Gregory of Tours

Also found in: Dictionary, Wikipedia.

Gregory of Tours

Saint. ?538--?594 ad, Frankish bishop and historian. His Historia Francorum is the chief source of knowledge of 6th-century Gaul. Feast day: Nov. 17
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Gregory of Tours


(original name, Georgius Floren-tius). Born around 540 in Clermont-Ferrand; died around 594 in Tours. Historian of the Franks.

The descendant of a noble Gallo-Roman family from Auvergne, Gregory became bishop of Tours in 573. He was one of the most influential Church figures in the Merovingian state. His History of the Franks (written in Latin, ten books), which deals with events up to 591 A.D. is our chief source for the political history of the Frankish state of the fifth and sixth centuries. The work served as the main source for A. Thierry’s Tales From Merovingian Times (A. Thierry, Izbr. soch., Moscow. 1937).


Gregorii Turonensis Historia francorum. In Monumenta Germaniae Historica, Scriptores rerum Merovingicarum, vol. 1. 1951.
Gregor von Tours, Zehn Bücher Geschichten, vols. 1–2. Published by R. Buchner. Berlin, 1955–56.


Vainshtein, O. L. Zapadnoevropeiskaia srednevekovaia istoriografiia. Moscow-Leningrad, 1964.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
From Gregory of Tours, whose passage spoke of Clovis acquiring both consul and augustus status, all early modern scholars knew of the Frankish claims to partaking in imperial heritage ("Igitur ab Anastasio imperatore codecillos de consolato accepit, et in basilica beati Martini tunica blattea indutus et clamide, inponens vertice diademam.
Gregory of Tours, best known for his misleadingly titled History of the Franks, offers a great deal of insight into the variety of legitimate avenues of spiritual expression to be found during this era.
He relishes the vividness with which figures as far apart as Gregory of Tours (eighth century AD) and Edward Hyde, Earl of Clarendon (seventeenth century), draw the circumstances of their very different worlds.
One should notice that Gregory of Tours chose a Greek word xenodochion for Agricola's leprosarium.
In AD 585 Gregory of Tours was staying in Koblenz with King Childebert.
(25) Anthony Davies observes that there is little evidence of exuberant licentiousness in the early Anglo-Saxon period, as there is for Gregory of Tours' Gaul, for instance.
Gregory of Tours (538-594), an erudite Merovingian bishop, reported that some thieves stole the stained-glass windows from a church to extract the gold that they believed responsible for their marvelous highlights.
Wood deals with Gregory of Tours as a reliable source in relation to Clovis, while Alexander Murray explores examples of the mutual borrowing of Christianity and pre-Christian magic.
Gregory of Tours began his History of the Franks with the creation of the world, which he and presumably others reckoned to last 6,000 years in all, and which at the time had 208 years left, or so he said.
The Historia Francorum of Gregory of Tours records the death of Hygelac in Frisia in about 521.
The sixth-century bishop Gregory of Tours considered his Historiae, in which accounts of human depravity are sporadically interrupted by miracles and other holy deeds, to be a different sort of work from his books of Miracula, which unfold a panorama of unending divine wonders.
Because the states that eventually emerged `had lost contact with their roots in the ancient world' (254), contemporary Christian historians such as Gildas and Gregory of Tours preferred instead to find more meaningful comparisons with the political world of the Old Testament and its `turbulent warrior-kingdom of ancient Israel' (92), and the monk Boniface composed a Latin grammar that used stylistic examples only from the writings of church Fathers (264).