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Stylite
(333 words)

[German Version]

Stylitism was a special form of early Christian asceticism, in which the stylite stood for long periods, usually for life, on a platform atop a pillar (Gk στῦλος/stýlos, hence “stylite”), which often was raised in stages, sometimes to a height of more than 20 m, as a visible expression of the ascetic ideal of extreme homelessness and immobility. It was the duty of monks to provide the stylite with sustenance and communion. As motivation the sources speak of total separation from the world and proximity to heaven. Proposed non-Christian models have been ruled out. This rad…

Cite this page
Brennecke, Hanns Christof, “Stylite”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 01 June 2020 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1877-5888_rpp_SIM_025228>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013



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