Religion Past and Present

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Syrian Monasteries
(584 words)

[German Version]

Syrian cenobites and their monasteries appeared in the 4th century, especially in north-ern Syria and northern Iraq. Apart from the account of Theodoret of Cyrrhus, we know little about the early period. Monks living atop pillars (Stylite) were an important element. The monastery of Simeon Stylites the Elder (399–459) became a pilgrimage center. The monasteries experienced their golden age in the 5th and 6th centuries. They were situated in remote, mountainous areas but also near cities. After the various schisms, monasticism…

Cite this page
Kaufhold, Hubert, “Syrian Monasteries”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 29 March 2020 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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