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The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity


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


Name

Symeon the Elder, stylite of Qal‘at Sim‘ān, ob. 459

Saint ID

S00343

Number in BH

BHG 1679-1688

Reported Death Not Before

459

Reported Death Not After

459

Gender
Male
Type of Saint
Ascetics/monks/nuns, Stylites/dendrites
Related Evidence Records
IDTitle
E00566Greek epigram, probably by Kyros/Cyrus of Panopolis, from the pillar-shrine of *Daniel (stylite near Constantinople, ob. 493, S00342) at Anaplous (Constantinopolitan suburb on the Bosphorus), praising the virtue of the saint, whom it compares to *Symeon the Elder (stylite of Qal‘at Sim‘ān in Syria, ob. 459, S00343). Late 5th c.; recorded in the 10th c. Greek Anthology.
E01217The Syriac Chronicle of Pseudo-Joshua the Stylite recounts how, after the news of the abolition of the chrysargyron tax by emperor Anastasius reached Edessa (northern Mesopotamia) in the year 498, its citizens in thanks processed to the martyrium church of *Sergios (soldier and martyr of Rusafa, S00023) and *Symeon the Elder (stylite of Qal‘at Sim‘ān, ob. 459, S00343), located outside the city, where a solemn eucharist was performed. Written in Edessa, 506/515.
E01785Basalt pillar with low-relief carving and Greek inscription naming *Symeon the Elder (stylite of Qal‘at Sim‘ān, ob. 459, S00343) or *Symeon the Younger (stylite near Antioch, ob. 592, S00860). Found at Jibrîn, to the southeast of Beroia/Aleppo (central Syria). Probably late antique.
E01822Inscribed metal medallion showing a depiction of *Symeon the Elder (stylite of Qal‘at Sim‘ān, ob. 459,S00343) or *Symeon the Younger (stylite near Antioch, ob. 592, S00860). Provenance unknown. Seen in Beirut (west Lebanon). Not earlier than later 5th c.
E02316Gregory of Tours, in his Histories (8.15), records how *Vulfilaicus (late 6th c. stylite and monastic founder, S01199) kept vigils in youth in the name of *Martin (ascetic and bshop of Tours, ob. 397, S00050), became a disciple of Aredius (monastic founder in the Limousin, ob. 591), and visited with him the tomb of Martin in Tours, where Aredius gathered dust in a small box (capsula). This dust when placed in the oratory of Aredius' monastery in the Limousin (western Gaul) increases in quantity. Vulfilaicus travels to the region of Trier (north-east Gaul), and on a column imitates the stylite *Symeon (probably the Elder, ob. 459, S00343; possibly the Younger, ob. 592, S00860). He destroys idols and converts the locals to Christianity; is cured of sores with oil brought from Saint Martin’s church in Tours; is ordered off his column by bishops; all in around 565-585. Written in Latin in Tours (north-west Gaul), 585/594.
E02448Gregory of Tours writes the Glory of the Confessors, in Latin in Tours (north-west Gaul), 587/588. Overview entry.
E02579Gregory of Tours, in his Glory of the Confessors (26), writes of *Symeon the Elder (stylite of Qalat Siman, ob. 459, S00343): how he lived on a pillar, effected many cures, and refused to be seen by any woman; reportedly,a woman who sought to enter the church over his pillar disguised as a man was struck dead. Written in Latin in Tours (north-west Gaul), 587/588.
E02853A complex of warehouses, excavated to the north of the praetorium in Caesarea Maritima (Roman province of Palaestina I), was richly decorated with religious wall paintings showing Christ with the *Apostles (S00084), and probably the Three Egyptian martyrs: *Ares/Aretas, Promos, and Elias (S00196), and *Philemon (martyr of Antinoopolis, Egypt, S00386). Finds of small objects and the biblical background suggest the existence of a shrine of *Paul the Apostle (S00008) at the site in the 6th/7th c.
E03813The Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime, compiled in Georgian in the 10th c., based however on 5th-7th c. prototypes from Palestine, commemorates on 27 July *Symeon the Elder (stylite of Qal‘at Sim‘ān, ob. 459, S00343), *Symeon the Younger (stylite near Antioch, ob. 592, S00860) and a third Symeon the Stylite and *Pantaleōn/Panteleēmōn (martyr of Nicomedia, during the Diocletian persecution of 305, S00596).
E03814The Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime, compiled in Georgian in the 10th c., based however on 5th-7th c. prototypes from Palestine, commemorates on 28 July *Eustathios (soldier and martyr of Ancyra S01501), *Ephrem (possibly poet and theologian of Edessa, ob. 373, S01238), *Euphemia (martyr of Chalcedon, S00017), *Anatolios (possibly martyr of Nicaea under Maximian, S01781), *Pantaleōn / Panteleēmōn (martyr of Nicomedia, during the Diocletian persecution of 305, S00596), *Symeon the Elder (stylite of Qal‘at Sim‘ān, S00343), and, as a later addition, John the Bishop of Chalcedon and confessor during Iconoclasm.
E03849The Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime, compiled in Georgian in the 10th c., based however on 5th-7th c. prototypes from Palestine, commemorates on 31 August *1003 martyrs of Nikomedia (under Diocletian, S01513), *Joseph of Arimathea (New Testament figure, S01787), *Nicodemus (the Pharisee, S01788), and *Mary (Mother of Christ, S00033), and *Symeon the Elder (stylite of Qal‘at Sim‘ān, ob. 459, S00343).
E04185Theodoret of Cyrrhus in his Ecclesiastical History mentions various holy men living under Valens (r. 364-378), most of them covered in greater detail in his Religious History. Written in Greek at Cyrrhus (northern Syria), 444/450.
E04388Syriac graffito invoking *Symeon (the Elder, stylite of Qal‘at Sim‘ān, S00343). Found at Deir Semaan/Telanissos in north Syria, near Qal‘at Sim‘ān, c. 34 km to the northwest of Beroia/Aleppo. Probably late antique.
E04490Evagrius Scholasticus in his Ecclesiastical History (1.13-14) summarises the story of *Symeon the Elder (Stylite, ob. 459, S00343), using the saint’s anonymous Life and Theodoret of Cyrrhus’ Religious History. He describes the shrine around Symeon's column, his well preserved head in Antioch (from which some teeth had been abstracted by the pious), and the miraculous appearance of a star at the shrine on the occasion of the saint's commemoration. Written in Greek at Antioch (Syria), 593/594
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.
E04560The Greek Life of *Daniel the Stylite (ob. 493, S00342) recounts the life and manifold miracles of an ascetic who, imitating *Symeon the Stylite (the Elder, ob. 459, S00343), lives on a pillar and founds a monastic community at Anaplous on the Bosphorus. The text mentions shrines of martyrs and prophets in Constantinople, the use of holy oil and images, and the transfer of relics of Symeon the Stylite and the *Three Hebrew Youths (of the Old Testament Book of Daniel, S01198) to Constantinople. Written in Constantinople, 493/518.
E04585The 6th/7th c. recension of the Latin Martyrologium Hieronymianum, as transmitted in 8th c. manuscripts, records the feasts of a number of saints on 5 January.
E05721John Malalas in his Chronographia (14.37) mentions the death of *Symeon the Stylite (the Elder, S00343) in 459; the people of Antioch demand that his body be buried in their city, and build a great church for it. Written in Greek at Antioch (Syria) or Constantinople, in the mid-6th c.
E05857The Calendar of Willibrord, in its earliest version, records the feasts of various saints in July. Written in Latin at Echternach, Frisia (north-east Gaul), 703/710.
E07025The Greek Life of *Auxentios (ascetic and monastic founder in Bithynia, ob. c. 470, S01523) recounts the life and miracles of its hero as an ascetic on mount Oxia, near Chalcedon (broader Constantinople), participant of the Council of Chalcedon, and founder of a nunnery at Gyrita near Chalcedon. It mentions shrines near Chalcedon. Written in Constantinople, probably in the mid 6th century.
E07731John Diakrinomenos in his Ecclesiastical History mentions stories from the life *Symeon (the Stylite, S00343), including a visit to him by the emperor Marcian, disguised as a commoner. Written in Greek in Constantinople, c. 513/515.