Leontius of Byzantium

Leontius Of Byzantium (1), an ecclesiastical writer of the latter part of the 6th and commencement of the 7th century, is sometimes designated, from his original profession, Scholasticus, i.e. pleader. As there are several works of that period which bear the name of Leontius, distinguished by various surnames, it is sometimes doubtful to whom they should be assigned. According to Oudin, Leontius flourished as an inmate of the monastery which had been founded by St. Saba near Jerusalem, and was for a time its abbot (De Scriptor. Eccles. 1, col. 1462, etc.). Cave, confounding two different persons bearing this name, places our Leontius in the reign of Justinian, but from one of the works with which he is credited it is evident that he flourished half a century later. The works which appear to be by our Leontius are as follows:

1. Σχόλια (Scholias), taken down from the lips of Theodorus (first published with Latin version by Leunclavius, and commonly cited by the title De Sectis in a volume containing several other pieces [Basle, 1578, 8vo], and reprinted in the Auctariumn Bibliothecae Patrum of Ducaeus, vol. 1 [Paris, 1624, folio], in the Bibliotheca Patrum, vol. 9 [Paris, 1644, fol.], and in the Bibliotheca Patrum of Galland, 12:625, etc. [Venice, 1728, folio]. The Latin version alone is given in several other editions of the Biblioth. Patrum).

2. Contra Eutychianos et Nestorianos Libri tres, s. confutatio utriusque Fictionis inter se contrarice. Some inaccurately speak of the three books into which this work is divided as distinct works.

3. Liber adversuzs eos qui proferunt nobis qucedamn Apollinarii, falso inscriptal nomine Sanctonrum Patrum, s. adversus Fraudes Apollinaristarum.

4. Solutiones Argumentationzum Severi.

5. Dubitationes hypotheticae et definientes contra eos qui negant in Christo post Unionern duas veras Naturas.These pieces have not been printed in the original, butin a Latin version from the papers of Franciscus Turrianus (published by Canisius in his Lectiones Antique, vol. 4, or 2:525, etc., ed. Basnage, and reprinted in the Bibliotheca Patrum, vol. 9 [Lyons, 1677, folio], and in the above-mentioned volume of Galland).

6. Apologia Concilii Chalcedonensis (printed, with a Latin version and notes, by Antonio Bougivianni, in the Concilia, 7:799, ed. Mansi [Florence, 1762, folio], and reprinted by Galland, 1. c.). In the title of this work Leontius is called Monachus Hierosolymitanus, but the word Hierosolymitanus is possibly an error of the transcriber. At any rate, Galland identifies the writer with our Leontius, and the subject of the work makes it probable that he is right.

7. Adversus Eutychianus (s. Severianos) et Nestorianos in octo libros distincturn (described by Canisins as being extant in MS. at Munich, and by Fabricius as occurring in the catalogue of the Palatine library).

8. Liber de Duplici Naturat in Christo contra Haeresin Monophysitarum (Labbe and Cave speak of this as extant in MS. at Vienna, and they add to it Disputatio contra Philosolhum Arianum: this, however, seems to be an extract from Gelasius of Cyzicus), which probably is one of the discussions between the "holy bishops" of the orthodox party and the "philosophers" who embraced the opposite side, and the Leontius who took a part in it was a bishop of the Cappadocian Caesarea, and contemporary of Athanasilus.

9. According to Nicephorus Callistus (II. E. 18:43), our Leontius wrote also "an admirable work," in thirty books, unfortunately lost, in which he overthrew the tritheistic heresy of John the Laborious, and firmly established the orthodox doctrine. Cave also ascribes to our Leontius Oratio in medium Pentecostem et in Csecumz a Nacstivitate, necnon in illud: Nolite judicare secundum fietceiem (published by Combefis, with a Latin version, in his Auctariumi Novurn, vol. 1 [Paris, 1648, fol.]). It is so given by the editors of the Biblioth. Latrum, vol. 9 (Lyons, 1671, folio), but Fabricius (Bibl. Graeca, 8:321) ascribes the homily to Leontius of Neapolis, while Galland omits it altogether. A homily on the parable of the good Samaritan, printed among the supposititious works of Chrysostom (Opera, 7:506, ed. Savill), seems also to be a production of our Leontius. There are various homilies extant in MS. by "Leontius presbyter Constantinopolitanus." See Canisius, Vita Leontii in Biblioth. Patrunum, vol. 9 (Lyons, 1677, fol.), and Lections Antiquae, 1:527, etc., ed. Basnage; Cave, Hist. Litt. 1:543; Vossius, De Historicis Graecis Liber, 4, 100:18; Fabricius, Bibliotheca, Graeca, 8:309, etc., 318; 12:648; Oudin, De Scriptoribus et Scriptis Eccles. 1, col. 1462; Mansi, Concil. 7, col. 797, etc.; Galland, Bibl. Patrum, 12, Prolegom. 100:20. — Smith, Dict. of Greek and Roman Biog. 2:756 sq.

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