St. Thomas More

Before he died a martyr, More positioned his beard on the executioner’s block so that it wouldn’t be cut while he was beheaded, saying, "This hath not offended the king." His last words were literally a joke about his beard. It doesn't get more impressive than that!

St. Clement of Alexandria

St. Clement once wrote that God "has adorned man, like the lions, with a beard" and described a beard as "the mark of the man." We can only imagine the leonine beard he must have had.

St. Maximilian Kolbe

Some images of this twentieth-century martyr of charity show a clean-shaven face, but others show a long, authoritative beard, as was customary for a Conventual Franciscan friar. The Franciscan Constitutions prescribe wearing a beard as "manly, austere, natural, an imitation of Christ and the saints of our Order, and despised."

St. Augustine

St. Augustine once wrote, “The beard signifies the courageous; the beard distinguishes the grown men, the earnest, the active, the vigorous." His epic beard must have been a sight to see.

St. Philip Neri

Here's an unusual story in the annals of saintly beards. St. Philip Neri was known to shave off only half of his beard, leaving the other half, as a way to look foolish and force himself to remain humble. I guess that's one way to do it!

St. Nicholas

We're all familiar with the jolly red costume and requisite white beard that pop culture associates with St. Nicholas. While the Santa Claus image is not accurate to the real, historical bishop, the beard is, especially after Nicholas spent years in prison when the Roman Emperor Diocletian ordered persecutions of Christians.

Padre Pio

The 20th-century saint can be seen sporting his customary beard in all the images we have of him, as you'd expect of a Capuchin Franciscan. His beard is an iconic part of his familiar and beloved appearance.

Sts. Cyril and Methodius

While we can't know for sure what these holy brothers and devoted missionaries looked like, most icons and images of them show them with truly impressive beards, as would be fitting for their time and place. If you've got a brother who's bearded too, the two of you can turn to these saintly men as your inspiration in brotherhood, beardedness, and evangelical zeal.

St. Joseph

While we can't know for sure what St. Joseph looked like, given his time and place, he almost certainly sported a beard. He's a role model and exemplar as a man, husband, and father; his beard is one more thing to imitate from his holy life.