John Sabas (Fl. C. 550)

JOHN SABAS (fl. c. 550)

A nestorian ascetic who spent a long time as a hermit and at an advanced age was the founder and principal of a monastery. His writings consist of letters, short sermons, and a compendium on the spiritual life called Ru’us al-Ma‘rifah (Chapters of Understanding).

Despite his Nestorian faith, these writings made him greatly esteemed in Jacobite and Monophysite circles, so that he became known as the “spiritual elder,” almost as a legendary character.


  • Wright, W. A Short History of Syriac Literature. London, 1894.


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