(redirected from Melchite)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.




(both: mĕl`kīts), members of a Christian community in the Levant and the Americas, mainly Arabic-speaking and numbering about 250,000. They are in communion with the pope and have a Byzantine rite much like that of Constantinople but in the Arabic language. Their head, under the pope, is called patriarch of Antioch; he lives in Damascus or Egypt. The name Melchites (which derives from the Syriac word for "king") was first applied to all who followed the emperor Marcian in accepting the Council of Chalcedon (451) and came back into use in the 18th cent. to designate that segment of the Orthodox Eastern Church that reunited with Rome; it is now, however, also sometimes applied to the Orthodox of Syria and Egypt. Like the MaronitesMaronites
, Lebanese Christian community, in communion with the pope. By emigration they have spread to Cyprus, Palestine, Egypt, South America, and the United States and now number about one million.
..... Click the link for more information.
 and the Syrian Catholics (see Jacobite ChurchJacobite Church
, officially Syrian Orthodox Church, Christian church of Syria, Iraq, and India, recognizing the Syrian Orthodox patriarch of Antioch as its spiritual head, regarded by Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox as heretical. It was founded (6th cent.
..... Click the link for more information.
), the Melchite community has its own hierarchy under the pope and its own rite.


See D. Attwater, The Christian Churches of the East, Vol. I (1947).

References in periodicals archive ?
The main part of the book is an exemplification and categorization of translation techniques as they occur in the idiomatic "Coptic" version; the Melchite version, following closely the Peshitta text, has not much to offer in this respect.
This was a reaction against the aggressive proselytizing of Latin missionaries, and the foundation of a united Melchite (Uniat) Patriarchate in 1724.
Metropolitan Yohanna Haddad of the Melchite Catholic sect also called for "respecting and preserving the role of UNIFIL on the eve of renewing its mandate in the south.
Within the Stockholm Catholic Diocese, the Armenian, Chaldean, Maronite, Melchite, and Syrian churches celebrated Mass in their respective languages, as did the Polish, Croatian, Spanish, Italian, Eritrean, Vietnamese, Korean, and Ukrainian communities.