Lydia of Philippi

● Orthodox Remembrance Day: May 7, May 20, August 3
● Name means: Woman from Lydia (Greek – Latin.)
● first Christian woman in Europe
● Patroness: the dyer
● Born in Thyatira, today Akhisar, Turkey
● Died end of the 1st century in Philippi, today ruins near Krinides, Greece
Lydia was a purple merchant in Philippi, where the agora can be seen in the excavations. She
was a godly woman, that is, one who was not of Jewish origin, but had an interest in the
monotheistic Jewish faith, attended the synagogue and was close to the Jewish community;
thus she was open to Paul’s message and therefore received him and Silas in her house (Acts
16:14-15); accordingly, she was the head of the household, widow or an independent
In the Orthodox Churches, Lydia was given great devotion, she is described as apostle-like and
depicted on numerous icons. Near Philippi there are few remains of an early basilica dedicated
to it, a new Lydia church and a memorial on the site where, according to tradition, her baptism
took place.