Skip to main content

Eutychios of Alexandria

EUTYCHIOS OF ALEXANDRIA

Patriarch of Alexandria, Melchite historian and theologian, whose Arabic name was Saīd ibn Batrīq; b. Fosā (Cairo), Egypt, Aug. 17, 877; d. Alexandria, May 11, 940. He first dedicated himself to the study of medicine, about which he wrote copiously. On Feb. 7, 933, he was elected patriarch of Alexandria. His literary fame is due mainly to his Annals (Nazm al-Jawhar ). This book, a general history of the world, was begun while he was a layman and was dedicated to his brother, Īsā ibn Batrīq, a practicing physician. In it Eutychios follows the pattern of the Byzantine chronologists in writing, without any systematic plan, a religious and profane history from the beginning of the world to his own time, ending with a.d. 938; it was continued down to a.d. 1027 by a relative of his, Yahyā ibn Saīd of Antioch. Chief emphasis is given to the history of the Church and of the Muslim Caliphates. The Nestorian and the Monophysite heresies are discussed and refuted at length. The value of Nazm al-Jawhar varies with the different sources Eutychios uses for his information. As with other Greek and Syrian writers of that period, he did not hesitate to include many popular legends. However, much factual information relating to contemporary practices cannot be found anywhere else. This alone would make the book invaluable. It soon became very popular, circulated widely, and was used as a source by such different historians as the Copt, al Makīn; the Arab, al Maqrīzī; and the Frenchman, William of Tyre. The author's special views on the heterodoxy of the Copts (Jacobites) and on the early Maronites (whom he identifies as Monothelites) earned for him the severe criticism of their historians.

Eutychios is, most probably, the author of the theological Book of Demonstration (Kitāb al-Burhān ), a work usually attributed in the manuscripts to St. Athanasius the Great. In the first part of this work, the author treats of creation, the destiny of man, the perfections of God, and the Incarnation. In the three other parts, he gathers all the Biblical texts relating to the dogmas described and discussed previously. All four parts were written by one authora member of the Greek Melchite Churchin Arabic, without traces of any translation, except for Biblical citations, some time before 944. All indications tend to prove Eutychios of Alexandria the sole author of Kitāb al-Burhān. Eutychios also wrote Disputation Between a Christian and a Heretic, and a book on the creation of the angels.

Bibliography: eutychios of alexandria, Annales, ed. l. cheikho et al. (Corpus scriptorum Christianorum orientalium 5051, Scriptores arabici, ser. 3, v.67; 190609), Arabic text only; Latin tr. e. posock (Oxford 1658), repr. Patrologia Graeca 111:9071156; The Book of Demonstration (Kitāb al-Burhān ) III, ed. p. cachia, Eng. tr. w. m. watt (CSCO 192, 193, 209, 210; Scriptores arabici, v.2023; 196061). g. graf, Geschichte der christlichen arabischen Literatur, 5 v. (Vatican City 194453) 2:3238. j. m. neale, A History of the Holy Eastern Church, 2 v. (London 1847) 2:181183. f. nau, Dictionnaire de théologie catholique, ed. a. vacant et al. (Paris 190350) 5.2: 160911.

[l. malouf]

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Eutychios of Alexandria." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 18 Aug. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Eutychios of Alexandria." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 18, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/eutychios-alexandria

"Eutychios of Alexandria." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Retrieved August 18, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/eutychios-alexandria

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.