Saint Pontianus, son of Calpurnius, was created pontiff on the 26th of June, A.D. 230. Some learned men think, with Platina, that it was this pope who ordered the singing of the Psalms in the Church, both by day and by night; but other writers maintain that the custom is older. It is possible that Saint Pontianus published a decree on this subject, for the better regulation of the ecclesiastical practice. This latter is the opinion of Sangallo.
In ten ordinations Saint Pontianus created six bishops, six priests, and five deacons. He governed the Church more than five years.
His body, martyrized in the island of Tavolato, near the island of Sardinia, was removed to Rome, by order of Pope Saint Fabian, and buried in the cemetery of Calixtus. His martyrdom has been likened to that of Saint Stephen, as he was stoned to death. There is a beautiful legend that the stones and rocks hurled at him all miraculously fell short. As night fell, Saint Pontianus cried aloud: “Lord Jesus, wilt thou not give me also the martyr’s crown?” Instantly the next stone struck him on the forehead, and he fell dead. Two epistles are attributed to him, but they are evidently apocryphal.
- from "The Lives and Times of the Popes", by Alexis-François Artaud de Montor