St. Silvia (also Sylivia) was the mother of Pope St. Gregory the Great. She was born about 515 (525?) and died about 592.
There is little information available about her life. Her native place is sometimes listed as Sicily, sometimes as Rome. She came from a distinguished family as did her husband, the Roman regionarius, Gordianus. She also gave birth to a second son, whose name is unknown.
Silvia was noted for her great piety, and she gave her sons an excellent education. After the death of her husband she devoted herself entirely to religion in the “new cell by the gate of blessed Paul”. Gregory the Great had a mosaic portrait of his parents executed at the monastery of St. Andrew. Silvia was portrayed sitting with the face, in which the wrinkles of age could not extinguish the beauty, in full view; the eyes were large and blue, and her expression was gracious and animated.
In the ninth century an oratory was erected over her former dwelling, near the Basilica of San Saba. Pope Clement VIII (1592-1605) inserted her name under November 3 in the Roman Martyrology. She is invoked by pregnant women for a safe delivery.