Sunday, July 7, 2013

July 20


Her martyrdom took place, perhaps, in the third century.

I READ that no trustworthy authority has come to light for any details regarding this personage. Even her existence does not admit of proof.

Her legendary acts represent her as brought up by a Christian nurse, and as herself a Christian. Wherefore her pagan father disowned her. At length, after various trials, tortures, and triumphs, she died by decapitation.

Nevertheless--and this undermines meditation--we cannot feel assured that she lived at all, or died, or went up to glory. Yet should not her memory, or her phantom as the case may be, do us some good? Let her not engross one day in the year for nothing!

On one supposition we can picture her in accordance with her name of Margaret as a modest daisy, growing where for the present we cannot come: or as a pearl not yet brought up from hidden depths to the sun-lighted surface. Or dwelling on her alternative name of Marina, we can look forward to knowing her when both sea and earth render up the dead.

On the other hand should she not exist, we shall yet have gained and not lost if the Feast Day (though it be not her Festival) have led us to think of things pure and lovely, of virtue, and of praise.

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