The Martyr of the Catacombs
"Who is he?" asked Marcellus.
"Alexander, a teacher of the abominable Christian sect. He is so obstinate that he will not recant--"
"Hush, he is speaking."
"Romans!" said the old man, "I am a Christian. My God died for me, and I gladly lay down my life for him--"
A loud outburst of yells and execrations from the fierce mob drowned his voice. Before it was over three panthers came bounding toward him. He folded his arms, and looking up to heaven, his lips moved as if murmuring prayers. The savage beasts fell upon him as he stood, and in a few minutes he was torn in pieces.
Other wild animals were now let in. They bounded around the inclosure, they leaped against the barrier, and in their rage assailed one another. It was a hideous scene.