Book of Saints – Hyginus the Pope

detail of a statue of Pope Saint Hyginus; date unknown, artist unknown; portico of Saint Peter's Basilica, Vatican City, Rome, Italy; photographed in May 2006 by Bocachete; swiped from Wikimedia CommonsArticle

(Saint) Pope, Martyr (January 11) (2nd century) After the martyrdom of Saint Telesphorus, Saint Hyginus, an Athenian, was elected Pope. Authors do not agree as to the precise dates of his accession and of his death. But it may safely be asserted that his Pontificate fell during the reign of the Emperor Antoninus Pius, that is between A.D. 138 and A.D. 161. A.D. 158 is the most likely of the dates given of his martyrdom. The struggles of the Church in his time were chiefly with the Gnostic heretics. He excommunicated Cerdo and others of their leaders. The heresy itself, a strange compound of Oriental superstition and of Metaphysical imaginings, has died out completely and makes no sort of appeal to the modern mind, though it evidently fitted in with the mentality of second century philosophers. Saint Hyginus is said to have accurately regulated the gradations of rank among the clergy. All the Martyrologies style him a Martyr and say that he was buried near the bodv of Saint Peter.

MLA Citation

  • Monks of Ramsgate. “Hyginus the Pope”. Book of Saints, 1921. CatholicSaints.Info. 12 August 2018. Web. 18 September 2020. <>