Saint Romanus of Antioch
In 303 or 304, at the beginning of the Diocletian persecution, a deacon called Romanus of Caesarea in Palestine suffered martyrdom at Antioch. Upon the proclamation of Diocletian's edict he strengthened the Christians of Antioch and openly exhorted the weaker brethren, who were willing to offer heathen sacrifices, not to waver in the Faith. He was taken prisoner, was condemned to death by fire, and was bound to the stake; however, as the Emperor Galerius was then in Antioch, Romanus was brought before him. At the emperor's command the tongue of the courageous confessor was cut out. Tortured in various ways in prison he was finally strangled. Eusebius speaks of his martyrdom in "De martyribus Palestin.", c. ii. Prudentius ("Peristephanon", X in "P.L.", LX, 444 sqq.) relates other details and gives Romanus a companion in martyrdom, a Christian by name Barulas. On this account several historians, among them Baronius, consider that there were two martyrs named Romanus at Antioch, though more likely there was but the one whom Eusebius mentions. Prudentius has introduced legendary features into his account, and his connection of the martyrdom of Barulas with that of Romanus is probably arbitrary. The feast of St. Romanus is observed on 18 November [cf. Allard, "Histoire des persécutions", IV, 173 sq.; Quentin, "Les martyrologes historiques" (Paris, 1908), 183-5].
The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume XIII
Nihil Obstat, February 1, 1912, Remy Lafort, D.D., Censor
Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York