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E06368: A letter of Pope Gregory the Great (Register 6.41) of 596, to Victor, bishop of Palermo, asks him to ordain a priest for a monastery dedicated to *Hermes (presumably the martyr of Rome buried on the via Salaria vetus, S00404) in Palermo (Sicily). 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 6.41

Extract from the opening of the letter:

Urbicus abbas monasterii sancti Hermae, quod Panormi situm est, a nobis cum congregatione sua magnopere postulauit ut in eodem monasterio presbyter, qui sacra missarum sollemnia celebret, debeat ordinari.

‘Urbicus, abbot of the monastery of Saint Hermes, which is situated in Palermo, has strongly demanded from us, together with his community, that a priest should be ordained in the same monastery to celebrate solemn mass.’

Text: Norberg 1982, vol. 1, 414. Translation: Martyn 2004, vol. 2, 432.


Evidence ID


Saint Name

Hermes, martyr of Rome : S00404

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


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).


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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