Site logo

The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity


from its origins to circa AD 700, across the entire Christian world


Name

Thomas, the Apostle

Saint ID

S00199

Number in BH

BHG 1800-1844, BHL 8136-8149

Gender
Male
Type of Saint
Twelve Apostles and Paul, Missionaries, Miracle-workers in lifetime, Martyrs
Related Evidence Records
IDTitle
E00077The Syriac Chronicle of Edessa records the transfer in 394 of the chest with the relics of *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199) to the church dedicated to him in Edessa (northern Mesopotamia) during the episcopate of Cyrus. Written in Edessa, in second half of 6th c.
E00080The Syriac Chronicle of Edessa records that in 441/442 Anatolius, a Roman military commander, gave a silver reliquary for the bones of *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199) in Edessa (northern Mesopotamia). Written in Edessa, in second half of 6th c.
E00367Gregory of Tours writes the Glory of the Martyrs (Liber in Gloria Martyrum), in Latin in Tours (north-west Gaul), 580/594. Overview entry.
E00515Gregory of Tours, in his Glory of the Martyrs (31 and 32), tells of the body of *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199) being translated from India to Edessa (Mesopotamia); how an oil lamp miraculously burns incessantly in his church in India; and how various miracles take place during the fair at his feast in Edessa. Written in Latin in Tours (north-west Gaul), 580/594.
E00549Greek epigram, probably from a dedicatory inscription in the church, recording the dedication, during the 4th/5th century, of a church to *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199) by the aristocrat Amantios (probably a former admiral) on his property in Constantinople. Recorded in the 10th c. Greek Anthology.
E00690The Notitia ecclesiarum urbis Romae, a guide to saints' graves around Rome, closes with the church and grave of *Peter (the Apostle, S00036) on the 'via Vaticana', north-west of the city. Written in Latin in Rome, 625/649. A description of the basilica, added in the later 8th c., lists many of the altars of saints within the church.
E00726Victricius of Rouen lists the relics of saints already present in Rouen: *John the Baptist (S00020), the Apostles *Andrew (S00289) and *Thomas (S00199), *Gervasius and Protasius (martyrs of Milan, S00313), *Agricola (martyr of Bologna, S00310), *Euphemia (martyr of Chalcedon, S00017), and *Luke (the Evangelist, S00442). Account in Victricius' Praising the Saints, written in Latin, c.396 in Rouen (northern Gaul).
E00865Multiple fragments of a Greek dedicatory inscription, probably commemorating the consecration of a church of the Apostles: *Peter (S00036), possibly *Paul (S00008), *Andrew (S00288), probably *Philip (S00109), probably *Thomas (S00199), *John (S00042); others are perhaps also named. Found at Side (Pamphylia, southern Asia Minor). Probably mid-6th c.
E01149Coptic fragment from the Acts of *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), of unknown Egyptian provenance, preserving part of the only post mortem miracle presented in the Acts of Thomas, involving a contact relic of the deceased saint, to be obtained from his grave, to heal the king’s son from a demon; presumably written originally in the early 3rd c. and translated sometime between the 4th and 6th c.
E01182Greek inscription commemorating the construction of a church dedicated to *Thomas the Apostle (S00199) on behalf of the patron's children. Found on the island of Siphnos (Aegean Islands). Dated 786/787.
E01199The Syriac Chronicle of Pseudo-Zachariah Rhetor recounts how John bar Aphtonia [ob. 538], a West-Syrian monastic leader, initiated a transfer of the monastic community named after *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199) from Seleucia ad Belum near Chalcis (Syria) to Qenneshrē (Mesopotamia) during the early 520s. Written, probably in Amida (northern Mesopotamia), c. 568/569.
E01202The Syriac Acts of the Second Council of Ephesus (449) preserve a letter of the clerics of Edessa against the bishop Hiba of Edessa (435-457), in which the pre-eminence of their city is asserted, based among other things on the claim that the relics of *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199) are kept there.
E01338The church of Panagia Kanakaria at Lythrankomi (north-eastern Cyprus) houses a mosaic with depictions of Christ, *Mary (Mother of Christ, S00033), unnamed *Archangels (almost certainly *Michael, S00181, and *Gabriel, S00192), and with labelled depictions of *Apostles and *Evangelists. Probably 525-550.
E01347The second edition of the Liber Pontificalis, written in Latin in Rome between the 530s and 546, in its account of *Symmachus (bishop and confessor of Rome, S00793), lists his extensive work at the basilica of *Peter (the Apostle, S00036) in Rome, honouring a number of different saints.
E01439A large hollow stone block, probably a water basin (baptismal font?), with a Greek inscription with the name 'martyr Tho(- - -)'. Probably *Thomas the Apostle (S00199). Found at Tella/Constantina (north Mesopotamia/Osroene). Probably late antique.
E01620Greek inscription commemorating the construction of a martyr shrine (martyrion) of *Thomas (probably the Apostle, S00199), by an Arab woman Mavia. Found near Anasartha/Theodoroupolis (north Syria). Dated 23-30 September 426.
E01689Greek inscription on a house at Barad/Brad in the Limestone Massif (north Syria), with a list of six or more saints: a saint *John (presumably either the Baptist, S00020, or the Apostle and Evangelist, S00042), *Dometios (monk of Syria, later 4th c., S00414), *George (soldier and martyr, S00259), *Christophoros (martyr of Pamphylia, S00616), *Euphemia (probably the martyr of Chalcedon, S00017), *Philotheos (possibly the martyr of Antioch, S00878), possibly *Kyros and Ioannes/Cyrus and John (physician and soldier, martyrs of Egypt, S00406), a certain *Eusebios, possibly *Thomas the Apostle (S00199), and other unnamed martyrs. Probably 5th/6th c.
E01832Inscribed red marble reliquary from the East church (the cathedral church) in Apamea on the Orontes (central Syria), recording relics of the following saints: *Ioudas, a saint whose name is lost (D[---]),*Kallinikos (possibly the martyr of Gangra, S00923), *Ioannes/John 'Stratiotes', and the *Forty Martyrs of Sebasteia (S00103). Probably 6th c.
E01964Greek inscription, just possibly naming a gateway or church after *Thomas (probably the Apostle, S00199). Found at Tamak, to the east of Apamea on the Orontes and Ḥamāh/Amathe (central Syria). Probably 6th c. or later.
E02339Floor mosaic with a Greek inscription commemorating the building, paving and embellishment of a church (naos) of *Thomas, probably the Apostle (S00199). Found at Khirbat Sa'ad, c. 10 km to the northeast of Gersa/Jerash (Jordan/Roman province of Arabia) but probably within the territory of Bostra. Dated 572.
E02734Fragmentary Greek inscription on a wooden board commemorating the construction of a church (oikos) dedicated to *Thomas (probably the Apostle, S00199). Found at Jerusalem (Roman province of Palaestina I). 524-552.
E02735Bronze cross inscribed 'of Thomas in Phordison', probably from a church of Thomas the Apostle (S00199). Found at Jerusalem (Roman province of Palaestina I). Probably 6th c.
E02833Lead ampullae showing the scene of the incredulity of *Thomas the Apostle (S00199). Now in Bobbio and Monza (both northern Italy), and the British Museum (perhaps from Egypt). Almost certainly from the Holy Land, just possibly from a church dedicated to the saint at Jerusalem. Probably 6th c.
E02856Fragments of a labelled wall-painting, probably of *Philemon (martyr of Antinoopolis, Egypt, S00386) and just possibly *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199). Found in Caesarea Maritima (Roman province of Palaestina I), at the 'chapel of St. Paul'. Probably 6th-7th c.
E03146The early seventh-century Georgian version of the Lectionary of Jerusalem commemorates on 9 May at the Church of the Apostles in Jerusalem the deposition of relics of the Apostles *Peter (S00036), *Thomas (S00199) and *John (S00042), of *John the Baptist (S00020), *Isaiah (Old Testament Prophet, S00280), *Theodore (soldier and martyr of Amaseia and Euchaita, S00480), Claudian (unidentified figure), *Tryphon (possibly the martyr of Nikaia/Nicaea, S00439).
E03163The early seventh-century Georgian version of the Lectionary of Jerusalem commemorates on 26 May *Philip (the Apostle, S00109), *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199) and *Zechariah (either the Old Testament prophet, S00283, or the father of John the Baptist, S00597).
E03222The Martyrdom of *Cetheus (bishop and martyr of Aternum (Pescara) in Central Italy, died c. 590-591, S01553) is written in Latin, presumably in Pescara, perhaps in the first half of the 7th c. It narrates the bishop of Aternum Cetheus’ flight from the city, raided by the Lombards Alahis and Umblo, to Pope Gregory the Great (590-604) in Rome; the Lombards’ repentance and journey to Rome, where they pray at *Peter’s tomb (the Apostle, S00036); how, swearing an oath at the tomb promising to preserve and increase church property in Aternum, they obtain from Gregory that Cetheus be restored to his see; Cetheus’ arrest after he is accused by Umblo of having taken part to an attack against the city plotted by his rival Alahis, who is beheaded; Cetheus’ death by being thrown into the river Piscaria his neck bound to a stone; the miraculous journey of his body across the Adriatic sea to the civitas Iaternensis (Zadar, Croatia), where it is buried; the healing of a blind man at his tomb and the translation of Cetheus’ body at the 9th milestone from the city; his name being unknown there, he is called Peregrinus ('foreigner').
E03280The early seventh-century Georgian version of the Lectionary of Jerusalem commemorates on 20 July *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199).
E03360The early seventh-century Georgian version of the Lectionary of Jerusalem commemorates on 24 August *Philip (the Apostle, S00109), *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), *Bartholomew (the Apostle, S00256), *Matthew (the Apostle, S00791).
E03374The early seventh-century Georgian version of the Lectionary of Jerusalem commemorates on 5 September *Zechariah (probably the father of John the Baptist, S00597), and the Apostles *Philip (S00109), and *Thomas (S00199).
E03390The early seventh-century Georgian version of the Lectionary of Jerusalem commemorates on 2 October the Apostles *Peter (S00036), *Paul (S00008), *Thomas (S00199), *Philip (S00109), and *Andrew (S00288), *Isaiah (Old Testament prophet, S00282), *Zechariah (Old Testament prophet, S00283), *Mamas (martyr of Kaisareia/Caesarea in Cappadocia, S00436), *Theodore (soldier and martyr and Amaseia and Euchaita, S00480) and *Christophoros (martyr of Pamphylia, S00616), *Sergios (soldier and martyr of Rusafa, S00023), *Pantaleon (martyr of Nicomedia, S00596).
E03416The early seventh-century Georgian version of the Lectionary of Jerusalem commemorates on 1 November *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199).
E03501Theodoret of Cyrrhus in his Cure for Greek Maladies refers to the veneration of relics, the dedication of offerings for healing, the naming of children after martyrs, the replacement of pagan temples by shrines of martyrs, and the festivals of the Apostles *Peter (S00036), *Paul (S00008), and *Thomas (S00199), and of the martyrs *Sergios (soldier and martyr of Rusafa, S00023), *Markellos (martyr of Apameia on the Orontes, S01456), *Leontios (probably the martyr of Tripolis, Phoenicia, S00216), *Antoninos, and *Maurikios (martyr of Apameia, S01437). Written in Greek in the 420s, at the monastery of Nikerte near Apamea on the Orontes or in Cyrrhus (both north Syria).
E03603Floor mosaics with Greek inscriptions from the basilica at Tell Aar, c. 40 km to the northwest of Ḥamāh/Epiphaneia (Roman province of Syria II, probably within the bishopric of Apamea), commemorating the paving of a church, termed ekklesia, in 375/376, and the restoration of the same sanctuary in 434/435, this time termed a shrine of the *Apostle(s), Apostoleion.
E03734The Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime, compiled in Georgian in the 10th c., based however on 5th-7th c. prototypes from Palestine, commemorates on 9 May the deposition of relics of the Apostles *Peter (S00036), *Paul (*00008), *Philip (S00109), *Thomas (S00199), of *John the Baptist (S00020), *Isaiah (Old Testament Prophet, S00280), martyrs *Theodore (possibly soldier and martyr of Amaseia and Euchaita, S00480), or a group of martyrs: Diodoros, Claudianus, Tryphaines, Nikephoros and their companions.
E03751The Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime, compiled in Georgian in the 10th century, based however on 5th-7th c. prototypes from Palestine, commemorates on 26 May *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), *Philip (the Apostle, S00109), *Zechariah, (probably the father of John the Baptist, S00597, or possibly the Old Testament prophet, S00283), and *Therapon (bishop and martyr of Cyprus under Diocletian, S01751).
E03789The Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime, compiled in Georgian in the 10th c., based however on 5th-7th c. prototypes from Palestine, commemorates on 3 July *Peter (the Apostle, S00036), *Paul (the Apostle, S00008), *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), and *Hyacinthus (martyr of Rome under Trajan, S01609).
E03806The Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime, compiled in Georgian in the 10th c., based however on 5th-7th c. prototypes from Palestine, commemorates on 20 July *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), *Elijah (Old Testament prophet, S00217), *Christina (martyr of Tyre, S00907), and of the *Archangels (S00191).
E03842The Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime, compiled in Georgian in the 10th c., based however on 5th-7th c. prototypes from Palestine, commemorates on 24 August *Philip (the Apostle, S00109), *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), *Barthlomew (the Apostle, S00256), *Matthew (the Apostle, S00791), *Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego (Old Testament martyrs, S01198) and *Tatianos/Tatios (martyr in Claudiopolis under Diocletian, S01791).
E03856The Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime, compiled in Georgian in the 10th century, based however on 5th-7th c. prototypes from Palestine, commemorates on 5 September *Zechariah (father of John the Baptist, S00597), and the Apostles *Philip (S00109) and *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), and *Aaron (Old Testament prophet, S01427).
E03886The Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime, compiled in Georgian in the 10th c., based however on 5th-7th c. prototypes from Palestine, commemorates on 5 October, at the church of *Mary (Mother of Christ, S00033), *Cyprian (bishop and martyr of Carthage, S,00411), *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), and *Aaron (Old Testament prophet, S01427),
E03887The Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime, compiled in Georgian in the 10th c., based however on 5th-7th c. prototypes from Palestine, commemorates on 6 October *Sergios (soldier and martyr of Rusafa, S00023) and *Bakchos (soldier and martyr of Barbalissos, S00079), *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199) and the 'session' of the twelve *Apostles (S00084).
E03913The Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime, compiled in Georgian in the 10th c., based however on 5th-7th c. prototypes from Palestine, commemorates on 1 November *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), *Konōn (gardener and martyr of Magydos of Pamphylia, S00177), *Kosmas and Damianos (brothers, physician martyrs of Syria, S00385), and Zosimos, an unidentified figure.
E04148Socrates Scholasticus in his Ecclesiastical History mentions a visit of the emperor Valens (r. 364-378) to the shrine (martyrion) of *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199) in Edessa of Mesopotamia. He attempts to prevent Nicene Christians from worshipping at the shrine. Written in Greek at Constantinople, 439/446.
E04532Greek inscription commemorating the restoration of a floor-mosaic 'to the glory (doxa) of God and honour (time)' of an unnamed Apostle. Possibly mentioning a shrine termed an Apostoleion, repaved through the intercession of that Apostle. Found at Seleukeia/Seleucia Pieria near Antioch on the Orontes (Roman province of Syria I). Dated 564.
E04538Rufinus of Aquileia, in his Church History, describes Edessa as the city adorned with the relics of *Thomas the Apostle (S00199). Written in Latin in Aquileia (northern Italy), c. 402.
E04558Lid of a white marble reliquary with a Syriac inscription labelling relics of *Peter (the Apostle, S00036), *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), Symeon the Stylite (the Elder, S00343), and of other unnamed martyrs. Now in İstanbul Archaeological Museums. Probably 5th or 6th c.
E04767Paulinus of Nola, in many of his fourteen poems (the Natalicia) written in honour of *Felix (priest and confessor of Nola, S00000), identifies Felix as the special protector (patronus) of Nola (southern Italy); the similar role of other saints, in other regions, is detailed in Natalicium 11. Written in Latin, in Spain and later Nola, between 395 and 408.
E04768Paulinus of Nola, in several of his poems (in the Natalicia) written in honour of *Felix (priest and confessor of Nola, S00000), describes the building work undertaken by Paulinus at Felix’s tomb at Nola/Cimitile (southern Italy); Natalicium 9 also refers to the relics of several other apostolic saints and martyrs housed in the basilica complex at Nola. Written in Latin, in Spain and later Nola, between 400 and 407.
E05060The 6th/7th c. recension of the Latin Martyrologium Hieronymianum, as transmitted in 8th c. manuscripts, records the feasts of a number of saints on 21 December.
E05067The 6th/7th c. recension of the Latin Martyrologium Hieronymianum, as transmitted in 8th c. manuscripts, records the feasts of a number of saints on 28 December.
E05223The pilgrim Egeria, in her Itinerary, describes her visit to Edessa (Mesopotamia), where she prayed at the tomb of *Thomas the Apostle (S00199), containing his 'entire body', read from his writings, and also visited other martyr shrines (martyria) in the city. Written in Latin during Egeria's journey to the East, probably in 381-384.
E05250In the 380s, Ammianus Marcellinus in his Res Gestae mentions the Roman commander, Sabinianus, who, while preparing for the war against the Persians visited tombs in Edessa, most probably that of *Thomas the Apostle (S00060) and possibly local martyrs. Written in Latin in Rome.
E05301Chromatius of Aquileia preaches a sermon (Sermon 26) at the consecration of a church in Concordia (near Aquileia), with relics deposited in its altar of the apostles *John (S00042), *Andrew (S00288), and *Thomas (S00199), and of *Luke (the Evangelist, S00442) and *John (the Baptist, S00020). Chromatius refers to the translation of Thomas' relics from India to Edessa (Upper Mesopotamia). Delivered in Latin in Concordia (northern Italy), 388/407.
E05338Gaudentius of Brescia preaches a sermon (Sermon 17) in Brescia (northern Italy), on the dedication of a basilica to the 'Council of Saints', with relics of *John (the Baptist, S00020), *Andrew (the Apostle, S00288), *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), *Luke (the Evangelist, S00442), *Gervasius and Protasius (martyrs of Milan, S00313), *Nazarius (martyr of Milan, S00281), the *Anaunian Martyrs (Sisinnius, Martyrius and Alexander, ob. c. 397, S00605), and the *Forty Martyrs of Sebaste (S00103). Written in Latin, probably 402/403.
E05454Proclus of Constantinople composes his Homily 33, On the New Lord's Day and *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), which he delivers in Constantinople during the liturgy of the first Sunday after Easter. Written in Greek in the early 5th c.
E05862The Calendar of Willibrord, in its earliest version, records the feasts of various saints in December. Written in Latin at Echternach, Frisia (north-east Gaul), 703/710.
E05950Mosaic portraits of twelve apostles and twelve martyrs (six female, six male) depicted on the barrel vaults of the Cappella Arcivescovile in Ravenna (northern Italy), datable 494/520.
E06047Mosaics from the 6th c. depicting the Apostles, *Gervasius and Protasius (martyrs of Milan, S00313), and *Vitalis (martyr of Ravenna, S02826) in San Vitale, Ravenna (northern Italy).
E06245Venantius Fortunatus, in a poem on virginity (8.3), when describing the court of heaven lists numerous saints with the cities of their resting-place. Written in Latin in Gaul, probably in the early 570s.
E06265The three Homilies (memrā) on Apostle Thomas in India are written in Syriac during the late 5th/early 6th c. by Jacob of Serugh (c. 451-521). They celebrate the exploits of *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199) through a dramatic retelling of the account of his journey to India from the Acts of Thomas.
E06358Gregory the Great in two papal letters (Register 5.47 and 5.49) of 594/595, one of them to Castor, bishop of Rimini, offers protection to a monastery dedicated to the Apostles *Andrew (S00288) and *Thomas (S00199) in Rimini (northern Italy). Written in Latin in Rome.
E06548Aldhelm, in his prose On Virginity, names *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199) as an exemplary virgin. Written in Latin in southern Britain, for the nuns at the monastery at Barking (south-east Britain), c. 675/686.
E06592The Latin Gelasian Sacramentary (or Liber Sacramentorum Romanae Ecclesiae), probably compiled around 750 near Paris using earlier material from Rome, records prayers to saints on their feast days in December.
E06677Cyril of Scythopolis composes the Life of *Sabas (‘the Sanctified’, monastic founder in Palestine, ob. 532, S00910), recounting his life as a miracle working ascetic and founder of numerous monasteries, adding a set of posthumous miracle stories, and including references to cults of several other saints. Written in Greek at the New Laura in Palestine, 555/557. Overview entry
E06887A list of subscriptions, preserved in a letter sent to Pope Agapetus I from eastern clerics protesting the appointment of Anthimus as the patriarch of Constantinople, documents foundations dedicated to saints in various places, including Syria. Written in Latin in Constantinople in 535/536.
E06924Aldhelm, in his poem On the Altars of the Twelve Apostles, records the dedication of an altar to *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199), presumably in Britain. Written in Latin in southern Britain, c. 670/710.
E07962The Paschal Chronicle includes two entries (for 454 and 468) recording the foundation at Constantinople of a church dedicated to *Thomas (the Apostle, S00199) by Anthemius, son-in-law of the eastern emperor Marcian (r. 450-457), and himself later western emperor (r. 467-472). Written in Greek at Constantinople, c. 630.