Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online

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Narsai, known as “the Harp of the Holy Spirit,” is regarded as the foundational theologian and poet of the Syriac-speaking Church of the East, as it emerged following the Council of Ephesus (431 CE) and the Council of Chalcedon (451 CE).

Narsai lived through the majority of the 5th century CE, dying circa 500 CE. Biographical information about Narsai is available for his early life, but large gaps have evaded investigation. Most details come from two historical works, both written by the bishop …

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Kitchen, Robert A., “Narsai”, in: Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online, General Editor David G. Hunter, Paul J.J. van Geest, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte. Consulted online on 21 September 2023 <>
First published online: 2019

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