From Eus. Hist. b. 7. c. 12. p. 262.
THESE eminent Christians, Priscus, Malchus, and Alexander, led a retired holy life in the country near Cæsarea, in Palestine. During the fury of the persecution under Valerian, they often called to mind the triumphs of the martyrs; secretly reproached themselves with cowardice, as living like soldiers who passed their time in softness and ease, whilst their brethren and fellow-warriors bore all the heat of the battle. They could not long smother these warm sentiments in their breast; but expressed them to one another. “What,” said they, “whilst the secure gate of heaven is open, shall we shut it against ourselves? Shall we be so faint-hearted as not to suffer for the name of Christ, who died for us? Our brethren invite us by their example: their blood is a loud voice, which presses us to tread in their steps. Shall we be deaf to a cry calling us to the combat, and to a glorious victory?” Full of this holy ardour, they all, with one mind, repaired to Cæsarea, and of their own accord, by a particular instinct of grace, presented themselves before the governor, declaring themselves Christians. Whilst all others were struck with admiration at the sight of their generous courage, the barbarous judge appeared not able to contain his rage. After having tried on them all the tortures which he employed on other martyrs, he condemned them to be exposed to wild beasts. They are honoured on this day in the Roman Martyrology.
Butler’s Lives of the Saints