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Sophronius

Sophronius was Patriarch of Jerusalem early in the seventh century. Specimens of his poetical work can be seen in the third volume of Daniel's Thesaurus. A few of his Idiomela are found in the Menaea, and also in the Horologion. If we except the hymn rendered by John Keble, "Hail, gladdening Light," and which has been attributed to him—although Athenogenes of Cappadocia, who suffered martyrdom under Diocletian c. A.D. 200, and is said to have sung the hymn while the flames encircled him, shares the honour in the Greek Church—none of his hymns have been translated into English. That hymn, φῶς ἱλαρὸν ἁγίας δόξης, is quoted by St. Basil in the fourth century, and then as of unknown authorship. The likelihood is, therefore, that it is one of the earliest Christian hymns, possibly of the second century. It is used as a vesper hymn in the Greek Church, and as such finds a place in the Service Books. It has been often translated, and in John Keble's version is one of the best known hymns from the Greek Offices.

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