First English edition of the Nuremberg chronicle: being the Liber chronicarum of Dr. Hartmann Schedel…

Simon (Symon), son of Cleophas, was an apostle of Christ Jesus Christ, and was his cousin. He was called "the Canaanite" and was said to have been a brother of Judas Thaddaeus. Because of his zeal for the Lord he was surnamed Peter. In the division of the ministry Egypt fell to his lot. As he preached the Gospel of Christ everywhere, so upon the martyrdom of James the apostle he ruled the church at Jerusalem with the consent of the apostles. And when he attained the age of one hundred twenty years, he, together with Judas (Jude) the apostle, was brought before the image of the sun-god to worship it; but they showed that the idol was full of devils; and they ordered the devils to break up the idol; immediately after which black Ethiopians[The German edition replaces ‘black Ethiopians’ with ‘black Moors.’] came out of it and broke it up. Then the high priests immediately fell upon the apostles and punished them. Some hold that this Simon was accused of heresy by Atticus, the consul, and was brought to his death by means of many cruel tortures such as Christ suffered. And all the people were astounded that so old a man could endure such suffering. Others said that Simon was the son of Cleophas, and a bishop of Jerusalem. His day is the 28th of October, on which Saint Jude is also honored.[Simon: There appears to be some confusion in this text. Of the original twelve apostles one was originally called Simon, and later Peter (the rock), or Simon Peter. He has already been spoken of in the martyrology at Folio CIV verso, and there disposed of by crucifixion with his head downward. The present Simon was no doubt the other apostle of that name. He is to be distinguished as "the Canaanite" (Matt.10:4) or "zealot" (Luke 6:15; Acts 1:13). The "zealotes" of Luke is the Greek equivalent for the Chaldee term used by Matthew and Mark, which has no reference to Canaan, or Cana, but is as a member of the faction of Zealots, fierce defenders of the Mosaic law and ritual.]

Petronilla (Petronella), that holiest of virgins and daughter of St. Peter, was a beautiful woman. By the volition of Peter she was troubled with a languishing illness or cold fever. And when the disciples asked him why he did not cure his sick daughter, although he had healed many other persons, he answered it was good for her. Yet he asked her to serve him and then return to her sick bed. And when she began to acquire a fear of God, she received healing medicine from her father. But now, against her inclinations, a count named Flaccus, desired her for wife. She asked three days grace in which to think about it. These three days she spent in fasting and prayer, and on the third day she died, as soon as she had received the last sacrament of Christ our Lord from Nicodemus. So Flaccus, seeing that he would be instantly mocked, took her companion, Felicola, (as his wife), and caused Nicodemus to be put to death with various tortures. Her body was buried at Rome, and her day is the last of May.[Petronilla is said (according to legend) to have been a daughter of Peter the apostle. He took her with him to Rome, where she became paralyzed; but Peter restored her to full health. A certain officer, named Flaccus, having greatly admired her beauty, sent soldiers to her to ask her to become his wife; but she replied, "If he wants me to marry him, let him not send rough soldiers to woo me, but respectable matrons, and give me time to make up my mind." At this response the soldiers immediately withdrew abashed. But before Flaccus had obtained matrons to convey his offer, Petronilla had starved herself to death. At Rome is a catacomb named after her, a church, and an altar in the Vatican that enshrines her body. According to some she was only the spiritual child of Peter.]

Lazarus, brother of the two sisters, Martha and Magdalen, was a bishop at Massilia.[Massilia, an ancient city, now Marseilles.] He was raised from the dead by our Lord Jesus Christ in the thirteenth year of the reign of Claudius. His sister Martha, according to the Lord’s prophecy, lived a whole year with a cold fever, and then rested in peace. Saint Frontinus buried her body. In memory of brother and sister a church was later built not far from Bethany. Marcella, her next of kin (as it is said), described her life, and afterwards converted to the faith many people in Sclavonia.[Slavonia (Sclavonia) (‘land of the Slavs’) is a historic region, part of modern Croatia, was in the ancient world part of the Roman province of Pannonia. The German edition translates Slavonia as ‘land of the Wends,’ who were one of the Lusatian branches of the Slavic race dwelling in Saxony and Prussia. Wend is an early German name for any Slav.] Ten years after the death of Martha, she too rested in peace in the Lord. The relics of this man Lazarus and his sister are held in particular veneration in the city of Massilia.[Lazarus was a citizen of Bethany residing with his two sisters, Mary and Martha. Of this household Jesus seemed to have been a friend. Lazarus was raised from the grave by Jesus in the presence of the family and a number of Jews after he had been dead four days; and so incensed were the Jews at this that they sought to kill not only Jesus, but even Lazarus. The story of this greatest of miracles performed by Jesus is recorded in John 11; 12:1-11. "Jesus therefore again groaning to himself comes to the grave. It was a cave, and a stone lay upon it. Jesus said, Take away the stone. Martha, the sister of the one that was dead, says to him, Lord, by this time he stinks: for he has been dead four days. Jesus says to her, Didn’t I tell you that if you would believe, you should see the glory of God? Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead was laid. And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank you for hearing me . . . . And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth. And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with graveclothes," etc. (John 11:38-44).]

Matthias, the apostle from Bethlehem and born out of the tribe of Judah, was, after the Lord’s ascension, chosen by lot by the apostles to become one of their number (as Luke testifies). After the descent of the Holy Spirit, it fell to his lot to preach in the land of Judea. Some say, according to his history that is said to be at Trier[Trier, the German for Treves.], that he was highly educated in the law of the Lord, pure of body, intelligent in mind, a circumspect counsellor, and of understanding speech. The Jews charged him with blasphemy and ordered two men to stone him. Within the course of his martyrdom he was slain with an axe, and with uplifted hands he gave up the Spirit. Some say his body was brought to Rome, some to Padua, some to Trier. His day is celebrated on the 24th of February. Although various opinions are held as to the time of his martyrdom, yet it is known that by divine direction the apostles elected him to succeed Judas Iscariot the betrayer.[Matthias, a disciple of Christ, and a constant attendant on his travels and ministry from their commencement until his ascension, was appointed by lot to supply the vacancy in the company of the twelve apostles occasioned by the apostasy of Judas (Acts 1:21ff.). Of his after life and ministry nothing is known with certainty. According to one tradition, he preached in Ethiopia and suffered martyrdom there; according to another, he labored in Judea and was stoned by the Jews.]


Martyrdom of Simon (Symon) the Apostle: A hillside. In the foreground kneels Simon in an attitude of prayer. On his right an energetic executioner holds him by the hair and is about to give him a blow with a cudgel. Behind him is another with a huge sword (a scimitar) raised over his head with both hands, and which is about to descend upon the apostle’s head. Stones lie about to indicate that operations began with stoning. In the background is the usual broken column, surmounted by a dancing demon—no doubt one of the "black Ethiopians" whom Simon conjured out of the image in order to destroy it. The artists (perhaps following the peculiar use of the word "column" in the German translation [s̈aule]), have represented every pagan image or idol as a "column," from which a devil emerges or upon which he dances.


Martyrdom of Matthias the Apostle: We seem to be on the roof or upper story of a medieval structure, where we note an altar built adjacent to the parapet. The altar is surmounted by a "column," from which a horned devil with cloven hoof, and spear in hand, is falling to the ground. In the foreground kneels the martyr in an attitude of prayer. Behind him stands the executioner with a huge axe uplifted and ready to descend upon the head of Matthias. Another man, apparently intended for a high priest, kneels beside the idol (a column) and observes the fall of the devil.