SAINT

A noble who became a monk in (feast day: 13 ). The account of his life has been preserved in in a complete (New York, Pierpont M 579.1) and in various fragments from (ed. , 1947), and is attributed to one , a historiographer of Rome who, in the mind of whoever composed it, was obviously the same person as , without apparent reason for such an attribution.

We are told that Archellides came from a noble and very pious family of the city of Rome. He is educated by “philosophers” and sent to complete his education in Athens and . Along the way he meets a corpse and is so struck by this that he takes a vow of virginity and goes to the Palestinian monastery of Saint . He is accepted by the monks, performs great acts of , and is also respected for his wisdom.

Without any news of him, his mother is very sad; she opens a hostel where she takes care of wayfarers. After twelve years some passing merchants discuss Archellides, and his mother learns where he is. She gives her belongings to the poor and sets out. When she reaches the monastery, she asks to see her son, who refuses her an audience [presumably because he has vowed not to look at the face of a woman]. The mother insists, and in his difficulty Archellides prays intensely for death. His mother thus manages to see him, although he is already ; she prays that she too may die, and her prayer is granted.

The text is one of the fictitious stories not linked to a Cycle and seems to have been composed directly in Coptic in about the seventh century.

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