Gregory of Nazianzus

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Gregory of Nazianzus


(Gregory the Theologian). Born around 330, near Nazianzus in Cappadocia. Asia Minor; died there around 390. Greek poet and prose writer. Church figure and religious thinker. One of the most prominent patristic figures.

Gregory of Nazianzus received a brilliant education in rhetoric and philosophy, which was crowned by language study in an institution of higher learning in Athens, where he became a friend of Basil the Great. In 379 he was summoned by the orthodox community to the episcopate in Constantinople, in order to contribute to the struggle against Arianism, and in 381 he presided at the Second Ecumenical Council. However, also in 381, in a situation marked by turmoil and intrigue, he resigned his episcopal office and returned to his homeland. As a theologian Gregory of Nazianzus was a member of the so-called Cappadocian circle, which included Basil the Great and Gregory of Nyssa. The circle introduced the methods of Platonic idealistic dialectics into theology.

Gregory of Nazianzus’ greatest prose achievements were his funeral panegyrics to his father and Basil the Great. His lyric poetry is distinguished by an intimate and varied intonation. The autobiographical poems On My Life, On My Fate, and On My Sufferings, with their psychological profundity and standard of self-analysis, are on a par with St. Augustine’s Confessions.


Briefe. Edited by P. Gallay. Berlin, 1969.
Tvoreniia, vols. 1–6. Moscow, 1844–68.
Pamiatniki vizantiiskoi literatury 4–9 vekov. Moscow, 1968. Pages 70–83.


Istoriia Vizantii, vol. 1. Moscow, 1967. Pages 417–19.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The characterization as insensitive of Gregory Nazianzen's advice to his widowed mother Nonna that `the pain will not be long' since she will soon pass away (pp.
In relation to these issues, Gregory of Nyssa's thought is particularly rich and interesting, so it will be the main focus of this paper, though some significant related material from Gregory Nazianzen will also be discussed.
Perhaps an examination of some parallel texts from Gregory Nazianzen's writings can help us understand this ontology of virginity.
There is nothing particularly new about this, which may be confirmed by the practice of Gregory Nazianzen, who lived this way on his family's estate.
In a companion piece to his present paper ('Wonder, Worship and Writ', Ex Auditu 7 (1991), 59-72) as well as in the paper itself, Norris strenuously defends the greater theological, exegetical, and even liturgical and ecclesiastical adequacy of Gregory Nazianzen's Nicene interpretation of Scripture over the neo-Arian interpretation.
Athanasius of Alexandria's letter to Epictetus and Gregory Nazianzen's letter to Cledonius, both of which were quoted by Cyril in his arguments against Nestorius, are included as appendixes.
Maximus, however, is one of several instances where Christian critics in his case Gregory Nazianzen) sharply distinguish Christianity from Cynicism, and even texts attesting similarity also presuppose difference.
Projects like Martin Marty's "fundamentalism project" and John McGuckin's fairly recent "'intellectual biography" of Gregory Nazianzen are beginnings.
She concludes that some differences did exist among the Christian authors, with Synesius, Ambrose, and Jerome leaning more to the |classical' side and others, including Basil of Caesarea, Gregory Nazianzen, John Chrysostom, Paulinus of Nola, and Augustine, synthesizing classical and Christian ideals more fully.
Torrance, "Gregory Nazianzen, Athanasius, and Cyril of Alexandria all challenge the concept of the paternal arche, certainly in the way Zizioulas presents it" (197 n.)].
The fourth-century sophist Himerios 167-73, by Hans Gartner) counted among his hearers Basil of Caesarea and Gregory Nazianzen as well as Julian the Apostate.
To strengthen his case, Guibert cites the example of Gregory Nazianzen as a particularly erudite creator of allegorical and moral interpretations for natural objects.(49) As for himself, Guibert admits, he will avoid even starting to discuss the topic, lest it carry him away into a far lengthier disquisition than he intends.