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E06338: Two letters of Pope Gregory the Great (Register 3.1 and 10.7), of 592 and 600, mention the monastery dedicated to *Severinus (hermit and monk of Noricum, ob. 482, S00848) in the castrum Lucullanum outside Naples (southern Italy). Written in Latin in Rome.

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posted on 2018-09-11, 00:00 authored by frances
Pope Gregory the Great, Register of Letters 3.1

Extract from a letter dealing with trouble in Naples:

Mancipia autem si qua de cetero in monasterium sancti Seuerini uel in alia ecclesia eiusdem castelli de ciuitate refugerint, mox ad notitiam tuam peruenerit, nullomodo illic ea immorari permittas, sed intra ciuitatem in ecclesiam reuocentur.

‘But if some slaves from the rest have taken refuge from the city in the monastery of Saint Severinus or in another church in the same fortress [the castrum Lucullanum, just outside Naples], as soon as it comes to your notice, in no way allow them to stay there, but let them be recalled into a church inside the city.’

Pope Gregory the Great, Register of Letters 10.7

Extract from a letter dealing with the bishopric of Sorrento:

Postquam is qui ad episcopatum Sorrentinae ciuitatis electus fuerat aptus nobis non uisus est, Amandum presbyterum oratorii sancti Seuerini, quod in castro Lucullano situm est, elegerunt.

‘After the priest elected to the bishopric of the city of Sorrento appeared unsuitable to us, they elected Amandus, priest of the oratory of Saint Severinus, situated in the castrum Lucullanum.’

Text: Norberg 1982, vol. 1, 147, and vol. 2, 832. Translation: Martyn 2004, vol. 1, 236 and vol. 3, 718, modified.


Evidence ID


Saint Name

Severinus, hermit and monk in Noricum, ob. 482 : S00848

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 - Places

Cult building - monastic

Cult activities - Non Liturgical Practices and Customs

Seeking asylum at church/shrine

Cult Activities - Protagonists in Cult and Narratives

Slaves/ servants Ecclesiastics - lesser clergy


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 castrum Lucullanum, just outside ancient Naples and the site of the medieval Castel dell'Ovo, was the site of the monastery that housed the body of Saint Severinus, which had been taken there from Noricum shortly after his death (see E02786 and E02347).


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).

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    Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity



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