Saints and Holy People

Find out about their lives and how they changed the world

Saint Sylvia (d. 593)

Saint Sylvia (d. 593)

Patron saint of pregnant women

Feast day: November 5

Saint Sylvia was the mother of Saint Gregory the Great. When Sylvia’s husband passed away, her son Gregory converted their home into a monastery. Sylvia was then able to retire to a life of solitude in a small home in close proximity to the Church of Saint Saba in Rome.

Sylvia often brought fresh vegetables to her son on a silver platter. One day, when Gregory found himself with no food to give a humble beggar, Gregory gave the beggar the silver platter instead. Sylvia is believed to have died between 592 and 594. After her passing, Gregory had a portrait of his parents depicted in the Church of Saint Andrew.

Pope Clement VIII added Sylvia to the Roman Martyrology in the sixteenth century. Her name was placed in the Martyrology as a sign of veneration, not because she was a martyr.

(Image in public domain)