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Christian tradition has generally passed down that all but one were martyred, with John surviving into old age. Only the death of James, son of Zebedee is described in the New Testament, and the details of the other deaths are the subject of pious legends of varying authenticity. In some cases there is near unanimity in the tradition, and in other cases, there are widely varying and inconsistent accounts.
- Peter, crucified upside-down in Rome circa AD 64.
- James, son of Zebedee was beheaded in AD 44, first of the twelve to die (since the addition of Matthias)
- John, son of Zebedee, no biblical record of death, he is believed to have died of natural causes due to old age.
- Andrew, Peter’s brother, was crucified upon a diagonal or X-shaped cross.
- Philip was crucified in AD 54.
- Bartholomew (also known as Nathaniel) was flayed alive (skinned) and then beheaded; some sources locate his death at Derbend on the Caspian Sea.
- Matthew killed by a halberd in AD 60.
- Thomas was killed by a spear in Mylapore, Madras, India in AD 72.
- James, son of Alphaeus, beaten to death with a club after being crucified and stoned.
- Jude was crucified.
- Simon the Zealot was crucified in AD 74.
- Judas Iscariot, according to the gospels, hanged himself after betraying Jesus.
Replacement picked by the surviving eleven:
- Matthias, Judas’ replacement, was stoned and beheaded.