Spotlight: Severian of Gabala

John Chrysostom, Constantinople, early or midd...
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Severian, Bishop of Gabala in Syria (* before 380; † after 408(?)) was a popular preacher in Constantinople at the end of the 4th century. He became the enemy of John Chrysostom and helped condemn him at the Synod of the Oak.

Details of his life are scanty, and are preserved in Socrates and Sozomen. These tell us that he came to Constantinople around 398/399. He preached in a definite Syrian accent, and became a favourite of the empress Eudoxia. He was initially a friend of Chrysostom, but was insulted by his staff. When Chrysostom backed his own men, the two became enemies. Quasten described him as “full of hate” for Jews and heretics.

Around 30 of his sermons are extant. A dozen were preserved in Greek among the works of his enemy Chrysostom, and others exist in Syriac, Coptic, and Arabic. A group of his sermons were published in Venice in 1827 in Armenian by J. B. Aucher. Almost none have been edited critically, some have never been published, and the list is not certainly complete. Details of his works can be found in the Clavis Patrum Graecorum nos. 4185-4295. Many are edited by Migne in the Patrologia Graeca 65.

Severian belonged to the Antiochene school of exegesis, and his interpretations can be very literal. He is notorious for his six sermons on the Creation, in which he expresses “absurdly literal” views including support for the Flat Earth.

His biblical commentaries also contributed to Greek catenas.

He is sometimes confused with Eusebius of Emesa in manuscripts.

(the above is ripped-off from Wiki)

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