Presbyters Uniwersytet Warszawski
ID
ER 1691
Bishop Theodoret of Cyrrhus (Syria) appeals to Pope Leo the Great complaining for his ill-treatment by Bishop Dioscorus of Alexandria (Egypt). His letter is carried to Rome by the presbyters and chorbishops Hypatios and Abramios, and the superior of the monks Alypios. Letter 52 in the collection of the letters of Pope Leo the Great "Si Paulus", written in Cyrrhus, AD 449.
Letter 52
 
Theodoret shows how well justified is his appeal to Rome. He praises the zeal of Leo against the Manichaeans and Eutychians. Then he complains for the ill-treatment by Bishop Dioscorus of Alexandria who managed to depose Theodoret on the Second Council of Ephesus in AD 449. He asks Leo whether he shall abide to this lawless condemnation or not. Not being able to arrive to Rome himself, he sends the legates:
 
7. Πρὸ δὲ πάντων, ἱκετεύω τὴν ἱερὰν ὑμῶν καὶ τῷ Θεῷ φίλην κεφαλὴν, παρασχεῖν μοι τῶν προσευχῶν τὴν βόηθειαν. Ταῦτα διὰ τῶν εὐλαβεστάτων καὶ θεοφιλεστάτων πρεσβύτερων Ὑπατίου καὶ Ἀβραμίου τῶν χορεπισκόπων, καὶ Ἀλυπίου τοῦ ἐξάρχου τῶν παρ' ἡμῖν μοναζόντων τὴν ὑμετέραν ἁγιωσύνην ἐδίδαξα. Ἐπειδήπερ ἐμὲ δραμεῖν πρὸς ὑμᾶς τὰ τῶν βασιλικῶν γραμμάτων ἐπέσχε δεσμά, ὥσπερ οὖν καὶ τοὺς ἀλλοὺς. Καὶ παρακαλῶ τὴν ὑμετέραν ὁσιότητα, καὶ ἰδεῖν αὐτοὺς πατρικῶς, καὶ τὰς ἀκλινεῖς ὑμῶν ἀκοὰς εὐμενεῖς αὐτοῖς παρασχεῖν, καὶ τὸ συκοφαντούμενον καὶ μάτην πολεμούμενόν μου γῆρας τῆς ὑμετέρας ἀξιῶσαι κηδεμονίας, καὶ πρὸ πάντων τῆς ἐπιβουλευομένης πίστεως παντὶ σθένει φροντίσαι, καὶ φυλάξαι ταῖς ἐκκλησίαις τὸν πατρῷον κλῆρον ἀκήρατον· ἵνα καὶ τὰς ἀντὶ τούτων ἀντιδόσεις δέξηται ὑμῶν ἡ ἁγιότης παρὰ τοῦ μεγαλοδώρου δεσπότου.
 
Latin version:
 
7. Prae omnibus autem sacrum Deoque charum caput vestrum obsecro ut precibus mihi opem et auxilium ferat. Haec per reverentissimos Deoque charissimos presbyteros, Hypatium et Abramium chorepiscopos, et Alypium monachorum qui apud nos sunt exarchum, sanctitati vestrae suggessi: quandoquidem ne ad vos contenderem, regiarum litterarum vincula retinuerunt, quemadmodum et alios. Et sanctitatem vestram ore ut et paterno affectu illos videat, et sinceras aures vestras illis benignas praebeat, et calumniis vexatam ac sine causa impugnatam senectutem meam studio et providentia vestra dignetur, tum ante omnia fidei insidiis appelitae quam maximam potest curam gerat, paternamque haereditatem Ecclesiis integram custodiat: ut pro his etiam paratam remunerationes a munifico et liberali Domino sanctitas vestra recipiat.
 
(Patrologia Latina 54, 847-857 = Ballerini 1753: 941-952)
Letter 52
 
Theodoret shows how well justified is his appeal to Rome. He praises the zeal of Leo against the Manichaeans and Eutychians. Then he complains for the ill-treatment by Bishop Dioscorus of Alexandria who managed to depose Theodoret on the Second Council of Ephesus in AD 449. He asks Leo whether he shall abide to this lawless condemnation or not. Not being able to arrive to Rome himself, he sends the legates:
 
7. And before all things I entreat you, holy and God-loved brother, render assistance to my prayers. These things I have brought to your Holiness' knowledge, by the most religious and God-beloved presbyters, Hypatius and Abramius the chorepiscopi, and Alypius, superintendent of the monks in our district: seeing that I was hindered from coming to you myself by the Emperor's restraining letter, and likewise the others. And I entreat your holiness both to look on them with fatherly regard, and to lend them your ears in sincere kindness, and also to deem my slandered and falsely attacked position worthy of your protection, and above all to defend with all your might the Faith that is now plotted against, and to keep the heritage of the fathers intact for the churches, so shall your holiness receive from the Bountiful Master a full reward.
  
(trans. Ch. Lett Feltoe 1895: 57; slightly adapted)

Place of event:

Region
  • Rome
  • East
City
  • Rome
  • Cyrrhus

About the source:

Author: Theodoret of Cyrrhus
Title: Letters, Epistulae
Origin: Cyrrhus (East)
Denomination: Catholic/Nicene/Chalcedonian
Leo the Great was the bishop of Rome from AD 440 to his death in AD 461. We have the collection of 173 letters of Leo.
 
Eutyches was a presbyter and an archimandrite in Constantinople who got involved in the theological discussions against Nestorius and was inclined toward the monophysite Christology. These views were considered heretical by Bishop Flavian of Constantinople and Eutyches was excommunicated by the so-called Home Synod in AD 448 (σύνοδος ἐνδημοῦσα, the synod of the bishops who happened to be in the capital). Eutyches sent in protest the letters to the bishops all over the world, from which the letter to Pope Leo is still extant. Eutyches also tried to obtain the support of Emperor Theodosius. The emperor eventually agreed on organizing the Council which took place in April 449 and was presided over by Bishop Dioscorus of Alexandria. Bishop Flavian and six other bishops were condemned for excommunicating Eutyches at the council previous year. The Council also condemned Bishop Theodoret of Cyrrhus in his absence on the basis of the book of extracts from his work. Theodoret learnt about this condemnation at some point after the council, and appealed to Rome in the present letter (see Vranic 2015: -64).
 
Edition:
P. and G. Ballerini eds., Sancti Leoni Magni Romani pontificis opera, vol. 1, Venice 1753
Patrologia Latina, vol. 54
 
Translation:
Bibliography:
A. Grillmeier, Christ in Christian tradition, v. 1, Atlanta 1975.
V. Vranic, The constancy and development in the Christology of Theodoret of Cyrrhus, Leiden; Boston 2015.

Categories:

Non-Latin Origin - Greek
Travel and change of residence
Described by a title - Presbyter/πρεσβύτερος
Ecclesiastical administration - Ecclesiastical envoy
Relation with - Another presbyter
Relation with - Bishop/Monastic superior
Relation with - Monk/Nun
Functions within the Church - Chorbishop
Please quote this record referring to its author, database name, number, and, if possible, stable URL: M. Szada, Presbyters in the Late Antique West, ER1691, http://www.presbytersproject.ihuw.pl/index.php?id=6&SourceID=1691