Monday, May 8, 2023

Dom C.L. Spiessens: Apostolic Succession in the Patriarchate of Antioch (III)

Part I

Part II

Translated from: Dom C.L. Spiessens, o.s.b., "Les patriarches d'Antioche et leur succession apostolique," Orient Syrien 7.4 (1962), 389-345 (in this post, pp. 419-434).

3. The Maronite Patriarchate

The Maronites take their name from the monastic community that formed around the tomb of Saint Maron, a Syrian hermit of the 4th century.[1] This monastery was located between Homs and Hama, on the right bank of the Orontes.

Anastasius II, “Melkite” patriarch of Antioch, was murdered during a Jewish revolt in 609. He was the last Chalcedonian patriarch resident in the capital of Oriens before the Persian then Arab invasions. Thus from 609 until 743 (Stephen III), no Melkite patriarch would reside in Antioch. When Heraclius had the Monothelete Macedonian appointed in 639,[2] he resided in Constantinople, like his five immediate successors.

But there is no doubt that a number of Christians of the Patriarchate of Antioch remained faithful to Chalcedon. If we are to believe the Maronite historians, the faithful gathered around the monks of the Monastery of Mar Maron, were of this number. That a bishop was resident in this monastery is not impossible; it’s even quite probable. But that it was this bishop who, as patriarch of Antioch, continued the apostolic succession in Antioch in all faithfulness to the faith of Chalcedon down to our own day without interruption is something difficult to show on the historical level.

Around 636 there took place in Mabbug the famous discussion between the Emperor Heraclius, the Jacobite Patriarch Athanasius Gammolo and eleven bishops of the Patriarchate of Antioch. The discussions, which were intended to reach unity between the different communities, did not have positive results. But among the participants of these discussions there was a delegation of monks from Mar Maron who pronounced against Monophysitism and in favor of the imperial theology at that time, Monotheletism. They accepted the Ekthesis and adhered to the doctrine that it expressed.

One hundred years later, when the “Melkites” had regained their footing in Antioch, we find these same monks of Mar Maron debating in Aleppo with followers of Saint Maximus the Confessor (726), then persecuted in their monastery and in the city of Mabbug by the “Melkite” Patriarch Theophylactus bar Qanbara (745-768?).[3]

It would be truly astonishing if they were persecuted by a Chalcedonian patriarch (since Byzantium had once more become Chalcedonian) if they themselves had been partisans of this council. Fifty years later, during the persecution of Christians under al-Ma’mun (814), Maronites fled to Cyprus and Lebanon.

With regard to doctrine, everyone apart from the Maronites is in agreement that the “Maronites”—monks of Dayr Mar Maron—were originally Monotheletes. The faithful gathered around them necessarily also were. The testimony of William of Tyre[4] cannot be rejected: in 1182, the Maronite Patriarch Peter renounced the Monothelete heresy to which his church had consciously or unconsciously adhered and united with the Church of Rome. The Maronites of Cyprus, however, did not adhere to the Roman faith until three centuries later, in 1445.

With regard to the formation of the Maronite Church as an independent church, it is more difficult to clear the terrain. The Maronites claim that their first patriarch was Saint John Maron, the former bishop of Batroun (Botrys) in Lebanon, who is said to have succeeded the Chalcedonian patriarchs on the See of Peter in Antioch.[5]

These claims are historically untenable. J. B. Chabot, defending the theses of Renaudot, demonstrates this very clearly by analyzing the facts available to us.[6] The figure of John Maron belongs to a legend created in the 15th century on Cyprus. The works that have been attributed to him are forgeries or works of plagiarism “produced in the 17th century by Abraham Echellensis.”[7]

The beginnings of the Maronite Church as a church are most likely to be found in that group of Monothelete Christians of Beit Maron who, during the persecutions of al-Ma’mun or his successors, retreated to the mountains of Lebanon where, thanks to the former Mardaite forces, they were able to obtain a certain measure of tranquility and where they were able to organize themselves on the religious and political levels, the latter in any case arising from their religious centralization.

It is surprising to see the political influence that these patriarchs would have over their flock. They are the veritable chiefs of their people. As soon as we see them act – in documents from the era of the Crusades as well as subsequently—they act like the true representatives of an entire Maronite “nation” and this will continue down to the most recent events.

More surprising still, even the bishops of the Maronite community act only as vicars of the patriarch.[8] We think it is possible to affirm that it was instructions from Rome, perhaps unfamiliar with the particular character of the patriarchal jurisdiction of the Maronites, which, in the 18th century, put an end to that vicarial understanding of the Maronite episcopate. To a dubium[9] submitted to the Propaganda Fide in 1774, asking “If it is licit for the Patriarch to require his brother Bishops to take from him certificates of their faculties when they go to make visits to their dioceses, especially to say that he sends them to visit such dioceses in his name and stead, as though they were his procurators or mercenaries…” The Congregation responded on July 8, 1774: “Bishops are not required to receive from the Patriarch certificates to visit dioceses when this is done by them by ordinary law.”

To another dubium[10] dealing with the patriarch’s power to prevent bishops from exercising their jurisdiction and also dealing with his faculties to judge alone, without a synod, all questions, the Propaganda responds: “It is not licit for the Patriarch to deprive Bishops of their dioceses nor to remove their jurisdiction at all, without consulting the Synod of bishops.”

Starting at that moment, the Maronite patriarch would be subject to the disciplinary laws in force in the universal Church.

Whatever that patriarchal jurisdiction might be, the “Maronite nation”, wherever it may be, only knows one leader: the patriarch of the nation. It is indeed a nation, having become more and more independent out of opposition to the Jacobite and Chalcedonian Churches and the Muslim oppressor, acting as such and giving itself as such a “Patriarchate of Antioch”. Of Antioch solely because that was the manner in which the patriarch styled himself, without anyone seeing clearly—before the 15th century—what this implied in terms of the succession of Peter in Antioch.

In 1121 we see a certain “Mar Petrus, patriarch of the Maronites”.[11] In 1141, another who signs his name “I, Peter, patriarch of the Maronites, by my name Jacob”.[12] It is only a century later that the patriarchs of the Maronites started to style themselves “patriarchs of Antioch” under the influence, we believe, of the Latin patriarchs. It is beginning in this period that the idea of the Maronites having their own succession from Saint Peter took root.

The fact that all the known Maronite patriarchs are also called Peter does not convince us of the contrary. When the Church of Persia formed as an independent church, the Councils of Seleucia-Ctesiphon (410 and 424) decided in a parallel manner that the patriarch that they gave themselves “is for us Peter, leader of our ecclesiastical assembly.”[13] There as well the bishops had a jurisdiction delegated by the metropolitans or the patriarch: “The gift of the priesthood has been granted to all the apostles, but sole principality—that is, spiritual fatherhood—has not been given to all; for one sole true God, there is also only one sole faithful steward, who is the chief, the director and the procurator of his brothers.”

This sentiment of total dependence on the patriarch can be understood even better among the Maronites if we take into account the monastic origins of that church.

Whatever the case may be, nothing permits us to connect the Maronite patriarchs to the line of patriarchs of Antioch properly speaking. It is among the Chalcedonians that this line would continue. The Maronite patriarchs are leaders, “patriarchs” of a church that had become independent as a result of its expulsion from its territory of origin. Little by little, under the influence of the Latin patriarchs of the Crusaders, there appeared the conviction that they were “patriarchs of Antioch”. But absolutely nothing connects them to the true Chalcedonian patriarchs of Antioch apart from the faith, recovered in its purity thanks to the Crusaders, and the episcopal consecration which makes them brothers in the same sacramental order.

Moreover, in 1636 Rome had to decide on the question at the moment of the consecration of Patriarch George Umayrah: “Whether he should be named ‘of Antioch’ as he was elected and others of his predecessors were accustomed to being called, and it pleases the Fathers that he be named ‘Patriarch of Antioch of the Maronites’ because the Patriarch of the Maronites is a national leader, like the two other Patriarchs of Antioch in Asia of the nations of the Nestorians (!) and the Jacobites who, having fallen into heresy, had separated themselves from the Holy Roman Church, while the general one, as he claims to be, is the patriarch of the Greeks, who resides in Damascus, where after the destruction of Antioch the patriarchal see of Antioch is said to have moved.”[14]

Despite the mistakes of every sort, the text is clear and it completely reinforces our conclusions.

The current Maronite patriarch is His Beatitude Mgr Paul-Peter Méouchi, appointed by Rome in 1955.

Since this Roman document prompts us to it, let us turn now to the Greek patriarchate.


4. The Melkite Catholic Patriarchate

Following chronological order, we have arrived at the Byzantine-rite patriarchates, the Melkite patriarchates, Orthodox and Catholic.

Since we are only attempting to study the patriarchal elections insomuch as they risk falsifying the true succession of Peter in Antioch, it is not necessary to review the election of each of the Greek patriarchs, since there is nothing that would permit us to doubt that the succession was regular up until the division in two that we shall now discuss.

 Neither is it necessary to insist at length on all the attempts at union which, especially starting in the second half of the 16th century, had been made in Syria. It is through the activities of the Latin missionaries (Capuchins, Jesuits, Franciscans, Carmelites) and through those of Byzantine Rite priests, often former students of the Roman colleges, that this activity would take place.

Cyril V had ascended, for the second time, to the patriarchal throne of Antioch around 1682, this time legitimately. But, from the beginning, the patriarch found himself in difficulties on account of opposition from the hieromonk Procopius Dabbas who, assisted by the relations he had with the Sublime Porte, and likewise encouraged by the Franciscans of Damascus, had himself proclaimed patriarch under the name Athanasius III. He was consecrated by three bishops and installed on July 5, 1685. The Franciscans of Damascus worked to have him recognized by Rome, which was done by a decree from the Propaganda Fide on June 16, 1687. Despite the illegitimacy of his accession to the patriarchal throne, Rome thus confirmed Athanasius III. But, in 1694, Athanasius III submitted to Cyril V, pressed as he was by financial debts that he could not escape on his own. Pope Innocent XII did not want to hear of a resignation and incited Athanasius Dabbas to continue his opposition to Cyril V, misled by God knows what reports. Moreover, things would soon get even worse, as in 1716 Cyril V himself sent his profession of Catholic faith to Rome, through Seraphim Tanas, a student of the College of the Propaganda in Rome. It was quite an embarrassment in Rome to have these two “patriarchs”, both Catholics.

After many hesitations, the Propaganda tried, in 1718, to convince Athanasius III to renounce his “rights”, but this time it was Athanasius who would hear none of it. Pushed to the limit, the Congregation of the Propaganda wound up recognizing, by a decree of May 9, 1718, Cyril V as the sole legitimate patriarch of Antioch. This was, in effect, the only possible legitimate solution. One wonders in vain why Rome acted so differently in these two situations.

On January 16, 1720, Cyril V died and, this time legitimately, Athanasius III Dabbas succeeded him, appointed by the patriarch of Constantinople, Jeremias III, after an election by the Synodos endimousa.

Athanasius III, who at first had called himself Catholic, signed in 1722 the encyclical of the non-Catholic eastern patriarchs against Catholic claims to purity of faith. Thus Athanasius spent his entire life in total equivocation. He died on July 24, 1724 in Aleppo, having made at the hands of the ablegate Gabriel Eva a Catholic profession of faith and submission to the decisions of the Council of Florence: “He answered me sincerely,” wrote Eva, “that this (the faith of the Holy Council of Florence) had always been and shall be my faith… Hearing such a promise from him, I gave him absolution for all the excommunications, censures and interdicts into which he had fallen…”[15]

At his death, the Catholics of the Byzantine Rite decided that the moment had come to hit hard and provide the Melkite Patriarchate of Antioch with a titulary proven in the Catholic faith. There were already a good number of Catholics among the faithful of the patriarchate, they even had Catholic priests and had had some Catholic bishops. But the Catholic population was nevertheless the minority. To wait for the meeting of the Holy Synod which, necessarily, had to meet under the presidency of the metropolitan of Tyre, Ignatius Beiruti, seemed dangerous to them, since the Catholicizing tendencies of that bishop were anything but promising. It was nevertheless the only possible way to arrive at a canonical election within the patriarchate itself. With the other possibility—referring the election to the Synodos endemousa of Constantinople—one was sure of winding up with the nomination of an Orthodox candidate.

The group of Damascene faithful of the Byzantine Rite and Catholic faith (328 persons) proposed as candidate for the patriarchate the priest Seraphim Tanas and addressed a petition to the pasha of Damascus, asing him to obtain a firman from the sultan of Constantinople.[16]

Seraphim Tanas was the nephew of the Melkite Catholic bishop Euthymius Sayfi and was very dedicated, just like his uncle, to the cause of union with the Roman Church. He was thus elected patriarch by that Catholic community of Damascus and enthroned under the name Cyril VI on October 1, 1724.[17]

We only wish to raise the precedent of one similar election. On September 14, 1451 the bishop of Saydnaya, Mark, was elected to the patriarchal see by the community of Damascus alone. He became Patriarch Michael III. But his election was subsequently confirmed by the Holy Synod of the bishops of Antioch, which saved the election’s canonicity. The real canonical election took place here by the Holy Synod’s confirmation of the choice of the people of Damascus.

It went entirely differently in the election of Seraphim Tanas. There was no bishop present at the election. There was not even a convocation of the Synod.[18] The ecclesiastical canons, however, were formal: “It is by all means proper that a bishop should be appointed by all the bishops in the province; but should this be difficult, either on account of urgent necessity or because of distance, three at least should meet together, and the suffrages of the absent [bishops] also being given and communicated in writing, then the ordination should take place. But in every province the ratification of what is done should be left to the Metropolitan (Canon 4 of Nicaea I). A bishop shall not be ordained without a synod and the presence of the metropolitan of the province...” (Canon 19 of Antioch). “… a bishop must not be appointed otherwise than by a synod and with the judgment of the bishops...” (Canon 23 of Antioch). The law of the eastern churches was very clear on this point. The election of Cyril is thus null and illegitimate.

But there was more. Seraphim Tanas was only a simple priest at the moment of his election. He had to be consecrated and this consecration would further aggravate his case. An appeal was made to the bishops, who refused to consecrate him just as they had refused to recognize him. Only one showed up in Damascus, the bishop of Saydnaya, Neophytus Nasri. The Damascenes also had Basil Finan, a monk of Holy Savior who was considered by the monks to be bishop of the monastery, come. Basil Finan assisted Neophytus Nasri in consecrating the priest Euthymius Fadl as bishop of Fourzol. Thus they had three bishops ready to confer episcopal consecration and to enthrone Seraphim Tanas as “patriarch of the Greeks” under the name Cyril VI: Neophytus Nasri, Basil Finan and Euthymius Fadl.

In fact, the episcopacy of Basil Finan was anti-canonical. He had been consecrated as a bishop (February 2, 1724) under pressure exercised by the Emir Haydar on Metropolitan Neophytus of Beirut (whom he had brought by force) and the latter was obliged to consecrate Basil Finan without the consent of Patriarch Athanasius III and the Holy Synod. As co-consecrators, they gave him the Maronite archbishop of Acre and the Armenian archbishop of Aleppo, Abraham.[19]

The consecration of Euthymius Fadl (September 14, 1724) was equally anti-canonical because it was done contrary to all the canons that have already been cited, which require the presence of at least three bishops and the consent of the patriarch (or metropolitan), as well as that of the bishops of the Synod. It was also anti-canonical because it was done without the permission of the bishop of the place where the consecration took place: “No bishop shall presume to pass from one province to another, and ordain persons to the dignity of the ministry in the Church, not even should he have others with him, unless he should go at the written invitation of the metropolitan and bishops into whose country he goes. But if he should, without invitation, proceed irregularly to the ordination of any... the things done by him are null” (Canon 13 of Antioch). If any one be made bishop without the consent of the Metropolitan, the great Synod has declared that such a man ought not to be a bishop” (Canon 6 of the First Council of Nicaea).

Is irregularity of the consecration, together with the irregularity of the election, such that it renders one or the other null and void? Or both? Broaching this question is the responsibility of theologians and not of a historian. We shall leave to them the task of doing it.

Had Rome judged that it would be more prudent to obtain official recognition of Cyril VI from the Sublime Porte before sending him its own confirmation? It remains the case that it requested the berat of investiture in Constantinople without the new patriarch being able to claim his titles or to enjoy the rights that they conferred upon him. The Sublime Porte turned a deaf ear. Rome insisted and had important and influential figures intervene. Constantinople continued to refuse. What is more, it recalled the wali of Damascus who had obtained a firman in favor of Cyril VI. Constantinople’s candidate had, in contrast, immediately obtained the requested berat and-- O irony of fate!--  this gave him, among other rights, that of cracking down and referring to the secular authorities all those who opposed his free exercise of his rights and prerogatives. In these circumstances, Cyril VI had no recourse but to leave Damascus. He did this in 1725 and took refuge in Lebanon, where the very Catholic mountains always provided a sure shelter for those Catholic leaders who were fleeing persecutions.

To what should this reticence on the part of the Sublime Porte be attributed, when in other circumstances it had shown itself to be prodigious with berats, sometimes granting them to two or three different rival candidates? It is difficult to say. One could suppose, however, that tsarist Russia, which had assumed the protectorate, throughout the whole territory of the Ottoman Empire, of the Greek Orthodox and which was all-powerful in Constantinople, could not willingly accept that a Greek patriarchate united with Rome stand up against the Orthodox patriarchate that practically depended on it and all the more so to see it oust and supplant the latter.

The unfortunate Cyril VI does not seem to have enjoyed much favor with the Holy See. If Rome requested his confirmation from the Sublime Porte at the time of his election, it took more than five years to grant its own. It was in fact only on April 25, 1730, at the Melkite Catholic synod held at the Monastery of the Holy Savior, that Cyril VI was proclaimed legitimate patriarch of Antioch by the mouth of the Capuchin Dositheus of the Holy Trinity, mandated by Pope Benedict XIII. The very rev. Father Dositheus read the decree from the Holy Congregation de Propaganda Fide which said, “Nihil obstare validae et licitae consecrationi Cyrilli in patriarchem antiochenem Graecorum.” “Nothing prevents the licit and valid consecration of Cyril as patriarch of Antioch for the Greeks.”[20]

This text leaves us a bit bleary. If we consider that, in ecclesiastical terminology, taking possession of an episcopal see is called “enthronement”, we cannot at all understand its use by Rome in the above decree of the words “valid and licit consecration.” The formulation gives the impression that Rome still doubts the validity of the previous consecration given to Cyril in the circumstances that we have described and authorizes a new consecration which, this time, would be valid. If our interpretation is exact, we wonder when this new consecration had been given to Cyril VI. We have not found any document that informs us on this point. It is probable that, before being enthroned, Cyril VI received episcopal consecration “in the greatest intimacy”.

One would have expected that, having given her accord, Rome would have confirmed it by sending the pallium. It did so, of course, but only after much delay. The unfortunate patriarch had to wait fourteen long years before receiving this official confirmation of his patriarchal dignity. It was, in fact, only on February 3, 1774 that the pallium was sent to him, but beforehand the patriarch had to give his promise to eliminate from his rite all the foreign infiltrations that had been adopted by different Greek Melkite bishops and notably by Euthymius Sayfi.

Cyril VI Tanas begins the line of Melkite Catholic patriarchs, which continues today in the person of His Beatitude Mgr Maximus VI Sayegh.


5. The Orthodox Melkite Patriarchate

We have already recounted above how, at the death of Athanasius III Dabbas, they proceeded in Damascus to the election of Cyril VI Tanas, first of the Melkite Catholic line of patriarchs. But at the same time, the Holy Synod of Orthodox bishops (apart from Neophytus Nasri), who were in Aleppo, where Athanasius III had convoked them before his death, had written to the Ecumenical Patriarch, Jeremias III, to ask him to nominate for Antioch Sylvester, a monk of Mount Athos.[21]

This same Athanasius had, at the same time, asked the bishops of Antioch to give him as successor this monk Sylvester, who had been his protosyncellus. This proves once more the “Catholic” sentiments of Athanasius III.

Patriarch Jeremias III and the bishops of the Synodos endemousa had already named as Athanasius III’s successor the metropolitan of Damascus, Joachim, but when in Constantinople they learned of the desire of the late patriarch and of the Synod of bishops of Antioch, the nomination of Joachim of Damascus was annulled and they asked that Sylvester be sent from Mount Athos. He was consecrated as patriarch of Antioch on September 24, 1724.[22] They obtained for him the berat from the Sublime Porte, as well as the order for the expulsion of Cyril VI.

This intervention by the Synodos endemousa was in no way an innovation, as we have already pointed out. It would take too long and be useless for the study that we have undertaken to point out all the interventions by Constantinople in the affairs of Antioch through the intermediary of the Synodos endemousa.

It is enough for us to say that, canonically, there was nothing irregular about Sylvester’s election by this Synodos. These interventions would continue in Antioch until after the election of Hierotheus I (1850-1885). At that time they were put to an end, thanks especially to the Russian influence on the Arab party of the patriarchate.

In our opinion, then, the Patriarch Sylvester continued the true line of Chalcedonian patriarchs from before and after the Severian schism, a line that was continued by both Greek and Syrian elements, whether at Constantinople or in Antioch.

It is through him that Petrine succession continues down to our own day in the person of His Beatitude Theodosius VI Abourjeili. Even after Sylvester, the succession went through many vicissitudes. We have studied the principle ones. The canonicity of the elections has always nevertheless been preserved.



We have presented, as we proposed, an account of the historical facts and the dogmatic or canonical reasons that have caused there to be, even today, five patriarchs each claiming to be the true holder of the patriarchal see of Antioch. For us, it is clear, as our readers may have been convinced themselves, that only the Melkite Orthodox patriarch can justify his claim to the succession of Saint Peter on this see.

One might perhaps accuse us of severity; one might accuse us of using two weights and two measures; one might find that we have been too intransigent towards the patriarchate of Severus of Antioch and not sufficiently so when it comes to the patriarchate of Sylvester. Severus’ error in his definition of a single nature in Christ was merely, in the opinion of all modern theologians, a purely verbal error, it being possible to consider this definition to be more or less in line with that which was given by the Council of Chalcedon, while the doctrine professed by the Greek Orthodox patriarchs is, on certain points of dogma, in opposition to that of the Catholic Church. If then, despite these oppositions, we consider His Beatitude Theodosius VI Abourjeili as continuing the succession of Peter, we should all the more so consider Severus of Antioch as successor of Peter, even after his schism.

Certainly, the argument would be of value if one only had to consider doctrine in patriarchal succession. But we have not forgotten that Severus of Antioch had been canonically deposed, a deposition that put an end to his apostolic succession, while none of the Greek Orthodox patriarchs of Antioch, whose successors are Sylvester and Theodosius VI, were the object of an excommunication or a deposition.

Whatever the case may be, we have done the work of a historian and not of a theologian. If we have given our personal opinion, we believe that it is justified by History. The reader, and particularly the theologian, will deduce from the facts that we have presented the conclusions that they believe ensue from them.


C. L. Spiessens, o.s.b.

[1] Theodoret, Historia Religiosa, p. lxxxxx, 1418.

[2] Chronicle of Eutychius, CSO, vol. 2, p. 13.

[3] Michael the Syrian, Chronicle, ed. Chabot, vol. 2, pp. 492-496.

[4] William of Tyre, History, XVII, 8.

[5] See P. Dib, “Maronites” in Dictionnaire de théologie Catholique, vol. 10, col. 1ff.

[6] J. B. Chabot, “Les origines de la légende de Saint Jean Maron,” Mémoires de l’Institut National de France (1951), pp. 1-19.

[7] Chabot, op. cit., p. 19.

[8] See the bold article of M. Clément, “La collegialité de l’épiscopat dans l’Eglise maronite” in Episcopat et l’Eglise universelle, Unam Sanctam, 39.

[9] Dubium 14, Congregatio de Propagande Fide 8-7-1774.

[10] Dubium 15, ibid.

[11] Ms Vatican Syriac 18.

[12] Ibid. For a study of the documents of this period, see J. B. Chabot, “Les listes patriarcales de l’Eglise maronite,” Mémoires de l’Institut National de France (1951), pp. 21-43.

[13] Chabot, Synodicon Orientale, 289-294.

[14] Decree of the Congregatio de Propaganda Fide, 28-1-1636.

[15] Mansi, XLVI, 158.

[16] According to Constantin Bacha, in his History of the Melkite Patriarchate, II, pp. 74-81, the document is found in the archives of the Congragation de Propaganda Fide.

[17] See the narrative of the events by the very rev. Father Dositheus, Custodian of the Capuchins of Damascus, in his letter of January 29, 1725 to the Congragation de Propaganda Fide, Mansi XLVI, 165-168.

[18] See the letter of Ambroise de Rennes to the Roman Procuror of the Capuchins, Mansi 160.

[19] See the act in Mansi, XXXVII, 219-226.

[20] Cyrille VI Tanas.

[21] On Sylvester, see: Cl. Karnapas, “The Patriarch of Antioch, Sylvester the Cypriot” (in Greek), Nea Sion (1905), pp. 197-199; P. Bacel, “La persécution de Sylvestre,” Echos d’Orient 7 (1904), pp. 160-161; and C. Bacha in his History of the Melkite Patriarchate, loc. cit.

[22] The acts concerning the election by the Synodos endemousa are in archim. Delikanis, Patriarchal Decrees, 1905, III, p. 185; and also in Phil. Vapheidis, History of the Church (in Greek), II, pp. 270-272.