Saints of the Day – Mesrob the Teacher

19th century Armenian illustration of Saint Mesrop the Teacher, artist unknown; swiped from Wikimedia CommonsArticle

(also known as Mesrop)

Born at Taron, Armenia, c. 345; died at Valarshapat, February 19, 441; feast day formerly November 25.

Saint Mesrob ‘the Great’ was a government official in Armenia, then a hermit and a disciple of Saint Nerses the Great. Mesrob was ordained and devoted himself to the study of Greek, Syriac, and Persian because Armenia had recently been partitioned between Persia and the Empire.

With Saint Isaac the Great, Mesrob was the founder of the Armenian church through his missionary efforts. He is credited with inventing the Armenian alphabet and translating the New Testament and Proverbs into Armenian from the Syriac version.

Mesrob’s missionary activities took him into Georgia, where he also had a literary influence, and is said to have sent students as far as Rome in search of manuscripts. He also organized schools in Armenia and Georgia and created a Georgian alphabet.

Mesrob and Isaac began the formation of a distinctly Armenian liturgy of worship based on that of the mother church at Caesarea in Cappadocia. He also founded his own school in Armenia, and continued preaching until his death at Valarshapat aged of 80. The Armenian translation of the Bible has a special value for scholars (Attwater, Benedictines, Delaney, Encyclopedia).

MLA Citation

  • Katherine I Rabenstein. Saints of the Day, 1998. CatholicSaints.Info. 22 May 2020. Web. 23 October 2021. <>