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E03319: Palladius of Helenopolis in his Lausiac History recounts the story of *Makarios (the Alexandrian, ascetic in Nitria, Lower Egypt, ob. c. 395, S00101), including miracles of exorcism. Written in Greek at Aspuna or Ankyra (both Galatia, central Asia Minor), 419/420.

online resource
posted on 18.07.2017, 00:00 by erizos
Palladius of Helenopolis, Lausiac History (BHG 1435-1438v; CPG 6036), 18

Summary:

18. Palladius met Makarios in Kellia, where he stayed for nine years. Makarios visited the kepotaphion (garden) of Jannes and Jambres, where he met demons in the form of ravens. On his way back, he almost died of thirst in the desert, but was fed by a cow. He exorcised many, including a girl from Thessalonike. He visited Tabennesis, pretending to be a novice and persuaded *Pachomios to accept him in the monastery. He scandalised the monks by his strict fasting, but his identity was revealed to Pachomios by vision. Demons burnt his cell during a long session of prayer. Palladius meets a priest with cancer who went to Makarios' cell to be healed. It turns out that the man was punished for fornication, and he was healed after quitting the clergy. There follows the story of the exorcism of a young boy. Makarios recounts a story about Markos the ascetic who received Holy Communion from the hands of an angel. Paphnoutios, the disciple of Makarios, recounts the story of a hyena that brought her cub to be healed by Makarios.

Text: Bartelink et al. 1974. Summary: E. Rizos.

History

Evidence ID

E03319

Saint Name

Macarius of Alexandria, 4th-century monk in Egypt : S00101

Saint Name in Source

Μακάριος

Type of Evidence

Literary - Hagiographical - Monastic collections (apophthegmata, etc.)

Language

Greek

Evidence not before

419

Evidence not after

420

Activity not before

335

Activity not after

395

Place of Evidence - Region

Asia Minor

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc

Aspuna

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

Aspuna Nicomedia Νικομήδεια Nikomēdeia Izmit Πραίνετος Prainetos Nicomedia

Major author/Major anonymous work

Palladius of Helenopolis

Cult activities - Non Liturgical Practices and Customs

Oral transmission of saint-related stories

Cult Activities - Miracles

Miracle during lifetime Miracles experienced by the saint Punishing miracle Miracle with animals and plants Material support (supply of food, water, drink, money) Miraculous protection - of people and their property Exorcism

Cult Activities - Protagonists in Cult and Narratives

Ecclesiastics - monks/nuns/hermits Children Animals

Source

Born in 364 in Galatia in central Asia Minor, Palladius became a monk in 386, spending some years in Palestine, before moving to Alexandria. In c. 390, he joined the monastic community of Nitria, where he spent nine years, under Makarios of Alexandria and Evagrios of Pontus. In c. 399, he returned briefly to Palestine and then left for Constantinople where he became closely associated with John Chrysostom. By 400, he was ordained bishop of Helenopolis in Bithynia (north-west Asia Minor), probably by Chrysostom. Palladius stood by his new protector throughout John’s conflict with Pope Theophilos of Alexandria over the affair of the Tall Brothers and the Council of the Oak. One year after John’s exile in 404, Palladius visited Rome in order to plead on John’s behalf with Pope Innocent I (401-411). Returning to Constantinople, he was arrested and one year later (406), he was exiled to Syene (Aswan) and Antinoe in Egypt. There he received the news of John’s death in Pontus (407) and wrote the Historical Dialogue on the Life of John Chrysostom (in 408 or shortly after, E02400). In the 410s, he was allowed to return to his native Galatia, and was restored as a bishop in the imperial church, being appointed to the see of Aspona. After his return from exile, in c. 419/420, Palladius published the Lausiakon (‘Book for Lausos’, widely known as the Lausiac History), a book commissioned by and dedicated to the patrician Lausos (imperial chamberlain in 420-422). Along with the History of the Monks of Egypt (E03558, composed in 395/397), Palladius’ work inaugurates the monastic genre of edifying stories and apophthegms. It immediately became a success: two decades after its publication, the ecclesiastical historian Socrates used the Lausiac History as a source (4.23.78), and it was translated into Latin and Syriac. There are also Armenian, Coptic, Ethiopic, and Arabic translations. Its copious manuscript tradition (242 manuscripts) and unstable transmission render a definitive critical edition of the text very difficult. On the manuscript tradition of the Greek text, see: http://pinakes.irht.cnrs.fr/notices/oeuvre/6840/ Like all monastic collections, the Lausiac History was mainly written to provide exemplars of ascetic virtue and edifying stories for broader spiritual benefit, rather than to encourage the active cult of the men and women included within it – indeed some of them serve as negative examples to avoid. It was, therefore, difficult for us to decide how to treat this work in our database, focused as it is on the cult of saints. At one extreme, we could have entered every (positive) figure within it as a saint, while, at the other extreme, we might have ignored the text altogether. In the end we came to a compromise position, with one overview entry for the full text (E03176), where all the holy men and women are named, and individual entries for chapters that either reveal interesting incidental details of saintly cult or cover major figures who, in time, came to attract cult. The Lausiac History in its many manuscripts and its many translations was in fact one of the principal ways these figures came to be known, and often venerated, across the Christian world. Some of its chapters were, indeed, later detached from the collection, and circulated as independent pieces of hagiography.

Discussion

Makarios of Alexandria, also known as Makarios the Younger, was one of the revered figures of the Nitrian community. Palladius probably met him in the last years of his life. His story is also recorded, with minor variations, in the History of the Monks in Egypt. The authors of this book visited Nitria shortly after Makarios' death, in the mid 390s. At that time Palladius still lived there and he is likely to have met the authors of the History of the Monks.

Bibliography

Text: Butler, Cuthbert. The Lausiac History of Palladius: Greek Text Edited with Introduction and Notes. Texts and Studies. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1904. Bartelink, G. J. M., Barchiesi, M. and Mohrmann, C. Palladio, La Storia Lausiaca. Scrittori Greci E Latini. Milano: Fondazione Lorenzo Valla, Arnoldo Mondadori, 1974. (with Italian translation) English Translations: Wortley, J. Palladius, the Lausiac History, Collegeville, MN: Cistercian Publications, 2015. Meyer, R. T. Palladius, the Lausiac History, Westminster MD: Newman Press: 1965. Lowtber Clarke, W. K. The Lausiac History of Palladius, London: Macmillan, 1918. Further reading: Katos, D. Palladius of Helenopolis: the Origenist Advocate. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011. Rapp, C. ‘Palladius, Lausus and the Historia Lausiaca.’ In C. Sode, S. Takács (eds.), Novum Millennium. Studies on Byzantine History and Culture Dedicated to Paul Speck, 19 December 1999, Aldershot: Ashgate, 279-289.

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