Saint Peter Marter of Verona was not the first Dominican to die in the cause of truth, but so greatly was he revered for his sanctity that he was canonised the year after his death; hence he became the type of fearless Apostle of the Order. More remarkable than his death is the record of his life. Born of heretical parents, and surrounded during his whole childhood with the most harmful theories and practices, Peter preserved a purity of faith and morals which was nothing short of miraculous.
Continually ridiculed and harangued by his relatives, he remained untarnished in both body and soul. Send to Bologna to the university at the age of 15, he met Saint Dominic, and instantly, with no backward glance at the wealth and power he was foregoing, threw himself at the Saint's feet and begged admission to the Order. He was present at the death of Saint Dominic, and shared in the legacy of the primitive zeal and courage passed on to the sons of a saint. Peter became a celebrated preacher and engaged in dispute with the heretics all over northern Italy. Many miracles were worked through his prayers, to the rage of the heretics.
In one city, a prominent man had been won to heresy, because the devil, taking the appearance of the Blessed Mother appeared at the heretics meeting and encouraged him to join them. Peter, determined to win the man back to the truth, went to the meeting of the heretics, and when the devil appeared in his disguise, held up a small pyx in which he had placed a consecrated Host. "If you are the mother of God" cried Peter "Adore your Son." The devil fled in dismay and many heretics were converted. Enraged by Peters success, his enemies made plans to destroy him. Sold Like his Master, for 30 pieces of silver, Peter was ambushed and killed on the road to Milan.