Gyroscope Review 16-4 - Page 35

AN ADMIRABLE VIRGIN OF ADVANCED AGE BY JENNIFER CLARK Apollonia stands rooted in faith, even as stones and fists strike her face, again and again. The Romans threaten to burn her alive unless she bows to their heathen idols. She refuses. Fists again, bashing her once beautiful, Egyptian face. Teeth crackle in her mouth, remaining ones wrenched out with pincers. This deaconess who inspired many to convert to Christianity is offered one final chance to cast aside her God. She draws breath as if to speak, quieting the crowd. With last scrap of freedom, Apollonia offers up a silent sermon, heaving her broken body into the fire. There is no record indicating who plucked her bones from the ashes. Her splintered jaw is now on display at St. Basil’s, teeth lodged like sacred bullets in churches throughout Europe. The tooth as relic, under the microscope. This is what is gleaned of faith: upper premolar, all angle and arch, resembles a small church. The tooth, ripped from its once pleasing u-shaped congregation, is covered in a cracked, white coat; edge pearled, quite rare. Kidney-shaped surface, a gnawing prayer. Note: Appollonia is considered the Patron Saint of Dentists. She died in 249 K \H]Y] MMYH H B