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E01098: The Liber Pontificalis, written in Latin in Rome in the 530s, and re-edited before 546, in its account of *Zephyrinus (bishop of Rome, S00546), states that he was buried in his own cemetery, near that of Callixtus on the via Appia outside Rome, on 25 August [217.

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posted on 31.01.2016, 00:00 by robert
Liber Pontificalis 16

First edition (as reconstructed by Duchesne)

Zepherinus, natione Romanus, ex patre Abundio, sedit ann. VIII m. VII c. X. Fuit autem temporibus Antonini et Severi, a consulatu Saturnini et Gallicani usque ad Presentem et Stricato consulibus... Qui etiam sepultus est in cymiterio suo, iuxta cimiterium Calisti, via Appia, VIII kal. sept.

'Zephyrinus, born in Rome, son of Abundius, held the see 8 years 7 months 10 days. He was bishop in the time of Antoninus and Severus from the consulship of Saturninus and Gallicanus [Gallus, AD 198] to that of Praesens and Extricatus [AD 217]... He was buried in his own cemetery close to the cemetery of Callixtus on the via Appia on the 8th day before the Kalends of September [25 August].'


Second edition

Zepherinus, natione Romanus, ex patre Habundio, sedit ann. VIII m. VII c. X. Fuit autem temporibus Antonini et Severi, a consulatu Saturnini et Gallicani usque Presente et Stricato consulibus... Qui etiam sepultus est in cymiterio suo, iuxta cymiterium Calisti, via Appia, VIII kal. septem.

'Zephyrinus, born in Rome, son of Abundius, held the see 8 years 7 months 10 days. He was bishop in the time of Antoninus and Severus from the consulship of Saturninus and Gallicanus [Gallus, AD 198] to that of Praesens and Extricatus [AD 217]... He was buried in his own cemetery close to the cemetery of Callixtus on the via Appia on the 8th day before the Kalends of September [25 August].'


Text: Duchesne 1886, 61/63 and 139. Translation: Davis 2010, 6-7, lightly modified.

History

Evidence ID

E01098

Saint Name

Zephyrinus, bishop of Rome, ob. c. 217 : S00546

Saint Name in Source

Zepeherinus

Type of Evidence

Literary - Other narrative texts (including Histories)

Language

Latin

Evidence not before

530

Evidence not after

546

Activity not before

212

Activity not after

222

Place of Evidence - Region

Rome and region

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc

Rome

Place of evidence - City name in other Language(s)

Rome Rome Rome Roma Ῥώμη Rhōmē

Major author/Major anonymous work

Liber Pontificalis

Cult activities - Festivals

  • Saint’s feast

Cult activities - Places

Burial site of a saint - cemetery/catacomb

Source

The Liber Pontificalis consists of a series of very short lives of popes. The preface attributes it to pope Damasus (366-384), but this attribution is obviously false. According to Louis Duchesne, the first modern editor of the Liber Pontificalis, the original series of lives was written in Rome by an anonymous author, probably a member of the lesser clergy, in the 530s, and contained the lives from *Peter the Apostle to Felix IV (ob. 530). Shortly after, before 546, the text was re-edited by another anonymous author and only this edition survives. The first edition, however, can be reconstituted on the basis of its two epitomes (and the second edition). The second edition started to be continued systematically from the time of pope Honorius (625–638). It should be noted that Theodor Mommsen dated both editions of the Liber Pontificalis to the 7th century, but his opinion is widely rejected and the commonly accepted dating is that of Duchesne. For the pre-Constantinian period (before 312), the credibility of the Liber Pontificalis is very low. The chronology is confused, and details concerning the personal lives, decisions and ordinations of the bishops of Rome at best reflect what people in the 6th century trusted to be true, at worst are a pure invention of the author. The situation changes with the later lives. Already the information of 4th-century papal foundations and offerings are generally trustworthy. The early 6th-century evidence, based on the author's first hand knowledge is even better, though still imperfect.

Bibliography

Edition: Duchesne, L., Le Liber pontificalis. 2 vols (Paris: E. Thorin, 1886-1892). (With substantial introduction and commentary). Translation: Davis, R., The Book of Pontiffs (Liber Pontificalis) (Translated Texts for Historians 6; 3rd ed.; Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2010).

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Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity

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