- John of Damascus, Saint
or Saint John Damasceneborn с 675, Damascusdied Dec. 4, 749, near Jerusalem; Western feast day December 4Monk and theological doctor of the Greek and Latin churches.He spent his entire life under Muslim rule. As a writer of hymns and theology, he had great influence in the Eastern and Western churches, especially through Exposition of the Orthodox Faith, a summary of the teachings of the Greek Fathers. He also wrote against the Iconoclasts (see iconoclasm).
* * *▪ Christian saintalso called Saint John Damascene , Latin Johannes Damascenusborn c. 675, , Damascusdied Dec. 4, 749, near Jerusalem; Western feast day December 4Eastern monk and theological doctor of the Greek and Latin churches whose treatises on the veneration of sacred images placed him in the forefront of the 8th-century Iconoclastic Controversy, and whose theological synthesis made him a preeminent intermediary between Greek and medieval Latin culture.John of Damascus succeeded his father as one of the Muslim caliph's tax officials, and while still a government minister he wrote three Discourses on Sacred Images, c. 730, defending their veneration against the Byzantine emperor Leo III and the Iconoclasts. The Iconoclasts obtained a condemnation of John at the Council of Hieria in 754 that was reversed at the second Council of Nicaea in 787.Soon after 730, John became a monk at Mar Saba, near Jerusalem, and there passed the rest of his life studying, writing, and preaching, acquiring the name “the Golden Orator” (Greek: Chrysorrhoas, literally “the Golden Stream”). Among his approximately 150 written works the most significant is Pēgē gnōseōs, (“The Source of Knowledge”), a synthesis of Christian philosophy and doctrine that was influential in directing the course of medieval Latin thought and that became the principal textbook of Greek Orthodox theology. Revised c. 743, it is composed of three parts: the philosophical (“Dialectica”), drawing largely from the late 3rd-century Neoplatonist Porphyry's Isagoge, an introduction to the logic of Aristotle; the historical, transcribing sections from the 4th-century Greek churchman Epiphanius' work Panarion, on heresies; and the theological and most widely known segment, the “Exposition [Ekthesis] of the Orthodox Faith.” Essentially a résumé of the 4th-century Cappadocian Fathers Basil, Gregory of Nazianzus, and Gregory of Nyssa, and expressed in Aristotelian vocabulary, it manifests some distinctive originality in John's choice of texts and annotations reflecting Antiochene analytical theology. Through its translation into Oriental languages and Latin, the “Exposition” served both Eastern and Western thinkers not only as a source of logical and theological concepts but also, by its systematic style, as a model for subsequent theological syntheses composed by medieval Scholastics. The “Exposition” speculates on the nature and existence of God, providing points of contention for later theologians.Elsewhere the “Exposition” analyzes the nature of free choice and the will. The author was sensitive to this question in light of Christian doctrine on personal responsibility for salvation. He describes the human will as a rational appetite or inclination to the good, functioning with regard to ends or goals rather than with means, which relate more to the intellect. In God there is will but no deliberation.A counterpart to The Source of Knowledge is John's anthology of moral exhortations, the Sacred Parallels, culled from biblical texts and from writings of the Church Fathers. Among his literary works are several intricately structured s (kanōn) (q.v.), or hymns for the Greek liturgy, although his reputation in liturgical poetry rests largely on his revision of the Eastern Church's hymnal, the Octoēchos.Additional ReadingFrederic H. Chase, Jr. (trans.), Writings (1958, reissued 1970); David Anderson (trans.), On the Divine Images (1980).
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John of Damascus — Chrysorrhoas redirects here. For the river, see Barada. Saint John of Damascus Saint John Damascene (arabic icon) Doctor of the Church Born … Wikipedia
John of Damascus — (c. 675–c. 749) Theologian, Poet and Saint. Little is known of the life of John of Damascus. He served as chief representative of the Christians at the court of the Caliph of Damascus; he entered the monastery of St Sabas near Jerusalem and … Who’s Who in Christianity
John of Damascus — Saint, A.D. c675 749, priest, theologian, and scholar of the Eastern Church, born in Damascus. Also called Johannes Damascenus. * * * … Universalium
John of Damascus — Saint, A.D. c675 749, priest, theologian, and scholar of the Eastern Church, born in Damascus. Also called Johannes Damascenus … Useful english dictionary
John of Damascus — /ˈdəmæskəs/ (say duhmaskuhs) noun Saint, 675?–749, Syrian theologian; a leading figure in the defence of icons … Australian English dictionary
Saint — 1347 80, Italian ascetic and mystic. died A.D. 731, pope 715 731. died A.D. 741, pope 731 741. died A.D. 352, Italian ecclesiastic: pope 337 352. died A.D. 683, Sicilian ecclesiastic: pope 682 683. died A.D. 855, Italian ecclesiastic: pope 847… … Universalium
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John — /jon/, n. 1. the apostle John, believed to be the author of the fourth Gospel, three Epistles, and the book of Revelation. 2. See John the Baptist. 3. (John Lackland) 1167? 1216, king of England 1199 1216; signer of the Magna Carta 1215 (son of… … Universalium
saint — saintless, adj. /saynt/, n. 1. any of certain persons of exceptional holiness of life, formally recognized as such by the Christian Church, esp. by canonization. 2. a person of great holiness, virtue, or benevolence. 3. a founder, sponsor, or… … Universalium
Saint John Damascene — St. John Damascene † Catholic Encyclopedia ► St. John Damascene Born at Damascus, about 676; died some time between 754 and 787. The only extant life of the saint is that by John, Patriarch of Jerusalem, which dates from the tenth… … Catholic encyclopedia