Saint Cecilia is the patron saint of musicians and Church music and her feast day falls today. As if often the case with early Christian martyrs there is some dispute over just when, where and how she died. My preferred version is this one:
Cecilia her husband and brother-in-law held meetings of Christians in their home eventually her husband and his brother were arrested and then executed for practising Christianity. Next on Prefect Turcius Almachius list was Cecilia herself. Firstly the officials who went to arrest Cecilia attempted to kill her by smothering her with steam in a bath house, however, the attempt failed and she arrested and was to be executed by decapitation. It is said that she refused to die until she had received Holy Communion and consequently despite trying to chop off her head three times, she remained alive, surviving another three days before finally dying. Despite what must have been horrific neck injuries it is said that for those last three days she sang to God which is why she has been linked to musicians and Church music.