New Catholic Dictionary – Saint Ephraem


(Hebrew: fruitful) Doctor of the Church, born Nisibis, Mesopotamia, c.306; died Edessa, 373. His father was a pagan priest, and he was instructed in Christian precepts by Saint James, Bishop of Nisibis, whom he assisted in renewing the moral life of the citizens of that city. In 363, when Nisibis was retroceded to Persia, Ephraem fled with the Christian population to escape persecution, and settled at Edessa, where he was probably one of the chief founders of the “School of the Persians.” The great liturgical poet of the Orient, his works comprise exegetical writings, homilies, and hymns. He was called the “Sun of the Syrians” by the Syrian Christians, among whom he had great influence. Tomb in Armenian monastery, Der Serkis, west of Edessa. Feast, Roman Calendar, 18 June.

MLA Citation

  • “Saint Ephraem”. New Catholic Dictionary. CatholicSaints.Info. 7 October 2012. Web. 23 January 2022. <>