St. Simon the Zealot was born in either Cana or Canaan. His only mention in the Bible comes from the lists of the Apostles in the gospels. Beyond this we only have tradition to tell us about this Apostle.
Simon has been historically associated with the Zealots. The Zealots were a political party of freedom fighters in 1st and 2nd century Palestine. They ultimately led a revolt against the Romans which led to the destruction of the Temple and Jerusalem in AD 70. It is believed Simon was a member of this group prior to becoming an Apostle although it is unclear whether he continued his association with them after becoming a follower of Jesus.
Some also believe that the epithet Zealot was given because of his zealous and strict adherence to Jewish law rather than an association with the Zealot Party.
Simon is associated with St. Jude, and they can be considered an evangelizing team. After preaching the Gospel in Egypt, he joined Jude in Persia and Armenia and was martyred with him in Beirut around the year AD 65. Other traditions say that he traveled throughout the Middle East and Africa. There are several traditions concerning the method of his martyrdom. Most accounts say that Simon was crucified, yet some claim he was sawn in half in Persia. There is even a tradition that he was martyred in modern-day Lincolnshire, England. His relics are buried in St. Peter's Basilica alongside St. Jude's.