Andrew’s army

The little prank in this one makes it that much sadder.

Andrew was a beloved third-century Roman commander facing an invading Persian army that was bigger and better prepared. To rally his troops, he revealed that his great fighting skills came from his belief in God, and he offered to convert his whole force. Unfortunately, back home, his boss was a rampant pagan. 

When Andrew returned victorious, leader to a new Christian band, he was rewarded with a large bronze couch… except that when it was given to him, it had just been pulled it out of an oven, so as soon as he sat down he burned his butt. Laughing about his little prank, Andrew’s boss sent him to jail. Before long, though, his boss’s boss, hearing that the great soldier’s legend was only growing, ordered Andrew set free. To preserve their reputations, the men plotted, they should kill him more secretly. 

Andrew fled town, picking up admiring fighters as he ran. His group had swelled to some 2,000 men by the time they found themselves cornered in the straits of the Taurus Mountains, in modern-day Çukurova, Turkey. There, two opposing mountain peaks gradually come together until they drop, suddenly, into a tight and impassable canyon with a roaring river below. 

As Roman assassins closed in, Andrew told his men that this time they shouldn’t fight. The 2,000 martyrs surrendered peacefully, lambs to an unrelenting slaughter.

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