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E02043: Hydatius in his Latin Chronicle records the discovery near Jerusalem in 415 of the body of *Stephen (the First Martyr, S00030); written probably in Chaves (north-west Spain), c. 468-469.

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posted on 2016-11-25, 00:00 authored by mszata
Hydatius, Chronicle 50 [58]

Hierosolimis Iohanne quo supra episcopo presidente sanctus et primus post Christum dominum martyr Stefanus reuelatur.

'When the aforementioned bishop John was presiding in Jerusalem, St Stephen, the first martyr after Christ the Lord, was discovered.'

Text and translation: Burgess 1992: 84-85


Evidence ID


Saint Name

Stephen, the First Martyr : S00030

Saint Name in Source


Type of Evidence

Literary - Other narrative texts (including Histories)


  • Latin

Evidence not before


Evidence not after


Activity not before


Activity not after


Place of Evidence - Region

Iberian Peninsula

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc


Place of evidence - City name in other Language(s)

Chaves Osset Osset Osen (castrum) Osser castrum

Cult Activities - Protagonists in Cult and Narratives

Ecclesiastics - bishops

Cult Activities - Relics

Bodily relic - unspecified Discovering, finding, invention and gathering of relics


Hydatius, a bishop in Galicia (in northwest Spain), probably of Chaves, wrote his chronicle c. 468/469. It is the most important source for the history of Iberia in the 5th century. For detailed discussion and further bibliography, see: Burgess 1993; Muhlberger 1990, 193-266. The numbers of paragraphs in brackets refer to the 1973 edition of A. Tranoy.


John was bishop of Jerusalem from 378 to 417. Hydatius mentions him earlier in his chronicle (31 [38] and 33 [40]) along with the information that he saw him personally during his travels to the Holy Land in childhood, c. 406/408. According to the account of the discovery of the grave of St Stephen, written by the priest Lucian, the grave was found in the village of Kaphargamala, in the territory of Jerusalem (E###).


Editions and translations: Burgess ,R.W., The Chronicle of Hydatius and the Consularia Constantinopolitana: Two Contemporary Accounts of the Final Years of the Roman Empire (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1993). Edition and English translation. Mommsen, T., Hydatii Lemici continuatio chronicorum Hieronymianorum, in: Chronica Minora saec. IV. V. VI. VII., vol. 2 (Monumenta Germaniae Historica: Auctores Antiquissimi 11; Berlin: Apud Weidmannos, 1894), 1-36. Tranoy, A., Hydace, Chronique, 2 vols. (Sources chrétiennes 218-219; Paris: Cerf, 1973). Edition and French translation. Further reading: Muhlberger, S., The Fifth-Century Chroniclers: Prosper, Hydatius, and the Gallic Chronicler of 452 (Leeds: Francis Cairns, 1990).

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    Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity