University of Oxford

File(s) not publicly available

E06332: A letter of Pope Gregory the Great (Register 2.13) of 592, to Bishop Iohannes of Velletri (near Rome), orders him, because of barbarian incursions, to move the seat of his diocese to a place dedicated to *Andrew (the Apostle, S00288). Written in Latin in Rome.

online resource
posted on 2018-09-11, 00:00 authored by frances
Pope Gregory the Great, Register of Letters 2.13

Although normally bishops should not move their sees, Gregory recommends that an exception be made in this case to avoid the incursions of the barbarians:

Propterea te Iohannem fratrem coepiscopumque nostrum Vellitrensis ciuitatis sedemque tuam in loco qui appellatur Arenata ad sanctum Andream apostolum praecepimus exinde transmigrari, quatenus et ab hostilitatis incursu liberior exsistere ualeas, et illic consuetudine sollemnium festa disponas.

‘For that reason we have ordered you, John, our brother and fellow-bishop, bishop of the city of Velletri, as well as your see in the place called Arenata, to be moved from there to Saint Andrew the apostle, so that you can live with more freedom from hostile incursions and also arrange festivals there with customary solemnities.’

Text: Norberg 1982, vol. 1, 99-100. Translation: Martyn 204, vol. 1, 200.


Evidence ID


Saint Name

Andrew, the Apostle : S00288

Saint Name in Source


Type of Evidence

Literary - Letters


  • Latin

Evidence not before


Evidence not after


Activity not before


Activity not after


Place of Evidence - Region

Rome and region

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc


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

Rome Rome Rome Roma Ῥώμη Rhōmē

Major author/Major anonymous work

Gregory the Great (pope)

Cult activities - Liturgical Activity

  • Other liturgical acts and ceremonies

Cult activities - Places

Cult building - unspecified


A letter transmitted as part of Gregory the Great’s Register of Letters. This letter collection, organised into fourteen books, is large and contains letters to a variety of recipients, including prominent aristocrats, members of the clergy and royalty. The issues touched on in the letters are equally varied, ranging from theological considerations to mundane administrative matters. This collection of letters, which was possibly curated by Gregory, was originally much larger. The surviving Register comprises several groups of letters which were extracted at several later moments in history, the largest of which took place in the papacy of Hadrian I (772-795).


The 'barbarians' threatening Bishop John were the Lombards.


Edition: Norberg, D., S. Gregorii Magni, Registrum epistularum. 2 vols. (Corpus Christianorum Series Latina 140-140A; Turnhout: Brepols, 1982). English translation: Martyn, J.R.C., The Letters of Gregory the Great, 3 vols. (Toronto: Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies, 2004). Further Reading: Neil, B., and Dal Santo, M. (eds.), A Companion to Gregory the Great (Leiden: Brill, 2013).

Usage metrics

    Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity



    Ref. manager