Saturninus is originally a Latin god, Saturn. It evolved into a male name as Saturninus which means Sowing or Birth or Origin
St Saturninus is the first Bishop of Tolosa or Toulouse. He was the son of Aegeus, King of Achaea, and his mother Cassandra, herself, was the daughter of Ptolemy, King of the Ninevites.
The Acts placed Saturninus in the 1st century, making him one of the 72 disciples of Christ. Legends associated with Saturninus state that after St Peter consecrated him a Bishop, Saturninus was given to his companion Papulus, who later became St Papulus the Martyr. Legend also states that besides Papulus, Saturninus also had St Honestus as a disciple.
To reach the Christian Church, Saturninus had to pass before the capitol where there was an altar, and according to the Acts, the pagan priests ascribed the silence of their oracles to the frequent presence of Saturninus. One day, the pagan priests seized him and on his unshakeable refusal to sacrifice to the gods, they condemned him to be tied by the feet to a bull which dragged him about the town until the rope broke.
Two Christian women piously gathered up Saturninus’ remains and buried him in a “deep ditch”, so that the pagans might not profane them.
The site where the bull stopped, is on the rue du Taur, “Street of the Bull”. The street with the Mithraic name is one of the original Roman cross streets running straight from the Capitole now to the Romanesque basilica honouring St. Saturnin.
Saturninus’ successors at Toulouse, St Hilary, Bishop from 358 AD to 360 AD and Exuperius who died on 410 AD, gave him a more honourable burial once Christian rites were no longer illegal, by erecting a simple wooden oratory over the “Roman crypt” where he had been interred. The noteworthy 14th-century Gothic church that eventually replaced earlier buildings is Notre-Dame du Taur or “Our Lady of the Bull”.