John Malalas

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John Malalas


Born circa 491; died circa 578. Byzantine chronicler. Nothing is known of his life, but he was apparently of Syrian origin.

John Malalas has sometimes been identified with John III Scholasticus, patriarch of Constantinople (565–77), who compiled a collection of ecclesiastical laws. The Chronicle of John Malalas is extant in an 1lth-century manuscript (possibly a late revision of the original text); it begins with the legendary history of Egypt and ends with the year 563. It contains many entertaining but unauthentic legends. Its first part centers on the history of Antioch, its second part on Constantinople. The Chronicle contains interesting material on sixth-century Byzantine history and was translated into Old Church Slavonic and Georgian; the Old Church Slavonic translation (tenth or 11th century) is a more detailed text than the extant Greek manuscript.


Chronographia. Bonn, 1831.


Meshcherskii, N.A. “Dva neizdannykh otryvka drevneslavianskogo perevoda ‘Khronika’ Ioanna Malaly.” In the collection Vizantiiskii vremennik, vol. 11. Moscow, 1956.
Udal’tsova, Z.V. “Khronika Ioanna Malaly v Kievskoi Rusi.” In the collection Arkheograficheskii ezhegodnik za 1965. Moscow, 1966. Pages 47–58.


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It was already used in contemporaneous Christian historiography, such as the Chronographia of John Malalas, where the rebellion is once referred to by this very term: 'rebellion of the Samaritans'.
His words, recorded by John Malalas (for the sources see Munro-Hay 1991: 153) are embellished but illustrate the kind of pomp and the elaborate garments associated with these rulers.
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The primary documents are arranged by theme and include excerpts from Prokopios' On the Buildings and Secret History, the Chronicle of John Malalas, and the Ecclesiastical History of John of Ephesus, among others.