Pantaleon, Saint


A martyr of Nicomedia under Maximinus (feast day: 15 Babah) (cf. Forget, 1954, p. 69). His Passion is preserved in a Greek version and a Coptic version. The latter exists in two manuscripts, one in the Egyptian Museum, Turin (cat. 63000, 15; ed. Rossi, 1887-1892) and one at Utrecht University (only fragments of two sheets, ed. Quispel and Zandee, 1962). There are certain discrepancies between the two Coptic manuscripts, but on the whole, their version is close to the Greek.

is the son of Eustorgius, a magistrate of Nicomedia. He learns the art of medicine from Euphrosinus, and the emperor wants him to be the successor of Euphrosinus. In the meantime, Pantaleon is converted by the old man Hermolaus, who teaches him to cure the sick by invoking Christ. He revives a boy who has been bitten by a viper. He tries to convert his father and heals a blind man in his presence. However, envious colleagues bring accusations against him to Maximinus. Pantaleon’s trial takes place with the usual account of arguments, miracles, visions, and tortures. After a last vision of Christ, he is martyred, and an ensuing conversion of the inhabitants of Nicomedia takes place.

The text seems to be a translation from the Greek and would have been made in the “classical” period (cf. HAGIOGRAPHY). It should be noted that it is the source of the text of the Passion of a martyr named OLYMPIUS unknown in other traditions.


  • Lefort, L. T. “Un Martyr inconnu: Olympios.” Le Muséon 63 (1950):1-23.
  • Quispel, G., and J. Zandee. “Some Coptic Fragments from the Martyrdom of St. Pantaleon.” Verbum Caro 16 (1962):42-52. Rossi, F. “Un nuovo codice copto del di Torino.” Atti del Lincei, ser. 5, no. 1 (1893):3-136.
  • . I Papyri del di Torino, 2 vols., 10 fasc. Turin, 1887-1892.