340–397
St. Ambrose

Introduction

Born: Circa 340, Au­gus­ta Tre­ver­o­rum, in the Ro­man pro­vince of Gaul. To­day the ci­ty of Tri­er, Ger­ma­ny, stands there.

Died: East­er Eve, 397, Mi­lan, It­a­ly.

Buried: Ba­sil­i­ca di Sant’Am­bro­gio, Mi­lan, It­a­ly, in a glass cof­fin, be­tween the mar­tyrs Ger­va­si­us and Pro­tais.

portrait

Biography

Ambrose was a Ro­man ci­ti­zen, son of a Ro­man pre­fect in Gal­lia Nar­bo­nen­sis.

At age 34, he was ap­pointed gov­er­nor of north­ern It­a­ly. In 374, Am­brose was se­lect­ed as bi­shop of Mi­lan by po­pu­lar ac­claim.

His hymns first came to wide­spread no­tice in a stand­off be­tween him and Em­press Jus­ti­na, who had sent sol­diers to ar­rest him.

Ambrose and his faith­ful flock stayed in the sanc­tu­a­ry of the church for days, sing­ing and pray­ing. The em­press lost the test of wills, and Am­brose’s hymns have lived for mil­len­nia.

Sources

Lyrics