POTAMIÆNA: Christian slave and martyr at Alexandria. The only two sources of value concerning her, Eusebius (Hist. eccl., VI., v.; Eng. transl., NPNF, 2 ser., i. 253) and Palladius (Historia Lausiaca, iii.; MPG, xxxiv. 1009, 1014), report that Potamiæna belonged to the metropolitan district of Egypt and was a martyr to modesty and chastity rather than to religion. According to Eusebius, she was plunged into a kettle filled with boiling pitch during the reign of Septimius Severns (202-211), a certain Aquila then being president of Alexandria, or according to Palladius in the reign of Maximinus II. (about 306-310). The account of Eusebius has been subjected to sharp criticism, partly on account of a general resemblance of his description to many forged acts of martyrs. It should be noted, moreover, that, according to Eusebius himself, legend early clustered round Potamiæna's name. It seems probable that Potamiæna was really martyred, as Palladius states, during the persecution of Maximinus, especially as particularly barbarous modes of execution were employed by him; Palladius adds that he heard of her martyrdom, at least indirectly, from St. Anthony, the father of hermits.