Saint symbolism

Christianity has used symbolism from its very beginnings.[1] Each saint has a story and a reason why they led an exemplary life. Symbols have been used to tell these stories throughout the history of the Church.[2] A number of Christian saints are traditionally represented by a symbol or iconic motif associated with their life, termed an attribute or emblem, in order to identify them. The study of these forms part of iconography in art history.[3] They were particularly used so that the illiterate could recognize a scene, and to give each of the Saints something of a personality in art.[2] They are often carried in the hand by the Saint.

Attributes often vary with either time or geography, especially between Eastern Christianity and the West. Orthodox images more often contained inscriptions with the names of saints, so the Eastern repertoire of attributes is generally smaller than the Western. Many of the most prominent saints, like Saint Peter and Saint John the Evangelist can also be recognised by a distinctive facial type – as can Christ. In the case of later saints their actual historical appearance can also be used; Saint Bernardino of Siena (1380–1444) is one of the earliest whose distinctive appearance was well-known from early prints and is nearly always used by artists. Some attributes are general, such as the palm frond carried by martyrs.[4] The use of a symbol in a work of art depicting a Saint reminds people who is being shown and of their story. The following is a list of some of these attributes.

Four Evangelists

Saint Symbol[5]
Matthew man or angel
Mark winged lion
Luke bull
John eagle

The Apostles

Saint Symbol
Andrew saltire[a]
Bartholomew the Apostle knife, human skin[a]
James, son of Zebedee pilgrim's staff, scallop shell, key, sword, pilgrim's hat, astride a white charger, Cross of Saint James[a]
James, son of Alphaeus / James the Just square rule, halberd, club, saw[a]
John book, a serpent in a chalice, cauldron, eagle[a]
Jude sword, square rule, club, ship[a]
Judas Iscariot thirty pieces of silver[a]
Matthew angel[a]
Peter Keys of Heaven, boat, fish, rooster, pallium, papal vestments; man crucified head downwards on an inverted cross, vested as an Apostle, holding a book or scroll. Iconographically, he is depicted with a bushy white beard and white hair, and wearing a blue robe and yellow mantle.[a]
Philip column; elderly bearded saint and open to God man, holding a basket of loaves and a Tau Cross[a]
Simon boat; cross and saw; fish (or two fishes); lance; man being sawn in two longitudinally; oar[a]
Thomas the twin, placing his finger in the side of Christ, axe, spear (means of martyrdom), square (his profession, a builder)[a]

Mary, mother of Jesus

Mary is often portrayed wearing blue. Her attributes include a blue mantle, crown of 12 stars, pregnant woman, woman with child, woman trampling serpent, crescent moon, woman clothed with the sun, heart pierced by sword, Madonna lily, roses, and rosary beads.[6]

Saint Symbol
Our Lady of SorrowsMary in mournful state, tears, bleeding heart pierced by seven daggers[b]
Queen of HeavenMary with a crown of stars, flowers[a]

Saints listed by name


Saint Symbol
Acathius of Melitenecrown of thorns[a]
Agatha of Sicilytongs or shears, veil, bells, two breasts on a plate[a]
Alfege of Canterburyaxe[a]
Alfred the Greatcodex, crown, orb/scepter[a]
Ambrosebees, beehive, dove, ox, pen[a]
Anne, grandmother of Jesusdoor, book[a], with the Virgin Mary reading, red robe and green mantle[8]
Anthony the Greatmonk's habit, bell, pig, T-shaped cross[a]
Anthony of PaduaChild Jesus, bread, book, lily[a]
Athanasius of Alexandriabishop arguing with a pagan, bishop holding an open book, bishop standing over a defeated heretic[a]
Augustine of Hippodove, child, shell, pen, book[a]


Saint Symbol
Barbaratower, chalice, ciborium, cannon[a]
Barnabaspilgrim's staff, olive branch[a]
Benedictbroken cup, raven, bell, crosier, bush[a]
Benno of Meissenfish with keys in its mouth, book[a]
Bernard of Clairvauxpen, bees, instruments of the Passion[a]
Bernardino of Sienatablet or sun inscribed with IHS, three mitres[a]
Blaisewax, taper (candle), iron comb[a]
Bonaventurecommunion, ciborium, cardinal's hat[a]
Bonifaceoak, axe, book, fox, scourge, fountain, raven, sword[a]
Brendan the Navigatorwhale; priest celebrating Mass on board a ship while fish gather to listen; one of a group of monks in a small boat [a]
Bridget of Swedenbook, pilgrim's staff[a]
Brigid of Kildarecow, crosier, Brigid's cross[a]


Saint Symbol
Casimir of Poland and Lithuaniaroyal attire of crown and red robe lined with ermine, lily, cross, rosary; sometimes two right hands[a]
Catherine of Alexandriawheel, crown, sword, book[a]
Catherine of Ricciring, crown, crucifix[a]
Catherine of Sienastigmata, cross, ring, lily[a]
Charles Borromeocardinal's robes, communion[a]
Christophergiant crudely dressed, torrent, tree, branch or large staff, carrying the Child Jesus on shoulder[a]
Clare of Assisimonstrance[a]
Clare of Montefalcocross[a]
Clementanchor, fish,[a] Mariner's Cross[b]
Corbiniansaddled bear{[9]
Saints Cosmas and Damiana phial, box of ointment[a]
Saints Crispin and Crispinianshoes, millstones[a]
Cyriacusdeacon's vestments[a]


Saint Symbol
David of Scotlandking with sword or sceptre[a]
David of Walesdove[a]
DemetriusDepicted wearing the armor of a Roman soldier, usually carrying a spear, often seated on a red horse[a]
Denishead in hands[a]
Dominicrosary[a] , star, dog with a torch[10]
Dominic de la Calzadahen and rooster, monastic habit, prayer beads, shepherd's crook[b]
Dorothea of Caesareaflowers, fruits[11]
Dunstanhammer, tongs[a]
Dymphnacrown, sword, lily, lamp, princess with a fettered devil at her feet[a]


Saint Symbol
Earconwaldbishop travelling in a chariot[a]
Edmund the Martyrquiver of arrows[a]
Edward the Confessorking crowned with a nimbus and holding a sceptre[a]
Saint Eligiusbishop portrayed with a crosier in his right hand, on the open palm of his left a miniature church of chased gold; with a hammer, anvil, and horseshoe; or with a horse[a]
Elisabeth of Hungaryalms, flowers, bread, the poor, pitcher[a]
Emericsword, lily[7]
Emilianusmonk on horseback[a]
Elizabeth of Aragoncrown[a]
Erasmus of Formiaewindlass[a]
Eric of Swedenking being martyred at Mass[a]
Eustacehunting clothes, stag, bull, crucifix, horn, oven[a]


Saint Symbol
FaithShield of the Trinity[a]
Felix of Burgundyanchor[a]
Fiacrespade, basket of vegetables[a]
FlorianCross of Saint Florian; Roman officer or soldier; pitcher of water; pouring water over fire[12]
Florinus of Remüsbottle, glass of wine[a]
Fourteen Holy HelpersSaints Acacius, Barbara, Blaise, Christopher, Cyriacus, Catherine of Alexandria, Denis, Erasmus of Formiae, Eustace, George, Giles, Margaret of Antioch, Pantaleon, and Vitus, shown as a group.[b]
Francis of Assisiwolf, birds, fish, skull, stigmata[a]
Francis Xaviercrucifix, bell, vessel, crab with a cross[a]


Saint Symbol
GabrielArchangel;[13] Clothed in blue or white garments; Carrying a lily,[14] a trumpet, a shining lantern, a branch from Paradise, a scroll,[14] and a scepter.[14], scroll stating "Ave Maria Gratia Plena"[15][a]
Gallan abbot blessing a bear that brings him a log of wood; may be shown holding a hermit's tau staff with the bear or carrying a loaf and a pilgrim's staff.<[16]
Genesiustheatre mask[a]
Genevievelit candle, bread, keys, herd, cattle[a]
Georgedragon, soldier or knight in armour, often on white horse, especially in the East, Cross of Saint George[a]
Gerard of CsanádBishop being killed by a spear[a]
Gertrude of Nivellescrown, tapir, lily, mouse[a]
Gervasius and Protasiusthe scourge, the club and the sword[b]
GilesBenedictine habit, hind[a]
Godelievecrown, well, woman being strangled[b]
Gotthard of Hildesheimdragon; model of a church[17]
Gregory the Greatpapal tiara, crosier, dove (often portrayed at his ear)[a]


Saint Symbol
Helenawearing a royal crown while supporting a cross[a]
Hermann Josephkneeling before a statue of the Virgin and Child and offering an apple[a]
Hermenegildaxe, crown, sword, and cross [b]
Hilary of Poitiersepiscopal vestments, a mitre and crozier, and a beard, usually white and often long[b]
Hippolytus of Romepapal tiara[a]
Hippolytus the soldiermilitary garb, horse's harness[a]
Honoratus of Amiensbaker's peel or shovel; bishop with a large Host; bishop with three Hosts on a baker's shovel; loaves[a]
Hugh of Lincolnswan[a]
Humilitydressed as a nun [a]
Hyacinth of Polandstatue of the Blessed Virgin Mary; Monstrance or Ciborium [b]


Saint Symbol
Ignatius of Antiocha bishop surrounded by lions or in chains[a]
Ignatius of LoyolaEucharist, chasuble with Jesuit-style collar, book often inscribed with "Ad majorem Dei gloriam", or the letters AMDG, the letters "ihs" with a cross across the h (traditionally with three nails below the letters, and the letters and nails surrounded by the sun's rays), sword, cross.[a]
Imerius of Immertalhermit's garb and bird of prey[a]
Irene of Tomarpalm of martyrdom[a]
Isidore the LaborerPortrayed as a peasant holding a sickle and a sheaf of corn, a sickle and staff; as an angel plows for him; or with an angel and white oxen near him. In Spanish art, his emblems are a spade or a plough.[18]
IsaiahAn old man with gray hair and beard holding a scroll with words from Isaiah 7:14, (in Latin) ecce virgo concipiet et pariet filium et vocabitur nomen eius Emmanuel, "behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and his name shall be Emmanuel[b]
Isidore of Sevillebees, pen, book[a]
Ivo of Kermartindepicted as a lawyer, holding a document, in legal dress.[a]


Saint Symbol
Jeromelion, cardinal clothing, cross, skull, books and writing material, stone in hand[a]
Joan of Arcshield, Cross of Lorraine[a]
Saint Joannalamb[a]
John BerchmansRule of Saint Ignatius, cross, rosary[a]
John Chrysostombees, dove, pen[a]
John of Godalms, heart, crown of thorns[a]
John the Baptistlamb, head on a platter, animal skin (the camel-skin coat of the Gospels), pointing at Christ or a lamb, often portrayed carrying a long crudely made cross[a]
Joseph of AnchietaGospel book, crucifix and Walking stick[a]
Joseph, spouse of MaryChild Jesus, lily, rod, plane, carpentry square, purple robe and brown mantle[a]
Juan Diegotilmàtli[a]
Justin Martyraxe, sword[a]
Justina of Paduapalm frond, knife, unicorn[a]
Juthwararound soft cheese[a]


Saint Symbol
Kateri Tekakwithaturtle, lily[a][b]
Katharine Drexelwoman dressed as a nun[a]
Kentigernbishop with a robin on his shoulder; holding a bell and a fish with a ring in its mouth[19]
Kevin of Glendaloughblackbird[a]
Kilianwearing a bishop's mitre and wielding a sword[a]
Kinga of Polanddepicted as an abbess; crown[a]
Kjeld of ViborgPriest with book[a]
Knut of DenmarkNordic king with royal insignia, dagger, lance or arrow.[a]
Kolomanpilgrim monk with a rope in his hand; depicted being hanged on a gibbet; tongs and rod; priest with a book and maniple[b]


Saint Symbol
Lambert of Maastrichtpalm of martyrdom[a], sword[b]
Lawrence of Romecross, Gospel Book, gridiron, palm frond, purse of money, attired as a deacon in a dalmatic, accompanied by a group of poor people.[b]
Leander of Sevillepen[a]
Leonard of Noblaclock, chain, manacles or fetters[b]
Liborius of Le Manspebbles, peacock[b]
LonginusMilitary attire, lance[b]
Louis IX of Franceroyal attire of crown and blue robe decorated with golden fleur-de-lis, crown of thorns, nails[b]
Louis Bertranda chalice containing a snake [b]
Louis of Toulousesilk gloves and a richly embroidered cape with a jeweled clasp at the neck[b]
Lucycord, eyes on a dish, lamp[a]


Saint Symbol
Margaret of Scotlandreading[a]
Margaret the Virgindragon in chains[a]
Maria Gorettifourteen lilies; farmer's clothing; (occasionally) a knife[a]
Marthaaspergillum, dragon[a]
Martin of Toursgoose; sharing cloak with beggar[a]
Martin de Porresbroom, a cat, dog and a mouse eating from the same plate[7]
Mary Magdalenejar of ointment, red egg[a]
Matildapurse, alms[a]
Mauricesoldier in armour, banner with red cross[a]
Maurusscales, spade, crutch[a]
Menas of Cretetwo camels[a]
Michaelscales, banner, sword, dragon[a]
Monicagirdle, tears[a]


Saint Symbol
Nicholasthree purses or balls, anchor, boat, child[a]
Nicholas of TolentinoAugustinian holding a bird on a plate in the right hand and a crucifix on the other hand; holding a basket of bread, giving bread to a sick person; holding a lily or a crucifix garlanded with lilies; with a star above him or on his breast[b]
Nicolás FactorFranciscan habit, skull, fire [b]
Pope Nicholas Irooster[20]
NinianClogrinny, or the Bell of St. Ninian[a]
Norbert of Xantenmonstrance, cross with two beams[a]


Saint Symbol
ObadiahProphet with his index finger of his right hand pointing upward[b]
Oda of Scotlanddepicted wearing a long blue gown with one shoulder bare; usually carries a staff or a book; always shown with a magpie on her hand and a crown under her feet[a]
Odile of AlsaceAbbess praying before an altar; woman with a book on which lie two eyes; larkspur[b]
Olaf of Norwayaxe in Norway's coat of arms, king with axe in a viking boat[a]
Onuphriusold hermit dressed only in long hair and a loincloth of leaves; hermit with an angel bringing him the Eucharist or bread; hermit with a crown at his feet
Opportuna of Montreuildepicted carrying an abbess's crozier and a casket of relics. She may also be shown with the Virgin appearing at her deathbed or as a princess with a basket of cherries and a fleur-de-lys[21]
Osgythrepresented in art with a stag behind her and a long key hanging from her girdle, or otherwise carrying a key and a sword crossed, a device which commemorates St. Peter, St. Paul and St. Andrew[22]


Saint Symbol
Pancrassword, palm branch[a]
Pantaleonnailed hands[a]
Patrickcross, harp, serpent, baptismal font, demons, shamrock[a]
Paul the Apostlesword, book or scroll, horse; long, pointed beard, and balding backwards from forehead. Green robe, red mantle.[a]
Peter of Saint Joseph de BetancurBell, Franciscan habit and spear canary pastor.[a]
Saint Peter of VeronaDominican with a hatchet in his head or a severe head wound; or writing the words "Credo in unum Deum" as he dies[a]
Petronillaset of keys, dolphin[a]
Philip Nerilily[a]
Philomenaanchor, palm, arrows[a]


Saint Symbol
Quentindepicted as a young man with two spits; as a deacon; with a broken wheel; with a chair to which he is transfixed; with a sword; or beheaded, a dove flying from his severed head[a]
Quiricusdepicted as a naked child riding on a wild boar[a]
Quirinus of Malmedydragon[23]
Quirinus of Neussmilitary attire; knight with lance, sword, hawk; banner or sign with nine balls[a]
Quirinus of Sesciamillstone hanging from his neck[b]
Quiteriadepicted with a dog on a lead; depicted with her head in her hands, emerging from the sea.[a]


Saint Symbol
Raymond NonnatusA Mercedarian friar wearing a cardinal's red mozzetta, holding a monstrance and a martyr's palm branch [b]
Raymond of Penyafortskimming across the sea with his cape as both boat and sail[b]
Remigiusdove, book, lamp[b]
ReparataStanding alone or near St. Mary, bearing a martyr's crown and palm; a dove; a banner with a red cross on a white field; sometimes depicted with St. Ansanus[24]
Richardbishop with overturned chalice[a]
Rita of Casciaroses, roses and figs, crucifix, thorn, sometimes with a wound in her forehead[a]
Rochangel, dog with bread, leg wound, pilgrim's dress[a]
Rosalia of PalermoDepicted as a young woman, sometimes holding a cross, book, or skull, and also a spray of lilies[b]
Rose of Limacrown of thorns, anchor, city, roses, crown of roses[a]
Rufina and JustaA model of the Giralda; earthenware pots, bowls and platters; books on which are two lumps of potter's clay; palm of martyrdom; lion[b]


Saint Symbol
Sativolascythe, well[a]
Sava of Serbiabook[a]
Sebastianarrows, crown[a]
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednegofiery furnace[b]
Spyridon of Corfubishop with Gospel; long, pointed beard, and wearing a shepherd's hat[a]
Stanislaus of Szczepanówsword[a]
Stanisław KazimierczykPriest's attire[a]
Stephen the Martyrstone(s)[a]
Stephen of Hungaryroyal attire of crown and robes, and holding orb or sceptre with double cross[7]
Swithunbishop with bridge, broken eggs[a]


Saint Symbol
Teresa of Ávilaheart, arrow, look[a]
Teresa of the Andessmall cross, flowers[a]
Thérèse de Lisieuxroses entwining a crucifix[a]
Thomas Aquinasmonstrance, dove, ox[a]
Thomas Becketsword, and wearing chancellor's robe and neck chain[a]
Thomas Moreaxe[a]
Timothythree stones and a clubclub and stones; broken image of Diana[25]


Saint Symbol
Ulrich of AugsburgBishop holding a fish; at dinner with Saint Wolfgang; rewarding a messenger with a goose leg, which turns into a fish on Friday morning; giving a garment to a beggar; with Saint Afra; riding through a river on horseback as his companion sinks; with a cross given him by an angel[b]
Urbanportrayed in art after his beheading, with the papal tiara near him[a]
Urban of Langresbishop with a bunch of grapes or a vine at his side; a book with a wine vessel on it[a]
Ursicinusbook and fleur-de-lis[a]
Ursulaarrow; banner; cloak; clock; maiden shot with arrows; depicted accompanied by a varied number of companions who are being martyred in various ways; ship[a]
Ursus of Aostabirds on his shoulder; wearing fur pelisse in a religious habit[a]


Saint Symbol
ValentineBirds; roses; bishop with a crippled or a child with epilepsy at his feet; bishop with a rooster nearby; bishop refusing to adore an idol; bishop being beheaded; priest bearing a sword; priest holding a sun; priest giving sight to a blind girl[26]
Vedastwolf carrying a goose in its mouth; child; bear[a]
Veneracrown; book; palm; cross; a palm of martyrdom interlaced with a triple crown (signifying the fact that she was a Virgin, an Apostle, and a Martyr{[b]
VeronicaVeil of Veronica[a]
Victor of Marseilleswindmill[a]
Vigilius of Trentshoes or clogs[a]
Vincent de Paulchildren[a]
Vincent Ferrerpulpit, cardinal's hat, trumpet, captives[a]
Vituscross, rooster, lion[a]


Saint Symbol
Wenceslaus of Bohemiacrown, dagger[a]
William of Monteverginewolf and pastoral crook[a]
William of Yorkbishop crossing the River Tweed[a]
Winnochand-mill, bridge, grinding corn[a]
Wolfgang of Regensburga church building with an adze lodged in the roof, a wolf[a]


Saint Symbol
Xenia of Saint Petersburgwalking stick[a]
Xystusbook, papal tiara, martyr's palm[a]


Saint Symbol
Yrieixbishop's mitre[a]


Saint Symbol
ZacharyMaking peace with King Luitprand. Sometimes he may have an olive branch and a dove over him [a]
Zenobius of Florenceflowering tree; bringing a dead man or child back to life[a]
Zitabag, keys[a]

Plants in symbolism

Flower Symbol Reason
AcaciaA symbol of the immortality of the souldurability of the wood [d]
AlmondA symbol of divine approvalFrom the Book of Numbers "The next day Moses entered the Tent of the Testimony and saw that Aaron's staff, which represented the house of Levi, had not only sprouted but had budded, blossomed and produced almonds." [d][27]
Anemonecrucifixion scenes and have been associated with the sorrow of Virgin Marythese flowers grew at Golgotha[c]
ColumbineHoly SpiritThe name "columbine" comes from the Latin for "dove", due to the resemblance of the inverted flower to five doves clustered together.[28][c]
Daisyinnocence, beauty, salvation, modesty, purity and lovesimplicity[c]
Hyacinthprudence, constancy, desire of heaven and peace of mindFrom the story of Hyacinthus, upon whose death the flower sprung forth.[29]
IrisOur Lady of Sorrowssharp leaves like swords [c]
Lilyvirtues of justice, charity and hope; also the Holy Trinity, the Madonna lily is specific to Marylilies with three petals [c]
Palm branchMartyrdomsymbol of victory in that war waged by the spirit against the flesh
PassionflowerCrucifixion of Jesuseach part of the flower represents a different aspect of the Passion of Christ [c]
RoseMaryqueen of flowers [c][30]
White cloverHoly TrinityThree petals that compose a flower [c]
White tulipHoly SpiritWhite tulips are used to send a message of forgiveness[31]

Further reading

  • Delaney, John P. (1980). Dictionary of Saints (Second ed.). Garden City, NY: Doubleday. ISBN 0-385-13594-7.
  • Lanzi, Fernando; Lanzi, Gioia (2004-09-01). Saints and their Symbols: Recognizing Saints in Art and in Popular Images. Translated by O'Connell, Matthew J. ISBN 9780814629703.
  • Post, W. Ellwood (1975). Saints, Signs and Symbols (2 ed.). SPCK Publishing. ISBN 9780281028948.
  • Walsh, Michael (2007). A New Dictionary of Saints: East and West. Liturgical Press. ISBN 978-0-8146-3186-7.
  • Whittemore, Carroll E. (1980). Symbols of the Church. Abingdon Press. ISBN 0687183014.

See also


  1. "List of saints". Catholic Online.
  2. "Iconography". Christian Iconography. 2015-10-20.
  3. Kostka, Arun Oswin. "Flowers in Christian Symbolism".
  4. Gast, Walter E. (2000). "Symbols in Christian Art and Architecture".
  1.  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Herbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "Symbolism" . Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton.
  2. Mayernik, David T. (2018). "A Vast, Immeasurable Sanctuary: Iconography for Churches". Sacred Architecture Journal. 5: 22.
  3. "Eastern Orthodox and Catholic teaching about Icons".
  4. Hassett, M. (1911). "Palm in Christian Symbolism". The Catholic Encyclopedia.
  5. Saint Jerome; St. Jerome (December 2008). Commentary on Matthew (The Fathers of the Church, Volume 117). CUA Press. p. 55. ISBN 978-0-8132-0117-7.
  6. Kugeares, Sophia Manoulian (1991). Images Of The Annunciation Of The Virgin Mary Of The 13th, 14th And 15th Century.
  7. Stracke, Richard (2015-10-20). "Hungarian Saints: Adalbert, Martin, Stanislas, Emeric and Stephen". Christian Iconography.
  8. Fongemie, Pauly. "SYMBOLS IN ART". Catholic tradition. Retrieved 2019-01-15.
  9. "L'Osservatore Romano publishes new Papal coat of arms". Catholic News Agency. 2005-04-28. Retrieved 2007-01-05.
  10. Libellus de principiis, citing the story of his birth
  11. "Saint Dorothy of Caesarea". Patron Saints Index:. 2008-03-18.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
  12. Mendler, Mitch. "Saint Florian - the patron saint of the fire service". Retrieved 2019-01-16.
  13. Zimmerman, Julie. "Friar Jack's Catechism Quiz: Test Your Knowledge on Angels". Archived from the original on 21 May 2012. Retrieved 16 February 2012.
  14. Ronner, John (March 1993). Know Your Angels: The Angel Almanac With Biographies of 100 Prominent Angels in Legend & Folklore-And Much More!. Murfreesboro, TN: Mamre Press. pp. 70–72, 73. ISBN 9780932945402. LCCN 93020336. OCLC 27726648. Retrieved 2013-11-15. Artists like to show Gabriel carrying a lily (Mary's flower), a scroll and a scepter.
  15. OrthodoxWiki. "Archangel Gabriel" (Internet). OrthodoxWiki. Retrieved 2013-11-15. Because the Angels are incorporeal beings, though they nevertheless take on human form when appearing to mankind, it can be difficult to differentiate one from another in icons. However, Gabriel is usually portrayed with certain distinguishing characteristics. He typically wears blue or white garments; he holds either a lily (representing the Theotokos), a trumpet, a shining lantern, a branch from Paradise presented to him by the Theotokos, or a spear in his right hand and often a mirror—made of jasper and with a Χ (the first letter of Christ (Χριστος) in Greek)—in his left hand. He should not be confused with the Archangel Michael, who carries a sword, shield, date-tree branch, and in the other hand a spear, white banner (possibly with scarlet cross) and tends to wear red. Michael's specific mission is to suppress enemies of the true Church (hence the military theme), while Gabriel's is to announce mankind's salvation.
  16. "Saint of the Day, October 16:". St. Patrick Catholic Church. Retrieved 2012-03-08.
  17. "Godehard (Gotthard) von Hildesheim". Ökumenisches Heiligenlexikon (in German). Retrieved 2019-01-15.
  18. d, d. "Isidore and Maria, Patron Saints of Farmers". d. National Catholic Rural Life Conference. Retrieved 2013-04-06.
  19. "Saint Kentigern". Archived from the original on 6 March 2012. Retrieved 14 November 2012.
  20. Adler, Jerry; Lawler, Andrew. "How the Chicken Conquered the World". Smithsonian. Smithsonian Institution. Retrieved 2012-06-01.
  21. Rabenstein, Katherine (April 1999). "Opportuna of Montreuil, OSB". Saints O' the Day for April 22. Archived from the original on February 6, 2007. Retrieved 2012-02-24.CS1 maint: unfit url (link)
  22. "Lives".
  23. Baring-Gould, Sabine (1898). "The Lives of the Saints". The Lives of the Saints.
  24. Jameson, Anna (1857). Sacred and Legendary Art. Longman, Brown, Green. p. 648.
  25. "Saints Timothy & Titus", Saints, Passionist nun.
  26. Jones, Terry. "Valentine of Terni". Patron Saints Tom. Archived from the original on April 1, 2010. Retrieved February 14, 2007.
  27. Numbers 17:1-8
  28. Shorter Oxford English dictionary, 6th ed. United Kingdom: Oxford University Press. 2007. p. 3804. ISBN 0199206872.
  29. "Signs and Symbols". Retrieved 2019-01-22.
  30. Cucciniello, Lisa (2008). Rose to Rosary: The Flower of Venus in Catholicism. Rose Lore: Essays in Semiotics and Cultural History. Lexington Books. pp. 64–65.
  31. "Easter Flowers". Retrieved 2018-03-10.
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