Perpetua ST., a Christian martyr who suffered at Carthage, under the persecution of Severus, at the beginning of the 3d century. She was a lady of high rank, and at the time when she was accused about twenty-two years of age. In her martyrdom she afforded an illustrious example of Christian fortitude. She was married, and had an infant son; she was the favorite child of a pagan father, who importuned her to turn from the Christian faith, and to whom her constancy appeared but absurd obstinacy; every entreaty, every threat was employed; she encountered the terrors of a crowded court, in which certain conviction awaited her; she was scourged and imprisoned; the tenderest feelings of filial and maternal love were appealed to; but in vain. "God's will must be done," was her language, and she remained immovable. Nor was she less firm in the final scene, when in a crowded amphitheater, together with Felicitas, she was thrown to a mad or wild cow. By this attack she was stunned; but the fatal stroke was left, in the spoliarium — a place where the wounded were dispatched — to an unskillful gladiator, whose trembling hand she herself, with a martyr's courage, guided to her throat. Felicitas suffered with her. (One scene from her life represented in modern art is her farewell to her infant child. There are, however, many incidents in her story which would be most interesting subjects for the artist, that as yet remain without representation. In her pictures a cow stands by her side or near her. She is commemorated in the Roman Catholic Church March 7. See Butler, Lives of the Saints; Hagenbach, Kirchengesch. der ersten drei Johrhunderte, ch. 12; Alzog, Kirchengesch. 1:139; Fox, Book of Martyrs, p. 23; Bohringer, Kirchengesch. 1:43; Ruinart, in the Act. Martyr. and the Act. SS. of the Bollandists; Schaff, Church Hist. vol. 1; Jortin, Remarks, 1:352.