaten with rods and iron combs so that her flesh was rend from her bones.  As blood ran from her body Margaret said “… this cruel torment of my flesh is salvation of my soul.”

Seeing that his tortures were getting no where with young Margaret the provost had her thrown into prison.  In her cell a horrible dragon appeared and assailed her, and would have devoured her, but she made the sign of the cross and anon he vanished away.

Then the devil, Veltis, appeared to her in the guise of a young man.  She caught him by the head and threw him to the ground, and set her right foot on his neck saying: “Lie still, thou fiend, under the feet of a woman.”  The devil cried out: “O blessed Margaret, I am overcome.  If a young man had overcome me I had not wrecked, but alas!  I am overcome by a tender virgin.”

Eventually, after more trials before the provost of water and fire, Margaret was beheaded.  It is worth mentioning that it is this Margaret who was on of the voices named by Joan of Arc who gave her messages which helped France regain its freedom from the English hordes.