St. Maurice was an officer of the Theban legion, a body of about 6000 men. These soldiers were Christians and loyal to their emperor and to God. They refused to sacrifice to the heathen gods and were put to the sword, in 286, by Maximian, the colleague of Diocletian, unresistingly giving their lives for the Faith.
(Source: The New Roman Missal, Rev. F. X. Lasance)