675-749
St. John of Jerusalem
portrait

675, probably in Damascus, Syria.

December 4, circa 749, at Mar Saba, his monastery between Jerusalem and the Dead Sea.

Of a good family in Damascus, John was educated by the elder Cosmas, along with his foster brother, Cosmas the Melodist. He held some office under the Caliph, and later retired to the laura of St. Sabas, near Jerusalem, along his foster brother. There he wrote his theological works and hymns, and was ordained a priest of the church of Jerusalem late in life. His enemies called him Mansur, for reasons unknown. His three orations in favor of icons earned him the sobriquets Chrysorrhous and The Doctor of Christian Art. His works include:

  1. Αισωμεν πάντες Λαοί
  2. Αναστασεως ημερα
  3. Δεῦτε πόμα πίωμεν
    • Come, and Let Us Drink of That New River
  4. Δευτε τελευταιον ασπασμον δωμεν
    • Take the Last Kiss
  5. Δόξα ἐν ὑψίστοις θεῷ
  6. Εκ νυκρος ορθριζοντες
    • Reconciliation’s Plan Devising
  7. Κατήλθες έν τοίς κατωτάτοις
  8. Μεγα το μυστεριον
    • Christ, We Turn Our Eyes to Thee
  9. Νεῦσον πρὸς ὕμνους, οἰχετῶν εὐεϱγέτα
  10. Ορθρισωμεν ορθρου βαθεος
  11. Ο παιδας εκ καμινου
    • Who from the Fiery Furnace Saved the Three
  12. Οτερεωσον με, Χριστε.
    • On the Rock of Thy Commandments
  13. Ποία τοῦ βίού τρυϕὴ διαμένει λύπης ἀμέτοχος
  14. Φωτιζου, ϕωτιζου
    • Thou New Jerusalem, Arise and Shine!
  15. Τας εδρας τας αιωνιας
  16. Αὕτη ἥ κλητή κλητή καὶ ἁγία ἡμέρα
  17. Επι της θειας ϕυλακης
    • Stand on Thy Watch-Tower, Habakkuk the Seer
  18. Ἕσωσε λαὸν, ϑαυματουϱγῶν Δεσπότης