Leontius of Jerusalem

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This article is about the 4th-5th century Christian theological writer. For the 7th century Byzantine emperor, see Leontios. For the 7th century Christian theological writer, see Leontios of Neapolis.

Leontius (c. 485 – c. 543), was a theological writer, and introduced Aristotelian definitions into theology.


Leontius was born at Constantinople, flourished during the sixth century. He is variously styled Byzantinus, Hierosolymitanus (as an inmate of the monastery of St. Saba near Jerusalem) and Scholasticus (the first "schoolman," as the introducer of the Aristotelian definitions into theology; according to others, he had been an advocate, a special meaning of the word scholasticus). He himself states that in his early years he belonged to a Nestorian community. Nothing else is known of his life; he is frequently confused with others of the same name, and it is uncertain which of the works bearing the name Leontius are really by him. For a time, he was a member of the so-called "Scythian monks" community.[1]

Modern research has shown that Leontius of Byzantium is not the same as Leontius of Jerusalem.[2]


Most scholars regard as genuine the polemical treatises Contra Nestorianos et Eutychianos, Contra Nestorianos, Contra Monophysitas, Contra Severum (patriarch of Antioch); and the Σχόλια, generally called De Sectis. An essay Adversus fraudes Apollinaristarum and two homilies are referred to other hands, the homilies to a Leontius, presbyter of Constantinople. Leontios's collected works can be found in J. P. Migne, Patrologia Graeca, lxxxvi.[1]


  1. ^ a b Chisholm 1911, p. 456.
  2. ^ For example Marcel Richard, Léonce de Jérusalem et Léonce de Byzance’, Melanges de Science Religieuse 1 (1944), 35–88 [reprinted: Opera Minora, 3, (Turnhout, Leuven, 1977), no 59], and Dirk Krausmüller, ‘Leontius of Jerusalem, A Theologian of the Seventh Century’, Journal of Theological Studies 52:2 (2001), 637-67.


  • Public Domain This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Leontius". Encyclopædia Britannica 16 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 456.  Endnotes:
    • Friedrich Loofs, Das Leben und die polemischen Werke des Leontios van Byzanz (Leipzig, 1887);
    • Wilhelm Rügamer, Leontius van Byzanz (1894);
    • Vincent Ermoni, De Leontio Byzantino (Paris, 1895);
    • C. Krumbacher, Geschichte der byzantinischen Litteratur (1897);
    • Johannes Peter Junglas, Leontius van Byzanz (1908).

Further reading[edit]