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Jacob Baradaeus

(181 words)

Author(s): Hage, Wolfgang
[German Version] ( Būrdʿānā, “the tattered,” Gk Tzantzalos; c. 490, northern Mesopotamia – Jul 30, 578, on the way to Egypt to settle a Syriac-Coptic dispute). A strict ascetic, Baradaeus (at the prompting of the Ghassanid Arabs and the empress Theodora) was ordained in 542/543 in Constantinople by Theodosius of Alexandria as bishop of Edessa. Constantly travelling in the East, as far as Egypt, he ordained many priests and (with two companion bishops) 27 bishops ¶ and two patriarchs (in sequence) and, thus, reorganized his “Jacobite” Syriac Orthodox Church (Syria: V, 2)…

Maruta of Tagrit

(193 words)

Author(s): Hage, Wolfgang
[German Version] (565?, Šurzaq near Balad, Persian Empire – May 2, 649), educated from childhood in a monastery, became a monk in various places (some in Byzantine territory). From 605 Maruta taught in Mar Mattai, then became abbot of Seleucia-Ctesiphon monastery; from 628/629, first Syrian Orthodox “metropolitan of the East” (Maphrian) in Tagrit (Arab. Takrit, today in northern Iraq). He founded churches and monasteries, and (already in Mar Mattai) was concerned with church order. His extant work…

Barsumas of Nisibis

(175 words)

Author(s): Hage, Wolfgang
[German Version] (born 1st quarter of 5th cent. – died before 496). Metropolitan of Nisibis (435–?), Barsumas was a prominent figure in the Apostolic Church of the East. He attended the dyophysite school (Christology, Antioch) in Edessa, was a supporter of Ibas (who became bishop of Edessa in 435), an…


(820 words)

Author(s): Hage, Wolfgang
[German Version] The Maronite Church in Lebanon traces its origins to Mar Maron, an ascetic who lived c. 400. A monastery named for him, in an uncertain location (somewhere in the Orontes region of northwestern Syria), probably founded by the emperor after Chalcedon (451) to reinforce Chalcedonian monasticism in Syria, held strictly to this creed in the Acacian Schism (Acacius of Constantinople; Henotikon) and on this basis championed monotheletism in the 7th century. It remained faithful to this …


(1,059 words)

Author(s): Hage, Wolfgang
[German Version] I. Name – II. Greek Orthodox Patriarchates – III. Greek Catholic Patriarchate I. Name For several decades the christological definition of Chalcedon (451) met strong opposition in the eastern portion of the Byzantine Empire, which championed the Alexandrian one-nature doctrine (Christology: II, 1.c; Monophysites/Monophysitism); finally the Syrian Orthodox Church (Syria: V, 2.b) and the Coptic Orthodox Church (Copts: I) split with Chalcedonian Christianity. These anti-Chalcedonian churches called their opponents Melkites (from Syr. malkā, “king, emp…


(1,078 words)

Author(s): Bloedhorn, Hanswulf | Ritter, Adolf M. | Hage, Wolfgang
[German Version] I. Antiquity – II. Early Church – III. Patriarchate I. Antiquity Modern Antakya, Turkey, was initially founded in 307 bce as Antigoneia on the Orontes (c. 7km upstream). It was refounded on May 22, 300 by Seleucus I. Nicator (Seleucids) on the present site and renamed in honor of his father, Antiochus. It was well situated at a commercial junction of road networks from Asia Minor and the Orient, with a harbor in Seleukeia Piereia located to the southwest 25km downstream. It was the capital of the Seleucid Empire. After Pompey conquered it in 64 bce, it became the capital …


(165 words)

Author(s): Hage, Wolfgang
[German Version] (Syr. map̄ryānā, “fructifier,” i.e. consecrator) was the official designation of the “metropolitan of the East” (occasionally also Catholicos), who presided over the (formerly Persian) eastern part of the Syrian Orthodox Church (Syria: V, 2.b) from 628/629 onward (Maruta of Tagrit). Initially an autonomous representative of the patriarch in this region, he was soon entirely subjected to the latter's jurisdiction as the bearer of what ultimately became a ¶ purely honorific title that was finally abolished in 1860 (although it was revived among the …

Bar Hebraeus, Gregor

(149 words)

Author(s): Hage, Wolfgang
[German Version] (Arab. Abūʾl-Farağ 1225/1226, Melitene [Malatya] – 1286, Marāgheh) was ordained Syrian Orthodox bishop in 1246; in 1264, he became chief prelate (maphrian) of the East, with his primary residence in Azerbaijan. He was a famous physician. Educated in Aristotelian philosophy, he became a notable encyclopedist with a compendium of ecclesiastical …

Apostolic Church of the East

(442 words)

Author(s): Hage, Wolfgang
[German Version] The Apostolic Church of the East came into being as an autocephalous church (Autocephaly) of the East Syrians in the Persian Empire during the first half of the 5th century; at the end of the same century it embraced Antiochene Christology (Antioch). Since that time it has been known as the Nestorian Church or, in the modern period, the Assyrian …

Timothy I

(205 words)

Author(s): Hage, Wolfgang
[German Version] (727/728 Hazza [Erbil, Iraq] – Jan 9, 823, Baghdad), catholicos-patriarch (780–823) of the Apostolic Church of the East. He had his residence in Baghdad, the new capital of the Abbasids, who respected him as a scholar; his disputation with al-Mahdī has been preserved (Syria: III). His partially preserved correspondence tells us about his theological and philoso­phical work as well as his ecclesiastical activity: he streamlined the organization of the church, saw to the training of…