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Maronites

(140 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] Christian religious community going back to the Syrian hermit Maro(n) (Μάρω(ν)/ Márō(n), Syriac Morun; 4th/5th cent. AD), the patron saint of a monastery on the Orontes near Apamea [3] in Syria, which became the centre of the resistance against the Monophysitism. After the death of the patriarch Anastasius II (died 609), the Antiochene ( Antioch [1]) patriarchal see remained vacant (Persian invasions); in 636, the region came under Arab rule. Its isolation in terms of geography and Church poli…

Athingani

(165 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] (Ἀθίγγανοι; Athínganoi). The A. (‘Untouchables’, from θιγγάνω) are mentioned as heretics who are counted as Paulicians, first by Patriarch  Germanus (De haeres. et synodis, PG 98, 85) in the 8th cent. They are called ‘Phrygians’ because of their origins or ‘Manichaeans’ because of their magical and astrological practices. Flourishing in the 9th cent.; found followers even in palace circles ( Michael II). They supported  iconoclasm. Several attempts to integrate them remained unsuccessful.  Astrology;  Magic;  Mani;  Phrygia Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum) Bibli…

Synaxarion

(131 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
(συναξάριον; synaxárion). [German version] [1] Short life Short life or encomiastic note in the menaea of the Orthodox Church's órthros (ὄρθρος, 'morning service') between the 6th and 7th odes of the canon [2], which together with the synaxarion characterize services on saints' days and feasts. Structure: month, epigram in iambic verse, naming of the saint and the feast, hexameter on the date and name, historical note, mention of the church commemorating the saint, life of the saint. Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum) [German version] [2] Book with short lives Book containing the synaxária

Book of Letters

(107 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] Armenian collection of important theological letters, documenting the history of the Armenian church and its relations with neighbouring churches (Syria, Georgia, Byzantium), such as the separation of the Georgian church from the Armenian in c. 600. The Book of Letters is divided into three chronological phases: 5th-7th, 8th-11th and 11th-13th cents.  Byzantium;  Georgia;  Syria Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum) Bibliography Girk T̀`ġtoc`, 1901 E. Ter-Minassiantz, Die armen. Kirche in ihren Beziehungen zu den syr. Kirchen. Bis zum Ende des 13.Jh.…

Abdias

(125 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] A collection of apocryphal acts of the Apostles in Latin ( Historia Certaminis Apostolici or Historiae Apostolicae) frequently used in the MA, is attributed to A., supposedly the first bishop of  Babylon and a contemporary of  Origenes. It consists of 10 books purportedly compiled in Hebrew by A. and then translated by  Eutropius into Greek and by Julius, who was known to write in Greek, into Latin. However, the collection presupposes  Rufinus' History and must have been created in the 6th-7th cents.  Apocrypha Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum) Bibliography W. Smith and H. …

Apophthegmata patrum

(215 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] (Ἀποφθέγματα πατρῶν; Apophthégmata patrôn). Anonymous collection of ‘Patristic sayings’ belonging to the most copied works of early monasticism. It contains short anecdotes of early monastic life and the   anachoresis in the Egyptian desert. They are teachings, prophetic predictions and miraculous acts that describe the daily routine of the monks. Particularly characteristic of the apophthegmata patrum are those sayings that are formulaically introduced by the plea of a believer who petitioned the anchorite in search of advice: ‘Tell …

Diatessaron

(285 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] (τὸ διὰ τεσσάρων [εὐαγγέλιον]; tò dià tessárōn [euangélion]). The Diatessaron is the earliest extant harmonization of the gospels, dating back to Tatian, who in the latter third of the 2nd cent. combined the four canonical gospels into one homogenous presentation by embedding the synoptic tradition within the chronological framework of the gospel of John. He also used some apocryphal material and furthermore showed his encratitic, anti-Jewish, and docetic ( Docetics) leanings. Whether the Diatessaron was originally written in Greek or Syriac, in Rom…

Chazars

(199 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] The C. (Turkish, roughly ‘vagabonds’) belong to the group of Turkish-Altaic peoples and are attested from the 3rd/4th cents. AD. Originally nomadic, in the 7th cent. they founded an autonomous empire reaching from the Black Sea to the Don. Their king (Qağan) was political and religious leader. Although they did not develop their own written language they left behind loan words in Arabic, Greek, Armenian, Georgian, Hebrew and Persian i.a. Their campaigns of conquest reached as far …

Sophronius

(224 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] (Σωφρόνιος/ Sōphrónios). Patriarch of Jerusalem (634-638), Greek-Byzantine saint, poet and author. S. was probably from Damascus and taught rhetoric. He became a monk in Palestine and with his friend Iohannes [29] Moschus travelled to the monastic settlements there. As a staunch opponent of Monotheletism in 633 he tried but failed to persuade Cyrus of Phasis, patriarch of Alexandria [1], to abandon it. S. was able to agree a compromise with the patriarch of Constantinople (Sergios …

Amphilochius of Iconium

(125 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] A. ( 340/345 in  Cappadocia, † after 394) was a student of  Libanius and rhetorician in Constantinople. In 370 he returned to Cappadocia and at the instigation of  Basilius the Great became bishop of  Iconium in the newly created province of  Lycaonia in 373. He created an ecclesiastical administration in his episcopacy and defended it against the  Messalians and other heretics. Through his cousin  Gregorius of Nazianze, who converted him, a close friendship developed with the Cappadocians and later with circles in the capital.  Gregorius of Nyssa Savvidis, Kyriak…

Synodikon

(110 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] (Συνοδικόν; Synodikón). Liturgical formula of the Orthodox Church. The synodìkon originated in the period of iconoclasm in AD 843, on the initiative of Methodius, patriarch of Constantinople, as a document of the victory of the patriarchate over the iconoclasts (Syrian dynasty). It continued the tradition of the diptycha . At the beginning of the 11th cent., the synodìkon was granted the more general function of a liturgical formula, which contained a commemoration list of emperors and patriarchs (in the prov…

Potamiaena

(117 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] (Ποταμιαίνα/ Potamiaína). Martyr (died c. AD 360; feast 7 or 28 June). Pupil of Origenes [1] in Alexandria. According to an account by Eusebius [7] (Eus. HE 6,4) she suffered martyrdom under Septimius Severus (193-211). She converted the soldier Basileides who escorted her to her execution. Together with her mother Marcella she was executed by having hot pitch poured over her. After three days she is supposed to have appeared to Basileides, who was arrested for his conversion and then also martyred. Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum) Bibliography J. Bollandus, G. Henscheniu…

Mesrop

(287 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] Known as Maštoc in the older MSS and in the vita written by his student Koriwn. His date of birth ( c. AD 360/364) and his descent from the influential family of the Mamikonians are uncertain. Born in Katzikk in the Armenian province of Tarawn, M. received a Hellenic education. After military service under the Armenian king - either Chosrov III ( Chosroes [4]) or his lieutenant Arawan - in Vagharshapat, he became a secretary at the Armenian royal court between 385 and 389. Between 390 and 395, the Armenian Patriarch Sahak [Isaac] the Great ( c. 457-438) made him a monk. Af…

Iberians

(89 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] (Ἴβηροι/ Íbēroi, Ἴβηρες/ Íbēres). I. and Iberia (Ἰβηρία/ Ibēría), as terms for the inhabitants and country of East Georgia, occur only in Graeco-Roman and Byzantine sources; possibly etymologically related to virkʿ (Armenian) or Sáspeires (Σάσπειρες, Hdt. 4,37; 40) [1. 146]. Iberia was bordered in the north by  Sarmatia, in the west by  Colchis, in the south by Greater Armenia ( Armenia) and in the east by  Albania [1] (Ptol. 5,10,1f.). Armenia;  Georgia, Georgians;  Georgian Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum) Bibliography 1 O. Lordkipanidse, Archäologie in Geor…

Kontakion

(198 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] (κοντάκιον, κονδάκιον; kontákion, kondákion; from κοντός, ‘parchment roll’). Name given in later times to a genre of Byzantine hymns documented first in the 6th cent. AD. The kontakion consists of 18 to 24 metrically equal stanzas (so-called oíkoi, οἶκοι), preceded by the metrically differing prooemium ( koukoúlion, κουκούλιον). The individual stanzas are connected by acrostichs ( Acrostich) and have a common refrain (the ephýmnion or akroteleútion, ἐφύμνιον, ἀκροτελεύτιον). Kontakia are related to the Syrian madraša ( Ephrem Syrus), …

Elishē

(118 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] (Ełišē). Author of a history of the Vardanids and the Armenian wars in the Armenian language, describing the uprising of the Armenian people under the leadership of Vardan Mamikonyan against the Sassanid occupation forces in AD 450/1. However, E. did not himself witness the historical events which he describes, but is likely to have lived in the 6th cent. AD. It was his aim to provide a martyrological anchor for the foundation of the Armenian church.  Armenia;  Armenians, Armenian literature;  Sassanids Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum) Bibliography E. Ter-Minassjan, Va…

Syntomon

(90 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] (σύντομον; sýntomon). As a specimen of Byzantine liturgical poetry the s. lies between the kontákion and the kanṓn [2], but without having achieved their popularity. In the liturgy of the Orthodox Church its four to nine strophes are inserted between the verses of psalms, and for this reason a s. is also called a stichērón (στιχηρόν). Presumably it can be traced to the poet and hymnographer Kyprianos (1st half of the 8th cent.). Hymn IV. Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum) Bibliography J. Szövérffy, A Guide to Byzantine Hymnography ..., 1979.

Euthymius I of Constantinople

(143 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] (Εὐθύμιος; Euthýmidos) I of Constantinople (b. c. AD 834 in  Seleucia, d. 917). After a period as monk on the Bithynian  Olympus, he transferred to the monastery of St. Theodorus outside Constantinople. As the father confessor of Emperor  Leo VI, he became abbot of the monastery of Psamathias, which the emperor had built for him specifically. After the deposition of the patriarch of Constantinople,  Nicolaus I Mysticus, he assumed that office; in agreement with the other patriarchs and …

Alexius

(223 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] A legend from  Edessa tells of a young Byzantine man (5th cent.) who left his wife on their wedding night to live an ascetic life [1. 36-44]. The figure of A., who became the archetype of the ascetic, was also known in Constantinople in the 9th cent., where Melodus († 833) composed a hymn in honour of A. The discovery of a Greek version that had escaped notice for a long period and which agrees in its main traits with a Syriac version of the 6th cent., but without being its translation [2. 56c], again raises the question of the original's language. Other Greek versions of the A.- vita…

Tabor

(174 words)

Author(s): Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
[German version] (Ταβώρ/ Tabṓr). Conically tapering mountain with a broad plateau at the peak (about 1,200 m × 400 m) in the Plain of Jezreel in Israel. According to Jos 19:22, the territories of the tribes of Zebulun, Issachar and Naphtali bordered on Mount T. In the Biblical texts, no indications are given of any cultic function of the mountain. Neither is there any connection with the cult of the Rhodian god Zeus Atabyrios ([1]; Rhodes). It has been possible to demonstrate Iron Age settlement [2…
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