In their Lives of the Saints, the Benedictines of Paris have retained 40 SS. Victor, the majority of whom were martyrs in the early Church. Since the name fits the disciples of Christ as victors or conquerors of death through His resurrection, it is difficult to distinguish archeological and other evidence that may be providing an epithet rather than the true name of an otherwise unknown saint. Pope St. victor (189–198) intervened in the controversy over the date of Easter and thus became well known in early Church history. In Africa the name Victor occurs frequently in the calendar and almost all the Victors are martyrs: a soldier martyred at Milan in 303 (Feast: May8); a fifth-century bishop at Utica (Feast: Aug. 23); a martyr at Carthage in 259 (Feast: Feb. 24); martyrs at Caesarea in Mauritania (Feasts: Aug. 26, May 10, Sept. 10 and 14, Nov. 2, and Dec. 18, 28, and 29). Other Victors were martyred at Alexandria (Feasts: Jan. 31, May 17); Barcelona (Feast: April 4); Braga in the 4th century (Feast: April 12); Chalcedon (Feast: Sept. 10); Diospolis in 284 (Feast: Feb. 25); Gerone in 304 (Feast: Jan. 22); Mérida (Feast: July 24); Nicomedia (Feast: March 6, Dec. 3, and April 20); Ravenna (Feast: Nov. 13); Rome (Feast: Dec.15); Solothurn (Feast: Sept. 30); Thessalonica in 304 (Feast: March 30). A Victor was one of the theban legion (Feast: Sept. 22); another Victor was martyred at Marseilles c. 290 (Feast: July 21) and became famous because of the monastery founded there by John Cassian. A seventh-century solitary is honored as St. Victor (Feast: Aug. 29); so are Victor, Bishop of Capua (d. 554; Feast: April 2); a fourth-century bishop of Metz (Feast: June 22); and a fourth-century bishop of Piacenza (Feast: Dec. 7).
Bibliography: j. l. baudot and l. chaussin, Vies des saints et des bienheureux selon l'ordre du calendrier avec l'historique des fêtes. ed. by the Benedictines of Paris (Paris 1935–56). h. quentin, Les Martyrologes historiques du moyen âge (Paris 1908).