Saint Euthymius the Great

detail of an anonymous icon of Saint Euthymius the Great; swiped from Wikimedia CommonsMemorial


May have been an orphan as he was educated at the home of the Bishop Orteus of Melitine, Armenia (modern Malatya, Turkey). Saint Polyeuctus of Melitine was a friend of his family, and one of Euthymius’ spiritual directors. Ordained c.396. Monk. Bishop‘s deputy for monasteries in the Melitine diocese.

In 406 he became a hermit for five years near the monastery of Pharan, about six miles from Jerusalem. He supported himself by making baskets, but gave most of his earnings to those even poorer than himself. Hermit near Jericho, living in a cave with a hermit named Theoctistus, and leaving his cell only on Saturday and Sunday, and then only to give spiritual direction. So many people gathered around the holy pair that they built a monastery; Theoctistus became abbot, and Euthymius withdrew to a cell near the Dead Sea.

He cured a young Arab boy, the son of Sheikh Asbepetus, by making the sign of the cross over him, and many Arab adults converted. Established a 15 cell hermitage at Khan-el-Ahmar c.426. Bishop, ordained by Juvenal, Patriarch of Jerusalem. Assisted at the Council of Ephesus in 431, but soon after returned to his solitude. Worked to bring Empress Eudoxia and her followers back to orthodox thinking, and away from the Monophysite heresy. Teacher of Saint Sabas the Great. Following his years in public, he withdrew again to his life of solitary prayer. His good example and wise counsel converted many. Foretold the date of his death.


  • 378 at Melitine, Armenia (modern Malatya, Turkey)



Additional Information

MLA Citation

  • “Saint Euthymius the Great“. CatholicSaints.Info. 15 May 2020. Web. 29 November 2021. <>