Theoctiste of Lesbos

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What we know about St. Theoktiste of Lesbos, also known as Theoctiste of Paros, we owe primarily to the prayer book written by St. Symeon the Metaphrastes ("the Translator"), renowned primarily for his (all 148) "Lives of the Saints".

It is recounted that Theoctiste lived during the 9th century and was born on the island of Mithimna, Lesbos, however, due to her association with the historical and archaeologically important Church of Panagia Ekatontapyliani - Hundred Doors (Paros), the "Parians" have her classified as one of their local saints. She was orphaned from a very young age and became a nun from her childhood and was raised in a monastery in Lesbos.

At around the time she reached the age of 18, pirates took Theoktiste, along with other young women, on one of their raids of Lesbos. On their way to the coast of Africa, their shipped anchored at the port of Naousa on Paros island. They let their captives land to get over their bout of sea-sickness and this is when Theoktiste managed to escape from her guards and got lost in the woods. [1] She wandered for many days and wound up at the temple of Ekatontapyliani

She dwelt within this church for 35 years and died late in the 9th century.

She is commemorated by the church November 9 and also November 22.


  1. In those days, the woods covered most of the island

See also

External Links