1-20 of 33 results  for:

  • Religious or Ritual Musician x
  • Pre- and Early Medieval (before 800) x
Clear all

Article

James W. McKinnon

(b Spain, 769; d Lyons, 840). Frankish ecclesiastic. He came as a youth to Gaul, taking up residence in the monastery of St Polycarp near Narbonne. He was ordained in 804 and named bishop of Lyons in 816, where he remained for the rest of his life, except for a period of exile in Italy during the years 835–8 because he had sided with the sons of the emperor Louis the Pious against their father; his temporary replacement as administrator of Lyons was his rival ...

Article

Alcman  

Warren Anderson and Thomas J. Mathiesen

(fl c. 630 bce). Greek lyric poet. He was possibly a native of Sardis in Lydia. Alcman spent his entire professional life in Sparta. This city was then startlingly different from the grim barracks state that it had been and would again become: its citizens cultivated art, poetry, music, and dance with intensity and brilliance. The poet himself commented on this: ‘To play well upon the lyre weighs evenly with the steel’, that is, military valour (Edmonds, frag.62)....

Article

Ambrose  

James W. McKinnon

(b Trier, c340; d Milan, 397). Saint, bishop and Doctor of the Church. He was the son of the Roman prefect of Gaul, and embarked upon a successful political career, being named consular governor of Liguria and Aemilia in about 370. While yet unbaptized he was elected Bishop of Milan by popular acclaim on 7 December 374. Together with Augustine and Jerome he is acknowledged as one of the three great Latin Church Fathers of the 4th and 5th centuries. He was primarily a public figure, however, unlike Augustine, the philosopher, or Jerome, the scholar; he consolidated the position of the Church against the powerful Arian heresy and the counter-attacks of paganism....

Article

James W. McKinnon and Joseph Dyer

Saint, churchman, and scholar. He was perhaps the most influential figure in the history of Christian thought, rivalled only by Thomas Aquinas and possibly Origen. Born in North Africa to a pagan father and Christian mother, the sainted Monica, he studied rhetoric in Carthage where he lost his boyhood Christian faith. In ...

Article

Dimitri Conomos

(b Edessa [now Urfa], July 11, 154; d Edessa, 222). Syrian hymnographer, astrologer and philosopher. Born into a pagan priestly family, he was educated by a pagan priest but baptized as a Christian, and in 179 he was ordained deacon and priest. Later denounced as a heretic and excommunicated (...

Article

James W. McKinnon

(b Nursia [now Norcia], Umbria, c480; d Monte Cassino, after 546). Italian saint and monk. His Rule became the norm for Western Christian monasticism. The only source of information concerning Benedict’s life is book 2 of Pope Gregory’s Dialogues (c594). Gregory was primarily interested in Benedict’s miracles, and although he outlined the main events of Benedict’s life he did not assign dates to them. The sole date of any certainty is that of the visit of the Ostrogothic King Totila to him near Monte Cassino, probably in 546; all others rest on speculation....

Article

Alexander Lingas

(b Constantinople, ?1665; d ?1725). Romaic (Greek) composer and cantor. Though undoubtedly influenced by the works of Panagiotes, Germanos and Balasios, he appears never to have been directly associated with the patriarchal court that nurtured his older colleagues. His own substantial contributions to their continuing renewal of Byzantine chanting were made instead from the Constantinopolitan parish church of St Constantine (in the district of Hypsomatheia), where Bereketes held successively the offices of reader, ...

Article

James W. McKinnon

(b Antioch, c347 ce; d Komana, Pontus, Sept 14, 407ce). Saint, churchman and preacher. He was born to a wealthy Christian family at Antioch where he was thoroughly schooled in rhetoric. After a period of severe asceticism, living as a hermit in the wilderness, he returned to Antioch to take up an ecclesiastical career. In 386 he was ordained a priest and assigned to preach in the cathedral; during the following years he preached most of the eloquent homilies that earned him the sobriquet Chrysostom, meaning ‘golden mouth’. In 398 ...

Article

Enrica Follieri

(b Damascus, c660; d Mytilene, c740). Byzantine hymnographer. He was first a monk at Jerusalem and later a deacon at Constantinople; in 711/12 he became Archbishop of Crete and from that time lived at Gortina.

His homilies (more than 50, of which half remain unpublished) and hymns were probably written when he was Archbishop of Crete. He was particularly famous as a writer of hymns, although the tradition that attributes to him the invention of the ...

Article

Egeria  

James W. McKinnon

(fl late 4th century ce). Pilgrim nun of Spain or Gaul. Her diary, containing a detailed description of ancient Jerusalem liturgy, survives in a single 11th-century manuscript copy, which was discovered at Arezzo by G.F. Gamurrini in 1884. He attributed the work to one St Silvia, sister of the Roman prefect, Rufinus – hence its earlier title ‘Peregrinatio Silviae’ – but it is now thought to be by a Spanish or Gallican nun, Egeria (the preferred spelling), mentioned by the 7th-century abbot Valerius. From references in the text to contemporary persons and events, liturgical historians have come to date the time of Egeria's pilgrimage to between 381 and 384....

Article

Alexander Lingas

(b Tyrnavo, Thessaly, ?1625; d ?Wallachia, 1685). Romaic (Greek) composer, cantor, and hymnographer. He studied Byzantine chant in Constantinople under the patriarchal prōtopsaltēs Panagiotes. Some time before 1665 he was elevated to the episcopacy, possibly at the instigation of Patriarch Dionysios III (a fellow native of Thessaly), becoming Metropolitan of New Patras (now Ypati). He appears to have resigned from the see before ...

Article

Lawrence Gushee and Michael McGrade

(fl 1071–98). Priest and writer of sequences. He is perhaps best remembered for his notarial work in the chancery of Emperor Henry IV, whom he served from 1071 to 1084. During his service at the court he drafted a series of epistles that defended the king's right of episcopal investiture; these letters formed the core of a propaganda campaign waged against Pope Gregory VII, who sought to curb lay participation in the administration of the Church. Aspects of Gottschalk's political allegiance can be detected in one of his compositions, the sequence ...

Article

(b Clermont-Ferrand, ?538; d Tours, 594). Frankish historian and bishop of Tours. Valuable evidence for the chant of the contemporary Gallican liturgy is to be found in his works (ed. in MGH, Scriptores rerum merowingicarum, i, 1885/R; for the Decem libri historiarum...

Article

James W. McKinnon

(b Rome, c540; d Rome, March 12, 604). Saint, pope and Doctor of the Church. Born to a prominent Roman family, Gregory was named prefect of the city in about 570. In 575 he turned his family home into a monastery, and embarked upon a life of spirituality and asceticism. In 579 he was sent to Constantinople as papal representative at the Byzantine court, remaining there until about 586; during his stay he lived with monks from his own Roman monastery, having failed, apparently, to learn Greek. He was elected pope by popular acclaim after Pelagius II died in the severe epidemic of 589–90 that followed upon the overflowing of the Tiber....

Article

(759–861). Hymnographer of the Georgian Church; see Georgia, §II, 2.

Article

James W. McKinnon

(b 8th century; d after 837). Churchman and liturgist. Born a Goth in Septimania, he is first documented in 808 as chancellor to Louis the Pious, who had been placed on the throne of Aquitania by his father Charlemagne. When Louis became emperor after the death of Charlemagne in 814, he brought Helisachar to Aachen with him to continue in the role of chancellor. He served in that capacity until about 817, remaining in close contact with the court of Louis for the rest of his career except for a period of disfavour from 830 to 833. Though a canon and not a monk, he was named abbot of St Aubin, Angers, and also of Saint Riquier (822–37)....

Article

Lawrence Gushee and James W. McKinnon

(b Poitiers, c315; d Poitiers, c367). Latin theologian, scriptural exegete and hymn writer. Hilary, thought to be of distinguished family and education, was converted to Christianity in his early manhood and was made bishop of Poitiers around 350. Between 356 and 361 he was in exile in Asia Minor at the order of Emperor Constantius II as a result of his opposition to Arianism. Some scholars suggest that the Syriac hymnody of the time (most notably that of ...

Article

Don M. Randel and Nils Nadeau

(b ?Cartagena, c559; d Seville, April 4, 636). Spanish archbishop, encyclopedist, theologian saint and doctor of the church. The youngest of Severianus’s four children, Isidore was probably born in Cartagena, Spain, shortly before his family fled to Seville. His early education was overseen by his elder brother Leander, whom he succeeded to the episcopal see at Seville in about 599. As archbishop, Isidore presided over the fourth Council of Toledo, which sought to achieve doctrinal and liturgical uniformity throughout Spain and parts of southern France....

Article

Jerome  

James W. McKinnon

(b Stridon, Dalmatia, c341; d Bethlehem, 419/20). Saint, scholar and churchman. Born to wealthy Christian parents, he studied rhetoric in Rome under Donatus. Subsequently he sojourned in Gaul and Aquileia, becoming acquainted with monasticism and the ascetic life. He next spent several years in the East, where he perfected his Greek, learnt Hebrew, became versed in Origenist exegesis and finally was ordained at Antioch in 379. From 382 to 385 he was secretary to Pope Damasus at Rome and began his work of biblical translation that would eventually culminate in the version known as the Vulgate. At Rome he also became the centre of an ascetic circle of aristocratic women to whom he later directed rather severe advice in his much quoted letters. In 385 he retired to the Holy Land and there spent the rest of his life in literary activity and in directing his monastery and convents at Bethlehem....

Article

Enrica Follieri

(b Damascus, c675; d St Sabas, nr Jerusalem, c749). Saint, Byzantine hymnographer and anti-iconoclast theologian. He was born into a rich Christian family; his father, Sergius, held an important position at the court of the Caliphs, and John, who had received a good literary and philosophical education, apparently held the same post after his father's death. Later he became a monk in the famous monastery of St Sabas. He was ordained priest by the Patriarch of Jerusalem and became his theological adviser. The most important of John's writings, ...