Saint Stephen (Koine Greek: Στέφανος, Stephanos; sometimes spelled "Stephan"), the first martyr of Christianity, was, according to the Acts of the Apostles, a deacon in the early church at Jerusalem who aroused the enmity of members of various synagogues by his teachings. Accused of blasphemy, at his trial he made a long speech fiercely denouncing the Jewish authorities who were sitting in judgement on him and was stoned to death. His martyrdom was witnessed by Saul of Tarsus (later renamed Paul), a Pharisee who would later convert to Christianity and become an apostle.
Stephen is venerated as a saint in the Roman Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran, Oriental Orthodox and Eastern Orthodox Churches. Stephen's name is derived from the Greek language Stephanos, meaning "crown". Traditionally, Stephen is invested with a crown of martyrdom; he is often depicted in art with three stones and the martyr's palm. In Eastern Christian iconography, he is shown as a young, beardless man with a tonsure, wearing a deacon's vestments, and often holding a holding a miniature church building or a censer.
Aachen (German pronunciation: [ˈʔaːxən] ( listen), also known as Bad Aachen; Ripuarian: Óche, Limburgish: Aoke, French: Aix-La-Chapelle, Spanish: Aquisgrán, Latin: Aquisgranum) is a spa town in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. In French, and sometimes (especially earlier) also in English, the city is known as Aix-la-Chapelle (French pronunciation: [ɛkslaʃapɛl]). Aachen was a favoured residence of Charlemagne, and later the place of coronation of the Kings of Germany. Geographically, Aachen is the westernmost city of Germany, located along its borders with Belgium and the Netherlands, 61 km (38 mi) west-southwest of Cologne. It is located within a coal-mining region, and this fact was important in its economic history. RWTH Aachen University, one of Germany's Universities of Excellence, is located in the city. Aachen's predominant economic focus is on science, engineering, information technology and related sectors. In 2009, Aachen was ranked 8th among cities in Germany for innovation.