Religion Past and Present

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Basil the Great (Saint)
(290 words)

[German Version]

(329/330, Caesarea – Jan 1, 370, Caesarea) was the brother of Gregory of Nyssa and a friend of Gregory of Nazianzus. Born into an aristocratic family in which the spirituality of Origen and the spirit of the martyrs were very much alive, Basil was educated at eminent schools (esp. Athens), as befitted his social standing. He chose to be baptized in 356/357 and simultaneously committed himself to an ascetic way of life (Asceticism). After visits to Egyptian, Palestinian, Syrian, and Mesopotamian ascetics, he withdrew as a hermit to the Iris/Pontus regi…

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Ritter, Adolf M., “Basil the Great (Saint)”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 16 January 2022 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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