Coptic source-St.Paul the Hermit-15 January 2017

Saint Paul the Hermit

Paul of Thebes
Anba Bola 1.png

Saint Paul, ‘The First Hermit’
The First Hermit
Born c. 227 AD
Egypt
Died c. 342 AD
Monastery of Saint Paul the Anchorite, Egypt
Venerated in Oriental Orthodox Churches
Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Church
Major shrine Monastery of Saint Paul the Anchorite, Egypt
Feast February 9 (Oriental Orthodox Churches)
January 15 (Catholic Church)[note 1]
January 15 (Eastern Orthodox Church)[2]
Attributes Two lions, palm tree, raven

The Life of Paulus was written in the year 374 or 375 during Jerome’s stay in the desert of Syria, as is seen from c, 6, and was dedicated to Paulus of Concordia as stated in Jerome’s Ep. x. c. 3.

1. It has been a subject of wide-spread and frequent discussion what monk was the first to give a signal example of the hermit life. For some going back too far have found a beginning in those holy men Elias and John, of whom the former seems to have been more than a monk and the latter to have begun to prophesy before his birth. Others, and their opinion is that commonly received, maintain that Antony was the originator of this mode of life, which view is partly true. Partly I say, for the fact is not so much that he preceded the rest as that they all derived from him the necessary stimulus. But it is asserted even at the present day by Amathas and Macarius, two of Antony’s disciples, the former of whom laid his master in the grave, that a certain Paul of Thebes was the leader in the movement, though not the first to bear the name, and this opinion has my approval also. Some as they think fit circulate stories such as this–that he was a man living in an underground cave with flowing hair down to his feet, and invent many incredible tales which it would be useless to detail. Nor does the opinion of men who lie without any sense of shame seem worthy of refutation. So then inasmuch as both Greek and Roman writers have handed down careful accounts of Antony, I have determined to write a short history of Paul’s early and latter days, more because the thing has been passed over than from confidence in my own ability. What his middle life was like, and what snares of Satan he experienced, no man, it is thought, has yet discovered.

[read original article by saint Jerome]

Source: St.Paul the Hermit


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