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Damasus I, Saint

Saint Damasus I (dăm´əsəs), c.305–384, pope (366–84), a Spaniard; successor of Liberius. His election was opposed by the Arian Ursinus (antipope 366–67). The Roman emperor Valentinian I had Ursinus exiled and decreed that all religious cases must come before the pope. Damasus ruled with vigor, addressing the entire church with authority. He encouraged the papal secretary St. Jerome in his work on the Vulgate, and undertook to memorialize the early martyrs by placing inscriptions on their tombs. He was succeeded by St. Siricius. Feast: Dec. 11.

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