Presbyters Uniwersytet Warszawski
ER 678
Presbyter Eutropius, probably from Aquitaine (Gaul), living at the turn of the 5th c., writes two consolatory letters to two sisters disinherited by their parents due to their Christian devotion. Account in the "Lives of Illustrious Men" by Gennadius of Marseille, writing in Marseille (Gaul), ca AD 490.
EUTROPIUS presbyter scripsit ad duas sorores, ancillas Christi, quae ob devotionem pudicitiae et amorem religionis exheredatae sunt a parentibus, Epistulas in modum libellorum consolatorias eleganti et aperto sermone duas, non solum ratione, sed et testimoniis Scripturarum munitas.
(ed. E. Cushing Richardson 1896)
Presbyter Eutropius wrote to two sisters, handmaids of Christ, who had been disinherited by their parents on account of their devotion to chastity and their love for religion, two letters of consolation in the form of small books, written in polished and clear language and fortified not only by rational argument, but also by testimonies from the Scriptures.
(trans. by E. Cushing Richardson, changed by J. Szafranowski)


E. Cushing Richardson identified this Eutropius with bishop Eutropius from Africa, known from Augustine's De perfectione iustitiae hominis and Orosius' "Histories Against the pagans". However, Pierre Courcelle, among others, identifies him as a presbyter from Aquitaine living in the second half of the 4th century. There are several other works that are now believed to be of his authorship; for details consult the bibliography.

Place of event:

  • Latin North Africa
  • Gaul

About the source:

Author: Gennadius of Marseille
Title: De viris illustribus, Lives of Illustrious Men, De viris inlustribus, On the lives of famous men On the Lives of Famous Men
Origin: Marseille (Gaul)
Denomination: Catholic/Nicene/Chalcedonian
The "Lives of Illustrious Men" by Gennadius of Marseille is the continuation of Jerome`s work bearing the same title. It contains 99 additional additional entries on different famous ecclesiestatics. It was written in the end of 5th century. At one point Gennadius writes that the death of presbyter and monk Theodore (Theodulus) of Coelesyria  occured `three years ago, in the reign of Zeno` (died AD 491). Gennadius also knows that pope Gelasius died (AD 496) and Julianus Pomerius is considered alive (d. AD 498). Therefore, Gennadius composed majority of his work most probably in the first half of the 490s.
E. Cushing Richardson ed., Hieronymus liber De viris inlustribus; Gennadius liber De viris inlustribus, Leipzig 1896, 57-97.
J. Madoz, 'Herencia literaria del presbítero Eutropio', Estudios eclesiásticos 16 (60) (1942), 27-54;
F. Cavallera, 'L'héritage littéraire et spirituel du prêtre Eutrope', Bulletin de littérature ecclésiastique 49 (1948), 60-71;
P. Courcelle, 'Un nouveau traité d'Eutrope, prêtre aquitain vers l'an 400', Revue des Études Anciennes 56 (1954), 377-390;
H. Savon, 'Le prêtre Eutrope et la 'vraie circoncision'', Revue de l'histoire des religions 199 (1982), 273-302.


Writing activity - Correspondence
Described by a title - Presbyter/πρεσβύτερος
Relation with - Woman
Please quote this record referring to its author, database name, number, and, if possible, stable URL: J. Szafranowski, Presbyters in the Late Antique West, ER678,