Presbyters Uniwersytet Warszawski
ER 1079
Cyprian, the bishop of Carthage (North Africa), probably in hiding because of the persecutions, writes to his clergy and sends money to the presbyter Rogatianus to help the poor. Cyprian, Letter 7, AD 250.
Epistula 7
Cyprianvs Presbyteris Et Diaconibvs Fratribvs Carissimis S[alutem]
1. [...] Quando ergo uos scripseritis quieti omnium rebus conpositis me uenire debere aut si ante dignatus fuerit Dominus ostendere, tunc ad uos ueniam. [...]
2. [...] Sed et peregrinis si qui indigentes fuerint sumptus suggeratis de quantitate mea propria quam apud Rogatianum conpresbyterum nostrum dimisi. Quae quantitas ne forte iam uniersa erogata sit, misi eidem per Naricum acoluthum aliam portionem, ut largius et promptius circa laborantes fiat operatio. [...]
(ed. Diercks 1994: 38-39)
Letter 7
Cyprian to the presbyters and deacons, his beloved brethren, greeting.
1. [...] When, therefore, you write that matters are arranged, and that I ought to come, or if the Lord should condescend to intimate it to me before, then I will come to you. [...]
2. [...] Moreover, you may supply the expenses for strangers, if any should be indigent, from my own portion, which I have left with Rogatianus, our fellow presbyter; which portion, lest it should be all appropriated, I have supplemented by sending to the same by Naricus the acolyte another share, so that the sufferers may be more largely and promptly dealt with. [...]


This letter may have been written before the actual start of the persecutions (the different systems of the numeration of Cyprian's letter try to establish the chronological order, but do not always succeed). This would explain why Cyprian entrusts money to the presbyter Rogatianus, whom we know to have later been imprisoned (Deléani 2007:138).

Place of event:

  • Latin North Africa
  • Carthage

About the source:

Author: Cyprian
Title: Letters, Epistulae, Epistolae
Origin: Carthage (Latin North Africa)
Denomination: Catholic/Nicene/Chalcedonian
Cyprian was born probably about AD 200. He converted to Christianity in about 245 and in 248 was elected Bishop of Carthage. Soon after, the Decian persecution began (in 249/250) and Cyprian went into hiding. In 251 he returned to the city. Under Valerian, he was exiled in 257 and executed in 258. The epistolary of Cyprian consists of 81 letters (16 of them by his correspondents, and 6 synodal or collective), the majority of them are from the period of 250-251, when they were the means of Cyprian`s communication with his clergy. They offer us a wide view on the organization of the Church in Carthage in the middle of the third century, her relation with the Church of Rome, on the development of the persecutions, and on the conflicts that they caused inside the Church.
Different numerations of Cyprian's letters exist, I follow the edition of Diercks in Corpus Christianorum.
G.F. Diercks ed., Sancti Cypriani Episcopi Epistularium. Epistulae 1-57, Corpus Christianorum. Series Latina 3B, Turnhout 1994.
Saint Cyprien, Lettres 1-20, Introduction, texte, traduction et commentaire par S. Deléani, Paris 2007.


Writing activity - Correspondence
    Ecclesiastical administration - Administering Church property
    Relation with - Bishop/Monastic superior
    Described by a title - Conpresbyter
    Pastoral activity - Helping the poor and needy
    Please quote this record referring to its author, database name, number, and, if possible, stable URL: S. Adamiak, Presbyters in the Late Antique West, ER1079,