Euthymius the Athonite

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Euthymius the Athonite
St Euthymius of Athos (Akhtala fresco).JPG
A 13th-century fresco of Euthymius from the Akhtala monastery
Born c. 955
Died c. 1024
Era Middle Ages
Region Byzantine Empire,Georgia
School Eastern Theology
Main interests
Theology, Art, Literature, Canon Law
Notable ideas
sibrdzne balavarisa

Euthymius the Athonite (Georgian: ექვთიმე ათონელი Ekvtime Atoneli; c. 955–1024) was a renowned Georgian philosopher and scholar. His feast day in the Orthodox Church is May 13.[1]

Euthymius was a Georgian, the ethnonym used by the Byzantines being Abasgians.[2] The son of Ioane Varaz-vache Chordvaneli and nephew of the great Tornike Eristavi, Euthymius was taken as a political hostage to Constantinople but was later released and became a monk joining the Great Lavra of Athanasios on Mount Athos. He subsequently became the leader of the Georgian Iviron monastery, which had been founded by his father,[3] and emerged as one of the finest Eastern Christian theologians and scholars of his age. Fluent in Georgian, Greek and other languages, he translated many religious treatises and philosophical works. Among his major works was the translation of sibrdzne balavarisa (Wisdom of Balahvari), a Christianized version of episodes from the life of Gautama Buddha that became very popular in Medieval Europe as the story of Barlaam and Josaphat. Of equal importance was Euthymius’ work to prepare Georgian translations of various Greek philosophical, ecclesiastical and legal discourses.


  1. ^ (Greek) Ὁ Ὅσιος Εὐθύμιος ὁ Ἀθωνίτης κτήτορας τῆς Ι.Μ. Ἰβήρων. 13 Μαΐου. ΜΕΓΑΣ ΣΥΝΑΞΑΡΙΣΤΗΣ.
  2. ^ Elguja Xintʻibiże (1998). Designations of the Georgians and their etymology. Tʻbilisis Universitetis Gamomcʻemloba. p. 73. ISBN 978-5-511-00775-5. 
  3. ^ Kalistrat Salia (1983). History of the Georgian nation. N. Salia. p. 82.