Arabic name, cognate with the Arabic given name Ahmad - "highly praised; the most famous, worthy of praise".
St Ahmed the Calligrapher
Ahmed the Calligrapher was a well-off, middle-aged official of the Ottoman Empire in the seventeenth century. He converted to Christianity and was martyred on May 3, 1682; thus he is commemorated as a martyr on this day.
Ahmed lived in Constantinople during the 1600s and was an official in the Ottoman Turkish government before his conversion.
Ahmed owned a Russian concubine whom he allowed to attend one of the Greek Orthodox churches in Constantinople. In time Ahmed began to notice that when his Russian concubine returned from church she was far more gracious and loving than she was before going. Intrigued by this, Ahmed obtained permission to attend the Ecumenical Patriarch's celebration of the Divine Liturgy in Constantinople. Due to his status and identity, his request was not refused, and he was given a special place when he attended.