Catholic Culture Trusted Commentary
Catholic Culture Trusted Commentary

Tertullian—The Martyrdom of Perpetua and Felicity

By James T. Majewski ( bio - articles - email ) | Mar 12, 2021 | In Catholic Culture Audiobooks (Podcast)

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“Possibly such a woman could not have been slain unless she herself had willed it, because she was feared by the impure spirit.”

We’re back to the time of the Church Fathers with this first-hand account of the events leading up to and including the martyrdom of Sts. Perpetua and Felicity. These events were documented primarily by Perpetua herself, who after her arrest maintained a prison diary. Alongside her testimony is another text written by one of her companions, Saturus, as well as an eyewitness account of the executions themselves.

Originally written in Latin, this work is largely recognized as having been at least edited by Tertullian, though whether he composed the narrator portions himself or not remains unknown. Still, we can be grateful to whoever collected these accounts, as they together paint a very complete and compelling picture of these heroic martyrs.

Saints Perpetua and Felicity, pray for us.


Full text at

Way of the Fathers Ep. 15—Perpetua: A Rare Female Voice from Antiquity

Catholic Culture Audiobooks: The Martyrdom of St. Polycarp

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Additional narration provided by Karina Majewski

Theme music: 2 Part Invention, composed by Mark Christopher Brandt, performed by Thomas Mirus. ©️2019 Heart of the Lion Publishing Co./BMI. All rights reserved.

James T. Majewski is Director of Customer Relations for, the host and “voice” of Catholic Culture Audiobooks, and co-host of Criteria: The Catholic Film Podcast. A film and voice actor based in New York City, he holds a BA in Philosophy and an MFA in Acting. See full bio.

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