Saint Paul
approx. 10 - 65 n. Chr.

Saint Paul

Museo alemán de epilepsia en Kork

In old Ireland, epilepsy was known as "Saint Paul's disease". The name points to the centuries-old assumption that the apostle suffered from epilepsy.

To support this view, people usually point to Saint Paul's experience on the road to Damascus, reported in the Acts of the Apostles in the New Testament (Acts 9, 3-9), in which Paul, or Saul as he was known before his conversion to Christianity, is reported to have a fit similar to an epileptic seizure:

"Suddenly a light from the sky flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him: Saul, Saul! Why do you persecute me? [...] Saul got up from the ground and opened his eyes, but he could not see a thing [...] For three days he was not able to see, and during that time he did not eat or drink anything."