Flavian, Patriarch of Constantinople, St.
FLAVIAN, PATRIARCH OF CONSTANTINOPLE, ST.
Reigned 446 to 449; d. Hypaepa, Lydia. A priest of Constantinople known for his moderation, Flavian succeeded proclus as bishop of that see. Eusebius of Doryleum in a session of the permanent Synod of Constantinople on Nov. 8, 448, forced Flavian to take cognizance of the heretical expressions used by the archimandrite eutyches, godfather of the imperially powerful eunuch Chrysaphius, and Flavian had to accede to his condemnation and deposition (November 22). Upon the appeal of Eutyches to the emperor and the greater Churches of the East and Rome, Pope leo i complained against Flavian's failure to refer the matter to him for judgment. When he did receive the acts of the synod, Leo supported the bishop of Constantinople's position in his famous Tome to Flavian. In preparation for the Council of Ephesus in 449, convoked by the emperor to vindicate Eutyches, Flavian's synod of 448 was investigated, and he was forced to present a profession of his faith. The council itself was conducted by dioscorus of alexandria, who managed it in such fashion that Flavian was condemned, deposed, and exiled on Aug. 8, 449. He died soon after, but not before sending an appeal to the pope, who responded by branding Dioscorus's council Illud latrocinium —the Robber Synod. Upon the accession of Marcian and pulcheria in 451, the bones of Flavian were buried with honor in the Church of the Apostles in Constantinople, and he was exonerated at the Council of chalcedon. Three of his letters are preserved among the works of St. Leo (Patrologia Latina, ed. J. P. Migne 54:723, 743).
Feast: Feb. 18.
Bibliography: Acta conciliorum oecumenicorum (Berlin 1914–) 2.2.1:77–79. p. batiffol, Le Siège apostolique (Paris 1924). t. g. jalland, The Life and Times of St. Leo the Great (London 1941). f. x. murphy, Peter Speaks Through Leo (Washington 1952). a. grillmeier, a. grillmeier and h. bacht, Das Konzil vom Chalkedon: Geschichte und Gegenwart (Würzburg 1951–54) 1:195–198. p. galtier, ibid., 350–353. h. chadwick, "The Exile and Death of Flavian of Constantinople," Journal of Theological Studies 6 (1955) 16–34.
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