Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online

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Emilia (Emmelia or Emily) is known as the “mother of saints” since five of her ten children attained sanctity: Macrina Junior, Basil the Great, Gregory of Nyssa, Peter of Sebaste, and Theosebia. Her husband was Basil the Elder, and her mother-in-law was Macrina the Elder, both of whom also were regarded as saints. The sources for Emilia’s life are Gregory of Nazianzus’ funeral oration for Basil the Great (of Caesarea), Gregory of Nyssa’s Life of Macrina, and the letters of Basil th…

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Alwis, Anne P., “Emilia”, in: Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online, General Editor David G. Hunter, Paul J.J. van Geest, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte. Consulted online on 15 October 2021 <>
First published online: 2018

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