Yelikonida and Yulian


I discovered the name Yelikonida in 2000, while reading August 1914, by my favoritest writer, Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn. Yelikonida, called Likonya, is one of the students in Prof. Olda Orestovna Andozerskaya’s Medieval history class for sophomores.

The nameday for Yelikonida is 28 May/10 June. According to what I found at her page at, Saint Yelikonida lived in Third Century Thessaloniki, Greece. She moved to Corinth and began gaining converts. However, during her sermon, she was arrested and brought before Governor Perino. She refused to abandon her faith or worship other deities, and was tortured in some very macabre ways.

The judge stopped the torture at one point and promised Yelikonida honours and the title of priestess. She agreed, to great celebration and acclaim. Once in the temple, she broke all the idols, which naturally enraged the priests when they entered. Yelikonida was beaten and thrown into prison for five days. The faithful believe she was miraculously healed by Jesus and Archangels Michael and Gabriel during a vision. Yelikonida was then brought before three lions in the arena, but they reportedly only licked her feet, and then rushed at the crowd in the arena. Governor Perino finally beheaded her.

According to the source I finally found, Yelikonida derives from the Greek hélix (spiral) and Helikón (torturous mountain), which contained two springs sacred to the Muses. After so many years, it’s exhilarating to finally discover the name’s etymology and history!


Yulian is of course the Russian (and Bulgarian) form of Julian. It comes from the Roman family name Iulianus, which in turn derives from Julius. Julius may be derived from the Greek word ioulos (downy-bearded). It may also relate to Jupiter, which comes from Iuppiter, which in turn derives from the Indo–European Dyeu-pater (Zeus-father).

One thought on “Yelikonida and Yulian

  1. Pingback: A to Z Reflections 2016 | Onomastics Outside the Box

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