Sergius of Resaina

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Sixth-century Syrian physician and translator; d. Constantinople, 536. A Christian, in early life probably a Monophysite, Sergius may well be the grammarian Sergius with whom severus of antioch exchanged letters between 515 and 520. He studied in Alexandria, became a physician, and later may have become a monk and priest. Sergius is one of the fathers of Syriac literature. Besides composing several short philosophical treatises of his own in Syriac, he translated more than 20 Greek philosophical, medical, and horticultural works into Syriac; he also translated the treatises of pseudo-dionysius the Areopagite (for the first time) and perhaps, too, the Gnostic Centuries of the Origenist evagrius ponticus, with which he was familiar. About 535 he went to Antioch, where he so impressed the patriarch Ephraem that Ephraem sent him to Rome as legate to ask the support of Pope Agapetus against the rising tide of Monophysitism in Constantinople. Sergius accompanied Agapetus on his visit to Constantinople in 536, and died soon after.

Bibliography: a. baumstark, Lucubrationes Syro-graecae (Leipzig 1894) 358384, 405470; Geschichte der syrischen Literatur (Bonn 1922) 167169. k. georr, ed., Les Catégories d'Aristote dans leurs versions syro-arabes (Beirut 1948) 1723. p. sherwood, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. j. hofer and k. rahner, 10 v. (2d, new ed. Freiburg 195765) 9:687688; "Sergius of Reshaina and the Syriac Versions of the Pseudo-Denis," Sacris erudiri 4 (1952) 174184; L'Orient syrien 5 (1960) 433437. a. guillaumont, Les "Kephalaia gnostica" d'Evagre le Pontique (Paris 1963) 222227. i. hausherr, Orientalia Christiana periodica 2 (1936) 488. j. m. hornus, Revue d'histoire et die philosophie religieuses 41 (1961) 3538.

[d. b. evans]