Filothei belonged to a noble family in Athens. She was married to the noble Andrea Chila (d. 1539) in an arranged marriage against her will in 1536, and refused another arranged marriage as a widow, instead living an ascetic life, spending her efforts on charity. In 1549, she founded a convent in Athens and became its abbess. The convent had a great deal of charity establishments both in Athens and on the islands of the Aegean sea. One of her most controversial activities was to buy the freedom of Greeks taken as slaves by the Ottomans, especially women taken to the Islamic harems. Her activity caused a conflict with the Ottomans, who on one occasion imprisoned and tortured her. She was released, but on 3 October 1588, she was attacked by the Ottomans, who abused her so badly that she died of the injuries on 19 February 1589.