One day, the proconsul Quinziano was informed that in the city, among the consecrated virgins, lived a noble and beautiful girl. He then decided that he must know her. He ordered his men to capture her and bring her to the praetorian palace: it was Agatha. The formal charge, under the edict of persecution of the emperor Decius, was that of vilification of the state religion, an accusation reserved for all Christians who did not want to abjure. In reality, the proconsul’s order was also born from the desire to satisfy a whim and a personal interest: to bend to himself a beautiful and illiterate young woman and confiscate her family property. To escape the proconsul’s order, Agatha for some time remained hidden away from Catania. On this point history and legend are strongly intertwined: more cities contend for the merit of having given asylum to the virgin exile. The most probable hypothesis is that Agatha took refuge in Galermo, a district not far from Catania, where her parents owned houses and land. According to another tradition, which probably stems from an error in transcribing the ancient acts of martyrdom, Agatha took refuge, instead of Galermo, in Palermo. A last and not very reliable hypothesis, this one of non-Italian tradition, claims that Agatha hid in a cave on the island of Malta. Over the centuries, the people have enriched Agatha’s escape and arrest with legendary adventures. One of these tells that she, pursued by the men of Quinziano and now arrived near the praetorian palace, had stopped to rest for a moment. At the same time she stopped, it is said to tie a shoe, an olive tree appeared from nowhere and the young girl could shelter and even eat its fruits. Even today, to renew the memory of that prodigious event, it is customary to cultivate an olive tree in a flower bed near the places of martyrdom. Another popular tradition linked to this legend is that, on the day of the feast of Saint Agatha, are consumed sweets of royal pasta, green in color and covered with sugar, which in the form resemble olives, called precisely "olivette of Saint Agatha". Returning to the story, Agatha remained in exile only for a short time. The apparitores, the minions in the service of the proconsul, reached her with the ease of the powerful, and brought her to court before Quinziano.