ACTA SANCTORUM

ANANIAS (Gr. Ἀνανίας; Heb. חָנָן ‘Jahweh is gracious’)

ANANIAS (Gr. Ἀνανίας; Heb. חָנָן ‘Jahweh is gracious’) A very common name in later Jewish times, corresponding to Hananiah or Hanani of the OT. We find it occurring frequently in the post-exilic writings and particularly in the Apocrypha. In the history of the Apostolic Church, we meet with three persons bearing this name. An early …

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Saint John Colobos

SAINT JOHN COLOBOS Coptic Tradition John Colobos, the Little or the Dwarf (fourth and fifth centuries), is one of the most striking figures among the desert fathers. He is known principally from the APOPHTHEGMATA PATRUM and from a Life in the form of a panegyric composed by Zacharias, the bishop of Sakha, at the end …

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Letter Of Ammon

LETTER OF AMMON The two most important manuscripts that have transmitted the text of the first Greek Life of Pachomius to us, the Florentinus and the Atheniensis, have also preserved the text of a document known as the Epistula Ammonis. It is a letter addressed by a bishop called Ammon to a certain Theophilus and …

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Assemani

ASSEMANI The Latinized form of the Arabic al-Sim’ani and surname of four Maronite members of a Syrian family of noted Orientalists who lived from the late seventeenth to the early nineteenth century. They are Joseph Simeonis (Arabic, Yusuf Sim‘an; 1687-1768), Stephen (Arabic, Istafan) Evodius (1709- 1782), Joseph (Arabic, Yusuf) Aloysius (1710-1782), and Simon (Arabic, Sim‘an; …

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Bollandists

BOLLANDISTS A society of Jesuit fathers named after John van Bolland (1596-1665), who founded it on the basis of a plan conceived by Heribert Rosweyde (1569-1629), who did not live to see it materialize. The plan called for the assembling and publication of a universal register of the lives of saints from all possible original …

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Hagiography, Coptic

HAGIOGRAPHY, COPTIC The writing about the saints of the Coptic church. Many religions venerate saints and so have produced a vast literature around them. Best known in the West is the monumental Acta Sanctorum (Lives of the Saints), compiled by the Society of Bollandists, a group of Jesuit scholars, beginning in the seventeenth century and …

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