As with other early Christian martyrs, Agatha’s story is legendary not factual. The Sicilian-born virgin supposedly was martyred during the persecution of Emperor Decius, who ruled 249-51. She was sent to a brothel to force her to repudiate a vow of chastity, but she remained steadfast and her breasts were cut off. After being healed by St. Peter who appeared to her in prison, she died a few days later from further torture. Because of her saintly cult spread, she was added to the Roman Canon of the Mass about 600.