The Macarian Legacy: The Place of Macarius-Symeon in the Eastern Christian Tradition

By Marcus Plested | Go to book overview

The Legacy

We know very little about the life of Diadochus, sometime bishop of Photice in northern Epirus. 1 Photius lists him amongst the defenders of the two natures at the time of the Council of Chalcedon. 2 Since the bishop of Photice at the Council of Chalcedon itself was named John, we can assume that Diadochus took up his see after 451. He signed the letter sent by the bishops of Old Epirus to Emperor Leo I following the assassination of Proterius of Alexandria in 457. 3 He had died by 486, the date of the History of the Vandal Persecution of Victor of Vita, which describes the 'blessed Diadochus' as 'great and worthy to be celebrated with every type of praise, for many of his writings like bright stars illustrate the catholic faith'. 4 Marrou has suggested that Diadochus may have been carried off to Carthage following a Vandal raid on Epirus between 467 and 474. 5 The Gnostic Chapters, his most important work, are addressed to certain 'brethren' (GC 1) and refer to those who practise encrateia both in coenobia and in cities, and to anchorites (GC 53), indicating that Diadochus wrote that work as a monk and for monks. 6 The Christological concerns of his Sermon on the Ascension are perhaps more suggestive of the work of a bishop.

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The Macarian Legacy: The Place of Macarius-Symeon in the Eastern Christian Tradition
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • The Place of Macarius-Symeon in the Eastern Christian Tradition v
  • Contents ix
  • Abbreviations xii
  • Introduction 1
  • I the Macarian Writings and Their Historical Context 9
  • 2 The Lineaments of the Macarian Vision 30
  • The Background 46
  • The Background 59
  • 5 Mark the Monk 75
  • The Legacy 133
  • 7 The Asceticon of Abba Isaiah 176
  • 8 Maximus the Confessor 213
  • Conclusion 255
  • Bibliography 259
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