Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online

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Martin of Tours
(3,035 words)

Martin of Tours stands out as a paradoxical figure: born in Pannonia, he became the spiritual protector of Frankish kingship from the Merovingians to the Capetians. Viewed with suspicion by the Gallic episcopate during his lifetime, he embodied the ideal bishop in the eyes of the medieval hagiographers. Although he was mostly a man of action and did not author any written works, he exerted a decisive influence on western monasticism.

The son of a military tri…

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Labarre, Sylvie, “Martin of Tours”, in: Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online, General Editor David G. Hunter, Paul J.J. van Geest, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte. Consulted online on 02 October 2023 <>
First published online: 2018

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