Moisej Ugrin and Ephrem – saints of the Orthodox Church Cover Image

Magyar Mózes és Efrém – az orthodox egyház szentjei
Moisej Ugrin and Ephrem – saints of the Orthodox Church

Author(s): István Ferincz
Subject(s): History
Published by: AETAS Könyv- és Lapkiadó Egyesület

Summary/Abstract: After the foundation of the states and the adoption of Christianity, the 10th and 11th centuries marked a number of social and political changes for both Hungary and the Kievan Rus. The starting period of our observations is the time when Christianity was adopted in a state-controlled framework (prince Géza, 973; Vladimir, 988). Hungary and the Kievan Rus as neighbouring states had contacts with one another on all characteristic levels of the feudal system: the members of reigning families even contracted dynastic marriages. Concerning political relations between the two countries, the end of the 10th and the whole of the 11th century can be regarded as a period of sporadic contacts on the evidence of the few sources. This is another reason why the data of religious and ecclesiastic literature are so important. Both dissimilar and parallel tendencies can be distinguished between the adoption and spreading of Christianity, and the development of the ecclesiastic system. In the time period when the formation of the state and the organized expansion of Christianity were taking place, i.e. at the turn of the 10th and 11th centuries, the schism between Rome and Byzantium was still to come, but the dividing lines between the spheres of influence of the two centres were already taking shape. Although we are aware of the presence of both churches in Hungary as well as in the Kievan Rus (by no means to the same extent, however), we do not know of any clashes of interests leading to significant conflicts. The Russian chronicles (for the year 996) inform us that Vladimir „lived in peace with the princes of the neighbouring countries”, including „the Hungarian Stephen” (Ugrorskij Stefan). This peaceful relationship is shown by the fact that among the princes' closest attendants there can be found the representatives of the neighbouring ethnic group. Thus, for instance, one of the favourite servants of Boris (Vladimirovich), who was later worshipped as a saint, was the Hungarian born George (Georgij Ugrin). His two brothers became monks known as Moisej and Ephrem, and they have been canonized by Russian and the Greek Orthodox Churches. The witnesses of the early Hungarian and East Slavic contacts are depicted in their legends (zhitie) as 4personifications of ideals. These ideals are expounded in our paper.

  • Issue Year: 1998
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 56-59
  • Page Count: 4
  • Language: Hungarian